Thursday, 24 January 2013


Our pups have grown so much since they were born in December.
They are so gorgeous.
I think they might be the most calm, quiet pups I have ever come across.

As they always have been.

At one day old they were not quite one child's handful.

They just got fatter and fatter.

A teddy bear??

First real feed of puppy porridge.
They walked and slipped and slid in it! It went everywhere.
Then came the teeth and mouthing us all the time.
This guy is "blowing" his puppy fur- starting on the top of his head! 
Thank goodness we have had these pups as both our German shepherds passed away recently.
We've bought a new big bloke who seems to be fitting in really well with the pack!
I am so grateful to still be on holidays to settle him in with the gang.

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Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Photography Light painting.

On Saturday night, after our photography soirĂ©e, we convinced Pete the Photographer to stay the night rather than make the long drive home. 
He had a wee rest and chat, then took advantage of the stunning lightning show going on in the distance. The lightning made the sky absolutely glow behind these images.
We had quite a few kids here- my daughter's friends and of course my boys- plus husband.
He put them to good use!

We had a heap of sparklers in the cupboard, so out they came. Plus all the torches we could find. 

I had been trying to get the bulb function to work on my camera, but was failing. Pete helped me set my camera to a 30" shutter speed, f13 and ISO400 and flick the lens focus to manual. 

FYI it wasn't on a tripod, just sitting, balancing on a stool, plus I had my wide angle lens on- set at 16mm. I have never shot in full manual before, only partially in AV or TV mode. This was something I have wanted to have a go at for a while.

I was a bit slow getting this one -so the 2 outside sparklers had almost died by the time I pressed the shutter. For your interest Sparklers last just over 30 seconds. The red streak is the little fella throwing a red headlamp up in the air behind them.

Stars! I was a bit off to the side, away from Pete, but then I moved closer so that I got a frontal view.

More red streaks and the Nintendo symbols, but the cross looks a bit like a bow! The kiddos took note and learned from this.

Someone ran in front of us with a torch and then shone it at us!

Here the kids were running around and then shining their torches at us and up into the tree.

Again just running all about.

And my favourite of the night.
The kids had sparklers and ran back and forth in front of us while taking them up and down like waves in the ocean. 

The girls tried to get a Christmas tree, but it didn't work all that well, again they learned from it.

A red star and a white star??

And this was the spookiest shot of the night. the kids all shone the torches onto their faces and moved about. They looked like ghostly figures.

Then the rain came in and put some droplets all over my lens. which made things kinda interesting.

But then it got to the point where we couldn't see anything and it was pretty cold. 
It was also about 2.15 am. We came inside and loaded the photos up and onto Facebook! Finally hitting the sack at about 3am.

Pete went home on Sunday morning having another workshop going on, but we laid about like big sloths as the temperature climbed to 43.8 degrees. The girls spent about 6 hours in the pool trying to keep cool. Eating huge tubs of ice cream and playing music REALLY loudly on the old stereo I set up outside!!!
We had the mates stay on for a few nights as there was a terrific storm on Sunday night in town and on the other side of town, where these mates live. It wiped out power to 26 000 homes. We had our generators out on loan and kept the girls here rather than them being at home with no power and horrible heat.

So they had me at it again on Monday night with my old camera that my daughter has taken over (a Canon 400D). My kids have been so inspired by Pete and his energy and enthusiasm, that they are walking about with cameras all day long!
They think they are rather skilled at this light painting now and have developed some new ideas.

They perfected the Christmas tree.

Love hearts.


Nintendo symbols

P3AC3 hahahahaha!!

or rather PEACE

Ha ha! EVOL- I didn't say a word until they saw it!

He He!

Running with torches.

And then they got creepy. 
The idea was to just jump up and down on the spot while I shone the big torch on them.
Looks like something out of a horror movie right??

Then they made the little fella sit on the ground while they jumped around him and I shone the torch from person to person.
 This freaked them out so much that the plans to sleep out on the trampoline were quickly abandoned!!

I have to say though that these sparkler ones are still my Favourites!

Does everyone have enthusiastic kids for this sort of stuff or is it just me??

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Home Photography

Last week my daughter and I did a 2 day photography workshop with photographer Pete Longworth.
I gave her the workshop as a Christmas present after she announced to me a couple of months ago that she wanted to be a photographer. She is very artistic and has a great eye for detail.
We went on Monday night and found out what our project for the week was to be.
Home was the theme. 
Then we were to take some photos over the next 5 days and apply some of the rules of composition and exposure that Pete had run through. His mantra for photography is Light, Subject and Composition. I repeat this in my mind quite often.
We returned on Saturday with our photos for him to help us decide which ones to use in a little slide show. Here are some of mine: For the life of me I Can't remember the exact order.
These are some of the things that make up my home. I didn't include photographs of my husband and children, which of course are the centre of my home, as my daughter had a few images of them to choose from and I didn't want to double up. But these are some other things that make up my home.


The Cairn Terrier team!

A special climbing cactusy plant's flower in the garden that my husband gave me years ago -it only flowers for one day once a year!

Mary Rose, of which I have quite a few!

Pink Butterfly bush

The house of many cowboy boots! - there are many more inside the door too!

My favourite cowboy boots, not the most comfortable, but I just love the texture.

These were my mum's and have been in my homes with her and this home.

Beautiful puss!

Googies -Plus the chooks that go with them!
The Staub pot that usually has something brewing in it at least twice a week.

And here are a few others that I want to share here

I wanted to have that big nose effect, but now realise that I needed a fish eye lens (which I don't have as it makes me feel ill) rather than my wide angle.


Check out those eyes!
I loved the exercise and must say that my daughter's images were absolutely fantastic. She has a real eye for it. I found it hard knowing that her's were so good - I really had to lift my game!
We had a little slide night here in the garden and were nearly blown away with a gale, so we moved it into the family room- as I was rearranging furniture , the youngest announced- "Gee I am glad that we cleaned up!" Yeah right, thanks for that!
But the truth was that we had been in a hell of a mess after the removalists delivered furniture from my inlaw's house on Tuesday and I had spent the whole week clearing out cupboards and rearranging things to fit a lot of it in this home. A fair bit of excess and other household bits are in storage in a shipping container in the paddock near the shed. I had a massive, massive week decluttering and so did the kids clearing out their rooms too. But it is done now and I can relax for the next few weeks of the holidays just faffing about- bringing some of those decorative bits up into the house. And of course there's a couple of silver polishing days needed.

When the slideshow was over and most people left for the night there was a wild lightning show going on. I had an expert teacher with us and he was out capturing the lightning strikes. So I had a go too. I had a wide angle lens on and I was trying to get my camera to take the shot in bulb mode and it would not fire ( I think I kow now what it was- AF on the lens!). But then I just switched to manual and followed Pete's instructions. 30 second exposure (30"), f13, ISO 400 and lens on manual not Auto focus and it worked!!!

A little person ran in front of the camera with a torch!

I then cropped this one.

Then out came the sparklers and torches and the kids got right into it!!
More on that in the next post.

 Lets just say that I've had to go out teaching the kids the settings on ALL the cameras in the house and light painting every night since!

Get your cameras out and have a go when you see the next thunderstorm coming!

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