2019 The Year of Small Surprises and Second Chances: Weeks 14 & 15

The year of small surprises and second chances… To be honest I think this might be how I approach the rest of 2019.  Embracing those sneaky, small surprises and allowing for second chances.

The first set of images is a throwback to my 2016 photo project when I took one image per day using Hipstamatic’s “shake to randomize” feature.  I chose the subject, shook my iPhone to activate “randomize” mode and let the app make the editing choices before I could see the final results.  I committed to posting what came out of the camera and in the spirit of fun came back to give it another try in 2019.  This time around though I made one small change and decided to keep shooting in the randomly chosen combination if I liked the settings.  The end result being I had several new photos from each day but could only use one for the post…

So, I was consistent with my photo taking but daily life was a little more time-consuming than I had planned for and my final, wrap up post just didn’t happen.

Faced with this I decided I had two choices:  skip the week or give myself a second chance and write a longer post by the end of the next week including all 14 images.  Since I liked the photos and didn’t want to pass over them just because I was too busy I decided to pick the second chance option.  One thing led to another and my entire next week was structured around second chances.

I started with a favorite 2014 Washington coast shot reimagined in soft pastel Hipstamatic.  The second image came about after a customer asked if I had a color version of my popular black and white forest trail poster.  I went back to the original 2017 photo and worked with colors until I found a combination that made me happy.  You might recognize the next shot of Finn, it’s a re-work of the black and white photo from the first set of images and the rest are all additional photos left over from my “shake to randomize” week.  I hope you like them!

As with previous weeks all photos were taken with my iPhone and edited on my phone or iPad.  If you have specific questions about the editing choices ask a question in the comments.  I’m happy to share!

 

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2019 The Year of Pollen and Pretty Flowers: Week 13

If you’ve ever tried to complete a year-long photo project you know each week brings a new challenge and today’s post is my answer to the seasonally specific question “what do I share when the focus of my blog is an outdoor PNW lifestyle but the arrival of spring means I can’t be outside because of the sneezing?” This is the third time I’ve set myself up to share a year’s worth of daily photos and while I might want to say I’ll only take and share pics from indoors until allergy season passes the truth is I need better choices or you’ll all leave me for more interesting reading.  Plus, the inside of my house is boring and spring in the Pacific Northwest is really lovely.  It would be a shame to not share.

This year I decided to risk the pollen induced sneezing and in one fast-snapping tour of the yard collected 6 images of what’s blooming now to create a fresh post all about flowers.  Our late start to spring meant the morning I made my flower dash there weren’t 7 interesting plants blooming so the begonia close up is from last summer. I like to think of the final result as a digital, sneeze free, bouquet.

All images were taken with my iPhone and edited in VSCO.  If you’re interested in more detail please click through each image individually as I’ve captioned them with the specific filter presets used within the app.

2019 The Year of Seeing Green: Week 12

The year of seeing green?  Living green?  Sharing green?  We try for all three here but I still had a hard time settling on one for this post so after a day spent typing and deleting variations I finally acknowledged my best days happen when I can see something green so “seeing” it is.  Of course time with family, a good book, meal etc will brighten any day but everything just feels easier for me to enjoy when surrounded by pretty shades of fresh green life.

Is there a color that makes you happy every time you see it?  Or does the absence of a certain shade make joy harder to find?  I’d love to hear your favorites,  or maybe even a little story about what color means in  your life!

This set of seven photos were all taken with my iPhone and edited using the following apps: 3/17 & 18 – Stackables, 3/19 – VSCO + Word Swag, 3/20-23 – VSCO.

2019 The Year of Black and White: Week 11

While the easy title for this week’s post was “Black and White” I could have also added something about it being the last full week of winter, or how my earliest memories of enjoying photographs were with books full of black and white images.  All of these would have been accurate but sometimes simple is best and that’s how I ended up with the title we see today.

As for this being the last full week of winter – yay!  I am so happy to turn the corner into spring that if it means the return of allergies and weeds in the yard and I’ll gladly take them in trade for longer days, warmer air and lots of pretty colors bursting out all around.

As for why I chose a monochrome theme it’s simple; black and white images capture and keep my attention in a way that color doesn’t quite match.  Many of you know that I take and post most of my images in color because the seasonal palettes of the Pacific Northwest really shine in vibrant, natural shades but when it comes to quiet storytelling or a photo to think about after you walk away black and white gets me every time.  As an early reader my favorite storytelling books contained pretty color illustrations but I also spent hours of self-directed, non-fiction book time at my Grandparents house engrossed in their Time Life book collection studying photographs of people leading daily lives long before I was born.  The decade volumes that interested me most were the earliest ones that included photographic illustrations because they were a first hand look at how people really lived before I was born and they were all in black and white creating a mysterious feeling of strangeness blended with familiarity.  I puzzled through the text as best I could and then “read” the photos filling in the blanks with what I thought was happening.  I can still remember my favorite pages and if I close my eyes I’m sitting on Grandma Emma’s living room floor in front of the fan with root beer and popsicles ready to learn about a new decade.

The photos above weren’t meant to be just like those old favorites, instead they’re quiet little moments of people and places that I thought benefitted from monochrome’s simplicity.  I’ll continue to post black and white weeks once or twice through the year and hope you’ll enjoy them as much as my big, bold color collections.

All photos were taken with my iPhone and editing apps used are Hipstamatic, VSCO and Stackables.  As always, if you have any questions about techniques or filters used please ask in the comments below!

2019 The Year of This and That: Week 10

Have you ever had a week that felt busy in the moment but didn’t result in a list of accomplishments?  My best case scenario for a week like this is that everyone made it through without any major problems and each busy day lead to something good later so by this metric I’ll call last week a success.  Yay!  I took steps toward bigger goals, put out plenty of fires and used my photo sharing time to feature some favorites from the past year that didn’t fit into an overall weekly theme.  In other words “a bit of this and that.”

My photo choices were little glimpses into things that made me happy; some pretty garden flowers, a forest road, a hiking trail, fluffy white clouds and an iconic PNW beach scene filled with driftwood logs.  All images taken with my iPhone 8+ edited in Hipstamatic or VSCO.

A fun side note:  posting so many hiking photos led me to design a new hiking T-shirt available now in my Etsy store.  All I need is some warmer weather and John, Ryan and I will be hitting the trails in style.

Northwest Frame of Mind on Etsy

2019 The Year of Mountain Tops and Flowers: Week 9

It’s sunday afternoon and the sun is shining but the air is still too cold for comfort and I am really ready for winter to be over.  I know the calendar says we’re a few days into March and warmer days are coming soon so I’m pinning new PNW hikes to my Pinterest page and when some of the mountain snow melts we’ll be off to new adventures and happy trails.

If you’re interested in PNW hiking, west coast road trips, easy but tasty recipes and plenty of fresh new cocktails there’s plenty to see on my Northwest Frame of Mind Pinterest page. Is anyone here on Pinterest?  I’m looking for new boards to follow and would love to join some like-minded pinners!

Since I didn’t travel to a beautiful mountainside this week I’ve resorted to perusing photos from last summer and editing my favorites in this vintage-look combination from Hipstamatic.  If you’re interested in which processes I used just ask in the comments, I’m happy to share my steps.

What do you do when the weather is too cold to enjoy being outside but you’ve got a bad case of cabin fever.  I turn up the heat, look through favorite pictures and make plans for our eventual return to outdoor living.

 

2019 The Year of Looking for Light: Week 8

I know February is coming to a close when I can hear birds again in the morning but daylight hours are short and it’s too cold for spring flowers to fill the gardens.  We’re turning the corner but we aren’t there yet!

Because my mornings and evenings are still fairly dark I’ve been looking back to unpublished photos filled with light and warmth so I can share something with a little optimism instead of gloom.  I like to think of it as a balance to the chilly gray pattern we’ve got to endure for a few more weeks and the thoughtful Debra of breathelighter phrased it perfectly when she said:

You know the warmth and beauty you’ve enjoyed before will return, and that can keep us going. Impatiently, perhaps, but still going!

So I guess it makes sense that I’ve spent this week looking back for beauty anticipating what will come.

This set of seven photos are from two October days at Marina Beach Park in Edmonds, WA.  One foggy day drew me to the contrast of autumn colors against cool gray mist but I also wanted to capture the same viewpoints filled with bright sunlight so the next time the sun came out I returned to the park to try again.  Do you have a favorite?

I’ve planned one more autumn photo to share on Instagram later today and I think the rest of February will be spent looking back at past beauty while dreaming about what is to come.  My fingers are crossed March brings us sunshine, flowers and new opportunities!

All photos taken with my iPhone 8+ and edited in On1.

2019 The Year of Crisp White Snow and Icy Blue Skies: Week 6

What a change from last week’s soft pinks and rosy afternoons! This week passed by in a frozen shade of blue all due to a sudden return of winter.  We’ve had snow days, ice coated roadways and a first for this blog, icicles.  Brrrr

All the images above are from my yard with the exception of the icy road photo so I guess it’s no surprise I’m feeling restless and housebound when that’s what waits for me at the end of our driveway.  After two weeks of quiet rest I was ready to go out and resume life but instead I’m watching weather reports, trying to figure out how long this school year will be once all the snow days are factored in and feeling generally a little grumpy.

All is not bad though, we’ve got a warm house, plenty of food, stacks of books to read and some dry wood ready for a nice warm fire.  So instead of focusing on what’s gone wrong here let’s turn things around.  I’d love to hear how your week was!

Editing note:  All photos were taken with my iPhone and the first six images were edited with Hipstamatic using the Anne-Marie + Hackney + Cadet Blue Gel combination.  The final image was edited in Snapseed.

2019 The Year of Comfort: Week 5

If you’ve read a few of these 2019 posts you’ve probably noticed each title begins with the same “2019 The Year of” then changes to a short descriptive phrase from the past week.  In the past I’ve tried to keep yearly project titles more consistent but my objective with this new year of photos and weekly recaps is to explore how many times my point of view changes in a year.  I may start a January project with the intention to focus on one motivation but it inevitable slips and adjusts as life happens and months change.  This time around I decided trust and record my first instinct as I began typing each new post.  Some titles may seem a bit odd but it’s been a good exercise to acknowledge what I actually thought of the past week instead of simply noting what I’d planned for it.

The comfort aspect to this week’s photos reflects my last week of quiet rest at home.  I was feeling better but still needed to conserve my energy so you see a focus on soft colors and comfort surroundings.  I went out for short walks and enjoyed some pretty winter sunsets, icy blue water, pretty flowers, boats all in a row and a wintry shot of Finn comfortable in his fleece bed.

Editing choices this week are all from Hipstamatic.  If you like the lens/filter/flash combinations above I usually try to list them in each Instagram post but you can also ask me a question in the comments and I’ll be happy to share the details.

As with past year-long photo challenges I don’t plan to post here every day, I’ll save that for my Instagram and Twitter accounts, but you faithful blog readers will get one weekly recap every Sunday.

 

2019 The Year of Changing Views: Week 4

This week has been a bit of change for me since I spent all of it at home resting so my photo choices are a mixed gallery of memories, sights from a typical work week, followed by a slow Saturday walk along the waterfront.  Changing views indeed.

We started the week with a fun image of street art on Decatur Island and then spent a few days with some of the contrasting views I see during a more normal week.  If you stop to look at what’s happening to traditional brick-and-mortar retail you see an illustration of the haves and have-nots.  I remain a strong supporter of small, independent shops but everywhere you look big businesses with cash on hand and access to credit are reinventing while those without are quietly shuttering.  The number of store closures will be in the thousands this year while only a small amount of our existing retail square footage will be renovated into new spaces adapting to consumers changing habits.  I’m not going to predict how this will all end but I do know that the volume and variety of in-store choices customers are used to today will be very different by year’s end.

I have plenty of photos of mall remodeling and store closure signs left but midway though the week decided I was done sharing them and was ready to look at something new.  Thank goodness I was able to go outside for a short walk Saturday!  I’m ready with a few new images and inspiration for a prettier week ahead.

As with past year-long photo challenges I don’t plan to post here every day, I’ll save that for my Instagram and Twitter accounts, but you faithful blog readers will get one weekly recap every Sunday.

Decatur Island, WA

2019 The Year of Sunshine, Soft Colors and Decatur Island: Week 3

Sometimes a look back at soft, summer pastels is a nice way to pass through the dark days of January.  Our warm winter continues but by this time of year the short days start to wear on me and I dream of long evenings outside until 10:00 pm enjoying the sunsets and visits with good friends.

Like this weekend in September on Decatur Island with Ryan, my friend Suzie and her daughter Naiah taking senior pictures.  Ryan and Naiah have been friends since daycare and we’ve shared more than a few vacations here in Suzie’s family cabin by the beach so when I got the chance to have the two of them together for official portraits I jumped on it.  They were great sports and we walked all over the island finding favorite locations and making new memories.

I you’d like to see Ryan and Naiah as little ones on Decatur take a look at one of my first posts here 6 years ago.  Forward

As for me this week has been a rush of working a few extra hours before attending to a long overdue matter followed by a stretch of enforced downtime.  I’m not one for quiet hours on the couch, or naps during the day so the thought of two weeks of doing nothing has been more than a little worrying.  I know plenty of people dream of something like this but I’ve actually been making lists of activities I can do while still following instructions and resting.  If anyone has a great book to recommend or a tv series/movie that I need to binge watch now’s the time to share!

As with past year-long photo challenges I don’t plan to post here every day, I’ll save that for my Instagram and Twitter accounts, but you faithful blog readers will get one weekly recap every Sunday.

 

Lake Crescent Lodge

2019 The Year of Lakeside Dreaming in January: Week 2

As I type this on Saturday afternoon the sun is shining, birds are chirping and if I close my eyes I can almost pretend I’m sitting in the lovely sun room at the Lake Crescent Lodge in the Olympic National Park.  I’ve already written a few posts about our strange, warm winter here in the PNW and it looks like the trend will continue a little while longer.  In fact Friday’s 61 degrees set a record for the warmest January 11th in Seattle history.  Wow.

Looking through my picture gallery above you might wonder why you’re seeing images from September instead of views from last week.  Well, there were two main reasons I decided to take on another 365 photo challenge, one was to finally share some of the thousands of new images hiding out in my photo roll and the other was to push myself to start writing again.  Even if it was just little, chatty updates from my week the practice would be good so here we are looking back on a warm September afternoon while I type a post in January.

As for my week it was a busy one filled with extra work hours and long afternoons trapped in rush hour slowdowns.  Audiobooks are my lifeline in the car and thanks to our local library I can usually work my way through an author’s catalog from beginning to end.  This season I’ve been listening to a lot of Christopher Moore and by friday afternoon I’d finished The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove. There wasn’t a lot of opportunity for photography although I did take a few new images for use later and when I had a free minute I thought back to this trip with Ryan when we were beginning to practice portrait photography for his Senior Pictures.

As with past year-long photo challenges I don’t plan to post here every day, I’ll save that for my Instagram and Twitter accounts, but you faithful blog readers will get one weekly recap every Sunday.