Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Here and there on the beach are giant tangles of bull kelp. They're strangely fascinating to see and somewhat difficult to photograph -- the sort of subject matter that lures you in and then laughs at your attempts to do a good job with it. ©Carol Leigh

Monday, March 30, 2009

56 minutes at the beach

Looking north (where the rain's coming from) and then looking down at a sand pattern. A view of the bluffs to the east and then a close-up of the glorious color within the bluffs. It was a good morning. ©Carol Leigh

Saturday, March 28, 2009


A lone tree stands out well against various shades of green. I'm still processing my drive-by photos that I took on Thursday and am particularly pleased with this one. An exposure of 1/8 second combined with shooting from a moving car means nothing is in focus! Yet I still have a recognizable impression of the scene, which I just love. ©Carol Leigh

Santo de Chimayo

It often takes a while to process a photograph. Last fall I saw this carving outside a window in Chimayo, New Mexico. A hand was missing, the window was spattered with dirt, and the lighting wasn't ideal, but I knew there was a photo lurking in there somewhere. So yesterday I pulled it out, dusted it off, added a hand, and brought out more of the texture in the wood.

Some might say that perhaps this santo was even more charming before I cleaned it up. Well, as the self-appointed queen of all things dirty, rusty, and grungy, I can say that no, it was definitely not more charming! The beauty of photography is that we are encouraged to look, to explore, to extract, and then to process. The looking and the exploration is fun — road trip! The extraction is a challenge — to create order out of chaos, to consider what is and what might be. The processing brings everything together, involving memories of your exploration, your feelings at the time the shutter clicked, and then tapping your skill in presenting to the world your little slice of life, and, in this case, a little slice of the woodcarver's life. ©Carol Leigh

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Motion in motion . . .

In my current online photo class my students were working on creating a feeling of motion or movement in their photographs. I was thinking of them today as I photographed through the car window. We traveled inland from the coast through Yamhill County, which is beautifully rural and beautifully green. Orchards of nut trees caught my eye with their repeating patterns, strong lines in the tree trunks, and contrast. This is too much fun! ©Carol Leigh

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Looking and cooking . . .

Alsea Bay, Waldport, Oregon. A quick trip to the library and I'd be foolish to not duck over a couple of blocks to check out the view. What a beautiful sight. And then home to make caramelized onions (a first for me). But once made, then what? Well, it was scrambled eggs and toast for dinner! Yum! ©Carol Leigh

Monday, March 23, 2009

Copper S

Chris brought home a gorgeous piece of copper, thinking I'd like to photograph the patina on it (and you wonder why I hang on to this guy?). So this morning I went over to Juanita's mailbox and photographed an S and then took a macro shot of the copper. I sandwiched them together and ta da! ©Carol Leigh

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Grape hyacinth

Grape hyacinths are beginning to push up out of the ground -- a sure sign that spring is here. Next are the bluebells, the crocus, the daffodils, the tulips. I used a 50mm lens and an extension tube, and an aperture of f/1.8 for excruciatingly minimal depth of field. ©Carol Leigh

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Just for you, June . . .

Well, you suggested a photo of Abby or baked goods, so just for YOU, I did both. I'm not much of a baker, but I made something called Peanut Butter and Jelly Shortbread Wedges. They're good! Only a little bit of the batter went flying around the kitchen . . . And then there was Abby, sitting in a basket on top of a stack of newspapers. Maybe tomorrow I can get back to the oil cans . . . XXX ©Carol Leigh

In a continuing series . . .

It's great to have something around to shoot when it's raining. It rains here a lot. Luckily I have lots of oil cans! Insanity reigns . . . ©Carol Leigh

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Rule of Thirds . . .

A sanitation truck sported these three colorful hoses against a textured metal background and I had to shoot them. Much to the amusement of the truck driver. ©Carol Leigh

Kelp Woman

There's a lot of bull kelp on the beaches now after our recent winds and storms. This one looked so much like a woman's head with her "hair" flowing away that I quickly added a carved wooden face to augment the look. Not a great shot/technique, but fun to do. Actually, the more I look at it, it's kind of creepy . . . ©Carol Leigh

Beach getaway . . .

I took a quick 45-minute photo walk on the beach yesterday to see what I could find. The brightly-colored rocks are always an attraction and then, on the way back, I noticed a rather eerie rock below the bluffs . . . ©Carol Leigh

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Family portrait . . .

Half of my oil can "family." ©Carol Leigh

Monday, March 16, 2009

Oil can #4 . . .

It's become an obsession. I love these things — their shapes, their purpose, their texture, patina, age, their imperfections . . . Creepy, huh? :-) ©Carol Leigh

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Oil cans

I set these guys up on a bookcase shelf to shoot. Think I'm gonna need a bigger shelf to shoot the whole collection . . . ©Carol Leigh

My address? 20 Main Street!

©Carol Leigh

Oil can in blue

Nothing like ultramarine blue combined with burnt sienna. Nothing like applying painterly terms to a photograph! Love this color combination. Love these oil cans. ©Carol Leigh

Friday, March 13, 2009

Trees at Ona Beach

Heading north on the coast highway, there's a little group of trees I've wanted to try shooting as we drive past. This is the best I've ever done with them. You can see the trees, the sand, the ocean, and the sky. All is light and bright, which is exactly how the day felt to me. ©Carol Leigh


Yesterday I took a grab shot of a keypad at the entrance to a condominium garage. Today I combined it with an out-of-focus photo of clouds I took in Santa Fe. I love the eerie combination of light and shadow that resulted from the mix. I was also reading about the power of the color blue in paintings and, seeing some blue in my photo, saturated some of the blue areas just a bit more. My photo is one of contrasts -- light and shadow plus the complementary colors of blue and orange plus letters and numbers. I love this shot -- on many levels. ©Carol Leigh

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Motion . . .

Both of these were taken today from a moving vehicle. En route down the Oregon coast, I focused on the side mirror and captured the waves on the beach we had just passed as well as the beach just ahead of us. I used a 0.5-second exposure to create more blur. It's not a good shot, but I find it interesting. The tree shot, too, isn't a "good" photo, but I love how the lighter-colored trees created a burst-like effect as we drove past. This is another longish exposure and was shot through the front windshield. Two weird photos taken on an absolutely glorious day. I'm sunburned! ©Carol Leigh

Waldport Marina

Over at the marina in Waldport you can have your crabs cooked for just 75 cents apiece. Have a seat. Make yourself comfortable. ©Carol Leigh

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Newport, Oregon

A trip to Newport to run errands and, since it wasn't raining, a quick detour to spend half an hour among the fishing boats. A lot of what I photograph there consists of paint splatters on the docks, rust patterns, paint dribbles down the sides of boats, etc. All of this is fodder for my photomontages, and elicits a lot of strange looks and humorous remarks from the local fishermen. "You certainly have an unusual hobby," was today's comment. ©Carol Leigh

Monday, March 9, 2009

Just jeans . . .

At the end of the day, something relatively easy to shoot. ©Carol Leigh

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Snow on the Oregon coast

We had a little snow here on the Oregon coast today (oh, so exciting!). Before it melted, I photographed it dripping off our shed and off the pine trees. ©Carol Leigh

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Rock study

The beaches here offer a lot to shoot. I could easily spend a month doing nothing but rock and sand abstracts. ©Carol Leigh

Friday, March 6, 2009

Gulls at sunset

What makes this photo appealing to me is the quality of the light and the texture in the clouds. I wish the birds had been sharp, but on the other hand I like the feeling of movement that blurred birds create. Beautiful day here on the coast today. ©Carol Leigh

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Sweet rolls!

One of my online class photo assignments is "spirals," and today's breakfast treat is a good example. ©Carol Leigh

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Not-so-scarlet letter A

I continue to photograph my neighbor Juanita's mailbox, today zooming in tight on the letter "A" in "MAIL." ©Carol Leigh

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Same window, different subject

The rain droplets evaporate from the restaurant window (see below) and so I turn my attention to a sculpture across the street, a sculpture by Toledo artist Sam Briseno. The window glass is tinted, so the colors look weird. Cool, but weird. Two crows land on the outstretched arm/wing, and one dips its head to be groomed by the other. Dark clouds threaten but the sky eventually clears. ©Carol Leigh

Monday, March 2, 2009

Through a rainy window . . .

Last week Chris and I were in a restaurant and the window next to our table was covered with raindrops. A house stood off in the distance, overlooking the coast. I took two photographs -- one of the raindrops on the window with the house completely blurred in the distance, and a second shot of just the house, as focused as I could make it. I then combined the two photos so that we can see the raindrops as well as the house. It's still soft, but that's what happens when we shoot through wet windows. It was an interesting experiment. And it also shows that it pays to have your camera with you as much as possible. ©Carol Leigh

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Juanita's mailbox

In my "Parts is Parts" online class, we're all working on creating 10 decent photographs from one subject. I've chosen my neighbor Juanita's mailbox for my project and this is my first photo. This is going to be difficult! But that's the point . . . ©Carol Leigh