Food Photography

foodpic2I really enjoy baking and gardening.  This summer I had my first Texas garden and I really enjoyed it.  I had a very prolific cherry tomato plant that gave me fresh tomatoes almost daily.  As far as baking goes I’ve finally found a biscuit recipe that I like and I’ve enjoyed making freshly baked biscuits whenever the need arises.  So I’ve found that as I’ve enjoyed both of these hobbies they’ve also lead to another enjoyment and that is of taking pictures of the objects that both hobbies produce, no pun intended!

The eggplants above weren’t grown in my garden but came from my local farmer’s market.  I had never seen baby eggplant and they were so beautiful that I had to take them home and see what I could do with them.  I ended up making an appetizer with them but I thought that they were so perfect that they needed to be photographed on their own before they were made into something else.

Also, you can see the cherry tomatoes I mentioned.  In July I could have taken this same photograph daily, as my tomato plant was loaded with dozens of these rosy orbs. I’m glad I did take these photographs because they bring me enjoyment even now as we roll in to fall.  I can appreciate the taste of summer through them. But I also love that they are not only a memory of a yummy treat or delicious salad but in and of themselves they are beautiful subjects worthy on their own as works of art.

So through my appreciation of food I have come to find a love of food photography.  I love the way it shows everyday objects, things we take for granted, on an elevated scale.  Through photos we can savor and appreciate the taste and sustenance these foods bring in an almost holistic way.

Photographer Katie Davies first made me take notice of this art through her photographs and since then I’ve taken notice whenever I see food photographs in books or magazines.  How are the shots composed?  What message are they trying to deliever? How do these photos make me feel?  They help me to appreciate art in the everyday.

Have you taken photos of your food?  Do tell.

Summer Knitting – His and Hers

Nothing says knitting like a hot summer day!  This summer while it was 1000 degrees outside I decided it would be a great time to do some knitting! Actually summer time does seem to be a good time for projects, like knitting, that are portable. Knitting projects are also great in summer because they can be picked up for a few minutes and then put down when you get busy with something else. So it some ways it is the perfect summer project!

First, socks for my son.

socks

I think he picked out this yarn 5 years ago!  …….And he was 5.  Luckily, green, yellow and gray still seems to appeal to him!  So it was about time to knit these socks!  Plus, pretty soon he will no longer want hand knit socks made by his mother.  I better enjoy making things for him while I can!  This was my first time using self stripping yarn and I have to say I really like it!  No changing the yarn color!  It just makes these great stripe patterns on its own!  I don’t know why I haven’t tried this type of yarn before!

For my daughter, I am knitting a sweater.  I’ve have been wanting to try this one for a while and if you look on Ravelry literally thousands of people have knit this one up. That is pretty amazing! But I never gave it a try because I didn’t think I would stick with it. I have yet to knit an adult sized sweater but when I realized that this one comes in a child’s size I decided to try it since it would be a smaller project.    sweater

I was pointed in the direction of this sweater from reading Susan B. Anderson’s blog and following her on instagram. Following her feed is dangerous.  She knits so many beautiful thinks you want to try every thing she is making! Right now she is working on project sweater chest. She has an actual chest of sweaters that she has knit over the years many of which she no longer wears. She wants to fill it with new sweaters that she will wear and she is encouraging others to knit sweaters also. So she is in the process of picking her top 10 favorite sweaters that she has knit and the owl sweater pattern that I used to knit the sweater above is one of those 10.

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Here are the arms after I knit them.  This was where Jennifer said she would just stop and make leg warmers!  Actually, not a bad idea!  But, I hung in there an as you saw in the above photo I attached them to the body of the sweater.  I’ve started on the owl pattern and I think? I see owls?  We’ll see…..

I’ll have to start a project mini sweater chest as right now I’m happier to work on smaller sweaters! They much more likely to be finished!  So, do you find that certain craft projects are seasonal?  Or do you just start projects that inspire you no matter the season?

To Buy Or To Make, That Is The Question

I meant to get out my sewing machine and dust it off. I really did. Except one day I rounded the last corner of the last aisle in the home section of TJ Maxx and there they were, my new bedroom curtains. They practically jumped out of someone else’s cart and into mine. I’m not kidding.

So here are the curtains that were in our master bedroom.

Curtains Before

 These sheer curtains with the burnout pattern were holdovers from our apartment in Germany. When we moved back into our house, I had enough panels, I just used them as place holders in almost every room. I always meant to replace them with something more substantial, less transparent. I seem to favor linen fabrics, so that is what I had in mind. Something light-colored and plain, maybe with a dark border. Then I found these curtains in TJ Maxx. I picked them up off the shelf and another shopper said, “I just had those in my cart. I was looking for a bedspread to match.” Ha! Her loss and honey, you don’t need things to match, just coordinate! That is a lesson for another day.

New Curtains

A linen looking fabric that I love, plus a pretty pattern that adds a nice touch, but coordinates easily with nearly everything. Two 96″ panels for $30. Score! I picked up two packages. I like to hang my curtain rods high on the wall, so I need the eight foot panels instead of the typical seven. If I were going to make my own curtain panels, I would purchase about three yards per panel. Well, it’s unlikely I’d find six yards of fabric that I love for $30. If I can find fabric I like for $10 or $20 a yard, that is a deal, $5 a yard is an absolute steal!

Here you can see the new panel on the left and the old sheer curtain on the right.

Curtain Comparison

See how transparent the old curtains were? The new panels let the light through, but they feel so much nicer. Here is where I apologize for the poor picture quality. It’s a combination of an inexpensive camera (I don’t want to spring for a DSLR just yet) and my favorite photo editing website has not been working for me lately. Ugh! To avoid the window burnout, I took the following picture at night.

Curtains After

I like my new curtains so much better than the old. It isn’t a dramatic change visually, but when you are actually in the room, well, it FEELS so much nicer. That seems to be a running theme with me lately, not so much the dramatic change, but a minor change that makes a room feel better. Full disclosure, I did wash the curtains before I hung them and they shrunk to just the right length. Whoa! Not sure I’d take that risk again.

So, that was my To Buy or To Make choice that pretty much decided itself. Have you had decisions like that? Have you ever had something go from another shopper’s cart to yours? Did you feel lucky or guilty?