Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Once again it's time for PJ's monthly photo blogging challenge. Is it just me, or does it seem like his challenge happens a lot more often than once a month? I think PJ uses some kind of black magic to make the month go by so fast.

I haven't taken a lot of photos this month, but nevertheless, I've tried to pick five that somehow represent Fall for me.

First, the colors of fall. I took these two photos in the beginning of the month when we still had some colorful leaves on the trees. Now they've all fallen, I'm afraid, and the trees are bare and ready for winter. Much like myself.


Next up, we have a party. Good food, a live band, and a captive audience. When darkness falls it's good to get out and have some fun, or the oppressive darkness of fall might get to you. Not to me, though, I love the darkest part of the year. It feels like home.

Fall also means it's time to get the car ready for winter. It took M and myself an hour to put the snow tires on the car, and we still have another car to deal with. I really think cars should have less tires.

Last, we have this old, broken rocking chair. Somehow it ended up under a tree at my parents' lake house.

Go check out PJ's blog for a list of the other participants.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

And The Winners Are...

I was recently informed that it's been two weeks since the end of Bob, aka 30 Days of Photographs IV. Two weeks! Where did the time go? I have no idea, but I can only assume time flies when you're enjoying life again. My stress levels are back on an acceptable level, my blood pressure is okay again, and I've stopped dreaming about three-headed fire-breathing cameras.

I've pretty much repressed everything about this challenge, but I have this nagging feeling that MikeWJ and I promised we'd pick our favorite photos of the entire bunch and give them some extra love.

Well, a promise is a promise, and this time we're actually keeping ours. Mostly, though, because Nicky kept pestering us to declare our winners already. Oddly enough, she seemed to think that making out with one of the hosts (me), and bribing the other one with cheese (MikeWJ) would bring her the win... Canadians, eh?

There were so many talented bloggers participating in the challenge, it was incredibly difficult for MikeWJ and I to choose our favorite photos. Some were funny, some were deep, some were pensive and some were just weird. Every single one of you impressed us with your talent and your creativity, and we loved the feeling of togetherness Bob forced upon us all.  We wanted to honor every single of you, but alas, we couldn't choose all five or six hundred photos for our favorites. Believe us, we tried, but Blogger temporarily iced my account for trying to post hundreds of photos in the same post. Who'd have thought.

But I digress. When MikeWJ and I first started this challenge, it was all about the photography. About taking as good a photo as possible, inspired by the prompts we chose. We spent hours trying to get the perfect light, perfect angle for our shot. We carried our huge and impractical cameras everywhere and competed fiercely to take the better photo. 

As time went by, more people joined, and the prompts grew more and more outlandish. The challenge became less about photography and more about having fun, about making friends, and about making up creative stories as to how our photo tied together with the theme of the day. While MikeWJ and I love the way the challenge has evolved, we decided to choose the winners of the challenge based on photographic merit. We chose photos we were impressed by, that showed creativity and talent.

So, without further ado, here are our choices:

First, we have Janine's lovely, if very sepia tinted, photo of a ladder. She took this photo for "Rising" on Day 26. We like it because it takes you back to another place and time. It's beautifully composed and for once, sepia is the perfect choice.

Next up we have CheesyMike's photo of his lover, who apparently happens to be a weird Victorian freak with a very misshapen beak. He took this photo for Lover on Day 28, and it's one of our favorites because not only is the composition perfect, but Mike also managed to capture the freak in a very interesting pose that gives the photo that little extra.

Jay impressed us with this photo taken for the theme of Tolstoy on Day 23. The leading lines and the shallow depth of field makes this photo visually stunning and absolutely beautiful in its simplicity. 

On Day 17 for My Junk, PJ posted this beautiful photo of fallen apples and tried to convince us that they were junk. A terrible explanation, but gorgeous photo. It's another stunning example of how to use leading lines and shallow depth of field, and the colors are wonderful.

Last but definitely not least, we have Babs, who took the most impressive photo of a butterfly we have ever seen, for the theme of Transparent. This one is definitely worth looking at in full screen. The water drops on the butterfly are amazing, right down to the light reflected in them. A stunning photo, and a perfect note to end on.

Sadly, MikeWJ and I both bought houses in September, which has left us dirt poor and unable to reward these awesome photographers with anything but a virtual pat on the back and one of those scrapbooks that one woman keeps asking me to give away to my readers in exchange for my soul and a little advertisement. But I hope you all know that if we had the means, we would almost definitely consider sending our winners some kind of prize.

Congratulations to our winners, and thank you to all that played. I hope to see every single one of you next time again.


Tuesday, October 1, 2013


After Bob comes sunshine. Or something. 30 Days of Photographs IV is over, but PJ's monthly photo blogging challenge is still going strong. The theme for September was Outdoors, and while frantically trying to take photos for Bob, I took the opportunity to snap some photos outdoors, too. I guess technically these are my outtakes from Bob, photos I thought about using, but never did. I know some of my fellow Bob participants will be posting their outtakes in the next few days, so I recommend you check in with all your new friends to see some more great photos.

Trains are very modern in Finland

Autumn market in Kristinestad.

Not everything is black and white. This photo is, though.

Houses are very modern, too.

And last, some flowers to make you feel good. Or sneeze.

Check out PJ's blog for more Outdoors photos. *