Monday, February 2, 2015

2015 photo challenge week 5

26 - Barbecue in a park, playing cricket and kubb, listening to the hottest 100. Magic. Battery operated radio required so I located my CD/Cassette/Radio from the mid nineties and reacquainted myself with tuning in analogue. The party host tracked down the 6xD batteries needed (apparently a rare size now). Challenge increased as the display is apparently somewhat inaccurate - that photo has it tuned to play 105.5. I was too busy playing cricket and such on the day to take photos, so since the radio played an important part, here it is.

27 - A haircut does wonders for the way I feel about myself. I don't know why,exactly, but it's not something I'm going to complain about. I thought it was time that my photo appeared in my project too. (The one on day 24 wasn't originally intended to be part of it, bit of an afterthought)

28 - Calendars have become part of the Christmas tradition, Mum and Dad get me a different one each year. This one features Monet's work, January was 'The water-lily pond with the Japanese bridge' (1899). A whole month gone... dang.

29 - I'll never get tired of sunsets, you don't even need to go far to appreciate them. This was taken from the end of my driveway. The rest of this commentary's going to head into editing, self-critique and such so if you're not interested, skip ahead ;)
One thing I've been learning this year is how to use my photo editing tools better. If I want a quick edit and I'm on a computer that's cool with the idea, I'll use google's inbuilt stuff (or instagram's), but for better results I'm using GIMP 2.8, rather good set of tools, and free too - I'm mostly editing levels though I also twitched a bit using brightness, contrast, lightness and saturation. Many of my photos, prior to editing, have colours and contrasts that don't really represent what I saw. Learning to use my camera better will help a bit, but editing will always factor in. I'm trying to strike a balance between beautiful colours and pushing things beyond reality. I think this one's a touch overdone - I should have edited it to be more orange than purple as the sky was predominantly orange that evening. It's a nice image that I find visually pleasing, I think the composition's good if not stellar but while enhancing an image is often necessary I want to represent what I saw, which this isn't quite achieving. I'll keep trying...

30 - Movie night at Apex Park in Gawler. It was a lovely night though the turnout was apparently somewhat down from the previous week. While I waited for the sun to set I enjoyed one of the cupcakes... again I realised this photo was very fuzzy when I saw it on a larger screen but I can't retake this. So... here are some flowers I saw on the way too? I got two photos of these, the other is a shade clearer but I prefer the composition of this one.

31 - I bought the wrong kind of feta so rather than have it go to waste, I made spanakopita, a new recipe for me. I'd link you to the recipe but I was rather free with it, halving the quantity, substituting frozen spinach for baby spinach and adjusting a few other things as necessary. Thankfully it's a very forgiving recipe - some cooking is more an art, some cooking is more sciencey... this one seems more at the art end. I think next time I'll add a little grated lemon rind, several recipes included that but the one I used did not. I've not cooked with pastry much before, especially in a savoury context, so I was very pleased with the outcome.

32 - After a night in the fridge, the results were delicious. I'm very proud of the results. I've tried it both cool and warmed, I prefer it warmed in the oven as it causes the pastry to become super-crispy and delicious.

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