Hello! It's been a while! I'd like to say I've been up to really exciting things but it's just been everyday life that has kept me busy. I'm sure you all watched the moon the other night, wasn't it fantastic?!
Maggie has been teething and I've basically been a walking zombie for the last couple weeks due to very little sleep. Today she learned to climbed out of her crib so my life is going to be changing drastically. To be honest, I don't know what to do now for nap and bed time (I always nurse her and then lay her in her crib and she goes to bed). I'm very worried that I'll have even less time to myself now.
The purse graveyard. I have four purses with broken leather straps that need to be repaired.
Yummy soup I made last week. I got the recipe via Posie Gets Cozy.
The other day I was watching two hawks circling around my house. I was observing them for quite some time and was trying to get a shot of them. I saw one swoop down and land nearby so I ran over and was looking for it as quietly as possible. I had just given up when I happened to glance above me and there it was! It stayed long enough for me to take a couple pictures and then it was gone. I was so thankful for this close encounter!
I make beans once a week. It's an incredibly inexpensive way to feed a family of seven and the leftovers make for yummy lunches the next day.
I wore a sweater this morning for about 30 minutes! Then I got hot.
Yesterday's breakfast. Poached eggs are so delicious. I find it crazy how preparing them differently can make such a difference in how they taste. They seem like a delicacy when made this way.
I spent this rainy morning listening to Nick Cave. This is a picture Ruben took on his phone last time we saw Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds in 2012. This was one of the best shows I've ever been to and I love this shot so much. If you are already a fan of his music then I need not tell how amazing it is but if by chance you've never listened, well let me encourage you to do so asap. You could start with this album, it has a lot of mellower songs but all the albums are wonderful. Enjoy!
Oh, and have you seen his tintype from Sundance? Pretty rad.
It's now been a year since I first became interested (obsessed) in the wet plate collodion process and I am finally at the point where I am able to start practicing this amazing, fascinating and complicated art.
Last February I took a two day workshop with Will Dunniway where I learned about the entire process from mixing chemicals, pouring plates to developing, fixing and varnishing. It was intense and it solidified my desire to move forward with this art.
I have slowly been acquiring all the necessary things and it's taken many months, lots of patience and a ton of help from family and friends and Will. My dad has helped tremendously and even though he doesn't read here I can't fail to mention him and all his encouragement and financial aid.
This is a plate from the workshop taken on Will's camera by the master himself.
With this type of photography the whole thing must be done while the plate is wet which means you need a darkroom close by to develop. Our friend Erick made me an awesome mobile darkroom for my birthday! You can't see the outside in this picture but it's really pretty!
This last weekend I poured my first plates. I had some major chemical problems but I was able to get a few decent plates. I have a lot of practice ahead of me but it is a dream to even be at this point!
Our friends Mike and Vanessa. (Vanessa moved which is why she is blurred)
After Ruben had sat for 5 photos he made me sit for one. We call this one "Dust Bowl Annie" hahaha! The camera got moved while the plate was being exposed so I'm blurry.
My daughter Alex had the best shot. I'm pretty pleased with this one. I'm still working on getting a perfect focus but again...practice, practice, practice!
That's what I've been up to! If you are interested in seeing how the whole process works, HERE is a detailed video. It demonstrates the process on glass instead of plates but the steps are still the same.
I hope you enjoyed this post because there will be more like it in the near future!
It's time for the next installment of local flora. All photos of plants in this post (with the exception of the passionflower) were taken in Newport Beach and Costa Mesa and most of these grow in the Talbert Nature Preserve.
Sticky Monkeyflower (Bush Monkeyflower)
Turkey-tangle Frog-fruit (Garden Lippia)
I'm pretty certain this little beauty is Southern Tarplant which is a native, rare endangered species.
Peruvian Pepper Tree Albizia, plume acacia, Stink Bean (not native)
Toyon (California Holly)
Pampas Grass (not native and invasive)
I'm really enjoying this ongoing project and as I type I hear a hawk calling outside which is make me eager to get out there and take a walk. Speaking of birds, I might as well post a few pictures that I recently took at San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine.
Great Blue Heron
I hope you enjoyed this post! You can read Part I here.
I thrifted this Land Camera at an estate sale many years ago. I thought it was broken but after I watched a few youtube videos I realized it just needed a new battery. It's been really fun taking pictures with it, frustrating but fun. Most of them are out of focus but for some reason they still are pretty awesome. Yesterday I finally got a good picture that was in focus and all (it's the one of Shane on his bike)! Here are some of the pictures I've taken over the last year.
The film is even reasonably priced at about $9 for 10 exposures. I use Fuji fp100c. I'd like to try out some black and white film but it costs quite a bit more so I'll be sticking with color for now. If you come across one of these at a thrift store or online and you like taking pictures, I'd highly recommend getting it!
Last week Ruben and I got away for the night to celebrate my birthday. We crammed one hell of a good time into 24 hours! Of course, that's kinda what you have to do when you have 5 kids and are never alone. We soaked in the sun, lounged in cool water, drank many beers, watched the sunset, stargazed (more on that in a minute), listened to the coyotes howling, watched the sun rise, went out to eat for breakfast! and thoroughly enjoyed each others company!
We were lucky to be there on a new moon and it was the night after the big meteor shower so the night sky was incredible! We saw a bunch of meteors and sat under the stars for a long time. All in all it was a terrific trip and a much needed break from home. A big thanks to my mom for watching all the kids and the generous birthday gifts (aka money) from my family which made our trip possible :)