Hocus-Focus

Hocus-Focus

In addition to this photo blog, you may have noticed my original blog (Artful Articles) where I do my thing, writing, mostly about astrological events.  I’ve been studying astrology for a long time and doubt it will ever end, and I enjoy it.  I definitely see the symbiotic relationship between what goes on up there and how it affects what goes on down here.  Some may not agree with me, but that’s okay, differing opinions make for good conversation (as long as it’s not heated).  Anyway, since my recent “unemployed” status from my full time job (not my freelancing jobs), I’ve come to realize that I like the freedom of working when “I feel” like it – I am a Cancerian afterall and Cancer’s motto is “I feel.”

While I enjoyed the stability and security of a steady paycheck and while precarious monetary balancing is not my favorite sport, I like working for myself – even if it means that I’m working harder and longer – I can stop and start when the mood hits me or when inspiration strikes at 3am.  Because of – and in spite of all these changes going on, I decided that I would start a website.  It seemed easy enough; I’ve done it for others before – but never an astrological site – there is a lot of stuff I need to write to fill the pages.  But the one thing I can do is shoot my own photos.  I have tons of astrological books and totems, I even have a crystal ball – a gift from a friend.  I haven’t been able to see any flying monkeys or ruby red slippers in it yet, but I did see a photo opportunity.  So now, when I need a break from writing the basics of my site, I whip out my trusty Kodak and set up shots on my living room table.   This is the header photo.  I’m not giving anyone the link yet, until it’s done, but when it is, I’d love to get your opinion.

Oh and I said I’ve made sites before, but apparently technology kept marching on since my techy days, so if anyone out there knows a really good WordPress Guru who knows about squeeze pages and landing pages and is looking for some work (and isn’t too expensive), I’d love an introduction.  One thing I’m learning is that I have to relinquish some control over my out of control life.  Thanks for stopping by.

Sometimes Weeds …

Can be beautiful …

And sometimes, if you look at them long enough, weeds …

Can be kind of creepy

And sometimes, when you think about how the bushes were all trimmed and the weeds were all pulled just a month ago … weeds …

Can be really frightening

Spring Blooms in Summer

Looking over some older photos I took in spring.  I love spring flowers, especially the blooms that appear on trees.  In my yard there are several apple trees – they all grow white blooms on one side and red blooms on the other.  It’s odd looking, but beautiful at the same time.  I only have a picture of the white blooms here – will have to find the red ones.  The Magnolia trees have these plush, silky blooms, pink blooms that only last a few days before a strong wind comes by and blows them away.  I was lucky enough to catch them before that happened.  And right outside my door is a Crab Apple tree.  I grew up with one of these right outside of our kitchen window and my mother and I would just sit and watch the birds flock to the trees and eat all of the fruit – that is until the blue jays would come and everyone of the other birds would quickly disappear.

Click on the photos to enlarge.

It’s hard to know how to post my pictures sometimes, I tend to take all of mine with the setting at the largest (in case they’re worthy of becoming a poster?).  I’m not really sure why, but I’m just a big fan of close ups and large photos allow me to zero in on certain parts of the photo.

Crossing the Line

Crossing the Line

I have this weird habit/hobby of taking pictures while in a car, most times as the passenger, but truthfully, not always – although when driving I’d rather miss a shot than hold up traffic – I will let it go (or swing back around to try again).  This one was taken while I was the passenger.  We were driving over the bridge to Point Pleasant Beach, in New Jersey.  It’s the dividing line between two towns, although I must say I don’t know what the other town is – when I’m the passenger, which isn’t often – I like to not really pay attention – sort of a mental break from details. [click on photo to see full size]

Just Dandy …

Just Dandy

I remember the exact day, date and time I took this photo and I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.  It was 9:39 AM on a Friday in April – the day after I got laid off from work.  I woke and greeted the morning Sun with a smile.  Hell yea I did.  It was a Friday, it was 9:00 AM and I didn’t have anywhere to go.  In celebration of my new-found freedom from the dreaded “cubby job” – or maybe just because I was free for the first time since I could remember, at least I could give myself one weekend of that – I went outside and layed down in the grass face down and gazed the magnificent orbs known as dandelions.  Mandelas.  Works of art.  Made of a thousand-million little, itty-bitty individual seeds, all symetric;y perfect.  The Sun shining through them made them even more magical.  No color.  No celebrated class among the world of flowers.  No need.  They stand alone.  And I have all the time in the world to watch them (at least until the neighbor’s landscaper comes on Monday).

Field of Wishes

 

Praying Mantis

I found this “little” guy on the hood babyprayingmantisof my car, probably eating all the tree pollen that had fallen all over my car.  I wonder if he knows how rare he is.  He was big but he was definitely a baby.  Luckily the Sun was blazign, and my car – pollen aside – relatively clean, so I got his shadow (that reminds me of a star) and his relfection, which oddly looks more featured than the actual praying mantis.  Every time I see one, which is rare, I can’t help but look closely at it like I’m studying some prehistoric animal that time forgot.  Their movements are like animated origami, whatever that is – it’s the only way I can explain it.  Delicate as they are, you can’t help but feel like they are older and wiser than the Earth itself.  In “Enter the Dragon” with Bruce Lee there was a scene where old men pitted praying mantis against praying mantis in a sort of cock fight and they were betting on the winner.  Very interesting.

 
Baby Praying Mantis

I Always Look Up

Friendly skies of robin’s egg blue or darkened skies of impending storms, no matter what, I always look up.  Up is where the big birds glide on streams of air without flapping a wing.  Up is where the stars shine bright and planets appear when the mood fancies them.  Up is where balloons fly free and our spirits soar.  Though occasionally, I look forward or around and sometimes even down, for most of the time, I keep looking up.  It’s the place I send my wishes and my prayers and let them be carried on a breeze to where they’re supposed to go.

Close-up and Personal

I have a Kodak 10 megapixel camera that I bought for next to nothing a couple of years ago.  If I was to ever admit to having a crush on an inanimate object, it would be my camera; we don’t go anywhere without each other.  Once in a blue moon (there will be one on August 31), I charge my battery and forget to bring my camera with me and I always regret it.

Sarasota and Siesta Key Beach

I’ve been to Sarasota several times, and Siesta Key Beach was voted more than once as one of the top ten beaches in the world.  The sand isn’t sand, it’s crushed coral and it’s fluffy like baby powder.  In the blazing Florida sun, you can walk barefoot on this sand and never burn your feet – you can’t do that in New Jersey!  Aside from soft, silky sand, the water is as blue as the sky, full of wild life like pelicans and dolphins and Siesta Key Beach can sometimes have some of the best shells for shell hunters to enjoy.  Of course, my favorite part of being in Sarasota is visiting family and friends and taking photos of all the things I don’t get to see when I’m home.