Sketchbook #12

Photography, Writing

It’s been a really good month, creatively. I’ve been slowly starting to build up my writing practice again (just on web copy this month, which… isn’t great, but it’s made me find the time to write, and get back into the habit of, you know, typing for extended periods of time), I’ve been working on specific skills in my drawing, and the weather is finally starting to get to a point where I want to go outdoors and take pictures. So that’s nice.

That’s the general. Now on to the specifics.

I feel like I’ve finally been making some progress with photography. I managed to get out for a couple of good photo trips (including one to a location I’ve wanted to shoot for years), and I’m really happy with some of the pictures.

So far, I’ve only edited two of… close to 100 (and you’ve seen them both). So that gives me something to work on in the next month. (In addition to the other pictures I’m going to be taking over the next few weeks.)

Of course, the semi-vacation that allowed me to get out and take photos I’m happy with also kind of interfered with some of my other projects, but I’m getting back to work. (And the time away probably did me some good.)

And I am now officially deep into NaNoWriMo planning. It’s… interesting. It’s still fun, but I don’t know how long that’s going to last. At some point (very soon), I’m going to have to stop just playing around with ideas and images and start figuring out what my story actually is. It’s shifted away from the original idea that kicked this whole thing off and back so many times in the last month, I’m not quite sure where it is anymore. I’ve got bits and pieces that might all be part of one story, or might be snippets of related stories, or might have nothing to do with each other. I think I’ve got my main character (mostly) figured out.

It’s good.

This time around, I’m making an effort to find ways of doing things that really work for me, rather than going with the same outlining techniques I used to rely on (and that never resulted in stories I was happy with). I’ve always been a bit conflicted about outlining, anyway; finding a new approach might help.

I just have to remind myself that I’ve got plenty of time. (But then I remember that five months isn’t really all that long, and I’ve still got one big puzzle piece that’s completely missing, and… yeah.)

I’ve got plenty of time. Really.

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "21. Cinematic" | Reghan Skerry

Weekly Photo Challenge 2016 | Week #21: ‘Cinematic’

Photography

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "21. Cinematic" | Reghan Skerry

Sometimes I struggle with the prompts that leave a lot of room for creative interpretation; if I have too many ideas, or too many options, I tend to get hung up on finding the right idea and dismiss anything that isn’t absolutely perfect.

So this week should have been a challenge.

It wasn’t.

I knew weeks ago that, for this prompt, I wanted to do something that felt like a road movie. Which… ok, yeah. That could have been a challenge, given that I don’t drive and I don’t have easy access to a lot of the landscapes that I associate with road movies. (There are times when I get really annoyed with the lack of desert around here.) But I had a few different ideas in mind, and I was able to spend some time figuring out the logistics.

And in the end, it didn’t matter. The timing worked out perfectly, and, while this isn’t one of the pictures I imagined when I was thinking about this prompt, I think it works.

Though it might still be better with a desert.

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "20. Golden Ratio" | Reghan Skerry

Weekly Photo Challenge 2016 | Week #20: ‘Golden Ratio’

Photography

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "20. Golden Ratio" | Reghan Skerry

Things are starting to get interesting again: the weather’s warm enough that I want to go outside occasionally, the trees are starting to fill out, and there’s finally—finally!—some colour. It’s not just all dull grey and brown.

And just when this is all happening, I’m falling back in love with black & white.

(Well. I’ve been falling back in love with black & white for a while. Not that I ever wasn’t in love with it. But the last few weeks it’s turned into a minor obsession.)

I don’t mind, really—there’s still more to take pictures of, and more colour means more interesting contrast, even when it’s in black & white—I just find it kind of funny.

This is another slightly-late photo, I know. But I’m only late posting it. I took it during the week this prompt was assigned. (So, last week.) It’s been a busy couple of weeks, and while I took a lot of photos, I’m only now managing to sit down and go through them. And this particular photo required a little bit of improvisation in the editing process—nothing too dramatic, but this is a slightly tricky prompt. There was math involved. I’m not a fan of math, even if I did memorize the Fibonacci sequence when I was eight.

Expect more (including the response to this week’s prompt) over the next week or so.

Snapshot #51 | 10 Things for 22 May 2016

Personal

Currently…

1. getting… to last week’s photo post. The photo is taken, and waiting in the camera. But this is a busy weekend (mostly busy taking more photos), so it’s going to take a couple more days to get the picture out of the camera and onto the site.
2. feeling… relieved. The thing that was causing me so much stress? Cancelled.
3. buying… the supplies to reupholster my desk chair. The office is slowly coming together.
4. trying… to decide between growing my hair out some more and chopping it all off again. (I go through this every few months.)
5. painting… the balcony furniture. I didn’t quite beat the storm of pollen, but close enough. (Also, just generally starting to get the balcony in order.)
6. solving… spam problems. Awesome.
7. making… progress on my NaNoWriMo plans.
8. starting… to think about ice cream. I’m not quite ready to start making it yet (I’m still waiting for it to get a bit warmer), but it’s time to start looking at recipes.
9. running… out of things to say. I’m a little sleepy right now, and drawing a blank.
10. putting… together new playlists.

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "19. Backlighting" | Reghan Skerry

Weekly Photo Challenge 2016 | Week #19: ‘Backlighting’

Photography

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "19. Backlighting" | Reghan Skerry

It’s a good thing that, with a bit of manipulation, the same light that’s so perfect for ‘Chiaroscuro’ also works for ‘Backlighting.’ Otherwise, I might’ve been running a backlog for a few weeks while I caught up.

I know that I’ve been doing a lot of indoor still-life stuff lately. (Or cat pictures.) But the weather is slowly starting to improve, and I’m slowly starting to feel like, you know, going outside on occasion. I’ve got plans to get out a couple times over the next week, specifically to take pictures, and I’ve got a few prompts coming up in the next few weeks that will require venturing outdoors, (mostly) regardless of weather or motivation.

Basically, I’m running out of excuses. 🙂 (I’m also kind of cursing myself for some of these upcoming prompts—I’d say I don’t know what I was thinking when I put together the list, but I do know. I wanted to challenge myself. Well. I’m getting my wish.)

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "18. Chiaroscuro" | Reghan Skerry

Weekly Photo Challenge 2016 | Week #18: ‘Chiaroscuro’

Photography

2016 Weekly Photo Challenge: "18. Chiaroscuro" | Reghan Skerry

It took an extra week, my first idea for this prompt really didn’t work, I’m not feeling all that inspired, and I’m not really happy with the composition, but it’s done.

I knew going in that there would be weeks when I just wouldn’t be able to meet my self-imposed deadline. This is the first time I’ve run into real problems (which is actually kind of impressive, considering it’s already May), and it would have been easy to let this go, focus on the upcoming weeks, but I managed to get this done only a few days after it was due, and get this week’s project done (though I’m going to hold of on posting that for a day or so).

This was the first real test of my dedication to this project. I’d say I passed. 🙂

Snapshot #50 | 10 Things for 8 May 2016

Personal

Currently…

1. finding… my perfect recipe for chocolate cake. Now I just need to find my perfect frosting recipe to go with it.
2. wondering… when it’s going to start to feel like spring, and not just the slow decline of winter.
3. giving… up on my Fitbit. In theory, I liked it. And I’m really impressed with the company’s customer service, but still: I’ve had three devices fail in less than eighteen months. It’s getting ridiculous.
4. making… my plans for NaNoWriMo.
5. drinking… an awful lot of coffee. Not a bad thing.
6. wishing… the light was better. 😦
7. looking… for new books to read. (I managed to finish two in one day, and everything I really want to read right now is on hold at the library.)
8. trying… not to let myself get too stressed out. I’ve got a rough few days coming up. The last few weeks have been an exercise in Not Thinking About It Until I Have To.
9. starting… to watch some French tv shows. In French. Mostly, I’m still confused, but I’m figuring out bits and pieces.
10. hoping… the next two weeks don’t turn into a disaster.