More to Learn – Photography

I saw that I had an email from the architect yesterday and I got excited! Maybe the preliminary plans were ready? But no, he had had the flu and is a bit behind. I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas to be here. Patience is the key word now.

But in the meantime I'm using this "wait time"  to work on some other things in the blog world that I desperately need to improve upon. Last year my husband bought me a Canon Rebel DSLR camera, something I had been wanting for some time. In the past I experimented with photography and even developed my own pictures. But eventually the ease of a point and shoot camera fit my life best when raising my family. Picking up a DSLR (DSLR stands for Digital Single Lens Reflex camera – it just means that you can change the lenses and the settings of the camera) for me was NOT like riding a bike. I did not just remember what to do.

So I went on a search to refresh my memory and to learn how to work this camera. I found all kinds of help out there on the internet. I found many "photography pins" on Pinterest and more information through other blogs that have been so helpful. Through the "Lettered Cottage" blog I found out about an online video course through shootFlyshoot – Photography 101. It was less than $100 so I signed up. Once you purchase this video course it's always available to you on your computer to refer back to whenever you want. It ihas been so informative and is very easy to follow along. Well worth the money!

But much time has past since I first purchased the program and now I need to go back and watch some of the videos again. Today I watched a section called "Interiors". I found out I needed I tripod, but since we are living in an apartment, with 90% of our belongings in storage, I had little faith that I would be able to find my tripod. But lo and behold it was in the front closet behind my camera bag. I must have anticipated needing it when we were moving in. DSLR cameras have an automatic setting on them that makes the camera as easy to use as a point and shoot camera. But the whole point of getting one of these cameras is to be able to manipulate the settings to make the best picture possible, using the camera in manual mode. As you can see from a couple of shoots from my practice today the automatic setting won out

Picture taken in automatic setting:


Picture taken in manual setting:


Why is it so yellow? Alas lots to learn! I'd love to hear from anyone who can give me a clue as to what I did wrong!

Video? Fingers Crossed!

Starting this blog has been quite a learning curve, not only learning how to blog, but learning how to take photographs and videos. In a previous blog I said that I would have a video of the demolition. I had taken several small videos with my iPhone during demolition but then I didn’t know how to put them all together. So off I went to the Apple Store for a lesson on iMovie. I had to go back to the Apple store again for some more help – I guess I’m a slow learner but here is and fingers crossed, hope it works correctly!

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Visit to the Architect – Yeah!!!

Even though the house is demolished, the lot is being cleaned up – debris needs to be removed, basement and pool have to be dug out, and some trees need to be taken down. But now I can start the fun part, planning the house!!!! I had spoken with the architect before but didn't want to plan too much until the house was down. One step at a time – is becoming my new motto. So I took my "bible" to the architect yesterday and he begins the preliminary plans. My "bible" is a binder full of tear sheets I have collect over the past hundred years or so. But we were really able to pare down to 1/4 of what we started with. We are concentrating on the exterior at this point, so we would look at two pictures at a time and ask if we had to choose a look which would we choose. Then one picture we would keep and one we would put to one side. This really helped us to pick out a style(s). Not really down to one specific style yet, but we definitely want a traditional look that looks like it belongs in the neighborhood.

Here's a picture of my "bible".


Here are some inspiration pictures I included to help the architect get an idea of what appeals to us.





We like hip roofs, but this next house has a cozy feeling to it I think.


And this is the one design that we keep coming back to.


If you were building a new home, what style would you choose?

She’s Down!

It took less than 5 hours to knock down more than 5,000 square feet of a house (that includes the garage)! The machine used for this job made it look like the house was made out of tinker toys, one nudge with the big bucket and the whole house would shake and then a big section would come tumbling down.



I left for a little while and when I came back there was just a bit of the house left. I watched with mixed feelings as it was leveled.



Even though I am so excited to be building my own home, I know and respect the fact that many families have lived in the house before, they had filled the house with many memories. The best way I know to honor that is to build a home that will be exactly right for our family, as the original owners had built for their family, and to fill it with new memories.