Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Small Town Night Life

As of late, I've been exploring my small town at night. Armed with only my camera and the will to somehow make this one horse town look beautiful, out I go into the darkness hoping to find the shot that makes my night. 
Bowie is a little town that time forgot. It is about 30 miles from the Oklahoma border. With a  population of a little over 5 thousand, more people exist beneath the ground at Elmwood Cemetery than are walking around this place. 
Pictured above, is Smythe Street. It is one of our main downtown streets. Ironically enough, we do not have a "Main Street". The street is made of bricks which gives it a very interesting texture for night shots. If it were wet, even better, but I've yet to get out and do rain shots there. One of these nights, I shall. 

Sweet Boys Diner, above, is relatively new to Bowie. The family had previously owned a different restaurant and taken a small break when it burned down. Now, they are back with this diner smack dab in the middle of down town. I love what the neon sign has done to transform the look of Mason Street. 

Further down Mason Street, you will find Nostalgia. It's an Antiques store and old fashioned soda fountain. You can go inside there for a wonderful lunch and spend hours just looking around all the explosion of antiques wall to wall, ceiling to floor. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Favorite Austin Shot

I've been digging around through some older photos so that I can reprocess them with some of my newer tools. 
This is my very favorite Austin, Texas image ever. It is the Frost Bank Building and I think it's just beautiful at any time of day.
However this night, we came out of the Old Spaghetti Warehouse and it was just misting a little. The building was all lit up so pretty and the mist was illuminated by the lights. The streets were damp so they were all shiny and reflective. 

Too bad I only had my crappy little camera with me. But I still love this shot. And I hope you do too. 

Here is another shot of it in the daylight from a different street obviously. The Frost Bank Building is my favorite building. Period. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

When It All Goes Wrong

I was dragged all over hell and half of Georgia (that's one of them there Texas sayins  I reckon) by my youngest daughter yesterday afternoon looking for "weddin stuff" and I was determined to get some shots with my stupid little cell camera since all the antique stores in town have such unusual junk in them. 

The original of this old thing was not so hot, but I had a "vision" of what I wanted it to be. And I worked on it...for over an hour...maybe more. And it still sucks. But by Golly I'm gonna post it, because if I put that much time into it (and that IS alot of time for ME to spend on one photo) then I'm gonna post it. 

I know you won't enjoy this one. I actually hate it. But as I said...after that much it is. 

Shot with a Droid Incredible and processed in CS5 with Nik. (I loooooove Nik!!)

Horton Motor Co., Nocona, Tx.

I went North last night to the great small town of Nocona, Texas.  While I was not actively going just to take pictures, I did take my camera and venture "downtown" in hopes that some of the newly renovated buildings might appeal to my love of night shots. 
As I turned a dark corner, I saw this shining from about a block away. I was far enough away that with my ....ahem...less than perfect vision, I couldn't really see what it was. I pondered as I waited for one lone car to get the hell out of my way, what could it be???
But this was not what I imagined. 
I plan to go back when it gets a bit warmer. And when I have a tripod and the wherewithal to use it. 
But meanwhile I just thought it was a pretty damn cool little place. 

I used CS5 and Nik to fix it up a little. 

Hope you enjoy it. :-)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Above It All

I took this picture from the restaurant in the Tower of the Americas in San Antonio. I was using some random crazy color thing on my tiny little sure shot Canon camera which is why all the buildings in the background appear orange. 
Me and the idiot enjoyed our dinner up there. We spent almost $150 bux on wine and steaks and beer but it was a great dinner. The mushrooms were to die for. 
Ahhhhh San Antonio!!! I miss you!!!

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Grass Skirt Goddess

Can't sleep, so figured I would randomly choose some little old photo that had not been processed and mess around with it. 

I decided to pick this little grass skirt goddess from the car show last year. She is just cute to me. There was a bunch of crap I didn't really care for cluttering up the corners on both sides so I thought "fine time to try out the whole square thing..."

I think she turned out ok. Might be cool to have her view of the world. But then again, maybe not. It would seem she is always looking where she has been and never seeing where she is going. Wow. Maybe that's why I like her. She's got the same plight as me.

Hang in there grass skirt goddess...We will figure it out. How hard could it be to just turn around???

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The 365 Project Always Kicks My Ass

I live in the most horrible area of Texas to take pics in the winter. And that is if it's sunny and beautiful outside. Combine with that my illness of the past couple of weeks (possible pneumonia) and the fact that yesterday and today were rainy and cold and you have a recipe for disaster for the photographically challenged. 

I promised my pact buddy that I will shoot a pic every day. Every single day. And I have. But as I said, I'm challenged. 

This was tonight's concentrated effort at finding something half interesting inside my house. 

"Shipwrecked" is a pic of my little zen garden with a boat and some star fishies and some dirty sand that my granddaughter just loooooves to play in. 

Processed in Nik Color Efex 4 with Bleach Bypass and Vintage Film Efex.

Hope you enjoy. :)

Nostalgia Bowie, Texas

If, for some ungodly reason, you ever end up having to visit the small town of Bowie, Texas, you should stop in at Nostalgia for a bite to eat. Their food is pretty good, they have a nice little daily special and the ambiance of the place is so ...well....nostalgic. 
From wall to wall, ceiling to floor, antiques are everywhere. Hanging from the ceiling, stacked on the floor, in display cabinets and on shelves, they fill every square inch of the old building. Every time I go there seems like the first time because there is always some new cool "old" stuff to see. My favorite part is keeping an eye out for things I might have owned as a child or seen at my grandparent's house. When I find something it brings back those sweet memories of times gone by. 
Oh...and just for the record...I would always go with the bread pudding for dessert. You just can't go wrong with it. :-)

This is an image from the My Town series I am working on. Hope you enjoy. :-)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Straight Out of Camera = Sooc

Yesterday afternoon I did something I seldom do, but that I'm going to try to do more often. 
I grabbed my camera with my new Christmas lens (Tamron 18-200) attached, grabbed my purse and a diet Dr. Pepper and got in my car. I was not entirely sure which way to go, but ultimately I decided I needed some alone time and think time. I headed out to the lake lot because I knew it would be extremely unlikely anyone would be there and I could just wander and snap random things and wait for the sunset. It was in the upper 60's when I arrived so it seemed like nice weather to do so. 
The lake is down perilously low. I could walk out further than I ever have in my life. And I enjoyed feeling the soft feel of the earth that has never been walked on fluffing under my feet. 
I took a ton of shots of nothing, ducks in flight, a boat going by, old trees, shells, rocks. The usual fare from this sad little lake. 
When I was done, I made my way back to the dock, which now sits quite a ways from the waters edge. I sat down, and watched the sun drop lower and lower. Snapping those historical shots of the actual setting of the sun. was gone but it still colored the sky and the water and I loved watching it go from gold, to pink to that dark muddy almost death color of night. 
I felt so content and so happy to have gotten some great shots. 
So happy in fact that when I reached the red light I turned left and headed up town to take some twilight shots of big Bowie, Texas. 
They turned out really well. Not all but some because I didn't want to lug my tripod. Indeed my plan was just to snap a few from the car window but before I knew it I had parked by an abandoned building and begun walking this town that I hate so much. That was a big step for me. Being seen out doing my thing is something I hate. But I did it and I'm proud of me for doing it. 
I will post those shots later on. One is live on my G+ profile. 
Anyway, it's time to get myself dressed and out the door to my little job. 
Peace out people! Take pics! Share the love of photography!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012


 This was taken at a photo shoot a couple of years ago. I was originally only shooting my granddaughter Lorelai, but she wanted to have some pics made with "Aunt Aly" so Lyssa stretched out in the window and Lorelai climbed up into her lap and proceeded to give her the biggest most genuine hug. 
I love the look of pure love and adoration on the face of my little Lorelai. She's the sweetest little girl in the world... well now days she is one of two. But back then she was the only apple of my eye. 
Family is the most important thing in the world. Friends and even "life partners" will betray you in the blink of an eye, but family... MY family, MY two daughters and my two granddaughters are the most important people in my life. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Texas Gulley Cat

I can't really explain my love for this picture. It's obviously not the subject. I think those things are just the ugliest things ever created. To find beauty in that would be simply insane which, lets all face it, I am. But still. 
I think there are two things about it...first I love the processing. This is one of the first images I processed using Nik Color Efex. I really just love so much about that. I'm still in my trial and trying to decide if I can spend the bux on it in my extremely poor state. Starving artist doesn't even begin to cover what I'm doing lately. 
The other thing I love about it is the memory it conjures up. When my oldest daughter was a little less than two years old we still lived at the hell hole in the country. A horrid single wide trailer that was just freakin' awful. It was the Jordan starter trailer and every Jordan who ever got married for the wrong reasons was doomed to spend the beginning of their marriage there. 
My mother and my grandmother would often come out to visit and sometimes we would come back to town with them for a bit. Always on the ride back home, when looking out across the weedy, dry, dusty field between that road and my house, my grandmother would ask my daughter "Do you see any gulley cats?" She meant some sort of wild animal. Just a joke really. But my daughter always saw a pump jack and therefore she began to assume that those old rusty noisy pumpjacks were the "gulley cats" of my grandmother's vivid imagination. 
So I do like this picture, because it brings back to me all those memories of when times were "so hard" but seemingly now so simple. 

The Faded Glow of Memory

As the candle burned deeper into the night, the memories became more vivid and she prayed for the morning light to return and fade the glow of memory.

On A Clear Day

This boring little shot was taken as part of my 365 pact. This is the gun range where I go to shoot BIG GUNS! And little ones. The "hills" in the distance are at 100, 200 and 300 yards. The wonderful marksman that I'm dating can hit dead on the targets at 300 yards all day long. I...cannot.
But to the left where you can't see is the pistol range littered with little orange clay pigeons that I have blown the shit out of. (I pretend each one has my ex-husbands face on it.) :-)  Said marksman worries a little about my thoughts when I am shooting. I told him ...just don't make me mad, silly man. Lol.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 ...One of My Fave Pics

Downtown Ft. Worth in the Fall. My daughter and son in law and I went to wander about and take some pics...they wander...I take pics. 
They didn't enjoy stopping all the time but I enjoyed many of the shots I got. The two large buildings flanking the smaller in the middle made me think of family, like big brothers watching over a little sister or something. 
It's one of my favorite images from 2011. :-)

New Year, New Photography Blog!!

I've tried to stay away from photography blogs. Why? I don't have the faintest idea. I love photography. And for the last six months, ever since G+ opened to the public, I have done nothing but breathe, eat and sleep photography. My work has gotten much better. You won't be able to tell it by this post, but that's okay. 
If you follow me on G+ , you already know my work. If you hang around here long enough, you will get a feel for what I can do. 
Photography has been, for me, a lot like the rest of my life. Hit or miss. Sometimes I have great successes and sometimes I get the wind knocked out of me. But my New Years resolution this year is to not let the tide of negativity wash me out. I will keep coming back. Every day. 
I will get up and I will go to work and I will love my family and I will build my new life and nothing or no one will stop me. And every single day...I will shoot. 

Cow Lot Sunset on New Years Day 2012

I shot this picture tonight when I went out to my daughters to have our traditional but totally improved New Years Day dinner. 

This is the first year in I don't even know how many that we have not had black eyed peas for luck and cabbage for money. We figured we are still poor and haven't had the best luck so we will just eat what we like. :-) 

I have started a pact with a dear friend of mine online to do a 365 Project. Last year I tried to do one and I got 3 days. This year, with his help and possibly harassment, I hope to complete the year. You will find them all here, as well as on my Google Plus profile. And I will randomly post other things that I have shot that I enjoy. 

Photography is my love. I will pursue it. :-) Happy New Year folks!