Photo Obsession

Hello, my name is Debi and I am addicted to photography. I admit it, I’m hooked, obsessed, totally over the top with this *hobby*.

I bought my first DSLR almost 2 years ago, a Nikon D3100. Now I’m up to four, yes, four cameras. Nikon D90, D5000 and D7000. Four cameras, 5 lenses, 3 editing software programs, one new MacBook Pro, a serious case on wheels to hold everything……and assorted accessories!  Woohoo….. My husband has decided he’d like to join me in my hobby (yay?) so I’m going to teach him what (little) I know. Wish us both luck!

I feel like I have learned a great deal in two years. I graduated to shooting in the RAW format a year ago, and have found it increases editing options. I do love editing, it brings out the frustrated artist in me, since I’ve always wanted to paint, but had no talent for it. Editing is the next best thing. Just changing the white balance or a using a preset can change the whole tone of an image, from boring to dramatic; from ho-hum lackluster color, to elegant tones of black and white.

I shot my first (and only) wedding last November, for my oldest niece.  It was a learning experience, for sure! The bride was thrilled with the photos, which made me feel better; but I realized just how little I knew about what I was trying to do. She was on a small budget, though, and I offered to do it as my gift to her. There were some sweet moments:

This was in a very small room, with lots of background clutter on the walls, so I cropped in very close to capture the sweetness of the father of the bride, giving her a good luck kiss before the ceremony.

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The bride with step-mom before the ceremony……I was so happy with this shot in the mirror, which was necessary because the room was so small.

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The bride, groom and family…. Continue reading “Photo Obsession”

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Barns from the Past…..

Being a country girl, I have to admit……I love barns. Barns of all sizes and shapes…and even the smells. Horse and cow manure, feed….hay….leather…… I’ve recently become a little obsessed with finding old barns to photograph and add to my collection. Living in a small town with lots of farmland surrounding the area, I’ve found there are barns hidden away all around me. At least once a week I go “back-roading” looking for these ancient structures. They all have a story to tell……of course, I don’t know the stories since I wasn’t born around here. But I’d love to know…..

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This one is on FM 1387 here in town, the house it belonged to on the corner, has been boarded up for about two years and the barn is fading fast.

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This is the Anderson barn, west of Highway 67, off Gifco Road. The land now belongs to Ashgrove and is destined to become a quarry. The local historical society is trying to raise funds to save the barn and the house that is on the same property. I haven’t seen the house at all, and the barn itself is hard to photograph since it sits right smack in the middle of the acreage. I did get a better shot last week, though from near the entrance to the property.

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This barn is huge……3 stories tall.

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These photos show the barns true colors, very gray and faded, with shingles falling through the roof. So sad.

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This is west at the end of  Gifco road atop a hill. Very pretty place, modern barn.

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Mt Zion Road, practically on the street.

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Ennis, Texas….we were looking for Bluebonnets, of course!

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Somewhere between Rockett and Ferris, I love this one!

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And just farther up the road from the Texas flag barn…..

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I’m completely baffled as to where i found this one. I should be keeping notes, right?

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Somewhere near a railroad track. Yep, that narrows it down!

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Not a barn, but on the same property as previous picture.

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Again, not sure where this one was…..I cover a lot of territory some days!

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Inside the main barn at the Penn Agricultural Center at Cedar Hill State Park.

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Inside the main barn at the Penn Agricultural Center at Cedar Hill State Park.

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The main barn at the Penn Agricultural Center at Cedar Hill State Park.

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Just what a photographer on a mission doesn’t want to see……”No trespassing”…. Bummer 😦

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But, when I walked all the way up to the fence line, I got a much better shot with my 300mm zoom lens….

and of course, a lot of heavy editing makes the barn look much better than it really looks.

That’s about the extent of my barns for now, but I’ll keep looking!

I Got a NEW TOY!!!!!

Yes, I’m just like a kid…I got a new toy! I’ve always wanted to be a “photographer”, meaning I’ve always wanted to own a camera that was more than a “point and shoot” cam. Last weekend I took the plunge. I have been inspired by a fellow musician, Pam, who takes the most amazing photos of babies, nature and her grand-kids…..so, as I studied her photos I wondered….”couldn’t I do that, too”? (you can find Pam on Facebook “Portraits by Pam”)

I purchased a Nikon D3100 camera, no extra frills or lenses, briefly read through the instructions, then set out on Sunday to take pics of some local scenery that I thought would be interesting to photograph. I’ll graduate to people later after I’ve had some more practice, because I do have a gorgeous new grandson who’d make beautiful pics….and a 19-year-old granddaughter who is stunningly photogenic. So….be patient!

The first seven photos were taken in historic Waxahachie, Texas. There’s also a section of town full of Victorian houses, on the “Gingerbread Trail” that I would love to shoot. Maybe later……

Feed Store
M-K-T Depot Waxahachie, Texas
Pedestrian bridge parallel to Highway 77
Katy Depot
Railroad crossing, look out for the cars, can you spell that without any R’s?
Bridge on walking trail at Getzendaner Park, Waxahachie
It was raining intermittently, so this shot was snapped through the windshield of the car, and I thought it was kinda cool.

These photos are from my own backyard…..

Windmill in motion….this little windmill is in my backyard 🙂
Budding Lily
The other budding lily….lol….they need to BLOOM already!
Sunrise above the rooftops……it’s hard to do in town!
Ertle the Turtle, who is really a “pot hanger” but looks so cute sitting next to the succulent…..

That’s the extent of my photography as of today….I’m still reading blogs and websites for tips and inspiration.

Coming soon…..pictures of my grandchildren!

Funny Family Fotos

People often reminisce about  the “good old days”……and I’ve done it also, however….some of these photos make me appreciate the “here and now” for sure!

All of these photos came from my grandmothers photo albums, which I acquired a few years ago, because my dad knew I’d take good care of them. These photos are his family and ancestors, and most had no information written on the back. I’ve had to post these on Facebook so my assorted cousins across the US could help me identify them. There were but a few that we had no clue at all, they are a mystery.

Let’s have a picnic…deep in the woods….let’s take the kids…..grab your coats, axes and washtubs!

We were all “stumped” about this one for a while!

The subjects in the photo above were eventually identified as my grandmother (tall woman holding baby) my dad (in hat) at her left elbow, my two aunts Bea and Geraldine, and some neighbors. We narrowed down the year to 1938…..

“ROAD TRIP”! (apparently my ancestors loved to leave home for adventures?)

This is my dad, age 3 months 17 days, according to my granny’s handwriting on the back.

Oh, just put the babies down anywhere, they’ll be fine!

I know the baby on the left must be my dad, because it looks just like ME……

“Hi, I’m Larry, this is my brother Darryl and my other brother Darryl”

My great-grandfather and his sons who never married and never left home.

I think this little boy may be my dad, or his cousin Sonny-boy…..they looked about the same in every picture I’ve found.

Once again…..”let’s sit the baby out in the road or middle of no where and take his picture”!

They must have been trying to “capture the light”……..

My daddy….
This is the little suit my dad was wearing in the photo above….
This is the suit and hat along with the original tiny photo; I have put them into a memory keepsake box, hanging on the wall in my bedroom. So sweet….

Retail therapy????

The first yard sale ever?

Playing “let’s pretend”……

“Let’s pretend like we’re not really poor”……

on the back “to Beatrice Wilson, this is Mildred and her little friend in their play house” …. printed on the back “Finished by Nichols Studio Jacksonville, Texas”

Forget taking the kid to the woodshed……

CPS…..where are you? After very close scrutinizing, we have determined this to be one of my dad’s cousins, and there is someone behind her, holding her up on the woodpile!

“Life on the farm….PETA would love this, right?”

I guess they couldn’t afford to have a dog for a pet….???

Anyone up for some fried catfish???

We have studied this one and can only hazard a guess that *maybe* this was a scene on the Red River long before the Denison Dam was built to create Lake Texoma. I don’t think I’d want to eat the fish that came out of that water, though!

And last, but not least…….no wonder they were so destitute, the “lucky” horseshoe was upside down…all the luck was running out!

This one is my favorite! We believe this is my great-grandfather Charlie Wilson and one of his sisters, or daughters….

Now, I know all these photos are in black and white and are very old, but I sense there wasn’t much green grass around at the time. It looks very desolate….no wonder my grandmother loved plants and flowers so much, she needed color in her life!

Thanks for the memories, Granny K….