Want to meet me in person? Want a free photo? I'll be at Tacoma's Out In the Park on July 12th! You can come talk to me about weddings, family portraits, senior and boudoir sessions, ask alllllll the questions you want, AND! I'll have a photobooth, so you can get in front of the camera and be ridiculously silly.
Next! I've added some images to the shop! Just a few Hawaiian landscapes and some bridge photos. I'm slowly adding more so be sure to check them out. You can get prints, canvases or notecards.
This is a post for me, but I thought it might be a good one for this blog as opposed to the private one I keep for making notes on the MFA work I want to do. It's not about photography, but it is. I guess it's more about process? I don't know. Forgive the rambling, there's stuff to get out.
For as long as I can remember I wanted to be an artist. Except, I'm not BEING one. I think about it a lot, I talk about it, I plan things. But I haven't been MAKING things. I've been drifting, trying to figure out who I am, what I want to make, what will get me into a show, blah, blah, blah. I've been paralyzed by fear of making something WRONG. Of messing up. Of... I don't even know what, but everything.
I've been watching friends be successful and while I'm happy for them, I've become more and more miserable. Why not me? Well, dumbass, you haven't been making anything. If you haven't made anything, you don't have anything to submit. You can't keep submitting the same sad images, hoping someone will finally take it. It doesn't work that way, and you know it.
So this morning, I walked past some flowers my husband bought me a while back. They were dying, but there's something about them I find beautiful. Then I remembered I wanted to try lumen printing. , I dug out some old paper I had laying around from my art school days, found a piece of cardboard and a large piece of plexiglass I didn't even remember having and hied off to my upstairs closet to mash the flowers onto some paper. It's sitting outside right now, soaking up the sun. We'll see how it looks when I put it in the fix.
Making a simple print felt good. For me, the thing about photography, and why I'm so interested in alt process is the MAKING. My hands are on it. My hands made it. It's deliberate. It's a THING.
Before anyone gets on me for slamming digital, I'm not. I like digital. It has its place. It's definitely the better system for a lot of situations. But there's something about getting your hands on something and having ONE chance. I can't shoot a bajillion frames and get one that comes out, nor can I composite these. I've got ONE shot and if I don't like it or it blows away or gets rained on or a squirrel eats it, well, hell, I need to start over.
But I have a whole box of old paper, a yard full of weird plants and a lot of time on my hands. I think I can do this.
I have publications! Well, one, but one more at least coming out. I did some work for Cooperative Press a while back for their magazine KnitEdge. It was a last minute thing, so I grabbed my daughter Maddie who's about to turn 13. She's a fantastic model, and was perfectly willing to pose for me. I dearly love working with teens and tweens.
Here are the images published. Check out the magazine!
You may have noticed I'm working to revitalize this blog a bit. I think I've worked out a schedule, things that will make the posting schedule a little more reliable and interesting. Maybe a wedding or family session I shot, possibly a senior.
Mondays will be an open topic. Maybe things I did over the weekend, thoughts on photography, random things I find on the internet. I'll try to include a photo or two, but no promises.
Tuesdays will be Technique Tuesdays. It may be talking about a new technique, explaining how certain things in your camera work, bits on developing, etc. Think technical info.
On Wednesdays, I want to do Working Wednesday, where I feature another business, like I did last week with T&H Fiber. I strongly believe in networking with other businesses. I'm going to feature other photographers, but also just other businesses. It helps everyone!
Thursdays will be Throwback Thursdays! Because WHY NOT? It's fun, it's silly, and I really enjoy looking back at where I came from.
Friday will Photo(grapher) Friday. I'm still working on this one, but I think I'll pick a photographer from my art history knowledge and talk about their work, or pick a photo and discuss it. I need to get back into my art language. This will be a good way to do it.
I'm takin the weekends off. :D I may put some Instagrams, but everyone needs a break, right? :D
So, in honor of today being a mash up, here's a shot from when I was going through all my old photos last week. I'm busily working on my MFA portfolio, scanning in all the images I'll need to print this summer. I'm hoping to have the transparencies printed in April and have the first batch ready to print in May. I'm teaching classes at Tacoma Community College and for the MSL program at UW Tacoma in cyanotypes that month.
I'm trying something a little different with this blog. Yes, it's still about photography, so you'll see a lot of that. But I'm also going to try incorporating different elements. You'll see the pattern develop as time goes on. :)
You've all seen the Throwback Thursday posts on Facebook and Instagram, right? Now you're seeing it here, too. I'm going to use it to highlight past work, things people may not have seen before.
This week, we're digging waaaaaaaaay, way back, to when I first started with photography. If you've read the bio on my website or on my Facebook, then you know I've been shooting for 23 years. I started when I was 13, and I dropped my dad's rather expensive camera in a stream while he was salmon fishing. What? I was bored and cold. That makes for accidents.
ANYWAY. He made me learn how to use the camera properly after that (first lesson- HOLD ONTO THE CAMERA). We lived near the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park, NY, the place of many a wedding and family session, I'm sure. They have absolutely gorgeous gardens there. So I did what most people do when they first pick up a camera- I took pictures of flowers. One of them even won second place in the teen category that year in the annual contest Vanderbilt Mansion ran.
Sadly, those images seem to have been lost to the ages. So you don't get to see them. But they were spectacular.
(I can totally claim that, because there's no evidence to the contrary.)
Instead, you get my first attempts at black and white, from my HS photography class. I was.... 15? 16? It was junior year, so 16.
Welcome to Dorothy, circa 1994. Gotta love it when you set a 16yo loose at the local ren faire.
And my first foray into color printing. This was when you developed your paper in a tube you had to keep rolling on the table while your chemicals (all 3225235 of them) were kept warm in a crockpot next to you. Touchy, touchy stuff.
(Yes, that is, in fact, me at 16. Short, fake red hair. I had just gotten my braces off. Oh, such a fashion nightmare...... )
Why am I posting these? A lot of photographers would NOT want anyone to see this kind of work. Well, I'm a firm believer in knowing where you came from. Past work, no matter how old is part of that. Yes, even when it's hideously printed, badly exposed tarot booths from the local Ren faire. Because you know what? I'll never be that terrible again. Nope.
This week we're trying something a little different with the blog. This post isn't about photography, but more about me. Sort of. And a friend. Let's consider it a "Get to know Dorothy" post.
If you've been a friend of mine, you know one of the things I do is knit. Like, a lot. A. LOT. I made three sweaters last year, if that tells you anything. I'm combining the photography with the knitting, which we'll get to in another post. Along with the knitting comes the website Ravelry. It's a forum/database/FULL OF AWESOME site I've been on for the last 6 years. I've made some amazing friends through there. Heather, of T&H Fiber Works is one of those. She's based in Omaha, NE, one of my old stomping grounds. That lucky woman gets to go to Zio's, Ted and Wally's, Runza, The Upstream, and Don and Millie's whenever she wants. SO JEALOUS.
Heather is what's known in the yarn world a an independent dyer. She works from her house, with her adorable bunnies helping her. I'm pretty sure they do. In my head they do. And her yarns are freaking gorgeous! I was poking through her site, and seriously, I want to pick up a few. She's got all weight ranges AND silk hankies. If you haven't worked with silk hankies yet, you need to. They're fun, they're soft as hell, and the colors almost glow on them. Her prices are fantastic, too.
The Dark Elf is my favorite:
I also really like her Tahitian Sunrise. It reminds me of the sunrises and sunsets in Hawaii. I miss Hawaii. The opportunities for a photographer there were amazing. Beach weddings were my favorite.
Orchid Delight makes me think of my great-grandmother. Lilac purple was her favorite color. If she were still alive, I'd totally use this to make her something.
Heather does all sorts of beautiful colors, and will even custom dye for you. Custom dyeing is one of the wonderful things about indie yarn people. If you have a favorite photo, or something you want to match, you can have it done. AND! She gave me a code for you all reading it to use on an order. If you want to get your hands on some of this awesomeness, go to her website- T&H Fiber Works, pick out some pretties and use the code DDBlog2014 to get 20% off your purchase. So go! Check her out! Why are you still here??
Last weekend I had the great pleasure to shoot Temple Beth-El's bi-annual tribute dinner at the Landmark Convention Center in Tacoma. I'd never been to the Landmark before, but I'd seen images from weddings and other events. It's a beautiful old building in downtown Tacoma, perfect for an event like this tribute dinner or the weddings it's used for all the time. This time I was in the Gothic Ballroom, which managed to hold 300 members of the temple, plus the families of the honorees.
Th evening started off with a blessing and welcome from Rabbi Kadden and the Sisterhood president, Sarah, followed by a prayer from the son of one of the honorees.
After dinner the speeches and entertainment started. We got to hear from the children of the honorees, and some absolutely hilarious stories from the honorees themselves. Then Sarah played a version of The Newlywed Game to see how well these couples knew each other after so many years together. Luckily, they got almost all the answers right!
Jim Friedman and Lin Spellman
The Newlywed Game
Sarah kept us running right on time. The evening ended with Cantor Elstein leading the group in Mazal Tov, accompanied by the ukelele. Apparently the uke came from a somewhat disastrous hula performance at a previous tribute dinner. :)
Thanks again to the Haas, Friedman-Spellman and Levine families. You absolutely deserved this evening! And a big thanks to everyone who organized it!
This was a super fun even I shot on Thursday night for the University Place and North Tacoma Young Life group. I do stuff for them from time to time, since my daughter's best friend's mom is one of the Young Life leaders. This time is was their annual benefit dinner. They had a fun Tonight Show theme, and some great entertainment! I got to start the fun by setting up a photobooth for the attendees. Take a look through the images and if you know anyone in there, give them some love!