Having been married for 50 years, this couple knows one another VERY well.

I’ve known this couple for almost my entire life, they haven’t seemed like they’ve aged at all since I first met them 20 years ago. <3

This is so sweet to me, seeing them together and still so much in love. They are so much more in love now, 50 years later, than they were in their first years of their marriage. :)

What an encouragement they are to any and all couples! <3 Love you guys dearly.

Is your mom really awesome?
Yeah, mine is pretty amazing too. ;) (Of course, the fact that she’s had 7 kids, runs a great house, makes some awesome meals, and still has one of the sharpest sense of humor that I know doesn’t even begin to touch the surface of how amazing she is.)

Well, if your mom is pretty amazing, I bet you’d like to have a chance to give something back to her to bless her with. (Hey, you’d better agree with me on this, you never know when your mom could be watching you! :P Mom’s have a way of showing up at random times, and knowing exactly what you’re thinking.)
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Today’s Frivolous Fact Friday is on… Flowers!!!

I am a royal sucker for flowers. Truly, I am.
There’s dozens and dozens of different kinds of flowers, and to be honest I pretty much like them all!
Lilies, Daisies, Lilacs, Forsythia, Irises, Chrysanthemums, Asters, Roses, Tulips, Orchids, Peonies, Carnations, Forget-me-nots, Mums, Marigolds, Freesia, Gerbera… I could go on forever. ;)

(Table setting at Liz and Phil’s wedding – September 2010)

(Wild Purple Thistle)

(Resurrection Lily – From my back yard!)

(The Bouquet from Melissa and Tim’s wedding -October 2010)

(White daisies from my local park in the gorgeous autumn sunset light)

(Table setting at Liz and Phil’s wedding reception – September 2010)

(Bolero Bee Marigold from my back garden)

(Small daisy with leaves and a tree branch)

(Poinsettia growing in Sunny California)

(Bouquet from Chris and Elbia’s wedding – October 2010)

(Red Rose on the snow -That my father bought for my mum for their anniversary)

(Red Rose and snow – That my father bought for my mum for their anniversary)

*sighs happily* Whenever I see a gorgeous flower, I can’t help but take pictures of it!
As it’s March 4th, and I’m watching our ground slowly thaw out, I am hoping (and praying) that my Spring flowers come soon! :))

Some quick tips for shooting flowers for any photographer!

-Shoot from a new angle. Everyone shoots flowers down, but try shooting up or to the side, or at a strange angle. Walk around the flower to capture some better views.

(Most people shoot flowers from the top, I captured these Magnolias from the bottom. To me, it made the image more dramatic. The dark colors of the branches contrasted well with the light and bright flowers)

- Don’t shoot in direct sunlight!!! Direct sunlight is harsh and casts harsh shadows on your flower, you want delicate soft light. Shadows, and diffused light work best! If you can do nothing else take a white sheet and have someone hold it in front of the sunlight to diffuse your own lighting.

(I had to hold the sheet over my subject to capture this image, the bright sun just washed everything out. This way I had beautiful diffused light at high noon.)

- On some occasions you can use the high bright light to shoot through a softer flower’s petals to bring out a glowing effect. Just a side note: You’ll want to be careful with this, don’t shoot into the light you could harm your camera equipment and/or harm your eye sight if you don’t do this properly.

(Shooting through the flowers brought out the beauty of these bleeding hearts. The lightflares don’t harm the look of the image either. ;) :P)

-A lesson I learned from Scott Kelby’s “The Digital Photography Book”, is you don’t have to wait until it rains to get beautiful ‘rain drop’ shots. Take a cheap spray bottle, fill it with some water, and create your own rain!!!

(I had to add my own water drops to this beautiful burgundy Victorian Rose, that is original to my century-old house!)

- Shoot your flowers with same or similar colors in the background. It gives a beautiful soft feel to your pictures!

(This white cherry blossom bunch looks beautiful and natural against the white background, anything else would have been too heavy or too dark and wouldn’t have the soft look I was going for.)

- Shoot your flowers on completely contrasting background for a very dramatic picture!

(A random attempt at mimicking Stephanie Meyer’s “New Moon” book cover. ;) I found this tulip in our yard. The black background brings out the beautiful colors and details of the flowers.)

- Don’t be afraid to get up close and personal. Details of flowers are truly awe-inspiring. Don’t hesitate to get a close up and capture as much details as possible!

(The soft stigma of this purple iris was more beautiful than capturing the image as a whole)

- Flowers don’t always have to be fresh and alive. Sometimes flowers are just as pretty when they are dead or dying.

(This flower wouldn’t look as beautiful alive as it does when it’s dying. The image is more dramatic with it’s drooping stem.)

*takes a breath*
Well, that is my random thoughts on flowers and flower photography for today. :)
Now… go buy some fresh flowers and start practicing, so you can be taking pictures of flowers like a pro when Spring comes here and we’re surrounded by hundreds of flowers!

Happy Weekend everyone!
Many blessings,

(Don’t worry! Part II of “What Makes a Good Photographer Great?” will be coming shortly! I haven’t forgotten about you all.) :)

Everyone has random days that has a special title for their Flickr pictures, or Twitter, posting videos, and their blogs.
Today I figured I might as well do my own, right? :D
So I came up with Frivolous Fact Friday. Each Friday I will try to post a new Frivolous Fact, either about me or about something else.

Today my Frivolous Fact Friday is about Football.

Yes, that’s right… Football. I know, I know. I’m a girl, why do I even know how to spell “football” let alone care for it?
Well, quite honestly, because I was raised to have a fine taste in Sports. *nods to her parents for her proper upbringing*

Playing Football
(Playing Football with some friends in 12 degrees in the middle of the night)

I can remember being really small, eating popcorn, watching John Elway passing rocket balls off to Terrell Davis.

I can also distinctly remember the Packers vs Patriots Superbowl in the 1996 season. (Superbowl XXXI) We had friends over, and their dad had the massive popcorn bowl on his lap when Desmond Howard ran the amazing 99 yard kickoff return. Bit of a mistake.
I’m sure your imagination can fill in what happened after that. After lots of jumping up and down, whooping and hollering, and screaming like crazed fans, we spent the next half hour trying to clean up all the popcorn.
We were still finding popcorn in strange places over the next 3 weeks.

(My 365 photo for Superbowl Sunday. My Colts! :D)

We’re huge football people here! As Indiana is and has always been my home state, I bleed blue and white. (GO COLTS!)
Ever since Manning was a Rookie in 1998, being drafted to the Colts, I had been a huge fan of his. Gotta love a good combination of both brains and talent in a humble player. :)
And yes, I will be one of the first to admit, I was so disappointed when I heard the news that Tony Dungy decided he was retiring. *sighs* Best coach of all time.

Some day, I will meet Peyton and Tony. I’m sure of it.
I’m almost dead sure I saw Peyton Manning in California once. I had flown out to California for a business conference in 2008 when I saw a slick black car pull up to pick up a guy in a Colt’s polo (*squee*) who was trying to avoid eyes, but people were asking him for autographs anyway. He looked almost exactly like Peyton manning… from 30 feet away at least.
I could be wrong, but I’d like to live in my delusions of actually having seen him in real life, instead of having my dreams cruelly dashed against a rock. :P

Peyton Manning
(Trying to mimic Peyton Manning’s expression on the Wheaties box)

What made me think about this today? I’m glad you asked! Today my dad bought me a Wheaties box just because it had Peyton Manning’s face on it. :) Need I say “Best… Dad… Ever!”? :P

Enough crazy rambling about Frivolous Facts, I’ll shut up now. I’m off to go watch the movie Invincible as I go through Football Season Withdrawal as I always do the end of February.

Have a great week everyone!!! :D
Until next Frivolous Fact Friday!

W-O-W! Can I just say that BMXers are some of the most daring people I know? ;)

First of all, I must admit, I was not a huge BMX fan until our friend’s son went pro and we could watch him on the Dew Tour on Sundays. Then… slowly, he began to make a fan out of me.
To be fair, I’m still not much of a BMX fan so much as I want to see our friend’s son succeed greatly at what he does best!!! So let’s just say that I’m a Brett fan more than I am a BMX fan. :P

So when I was asked to come to an event full of BMX riders and take pictures for the night, I most heartily agreed to this job!
It was SO much fun! I spent the evening with my friend and got to spend the night watching (and shooting!) these daring bikers pull some amazing stunts!
How can you not enjoy a night full of friends, sports and photography?! ;)

Needless to say… there’s plenty of fun pictures that came of it. :D

Here’s some clips from the night!

277/365 - BMXing with the Pros

Handlebar spin

Seeing the world upside down

(Brett being mobbed by his fan girls, and his mom behind him)

A mom and her baby.

(Brett and his mom, after everyone left and we could walk out into the parking lot without having his “fan club” mob him again)

One happy mum!!!