Sunday, January 25, 2009

Week 4: Freedom, friends and football

Last weekend after our beer festival, I took photos of the bottles and arranged them in winning order (Jenning's Sneck Lifter, spearheading this format, was the overall favourite). I soon discovered that it is very difficult to take pictures of that much glass reflecting in the sun, so I ended up placing them on an old wine barrel and allowing the sunlight to filter through a lattice fence. I felt this gave a slightly dappled effect and a focus of light and interest. By the way, the beer was good. Read about it on Kate's blog.

I met a new friend on my travels - he was very cute and inquisitive. White cats have a particularly hard time in New Zealand and often suffer from skin cancer, so many of their human companions rub suncream into their ears. I quote again from my cat book - "You will always be lucky if you know how to make friends with strange cats." - Colonial American proverb

I passed this protest in the high street - the traffic was stopped and the police were escorting. It all seemed pretty peaceful, unlike the situation in Gaza.
Ursula Gabriele Gschwendtner is a performing artist who uses the art of sacred clowning to explore feelings and emotions. She suggests "We wouldn't have all these wars if people had a connection to their heart. They couldn't send tanks into Gaza or whatever. Masculine energy is ruining our planet."

I know this is not an especially good photograph, but when I saw this image in a shop window I was amused - partly because the strips are on sale, but also because who would buy both at the same time?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Week 3: Colour is good for you

Emily Buttle is an amazing woman who directs and manages the Empress Stiltdance Company. She describes herself as a ‘large-scale spectacular performance artist’ and here she is standing beside her stilts in her studio. Her dream is 'to fill the world with colour, light and a gorgeous feminine energy that can bring something beautiful to the lives of many'. Who could argue with that and not sound churlish?

There's just something about a yellow and blue colour combination that can't help but make me smile. We painted our kitchen in these colours when we lived in Sumner and it really did make things brighter. Shame about the power lines, but I don't believe in using photoshop or any other digital enhancements. I would like my images to reflect the visual truth - telecommunication warts and all.
The Botanic Gardens are the jewel in Wellington's crown and this week the featured flowers are fuschias. Numerous varieties of pink, purple, white and red flourish in the flowerbeds. I love these firework-style flowers as they shoot for the stars but fall back down to earth.

Another amazing woman - this time Katrina Baylis who moonlights as Fairy Trina. She's from Palestine with a degree in international politics, and her mission is to keep the magic and wonder alive in children's imaginations for as long as possible. She entertains children at parties and festivals - they love her and ask for her autograph and a cuddle at the end of each session. She says, 'I really am blessed because I get that view of life that adults lose – innocence, magic and love. I can completely be myself on a very basic level and I really enjoy that'.

I just love this sign outside the local Seatoun dairy. For those not native to New Zealand, a dairy is a corner-shop, and L&P is a high-sugar fizzy lemonade-style drink. Other signs outside advertise pies and ice-creams; a sweet as Kiwi diet.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Week 2: Flowers, food, friends and family

One year my sister decided her New Year's Resolution was to always have fresh flowers in the house. I think this is a great idea. I'm not saying I'm going to do that myself, but I have decided I will buy myself flowers from now on - I love them, but I only get them when I'm doing plays, so why not buy my own? This is a close up of some hydrangeas.

I've always been fascinated by pomegranates; they are simply weird fruit. With mysical and classical allusions, they glow like the tempting morsels. They have allured me since I first saw Rossetti's Proserpine, and I bought a couple so we could eat their bitter-sweet seeds with French vanilla ice cream.

Lindsay wears a purple dress that she reckons looks exactly like something her mum used to wear - she has a knack of picking up great finds from the Salvation Army. Giant salad model's own.

For Jenni's birthday we have morning tea - homemade cake, scones, tarte abricot and strawberries. She says this gathering is typically what the public expect from civil servants.

For something completely different, we go to Harcourt Park to watch the international jousting championships - much skill is on display and it's all a lot of fun with people wandering about dressed in mediaeval garb hammering out breastplates of armour, embroidering tapestries and drinking mead. We join in with the latter. My sister brings her children along to watch the festivities but they are not all so sure about the proceedings.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Week 1: Start as you mean to go on

There are bound to be several pictures of my cat. Chester is a stunning silver seal Burmese, and is, as my mother wrote in her annual Christmas missive, 'a gorgeous and much-loved cat who likes exploring'. She forgot to mention sleeping, but I guess that goes without saying!

Him Outdoors - the other significant male in my life. He bought me the camera, so it's only fair I test out the first week of pictures on him. I also leave him the tedious task of instruction-reading; hence the glasses.

Moore Wilson's is where the cafes, caterers and restaurants of Wellington shop and is open 7 days a week. The range of fresh produce (including organic produce) is excellent and I can waste many an hour scanning the deli goods, the bakery, the cheeses, fish, flowers and condiments. There's also a fantastic wine section, an area for toys and one for 'variety' which includes everything from kitchenware to linen and luggage. The food area has recently been revamped so we went to check it out.

I did warn you there would be plentiful pictures of Chester. Him Outdoors got a picture of Turf Moor for Christmas from his parents - they thought I might not appreciate this so much and sent me a book full of pictures and qotations about cats. Here's one that seems to suit:

'I love cats becasue I love my home, and little by little they become its visible soul.' Jean Cocteau

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

When I mentioned on Kate's blog that I wanted to 'do more with photography', it was suggested that I try taking photos daily and posting them. I'm not sure I can manage every day, but I thought I would try a weekly round up of my life in pictures. So, what better way to start than this on New Year's Eve? Cheers!