the year of reviving old hobbies

2013 seems to be the year in which I revive long neglected hobbies. First writing, and right now, I feel a growing pull towards photography. No, not only taking pictures with the new camera, but also re-learning composition, technique and training my eye again. Scrolling through my flickr-Stream, I found some pictures from a time when a camera was always with me… and I thought: Did I take this picture? Wow.

edc
This is one of my all-time favourites, I just love the red tag in the midst of the blue fabrics.

innsbruck bei nacht
I can’t remember how I shot this one, as I’m sure as hell wasn’t lugging around a tripod through Innsbruck.

bouquet
The one and only wedding picture I ever took that I actually like. I photographed countless weddings for my friends, but I’m no people photographer, and my inner perfectionist was never happy.

chain II
I used to find motives in the most mundane settings…

seifenblase03
… and apparently went to great lengths to get my shot. I also can’t remember how I managed to photograph soapbubbles. Alone. Without an assistant.

centaurea

löwenzahn

dandelion

missing summer

Needless to ask where my photographic passion lies though… I will always love taking pictures of flowers. And their insect friends. The old Nikon was a great companion, and I might drag her around as long as her battery life allows for milking that macro lens.

I also realised that I became a hermit in recent years. Pretty much since finishing Uni, to be exact. As if that drama around writing the thesis (don’t want to get reminded about that, huh) and finding a job stiffled all my creative energy and the will to venture out into the wild world. Happy to feel it coming back. And happy to have a new camera to use all that creativity with. *dives into her photography books*

the week in pictures, 08.09.2013

Haworthia reinwardtii

Soooo… I got myself a very very early birthday present. A brand spanking new camera. And oh my god, I’m in love. It’s my very first, not-compact-all-in-one-camera, and it is awesome. As a die hard Nikon girl, it is, surprise surprise, a Nikon. A Nikon 1 V2 to be specific, one of those pretty small system cameras. Because I’m not somebody who lugs around huge camera bodies with a gazillion of lenses, no matter how great these cameras are. Big DSLRs are just not made for me. But still, with this one I can switch lenses! Eeeeeeh!

The new baby and her lens kit

It came with two lenses, a 10-30mm and a 30-100mm and I’m stoked. Haven’t figured out yet which one I like more. Of course, I’m now trying to take as many pictures as possible, and here is a selection.

Unidentified Semper Vivum

Of course, first stop were my plants, as I needed some patient models to get to know the camera. Love. it. Missing a dedicated macro lens though.

september sky

The beautiful blue september sky. We had a really nice week weather wise.

fluffy and wet

I even took the camera to work, to take some pictures of the pretty dew drops in the morning.

And for the grand finale, here is the Kaiserstuhl at sunset:

Sunset and the volcano

learning to see

What I like about visual arts is that they all teach you to see. To really look and take it all in. My efforts in getting back into painting and finally grasp that concept of drawing a face made me aware of how many colours make up skin. And how screwed up those photoshopped, flawless faces in advertising really are…

In another attempt of overcoming my perfectionism I show you my latest work in progress, a rather weird looking eye. But, practice makes perfect, or so they say…

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making faces

I finished my painting! It’s still not perfect and lightyears away from being remotely realistic, but there’s a face, and it actually looks like one!

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The shading is still a bit weird, the skin could use a wider range of tones, and lashes are firmly in the archnemesis camp – as are noses. I could jammer on about what is not right, and what is still missing, but I’m not giving my inner perfectionist that pleasure. It’s a first try on a new programm, so it can’t be perfect anyway. Instead I’ll tell you what I like.

The hair. Oooh, I love painting hair. Different colours, dark strands, light strands, whispy hair… and reflections. All without having to be precise. Win!
I’m quite happy with the eyes. It amazes me every time what a difference two little white dots can make. It was an eye before, but reflections make them come alive. Sort of. They are also the part where the shading works best.
Lips. Hmmm, juicy lips. Like hair, I really like painting lips. And putting highlights on them has the same effect as putting reflections into eyes… suddenly they look more real.

And before anybody thinks that I’m some sort of talented genius, I confess that I traced the outlines from a random photo I found on We heart it. I think it’s a movie still.

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I still consider that cheating, but I learned that even professional comic artists trace pictures, so I thought: What the heck, if they can do it, so can I. Mainly because sketching a remotely anatomically correct face/body is a task on its own, and I was more interested in colours and brushes and technique. And even with a traced outline one still has to fight with light and shadows and colours. It’s just helping with the placing of everything. I think I painted the eyes 5 times, and stopped counting with the nose. Darn noses!

So, yeah. First picture since… oh good, I don’t know… 10 years?

to dress up the walls

As the renovations of the great big hallway of doom come along nicely, I once again face the fact that this house lacks wall decoration. Shocking, I know.

Now, I don’t want any IKEA art1. Decoration consists so far of a gigantic SPAWN movie poster in the bedroom, next to a Lara Croft on a motorbike. There are Princess Leia dolls, and Mystery Machines. And an awesome old fashioned, huge oil painting of a ship under full sails over the dining table. As this is pretty geeky, the upcoming decorations have to fit that theme.

At the moment I’m thinking Spaceships in the hallway. Namely a TARDIS, a USS Enterprise and a Millenium Falcon. The latter two are not so much of a problem to find, but TARDISes are tricky.

I might go for a black/white/wood bedroom theme, so more black and white art might be in order. I do own a pop art black and white storm trooper, who needs proper framing.

As I’m on a major Wonder Woman / Batman trip at the moment2 I really want some awesome Batman and Wonder Woman posters, but those are rare. Especially for Wonder Woman, because I’m not so much into oversized breast/butts.

What’s hanging on you walls?