photography

Just what you needed to hear

Roses Reading

Ralph

Snail Mail Revolution

I've been doing a course on Instagram, trying to improve my photography and Instagram engagement in general. It's challenging, fun, inspiring, and frustrating, like most things are when you're learning something new. Then today, someone else in the course shared this video with the class.

I'd heard of this little piece by Ira Glass before, but had never actually taken it in myself. If you're struggling with trying to be creative - or really, with trying to be good at anything in life - and you feel like you're just not up to scratch, do yourself a favour and spend two minutes listening to this. (If you can't see the video below, click this link to find it in Vimeo).

It just might be exactly what you needed to hear.

THE GAP by Ira Glass from Daniel Sax on Vimeo.

10 "slow living" unsung heroes of Instagram

Intagram-naomi Are you on Instagram? That's me above. I'm @naomibulger if you'd like to drop by and say hi.

Who do you like to follow on Instagram? I love to fill my feed with people who inspire me and, these days, more often than not, people who inspire me are people who I like to call "slow-living heroes."

Creative folk, gentle folk, mindful folk. You know the sorts of folks I'm talking about! They are makers and bakers; gardeners and gatherers; weavers, wordsmiths and wanderers; snail-mailers, and spreaders-of-kindness.

Here are 10 of my favourite slow-living Instragrammers, each of them "unsung heroes," because they have relatively small accounts, of 1000 followers or less.

elise_albrektsen⇑⇑ @elise_albrektsen

stringofwonders⇑⇑ @stringofwonders

lomoens⇑⇑ @lomoens

anianycz⇑⇑ @anianycz

_freshlypressed⇑⇑ @_freshlypressed

lullaby0720-2⇑⇑ @lullaby0720

sovica4⇑⇑ @sovica4

bsvitlana⇑⇑ @bsvitlana

oandystudio⇑⇑ @oandystudio

gemmagarner⇑⇑ @gemmagarner

Who else should I be following? Link me up!

All your thoughtful words

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During the past month or so I have been chipping away at the photography for my new book (which is going by the working title Snail Mail Revolution, by the way, but that might change). I want the book to be really beautiful, something that you will want to hold and touch and browse through slowly. It is really important to me to avoid having something that looks like a glorified stationery catalogue.

When I put a call out to you guys to tell me what you loved about snail-mail, what you felt made it so very special, your responses were absolutely amazing. Thank you!

Thank you

Thank you

Thank you

Thank you!

So many of you encapsulated PERFECTLY how I felt about this ancient and evergreen way of staying in touch (take a look at this wonderful quote from Selise, for example). People loved snail-mail because it was so intensely personal, a direct conversation between two people, thoughts written by hand, their rethinking exposed in crossed-out words and margin notes. And because it was slow, a return to mindfulness and patience and the art of waiting for something worth waiting for. Many people loved that letters were tangible, something they could touch and smell and see. There was more said, so much more, and it was beautiful. But you will have to wait for the book to read it all!

All your thoughtful words really helped me when it came to planning the photography, and I was really keen to capture the essence of what you were saying. To my mind, the photographs needed to evoke some kind of emotion, to tell a story. The sense of occasion that comes, for example, with opening and reading a letter from someone you love. Or the thoughtfulness that goes along with sitting down to write a letter. Do you know what I'm trying to say? Is this making sense?

If you follow me on Instagram, you'll have seen the images on this post popping up during the past couple of weeks. They are outtakes and behind-the-scenes shots of what I've been trying to create. I hope you like them. I'm really happy with how this book is all coming together!

Things learned and loved on Tuesday

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Learned: I couldn't save the world but I could make someone's world better

Loved: Oona Ristola photography

Learned: a recipe for fig, ricotta and honey toast. Yum!

Loved: green and growing homes

Learned: why our children need to read

Loved: knitted comfort food

Learned: three surprising decorating tips

Loved: this book-themed hotel

Learned: how to put together a cheese plate

Loved: the chance to get my paws on a note pad from the Great Northern Hotel, Twin Peaks

Learned: little baby pumpkins make really sweet (and not at all scary) table decorations at Halloween, even if it isn't autumn or Thanksgiving

How about you? What have you learned and loved lately?

 

 

 

 

Camouflage

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I have not been able to stop looking at these lovely photographs of "camouflaged" birds, ever since I saw them on Honestly WTF. They are part of a series called "Birds of a Feather" by artist Claire Rosen and each of the birds - some of them common and others exotic - has been posed in front of vintage wallpaper. I think the idea of 'wild' birds in such a domestic setting and so consciously posed is incredibly fun and playful. It's like a children's storybook. Like the Big Bad Wolf all dressed up in Grandma's bonnet.

Browsing through the rest of Claire's portfolio is like taking a tumble down the rabbit hole and through the looking glass all at once. I asked her where she found inspiration, and she pointed me to a beautiful, interactive board she created on "A Creative Life." What you see below is just a screen-shot of a small portion of the board. Take a look at the entire board here (tip: I couldn't open this in Firefox. If you are having trouble, try with a different browser) and click on the various boxes to uncover the inspiration behind them.

Claire says, "Everyone has the capacity to be creative and it starts by creating a safe space to be creative in. Creativity is a muscle that needs to be exercised and fed with inspiration." Would you agree with her?

 

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Credits:

As mentioned, the image above is a screen-grab of a much larger board created by Claire Rosen. The original is found on fusings.com. All Birds of a Feather images are used here with kind permission from Claire Rosen. Credits are as follows.

WEBSITE : www.clairerosenphoto.com INSTAGRAM : @clairerosenphoto BOOK: http://www.blurb.com/b/4708660-birds-of-a-feather

LIMITED EDITION ARCHIVAL PIGMENT PRINTS on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Paper signed and numbered on front 40 x 60 inches    (edition of 05)      25.5 x 17 inches (edition of 10)             11 x 16.5 inches (edition of 15)              6 x  4 inches (edition of 150)    

The Birds of a Feather series will be in an exhibit in September at the Hagedorn Foundation Gallery (http://www.hfgallery.org) in Atlanta, GA with an artist reception on Thursday Oct. 16th.

Little things - the cowboy

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Little things in my home...

This pensive cowboy sits outside his restaurant and on my kitchen bench. I found his photograph in a bric-a-brac shop in Aspen, Colorado, when I was staying up there for a fiction writer's course (called Aspen Summer Words - if you ever get the opportunity take it - it was amazing!).

I almost didn't share the cowboy today because the whole purpose of this series is to tell the stories behind the little things in my home. Like this. Or this. Or this. And I don't know the story of this cowboy. Nor have I created a story for him since bringing him home. But I am so deeply drawn to this picture, and I don't even know why. I never tire of looking at it, or thinking about it, and wondering what is his story? What is the story of this new town?

Little Things” is an occasional series about the stories behind some of the little things you’ll find around my home. Are there stories behind the little things in your home? I’d love you to tell me about them! Or if you’d like to join in and write a post like this of your own, don’t forget to share a link to it so I can read it.

Kate & cat

andy-prokh-katecat01 This stunning photographic suite of a little Russian girl at play with her cat is my new happy place. I could say more but really I think the photographs speak for themselves. Watch these two grow up together, so lovely!

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The photographer, Andy Prokh, was born in Siberia. He is a former economist who switched careers after more than 10 years, and turned to photography instead. Take a look through the gallery of his works. I find it a little bit Alice in Wonderland-esque: one minute dark, the next funny, now I'm confused, now I'm in love.

All images used with Andy's Prokh's kind permission