Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My Favorite Images of 2009

Looking back over the year, it is filled with so many good memories. So many moments I'm glad I've captured. Here are my Top 10 Images.

10. Shea's Thick Brick Stout - Part of My Beer Documentation
POTD 011209
9. Lance - One opportunity to grab him as he raced by. I'm proud of this shot!
POTD 021409
8. Reflected Reflection - this took a few attempts to get it right, my favorite self portrait!
POTD 051309 - Reflected Reflection
7. Justin's Ironman Finish - An amazing day, I could easily post 6 others from this day!

6. I was attempting a different shot but Ian did what he does best, exude personality and pull me out of my comfort zone! A One Little Word pick at Shutter Sisters!
POTD 121109 - Christmas Alien
5. The kiddo has the strangest ideas! He wanted to be a mummy. Dad obliged. Ian asked for photos! Perfect.
POTD 073109 - Toilet Paper Mummy
4. Hopscotch. I saw this right before it happened, I love that. It was a POTD on the Maternal Lens!
POTD 032009
3. A bike ride to the Capitol, a wide angle lens and a boy who must perform!
POTD 010309
2. The Essence of Ian - A good day, a balloon hat and great light...that's all I ask!
POTD 022309
1. Discovery - This was different for me, but as soon as I saw him in the fading light, I knew the shot I wanted. This made Explore on Flickr but more importantly is a family favorite. It was also a daily click on Shutter Sisters, a HUGE honor.
POTD 052509 - Discovery

I will continue to take photos everyday in 2010. Thank you for your kind comments and perspective. It simply boils down to not being able to imagine not having my life documented in such a visual way. I want to remember the details. And with a four year old in the house those details seem to be screaming by me at an unbelievable pace.

Thank you for sharing the last 365 days with me! Can't wait to see what develops in 2010!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

What If I Didn't...

I've taken a photo a day every day this year and for over half of 2008. Every day. Without fail.

What if I didn't next year? What if I didn't pick up the camera as I walked out the door? What if I stopped wearing it as the accessory to complete my outfit?

I think about it sometimes. Contemplate what I would miss. Contemplate what I might experience, seeing the world through two eyes instead of a little black square.

Would I enjoy photography more? Would I begin to see the world differently?  Or would there be a deep unmet need burning at my very core?

I'm just wondering. What do you think?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Letter To Santa

I asked Ian if he wanted to write a letter to Santa. He excitedly replied yes! I transcribed his words into an email to the big guy.
Dear Ian: (obviously some confusion here, but he is 4 and who am I to correct such cuteness)
I wish I had a toy bike.

And then on second thought he got a bit more specific
real bike colored red and grown up wheels and grown up pedallers. 
and then again
dear ian:
we're not going to be home. 
and then he needed to revise again
dear ian:
love ian and we're going to be home tomorrow but not on christmas day.
that's it 
I hope his message makes it in time! 

Monday, December 21, 2009

Naughty or Nice, Four Year Old Style

There is a lot of talk around here lately about somebody watching. The excitement is building! He's asked Santa for a red bicycle. We'll just have to wait and see if the big man delivers!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

POTD 122009

POTD 122009, originally uploaded by katrina.kennedy.
Things have been a little busy around here! Work, my first tutorial in the DesignerDigitals store, visits from family, and our annual Holiday party! So much to share! Today though, we are just relaxing!

Monday, December 14, 2009

On This Day, 13 Years Ago

I married the first boy I ever kissed.*

He is my best friend. He knows who I am and how I am and why I am how I am. And he still sticks around. With my crazy ideas. My sudden whims. My rules that last for about two days, only to be replaced by newer better ones.

He understands my moods. And that alone is a heroic accomplishment.

He truly wants only one thing in life. He would tell you if you asked. He would say it with complete candor. He just wants Ian and I to be happy. More than saving the world. Or growing our own veggies. Or reducing our carbon footprint. Or being the most amazing science teacher imaginable. Or anything.

And if I think about it too long, it overwhelms me. It is so pure and honest and real.

And for that I love him.

*and strangely, still feel funny admitting the kiss, knowing my mom will read this!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Invaded by the Christmas Alien

Only Ian would grab lights and declare himself a Christmas Alien! I asked for a quick photo in front of the tree to play with a little heart bokeh, but gave up when he started to goof!

He does it well!

He then promptly asked, "are you going to give me $5.00?"

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ghost of Christmas Past...Revealed!

I've revealed the technique for my Ghosted photo in the DD Photo of the Day Flickr Group! 

And for the record, most ghosts don't smile :)

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

When The Boys Go To Sleep Early

Mom is left at her computer to play! Tonight I decided to play with my tripod and take some photos of our tree. I just love our mantle at Christmas and all of the memories each item has. My intent was to just take a few tree photos and maybe some of the ornaments. And then I started to play. This is the winter I master the low light in our living room. And, well, then I had a little too much fun!

Any idea how I captured this? Guesses? I'll share later!

Monday, December 07, 2009

I Love Everything In This World

POTD 120709 - Wish, originally uploaded by katrina.kennedy.

We had a good day today. Unexpected kind of good day! A quick trip to the snow, only 25 minutes away! We live in California!! Granted, Northern California, but we DON'T get snow. Sure Tahoe is a two hour drive away. But 20 minutes?! Cool. Seriously.

Ian loved the snow. But the best part? On our way home he announced, "I love everything about this world." When we arrived home, this tshirt was in the mailbox. My mom had great timing! He insisted on wearing it immediately and loved pointing to his approximate spot on the globe. (We'll work on geography next year!)

Thanks Mom!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

He Loves Santa Claus

Funny how the boy who wouldn't get close to Santa Claus two years ago has completely embraced him this year. He doesn't hesitate. Asks for him. Waits patiently. Tells him without hesitation what he wants for Christmas. Says thank you.


And this year, Santa is bringing EXACTLY what the boy has asked for!

And Santa will deny persuading the boy to want what he is bringing :)

Long Days Of December

Not every day of December is filled with snowflakes and bliss. Today was definitely a testament to that! I spent my entire day corralling a kiddo who wanted to climb everything, although he's never been a climber. He hit the ground countless times with a cry of, "I'm ok," which in our house translates to, "I've hurt myself but I'm not going to admit it." He dunked legos into a glass of water, just for fun. He gave me that, I'm going to ignore everything you are saying look, repeatedly. Stuffed silly putty into his sock and walked around in it. The silly putty and the sock are now in the trash, they were inseparable. Now he is asleep. And that, I must say, has been the best part of my day!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Captured! Daily December, December 1

I love this project! Today we started what I hope becomes a tradition, a letter from Santa. It came with a small gift and a reminder he'd be watching. Ian was thrilled.

Credits at DesignerDigitals

I hope he doesn't expect another gift tomorrow!

Monday, November 30, 2009

My Photography Book Is In The Store

As we say in my house, this makes my heart happy!

I loved working with my dear friends Melanie Grimes, Kathie Ostgulen, and Jill Hogan. They took beautiful photos as they worked their way through my exercises.

Kathie sent me an email that brought tears to my eyes as I read it.

Thanks sooooo much for including me in your book and making me a better photographer did what no one else could do for me and for that I will be forever grateful!

Yes, she made me heart happy!

If you have read it I'd love to hear what you think. What did you love? Where were you frustrated? What are you able to do now, that you couldn't before? Photography is such a journey.  I'm hoping we can share it.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Our Plan For Holiday Magic Making

I love the holidays! I love getting out of the house and joining our community in celebrating the season. I wanted to keep all of our events and plans together and saved forever. So here are the things we are planning to include!

11/27-11/29 The Santa Train - A new family tradition! Free for Train Museum members too! Ride the train with Santa the weekend after Thanksgiving. Live music, decorated train and just pure holiday goodness! The best part? Santa really stops and talks to each child!

12/5 6PM Festival of Lights Parade This is a new parade in the newly coined "Handle District." It says they hope for 20 floats. So this might be quaint and fun or completely cheesy. Either way we are going to give it a try. It's a good reason to be out and then stop by Rubicon after!

12/5 7PM Sacramento Boat Parade - We had a bad experience attempting to see this last year. So this year I'm going to give it another try, time permitting. If the Festival of Lights Parade is HUGE we may not make it.

12/10 Governor's Christmas Tree Lighting - A family tradition. (two years in a row counts right?!) We only go for part of the ceremony because it is usually super crowded and cold!

State Capitol Museum Music - Throughout December the Capitol Rotunda is filled with music. We love to go to the second floor and peer down on the performers. Everything from bagpipes to classical piano. All ages and stages of performers too!

Old Sac Horse Drawn Carriage Rides - Fun for an evening outing. We bundle up and this year plan on taking the ride around the Capitol to see the lights and make people wait behind our carriage.

T Street Lights - Okay, the lights aren't on T Street, but that is how we always remember. Then we drive down T Street slowly until we see the line of cars turning! I love walking down the street to see all of the displays.

Santa's Toy Shop - This is a new to midtown event each weekend of December. Sounds like story time with Santa. We might give this a try.

Old Sac Theatre of Lights - A new to Old Sac event. I love the magic of Old Sac at Christmas so an added event should be fun!

Midtown Ice Skating Rink - It's not Rockefeller Center, but we are so excited to have the rink within easy walking distance of our home! We took our niece and nephew to the old location for many years and this year Ian gets to continue the tradition a bit closer to home!

Carnival of Lights - Another new light event worth investigating. Includes lights and...a carnival. In the old ice rink spot.

We'll throw in some holiday baking. A little home time. Our annual Holiday Party and I think our month is full! Looking forward to a fun one! What are your plans?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

December Daily Begins November 26th!

I love my Daily December album! It has a prominent home on our coffee table so I can thumb through it and relive last Christmas. Ian loves to see what he did and ask if we can do it "today." If he had his way we would have decorated and bought a tree about three months ago!

This year I'm going to document December again, but I'm starting on Thanksgiving. My Thanksgiving photos always get lost in the shuffle of holiday preparation so it seemed like a good place to begin. Plus this year we are celebrating the turkey day with Shea's family and Christmas with mine. Now we'll have photos of both included!

A few things I learned last year that I hope to remind myself of this year.

  • Make time to document. I tried to make time each evening to look through photos, document funny things that happened or sweet things Ian said. Having a lot of photos helps to jog the memory.
  • Keep to a simple format and stay with it. I'm going to use Ali's December Daily Templates 2 and use the same papers and embellishments I used last year creating a continuation of last year's book. I'll mix in a few of the Original December Daily Templates ! I just love those!

  • If you miss a day don't freak out. I missed a couple of days last year both photos and words. I just skipped those days in my book. The sky did not fall. There is no gaping hole in the book. It still makes me smile.
  • Use the camera you have! Last year I found myself with Ian at the mall experiencing one of my favorite days of the year. I did NOT have my camera, which is a rare occurrence! I snapped photos of him anyway and created one of my favorite pages of the entire book.
  • Enjoy the moments. I believe we experienced more as a family because of the project. I really wanted great photos, great locations, and to see everyone smiling! That meant venturing out on cold nights (ok, California cold, but we are in Northern California so it is a bit cold!)
Did you do Daily December last year? Link us up to your book or your favorite page from your book so we can be inspired!

Here is my favorite page from last year! The story still makes me smile :) Happy Thanksigiving! And yep, bring on December!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Place Where Vision, High School Rodeos, & Being Vegan Collide

I'm reading Visionmongers: Making A Life And A Living in Photography, an amazing book about photography and vision and passion and choices and direction. I love how the author describes photography and passion. "You don't do it because you can, but because you can't not." I can completely connect with the drive, the urge, the need to photograph, to strive to be better to constantly ask the question, "am I good enough."

And then today I found myself at a High School Rodeo. I was there to watch my niece and of course I took my camera. Because I always take my camera. Everywhere.

Did I mention I'm vegan? I don't eat meat. I don't eat anything that came from an animal. The leather products I own are from my pre-vegan life as it now seems wasteful to simply throw them away. I'm going to at least use them up before I replace them.

And there I was. In the heart of beef eating, cattle herding, PETA loathing rodeo land. With my camera. So I took photos. A lot of photos. And although there was part of me thinking, what kind of hypocrite am I? The photographer in me was amazed at the movement, the light, the beauty I could capture.

Ok. So my calling isn't in rodeo images. I know that. It would suck the very life from me. But for one day, for a few hours. I completely enjoyed it. And in so many ways it was easier than photographing 4 year olds!

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Holidays Begin With Ice Skating!

The outdoor rink is open! Ian is so excited to try it out. We just need to find a size TINY skate first!

Holiday Time For You To Focus on Photography!

Four hours just for you and your camera.

I'm opening my home to 10 people who want to:
Take more creative control of their cameras
Capture holiday images they'll love for a lifetime

We'll cover
Aperture Priority Mode
Manual Mode
Exposure Compensation
White Balance

Would you care to join me?

December 5th
My home in midtown Sacramento

snacks and beverages provided

Give yourself the gift of better photos this Holiday Season.

Email me to register! katrina at katrinakennedy dot com

Thursday, November 19, 2009

What We Did On Our Family Vacation

I started this blog to document Ian's life. And then I let other things take over and post un-Ian related posts. Those posts are certain to foster an email from my mom who says, "what about my grandson? I haven't seen his photos in days..."

So this is for my mom :) Finally, a little about a boy.

He was so excited to travel to Seattle! We counted down sleeps and FINALLY he was able to "blast off" to the great Pacific North West.
He was absolutely OBSESSED with the Safety Information Card. Literally 30 minutes spent examining it.
We arrived in Seattle in the morning and after saying hello to Aunt E , Cousin K and meeting "my new baby cousin L" we were on our first adventure. Aunt E is not one to waste any time! We headed out for the Ballard Locks where Ian instantly found leaves to hide behind. He's not very cooperative lately!

It was cold but not rainy which made for good fun exploring the waves,

viewing the one fish in the ladder,
and watching the locks and bridge work.
Home for the evening and then off to class for me for the next two days. While I was in class I've heard there was all sorts of merriment being had, pizza being eaten, football games watched, aquarium viewing, library exploring and some rain. Sunday night they picked me up. We had a quiet evening with Aunt E and Uncle A before an early night.

Monday, our last day in Seattle we headed out to the Children's Museum. Our friend Charleen had said good things about it, so I really wanted to see it. Oh, I should probably mention that was after the one handed photo shoot I tried to conduct alone with a 5 month old little girl. I tried to sneak it in while her mom was in the shower. I really should have asked for help. Not easy to pose, focus, and watch that she doesn't tumble! Can't show you the photos though, it will spoil the Christmas gift :)

The Children's Museum was great. Dark and bad for photos. But great. Ian loved it!

The journey through the digestive track, ending in poop.

The mucus machine.

The jumping.

The obstacle course
The mini Taco Time and "mini" market

and of course the construction site where he referred to himself as Bob and did a lot of supervising his staff!

And then we saw this photo in the market. I have NO DOUBT that is Leo!!

Then it was off to the airport for out flight home. Not nearly as exciting for him as the trip there. In fact, he proclaimed to the entire plane on more than one occasion, "we are not moving." Hard to explain speed to a little guy who could only see clouds out of his window! I'm sure it was much more comforting to those around us compared to his asking, "when do we use the parachutes?" on our first leg of the trip!

And there you have it. That's what we did on our weekend in Seattle! Love you Mom! And thanks for reminding who this blog is really about!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Seattle Confidence Workshop

Me Ra Koh's Confidence Workshop was wonderful! I loved confirming so much of what I know and adding to my bag of techniques. I loved most getting to shoot this precious little boy. He was so sleepy. What a tiny beautiful miracle he is!

And yes, Mom, I'll post photos of your grandson soon! He says, "happy birthday."

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Stopping By For the Evening

Every fall they arrive in town. Usually downtown. They are loud but not too loud. They are fascinating to watch as they flit between trees, fly off in all directions. Sometimes seem to have a purpose and sometimes none at all. Last night they landed in our trees. For at least an hour they flew around, landed, and repeated.

We stood in the alley, the direction of the best light and just watched. And listened. Ian recorded with the video camera. I photographed them. And Shea gave direction. It was his idea to get them in flight. No easy task as they are quick. But I caught them. It wasn't until I sat at my computer that I saw just how amazing the photos could be. I typically don't do so much processing. These just called for it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

One Year Ago Today

It seems my subject doesn't change much, he just grows!


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