Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #131-Emotions

Calm

Is tranquility an emotion or a state of mind? Either way, there is so much peace to be found on a quiet, snowy morning. Not even the birds were at the feeder yet and no squirrels had left footprints in the pure white.

Grief

These flowers were from my father’s funeral, a memorial from my boss and our lab. It was October, and the beautiful fall colors of the arrangement brought to mind the cycle of life that plays out in the seasons. Fall is glorious in its preparation for winter and death, a slow fading and a time of letting go. In the back of our minds we know spring will come again, but it can be hard to remember.

Love

I know dogs have the reputation for loyalty, but cats can also get really attached in their own way. Juhani is a lap cat; if you are sitting, she wants to be on you and purring very loudly. She will headbutt you if you are not petting enough. We recently celebrated her “Gotcha Day” and I hope that she will be sleeping on top of us somewhat inconveniently for many years to come.

Find more emotions at the original Lens-Artists challenge.

Lens-Artists Challenge #130: It’s a Small World

Guest host Anne this week has a great discussion of some of the details and differences of micro/macro/close-up photography. Not having a formal background in photography, these are the kind of details I love learning!

Juhani

Close-ups are the thing I experiment with most, because I’m still learning how to do them well. I use my phone for photos, so no macro lens.

I took like a dozen pictures of this pumpkin stem because it had a neat curlicue. I was trying from different angles with the focus in different place; I liked this shot best. The only way we learn is by practice!

You can find more small worlds at the original Lens-Artist challenge.

Lens-Artists Challenge #61 – Precious Pets

In general I often prefer animals to people.  I’ve had pets since I was young, and I’ve worked with animals in various ways throughout my career.  However, I would unequivocally say I am a cat person.  They have so much personality and require just the right amount of attention.

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Popcorn was my first cat.  She was very feisty, though she mellowed and became more of a lap cat when she was older.  She had the most beautiful long white coat, with a raccoon-like mask and tail.

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Jolee was the first cat my husband and I adopted together; we named him after a Star Wars character.  He was a huge troublemaker and figured out how to open the doors in our house.  He passed away rather suddenly this year and left a big hole in our lives.

Juhani is also named for a Star Wars character.  If there is a lap available, she will find it immediately.  She is the sweetest cat ever and tolerates our toddler with equanimity.

You can find more precious pets at the original Lens-Artist challenge.

Saying Goodbye

Last week my kitty got sick quite suddenly and passed away, so it’s been a pretty rough time for our family.  Even if you guys didn’t know it, Jolee was instrumental to my blog because he always curled up next to me to keep me company when I was writing or reading.

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We named him Jolee because he was a mix of black and white, therefore grey, and therefore reminded us of the grey Jedi Jolee Bindo from Knights of the Old Republic.

He turned out to be a grouchy busybody, just like the KOTOR character. 😀  He really liked to cause trouble and once jumped into the Christmas tree.  (He never tried it again. It was a very wet, prickly tree.)

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His favorite toy was BB-8.

Yet he was so patient with our one-year-old son, and he always slept with me when my husband was on business trips.  He kept me company for hours upon hours as I played video games, worked on my novels during NaNoWriMo, blogged, read, or napped.  He had the softest, silkiest fur ever.

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Cats are weird.

Jolee was with our family for nearly six years.  It wasn’t nearly enough.  We miss him every day, even just when we walk in the door and he’s not there to greet us.

Helper cats.

Thank you for adopting us as your family, Jolee. We love you always.

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #34: Close-Up

My cameras and phones have never been really good enough to get good macro shots, so here are some close-ups of architecture: Sagrada Familia church in Barcelona, Spain; the capital of a Corinthian-style column in Venice; a bench wall by the sea in Palma de Mallorca, Spain.

And just for fun, I was playing with my phone today, so here is a close-up of my cat Juhani.

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You can find more close ups at the original Lens-Artist challenge.