Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #211 What’s your photographic groove?

Anne’s challenge this week is, “What’s my photographic groove? What type of photography do I truly enjoy doing?  I will show you wonderful images and tell you about them.

This challenge has me thinking. When I was enrolled and pursuing my Photography Certificate, I was exposed to many photographic experiences. My practical mother continued to ask me what I intended to do with my photography. One idea was to start a Pet Photography business. Another idea I had was to author a picture book. I had just retired from a Library/Teacher career of 25 years. I didn’t know way direction to take. Life happened. My parents and grandchildren needed my attention. By the time I finished 40+ credits I decided I was going to do photography on my own terms – for my own personal enjoyment. I didn’t need another job. So I guess you can say my photographic groove is “Focus”. I use my camera to help me see the world around me. I capture whatever I come across.

Often, my camera helps me connect to my surroundings. Sometimes nature, sometimes people, and sometimes taking a quirky look.

My camera connected me to a good group of friends. This group has taken me to many places and spaces in the area. Visits out of town to Niles, Ca. Trips to the Sacramento Zoo. Visiting a local urban micro Farm at End of the Road in Orangevale, Ca.

My photography helps me focus on the present, and preserve memories to reflect upon in the future.
I have been raising my second puppy in the past 2 1/2 years. Glad I have photos of my Charlie.

Puppies grow into dogs and seem to change overnight. Waiting for them to calm down may take just a bit longer. This is where my iPhone comes into play.


My 4 youngest grandchildren have moved back and forth from Sacramento, California to Knoxville, Tennessee (about 2500 miles). They returned last week for the third time in less than three years. Photos and FaceTime helped during these times of separation. I so enjoy my Nixplay digital frame.

But as of last Thursday, I can see my grandchildren in person. We celebrated the first day of TK and First Grade, and the last day of vacation for my 5th grader with some ice cream at Handels.

Great challenge. Sorry for the late post. I have been having “words” with my WordPress!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #206 Treasures

This week Aletta has chosen the topic Treasures. It can be wealth or riches like precious metals, money, jewels, or anything a person values greatly. I started out thinking of things that surrounded me in my home. I have a number of things that I collect: spoons, bears, and heart-shaped stones. I also have many things that my mother collected: crystal and tea cups. But after thinking about this topic I came to the conclusion that what I truly treasure are the memories that come with every item. Where I was, who I was with, and my experience. Or in the case of my inherited objects just thinking about my parents.

That is probably why photography itself is something that I treasure. It is not just capturing the perfect image, though that is an added bonus, but the experience, who was there to share it with, and taking the time to take in my surroundings. A quiet time, a fleeting moment, and a time to reflect.

But in order to appreciate much of these treasures, I depend upon my eyesight. I have inherited macular degeneration from my mother. By eighty her vision was severely limited, and this loss caused her to be dependent on others. The adjustment was hard. So far, I am doing well, but I can tell my left eye is not pulling its full weight. The human body adjusts and I have no limitations yet. So I am treasuring every moment I can get out with my friends and take photographs. I joke with my friends, and say when I can’t see can I still go out and pretend to take pictures?

I absolutely treasure my dogs. I waited so long for my first dog, Liberty because I wanted the time to be right to care for her. Charlie came next after the time had passed, and then I waited till he was born. But after he crossed over, he sent me my Moxie Love so I wouldn’t be without this companion. I am busy working to train Moxie so that she can come with me when I am out and about. My goal is to take the AKC Good Citizen Test at the end of the summer. In the future, I would like to visit assisted living communities.

There are families that have the quintessential family portrait, then there is my family. Currently, everyone is scattered. I have two married children and seven grandchildren. Grandchildren range in age from 2 years to 25 years old. Each child is a treasure in their own way. Maybe one day I will have a full family portrait, but I will not hold my breath.

This is a challenging blog to write. It does make me take time to appreciate the treasure time and the world around me. It is easy to get off track and think about day to day life. What do you treasure?

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #205 The Eyes Have It

Tina challenges me to explore the concept that, “In photography, the most successful portraits will, with rare exception, include focus on the eyes.”

Eye Spy billboard captured in Times Square

The movie titled “Big Eyes” told the story of an American artist Margaret Keane. These murals reminded me of that style.

I have been shooting this smiling sun for over 20 years when I stop in Gilroy, Ca. for cherries on the way to Pacific Grove in May. I try to photograph this from a new perspective.
I printed this photograph many years ago and called it, “Peeking”.

The Sacramento Zoo provides many photo opportunities. This time I was focused on the eyes.

Alpaca after shearing. What is she trying to tell me?
Fish Eye

A salute to a dear photo friend who left us too soon. Greg loved to wear hats. Here he is at the Highland Games in Woodland many years ago.

Greg Morris

I found these odd eyed dogs at some dog events around town.

My Liberty (Libby) Love expressive eyes

Charlies had the most beautiful eyes

Moxie is really starting to vary her expressions. Raised eyebrow when the word “treat” or “dinner” is mentioned.

Did I hear the word, “Dinner”.

Thank you for stopping by to see how I focused on EYES! I would love to read your comments!

Lens-Artist Photo Challenge #204 Doors

 This week Sylvia would love for me to share a few appealing or distinctive doorways I have discovered. Do you feel some have more character than others or evoke a particular feeling or mood? Hope you have fun viewing this challenge! 

Old Sacramento has many historic doors, While I was enrolled in a Color Photography class at Cosumnes River College my professor gave us an unusual assignment. I was given an adjective., a noun, and a verb. My three words were Flaming door expanding. So off to Old Sacramento in search of a good door.

Flaming door expanding!

I have always looked for unusual doors. Some tell a historical story, some make a statement, some are inviting, some provide a different message, and some provide a frame for a photo,

Fire House Door established in 1853.
Port Richmond, California.
Half Moon Bay Review established in 1898.
Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California.
Orange’s First Bank established in 1886
Orange County Fruit Exchange – Sunkist established in 1922. A landmark building in Orange, Ca
Doors, and more doors at the winery.
Niles, California
I wonder what was taking place behind closed doors?
Half Moon Bay decorated in the Halloween spirit!
Sending mixed messages.
Entering a wine celler creates a nice frame.
Looking through a doorway in Bodie, Ca.

This is just a small sample of doors and doorways that I come across when I am out with my camera. But the best door I enjoy opening up is the one I call home. My dog Moxie (14 months) agrees! Here she is after her spa day at Sunflower Pet Salon.

What door do you enjoy opening?