Bliss and grunge...


As it happens sometimes, I found myself playing around with some images
without any particular direction in mind
or intent...
other than, perhaps, the intent to avoid "pretty flower" photos.
Do you ever feel that way...unable to stomach one  M O R E  beautiful posy picture?

No offense meant, it's just that I need to be heading somewhere else at the moment...

away from literal and more towards how a scene *feels*...

Without a doubt my garden makes me feel blissed-out, especially at this time of year
near high summer, when all the plants are busting out of themselves in vegetative exuberance.
Then, there's all that late evening light
putting its own dramatic spin on what's going on out there...

but there's more to it and its hard to explain...

I add grunge (funny photo term) to what might be "a pretty scene" while I ask myself, why?  
What I realize is,
I'm doing the same thing with image making 
that I do with cloth and stitch and beads:
trying to tell a story.

And with any kind of storytelling,
sometimes it's just better to leave out some of the obvious.

There's a mini-revolution happening at the moment and although I'm not much of a "joiner," 
I'll readily admit to my voluntarily participation in the phone photography revolution.
I happen to think it is one of  the most  freeing
(as in, getting unstuck OR finding a way to express oneself in the first place) 
forms of creativity out there...so accessible to so many,
no rules, shoulds or shouldn'ts...
just a fantastic way to play with light and color and special effects that will
 rock your grandma right outta her traditional chair.

Here's a wee example of just how much change can happen...

This is a straight shot right from my phone camera.

No tweaking, no alterations of any kind.
High noon, hideous light, super contrasty...boring.

Here's (maybe) a not so boring interpretation with some vintage effects and old-timey blurs.
Leaves a little something to the viewer's imagination

and for now, that suits me just fine.

: : :

If you happen to be in a similar artistic mindset, may I suggest a worthwhile read...
Nicola Taylor wrote something today over on the Shutter Sisters blog
and her title sums it up splendidly:  on finding your own way...
Nicola left her career as a stockbroker and not believing she had any creative voice at all
made a life-changing discovery to the contrary.
In her words:
"It's one of those magical things that happens when you just let go
and allow the story to have an ending you didn't envision."
Read her heartfelt post  HERE.


  1. Hi Christi
    I always love your photography. These pics wowed me so I took a moment to digest your thoughts on them. It occurred to me that you do with grunge what I try to do with crop. You draw the eye to the focal without having it pop right out at the viewer and I love that.

    xx, Carol

    1. Thanks so much for that, Carol, as I'm not sure WHAT I'm doing sometimes. I suppose that is one of the things
      I love most about this craze...it's all about dropping expectations and just having fun with it. In my comparison
      with working in cloth & stitch, I see these photos the same way I prefer to *see* my textile work...with my eye wandering
      around the piece, finding this, finding that. So hard to explain.

  2. Beautiful photos, beautiful art! I love to edit too, to give pictures a feel that's right for me...
    The edit of the bright pink/red flowers is lovely....what I see is a more "romantic air" to the photo and a gentleness that calms me.

    1. Karen, so glad you stopped in for a visit...I appreciate your comment very much.

  3. Ooooh, oooooh, oooooh!
    gentleness that calms me
    allowing the story
    to have an ending
    you (and we) didn't
    example about how much
    change can happen
    going to the inside
    of a thing

  4. I think the need to grunge is to create history. Taking something that is new and shiny and full of possibility and giving it place and personality. Making it our own. With our own marks and our own scent. Our own touch. Literally. Figuratively.

    1. (luv your photo i.d. pik, Jen!..."Hi Stella!")
      While I read your words I had a visual come to mind of a metalworker I admire who does rockin' wonderful steampunk jewelry. She takes all kinds of shiny, new objects and blasts the heck out of them with torches and tarnishes and all sorts of other aging & crackling methods. The finished pieces are entirely unique and leave me with the feeling, "How the heck did she do that???" Maybe ~ and I haven't really thought of this before ~ I'm working on a similar process...?

  5. grunge is beautiful. your gardens are beautiful, and so are you.
    thank you for your openings. quite healing.

    1. Goodness Nancy, thanks for that. Truly.

  6. Love the bottom photo a lot... To me the difference is that an unaltered photo is an illustration (and has it's place). Once we alter a photo, we add our own perspective and a photo begins to capture something else, becomes a way to communicate in an imaginative way.

    1. Exactly, Deb! YES.
      And that bottom photo was my fave of the group ;>}