Photography

All About Art: Ten Quick Tips to Improve Your Photography

Pho-tog-ra-phy•noun: the art, process, or job of taking pictures with a camera. For a long time I thought I couldn’t do art because I didn’t consider myself artistic. But art plays an important role in our lives. God created us to create; therefore, we need to express ourselves artistically. Not everyone can draw, but everyone CAN do art. Some people find artistic expression in needlepoint or counted cross stitch. Some people take photos. Photography IS Art You’ll notice that Merriam-Webster’s…

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Find Your Pod, Tell Your Story

Sto-ry • noun: an account of incidents or events We can nurture ourselves through story—both by sharing our story and listening to other people’s stories. Find Your Pod, Tell Your Story The captain of the whale-watching tour ship called out over the loudspeakers, “Look to nine o’clock and you’ll see a bottlenose dolphin!” The passengers rushed to the port side and crowded eagerly around the railing. “Do you see it?” I asked one of my students. “Over dere,” he said,…

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Overlooking the Plain is Overlooking the Plan

A Plain Bird I spotted a bird sitting on the curb across from my house as I headed out the door for a run. Never one to miss a photo op with a bird, I ran back inside for my camera. I thought that perhaps the resident juvenile Cooper’s Hawk had dropped by for a visit. Focusing the lens, I called out to my youngest daughter. “Sarah!  It’s not my hawk, it’s a roadrunner!”  We took turns looking through the…

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Birder’s Paradise? Or Birding in Paradise

Texas in the Summer I clutched the dripping Gatorade bottle with one sweaty palm and unscrewed the cap with trembling fingers. They might call Texas a birder’s paradise, but it felt a little more…hotish, shall we say? For the past three hours, I had wandered the trails of Resaca de la Palma State Park—on a toasty 98˚ with 80 percent humidity July day. Most people enjoy the World Birding Center parks in the fall or spring. The weather turns balmy…

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The ‘Other Lessons’ that Inspire (aka, When We Don’t Get What We Want)

A Journey to Inspire Me The boat rocked back and forth as it rose and fell with the swells of the ocean. The deep blue of the water vied with the sky for my attention. On the horizon, thunderheads piled up between us and the receding shore line. I couldn’t wait to discover the secrets of the open ocean and let them inspire me in some creative way. The hot wind whipped my curls into my eyes. I didn’t bother…

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How to Rejoice in the Parched Places

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Isaiah 35:1 Lessons from the Dry Land We moved from Bozeman, MT to Holbrook, AZ almost five years ago. I confess I still miss the snowstorms, the months of cold weather, and the luscious flowers in the spring and summer. Maybe the native Montanans call it God’s country because they, like I, always feel a little closer to God in the wide-open spaces and majestic…

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The Simple Antidote to Not Enough: Praise

Feeling Like I’m Not Enough I wander along the road in the desert, feeling off-kilter and slightly out-of-sorts. Maybe my feelings of discontent come from wondering if I have enough. Will I have enough time to fit everything into the day, enough money to pay my taxes, and enough patience with my spring-fever-filled students? I long for assurance that I will make it through this quarter, that I will have enough to meet my needs, that the hummingbirds will actually return,…

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Do You Suffer From Puffin Disease?

Next Stops, Puffin Paradise and Seldova I spent my first night alone at a roadside pullout just north of Homer. When I woke up the next morning, I discovered that someone else had pulled in to camp behind me. I couldn’t decide if having someone camp in the same pullout made me feel safer or creeped-out. After a quick breakfast, I headed into Homer to catch a ferry to Seldova, where friends of my parents live. I had met Paul…

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Your Point of Focus Determines the Quality of Your Experience

Our Last Days Together in Alaska After our Denali adventure, we stayed at Red Eagle Lodge for a quiet weekend before bidding Sarah goodbye. I would see her one last time before driving home, but Pedro had to catch a plane in Anchorage. For the third time during our trip, we stayed at a campground—this time near the airport. Pedro had a stand-by ticket for late at night, so we thought camping nearby would make things easier. After sleeping in…

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What Happens When You DON’T Buy The Lens

Close Encounters of the God Kind I faced a dilemma at the beginning of our Alaska adventure—the budget kind of dilemma that often plagues me. We had enough money to make the trip if we kept our expenses in Alaska down. But I really, really wanted a better telephoto lens for my camera. The 100-400mm lens that I already have didn’t seem adequate for capturing the wildlife we would certainly see along the way. I reasoned that since we would…

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