SEPTEMBER 04, 2021
Challenge # 6 - A Portrait and a Story
Regardless of not feeling like taking pictures lately, I got my camera and went to a city nearby. I was driving on Main Street looking for a place to park my car when I noticed a lady wearing a hat crossing the street. People wearing hats always catch my attention.
I parked my car at a parking lot and started wandering on the streets. When I got to the strip of green that divides much of Main Street I saw the lady with a hat talking to somebody. She was sitting on a bench, he was standing with a cup of coffee in his hand. He looked more like a passerby who just stopped for a small talk rather than a friend. That made me think that the lady wearing a hat is open to talk to strangers.  
I kept walking but keeping an eye on them. When he left I turned around, walked towards her and introduced myself.
Stephanie is an interesting, smart & witty woman. We talked for about 45 minutes and she told me some interesting stories, including one about the hat she was wearing.
Earlier that day while walking on a street by the church she saw a hawk coming down for a chicken. Waving her arms and yelling to the hawk she tried to save the distraught chicken but she couldn't stop the inevitable, the hawk got most of the chicken, leaving behind only parts of it.
To pay her respects to the dead chicken she got the biggest feather she could find, went back home, washed it, and now the dead chicken feather adorners her hat. Hearing that made me think that the she was cuckoo, or she was mocking me.
I said goodbye promising to send her some pictures, and off I went.
On my way to my car, I noticed a dead end street by the church and decided to check it out. Some children were loudly talking to each other at the end of the road, when I was approaching them they left in a hurry, and that's when I noticed a dead bird in the middle of the road. I thought 'what a big bird, much bigger than the ones that visit my backyard', and that's when I saw one chicken leg by the remaining feathers!!!
JULY, 05 2021
"To me, photography is an art of observation. 
It's about finding something interesting in an ordinary place...
I've found it has little to do with the things you see 
and everything to do with the way you see them."   Elliott Erwitt
MAY 24, 2021
For so many years I'd had so much joy making pictures of my garden, specially in the spring, but not this year. I've been feeling so restlessly, so out of place, like something is missing and I can't make sense of it.
However, I've been thinking about it and I wonder if these feelings are a late reaction to the global lockdowns and financial and emotional strain of the pandemic, both in general and within the bubble of our family.
I think I managed the pandemic mayhem pretty well up to a couple of months ago. I've accepted what I could not change, I've been doing the right things to help reduce the spread of this virus without feeling my 'freedoms' have been curtailed, but now I think I am caving into these feelings and it's not being easy to cope with these emotions.
APRIL 24, 2021
Challenge # 4
Showing Emotion in the Inanimate
Exercise to open our eyes to bring sensibility into our photographs. ​​​​​​​
Look for Lines & Shapes - Lightning - Tones, Color and Texture - Find interesting things - Experiment and try different things.


APRIL 18, 2021
APRIL 14, 2021
Signs of Spring - So colorful!​​​​​​​
MARCH 28, 2021​​​​​​​
Challenge # 3
Portraits
Despite feeling a lot of discomfort it was very rewarding to get out of my comfort zone and asking strangers to  take their portraits.
This is a photography skill that I want to practice more -  make people feel natural and real in front of a camera. 
​​​​​​​
MARCH 19, 2021
For a person like me who struggles with perfectionism, who thought that making pictures implied making 'perfect and pretty' it's been a  very eye-opening experience being part of this incredible community - Home Photo Salon. James is a very king and generous teacher and he has created a wonderfully inspiring community - so much education, so much inspiration, so much fun.
Embracing imperfections  -  Refine my ability to observe  -  Find beauty in the mundane
Shifting my focus from simply photographing things to start photographing feelings, emotions.​​​​​​​
MARCH 12, 2021
“An ordinary life isn’t ordinary when you put a frame around a moment.” —Joel Meyerowitz​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
february 09, 2021​​​​​​​
For a couple of years I had tried to join Roxanne Bryant class Editing for Artists and every time I was too late to sign up. Finally, this year I was able to register for it and I didn't get disappointed. It was a worthwhile investment.
Her teaching style is both gentle and kind. She's a talented artist who does not hold back in sharing her knowledge and expertise. Her color theory/editing class was more than I could have hoped for.
  
january 15, 2021
Pockets full of Light
january 08, 2021​​​​​​​
Flowers always help me beat the winter blues...
december 25, 2020
Merry Christmas!
december 12, 2020
Challenge # 1 - Dreamlike
Every 5-6 weeks members of the Home Photo Salon will be given a theme for a challenge as a way to motivate and help photographers to create something beautiful, interesting. It's a way to help us to focus and get motivated to keep shooting, to practice and experiment. 
The more we take photographs, the more we are going to learn and grow as a photographer​​​​​​​.
The first challenge was called Dreamlike. The idea was to create new work that had a dreamlike feeling keeping it within the Close to Home theme. This was not an easy challenge, mainly because it was the first time I participated on a photo challenge and I wasn't sure which direction to go.
I was driving on a misty & foggy afternoon when I drove by this cemetery. The quiet and soft mood of the fog and mist evoked an ethereal and wonderful atmosphere. I felt compelled to pull over and get inside and stroll around breathing in the fresh air.
december 04 2020​​​​​​​
I believe in serendipity, it has happened to me many times throughout my life, and serendipity is how I explain why a few years ago I signed up to received the newsletter from NYC photographer James Maher
Last summer, he came up with an idea of a  contest to stimulate photographers to start shooting more during the pandemic. The contest - 5 Blocks from Home - was to send to him a series of five photographs taken anywhere within a five block distance from home, or in our home. Gladly, I got the 3rd place in the contest - Hooray!
Inspired by the response to the contest James came up with an incredible concept to create an online group and invited me to part part of it - Home Photo Salon - a community of people passionate about photography, an anti-Instagram place. Being part of this group has inspired me to shoot more and has pushed me out of my comfort zone when shooting,  plus it has lots of education.  
James Maher is most known for his street photography and this is the genre I had the least experience and interest in my photography journey, so there was no rational reason for me to sign up to his newsletter but serendipity had its way and it couldn't had brought me to a better place.          
AUGUST 14, 2020
I wonder if the collective feeling of gratitude we've seen all around the world will become part of our daily lives or will it vanishes with the pandemic...
july 02, 2020​​​​​​​
Blogging was my first experience with Social Media and it was a very fulfilling experience. It was a place of creativity and friendship. I had the joy to meet some of these new friends personally, and to these days we are still in contact. It was at that time I discovered a new way to express my creativity and I found a new passion - photography.
I don't think Social Media is bad, at least it was not in the beginning, and the concept is great - it enables us to stay in contact with family and friends around the world; to find new friends and like-minded communities; to find an outlet for creativity and self-expression. On the other hand, it has become a place that exacerbate feelings that others are having more fun or living better lives than we are, triggering feelings of anxiety and inadequacy about our lives or appearance; plus cyberbullying, self-absorption, and so on.
I feel I am loosing the joy and pleasure I have when shooting, I am becoming  entangled in getting more engagement and likes from an audience of strangers that could care less about my photography.
It's been a long process to stop worrying about who will or won't see my work, to stop worrying who will or will not like my like work. 
May 25, 2020
Memorial Day
The Memorial Day Parade is not meant for the time of coronavirus, hence no parades this year. I
 watched a Memoria Day Parade for the first time in 2019 in a beautiful sunny day. I was almost as excited as the children in these photos yet today we find ourselves isolated and divided.
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