Friday, March 6, 2009

The Great Indoors

Well I guess that last post's "mystery images" were much too easy for this intelligent bunch. I'll have to find more obscure objects next time.

I did have fun photographing the watch and the energy-efficient light bulb, and cropping them in close. The watch in particular was challenging because I had a hard time trying to get the winder into focus.

The two full-image shots are below, followed by a few more photos which were all taken indoors under natural light.

My simple wristwatch which I wear (say that three times fast!) every day. I much prefer the face of an analog watch over digital. I only buy inexpensive watches because I tend to be hard on them - often forgetting that I'm wearing one until after I've done the dishes. The time may be a bit less accurate than that of a digital, but I tend to set it a few minutes ahead anyway, This way I can trick myself into being on time. (please click to enlarge)

I took this shot from directly below an overhead light fixture. I'm not crazy about the appearance of these spiral-shaped light bulbs but I sure do appreciate their energy efficiency aspect. I find them more difficult on the eyes, and the split-second hesitation between light switch and power throws me almost every time. I figure they'll become more aesthetically pleasing over time as they've already begun to enclose some of them inside of a standard-shaped light bulb. (please click to enlarge)

My Valentine's Day flowers were two weeks past their prime and ready for the green box. The soft yellow blooms seemed to outlast the other colours but even they have begun to wither. They were beautiful while they lasted. Thanks, Frank! (please click to enlarge)

This set of tea candle holders adorns a wooden chest in my dining room. It turned out that its colours matched perfectly with a vase that has probably been in my family longer than I have. It can be seen in the background. (please click to enlarge)

The flowers on this Kalanchoe (thank you Mental P Mama for identifying it for me) are less than a centimeter wide. It has just begun flowering after sitting dormant for the winter. Hopefully this is one of the sure signs of spring. (please click to enlarge)

I love the colours of this teacup and saucer which I picked up at a yard sale a few summers ago. It was in this cup where I first found the mole, which began our little game. Frank, this should serve to remind you that it's your turn to find the little guy. And Suldog, this should also remind you that you were going to write about something similar. (please click to enlarge)

This Croton also sits in front of my kitchen window all winter, waiting for the day that it's warm enough to go outside for a few months. The diagonal stripes on the green leaf are shadows from the slats of my venetian blind. (please click to enlarge)

A few wisps of fake flowers adorn this little brass watering can. It sits upon a small shelf in my front hallway. (please click to enlarge)

Pink, freckled leaves grace this Hypoestes* plant which grows in a basket alongside the above flowering plant. The leaves have been growing more profuse the past few weeks. Another sign of spring? We can hope. (please click to enlarge)

Skittles always has to be a part of whatever I'm doing. If I'm in the kitchen, he's even more vigilant of my every move, just in case I have a strong urge to pour out some cat food. What do you think he's looking at? (please click to enlarge)

* Daryl, I thought I had included the name. I remembered Googling it, but I only put the name in the labels. It's a Hypoestes. Thanks for pointing out the missing info. :)


the Bag Lady said...

Skittles is adorable! And those little flowers are gorgeous.

Wonderful pictures, Hilary!
(Wow - am I really first?!)

Frank Baron said...

There's much to see when you bend your eye inward. You took some very creative shots here, Hil, and very nicely indeed. :)

Reb said...

Hilary, those are all great shots, and Skittles is just wonderful. I think he is watching the invisible bug that is about to jump on your shoulder! ;)

Tabor said...

This is fun. Looks like photography is one talent you very much enjoy.

Shrinky said...

That shot of Skittles is superb, but I rather think the photograph of the watch takes my top prize, you have captured the warm, buttery light beautifully. It is always a delight to walk around your site, you are such a perfect hostess (smile).

SandyCarlson said...

The light on the cat's back warms ME up! Great shots, all, though. Just beautiful. You made that light bulb a work of art!

Zuzana said...

Hilary, you have a rare talent for details and composition. I enjoy seeing these images, as I see in them colors and shapes. Similarly to when I paint.

I never wear a watch. I do not even remember on which wrist it is suppose to be worn. I have watches and clocks all around me at work and home; and whenever I am outside, I always have my cellular phone.

If I ever travel, I have a watch that is on a chain and I wear it around my neck.

steviewren said...

Love that intent look on Skittles face. He's a pretty kitty.

Kat said...

The color in the photos is amazing! I just love the color of the candles and the flowers too.
And there is something (probably the natural light) about the watch shot that makes me feel all nostalgic. I much prefer analog watches too. :)

RiverPoet said...

I absolutely love the close-up of your kitty, and the colors and angle of the shot of the candle holders is beautiful.


Mental P Mama said...

{{{Skittles}}} And that beautiful flowering plant is called a Kalanchoe--it was one of my mother's favorites. Thanks for the cheery look at your warm home;)

Hilary said...

You take such great photos.....I just bought my Nikon D40, and I admit to being pretty clueless.....well, maybe not clueless, but I have SO much to learn. You inspire me.

Jinksy said...

Another super set of images. I love the cheeky 'face' on your blue/green cup and saucer...

NJ said...

Those are great photos indeed Hilary. It's inspired me to try to do the same.

Leah J. Utas said...

Beautiful shot of the cup and saucer. It's soothing and inviting.
Excellent work again. I think Skittles is keeping a very close on eye on you.

Carolyn R. Parsons said...

A cat in a sunray..perfection.

The watch, brilliant.

I love them all but they were my favourite.

Skittles is adorable..I love kitties.


elasticwaistbandlady said...

Kalanchoe is more a plant acclimated for Southern climes. I'm surprised to see it migrated to the Great White North.

I wonder if it had proper documentation when it crossed the border??!?

Pat - Arkansas said...

Wunnaful, wunnaful, wunnaful! I greatly enjoyed every photo, Hilary. I hopped back over to refresh my memory about the little mole, and enjoyed that post all over again. You are so right; the best treasures are in plain sight if we would but see them.

Love, love, love Skittles... and your sunshine filled kitchen!

Shammickite said...

Always nice to peek in at a few corners of your house. Nice to think that your plants are predicting spring arriving soon. Clever things! It's 13C out there right now.... and I'm babysitting all afternoon so we will be able to take advantage of the mild weather and to go out in the stroller to the nearby park and maybe find a set of swings to enjoy!

Daryl said...

The cat food box or treat container.

I know the name of the pink spotted plant but cant recall it right now .. .

HanamiGallery said...

i love skittles green eyes! such a cute kittie~! hehe maybe hes not looking for food but a pet! hahah

photowannabe said...

Thanks for the wonderful tour of your home. The lighting is perfect. Love all the shots but 2 of my favorites are the yard sale cup and your precious Skittles. Terrific pieces of art to my way of thinking.

Clowncar said...

You seem to just get better and better. Love that first cat's eye pic. And the line of rocks hlding candles is wonderful too.

Janie said...

Creative images, all.
Is Skittles hoping for some catnip? Or are you tempting him with a length of yarn?

Michele said...

Skittles is sweet... he has such interesting marking for a cat... just like my kitty.
Beautiful pictures.
Thanks for dropping by my blog.
I appreciate it. =)

Anonymous said...

I love that very first shot of your Skitty!

Like you, I prefer an analog watch. There is just something so pleasant about looking at a watch and actually having to "tell time."

Dianne said...

The light in each of these photos is so lovely

In some of them you can smell spring and others I can smell coffee brewing.

Your photos delight all the senses

Skittles is a beauty.

Debra (a/k/a Doris, Mimi) said...

I love the way you captured Skittles in sunlight. GREAT photos!!

blunoz said...

All very nice pictures, but for some reason I am really drawn to the one picture of the tealights on the wooden bench. Not sure why I find that mesmerizing.

Hilary said...

• You really are first, Baggie! And thanks for the kind words. :)

• Thank you, Frank. You suggested indoor shots and I'm glad you liked how they turned out. :)

• Thanks, Reb. It could well be. We seem to have countless numbers of those invisible bugs. He's an active kitty. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Tabor. I sure do. :)

• Thanks very much, Shrinky. The watch was on my bed comforter, and the early morning sunlight was coming through the balcony window. Thank you so much for those very kind words. It seems I also have the perfect guests. :)

• Thanks kindly, Sandy. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. Your kind comments mean a lot to me. :)

• Thanks very much for the kind words, Protege. I guess the time I notice most is on my computer because of the time I spend there, and next would be my wristwatch. Come to think of it, at home I have a lot of time-keeping devices. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks, Steviewren. He's pretty intent upon everything he does. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Thanks very much, Kat. I guess it is the natural sunlight which gives them the colours you've note. I'm glad you like the images. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Thank you, Doris. Cats make good subjects when they sit still long enough. I'm glad you liked the post. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks so much for that information, MPM. I've now included it under the photo. I'm not great with naming plants, but I do know what I like. Thanks for the kind words. I'll give Skitty a scratch behind the ears for you. :)

• Thanks very much, Hilary. I was pretty clueless to begin with too, and still am in many ways. But the more you play around with your camera, the more you learn your way around different shots. Just keep snapping. The worst you'll have to do is delete some. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks kindly, jinsky. You always manage to find something interesting within a photo. Thanks always for your visit. :)

• Thanks very much, NJ. I have no doubt you take some great shots. I'll have to come by for a visit to catch up. Thanks for the kind words. :)

• Thank you, Leah. That cup is yours if you ever drop by for tea. :) You're right about Skitty. He's keeping a close eye on part of me. I Had my hand up on the wall, scratching for his attention. :)

• Thanks for the kind words, Breeze. I think Skitty is pretty perfect too. He's a great cat. Thanks for stopping by with your kind comments. :)

• EWBL, this indoor Kalanchoe probably smuggled itself in with another plant - possibly hiding under its leaves. Some plants are umm shady that way. ;) Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks so much for your always-kind words, Pat. I'm glad you re-enjoyed the mole story and that you loved the photos. Thanks kindly for your visit. :)

• Thanks, Shammie. I hope it wasn't too muddy under the swings with such a quick melt. We enjoyed a high of 16C (61F) yesterday, but boy was it sloppy walking. I hope my houseplants are right too. It would be nice to send them back outside for a few months. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Daryl, thanks for pointing out the missing plant name "Hypoestes." I had in fact even Googled it to learn the name and then didn't include it anywhere except the labels portion. Skitty was just looking at my hand - a simple attention-getting device - snap! Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Hanaami, thanks for stopping by. Skitty is always looking for something - often, it's trouble. :)

• Thanks very much for the always-kind words, Sue. I'm glad you liked the house tour and found a couple of favourites. Thanks always for stopping by. :)

• Thanks very much Clowncar. Your kind words are always appreciated. I'm glad you like these shots. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Thanks kindly, Janie. Skitty was just being tempted by my fingers, scratching, snapping or wiggling. He's a very curious, playful cat. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Michele. I appreciate you taking the time to visit and comment so kindly. I hope you're feeling better daily. :)

• Thanks very much, KC. I agree about the watch. I also tend to say "a quarter to four" rather than "3:45" or "ten after" in place of "2:10" but that's probably old school. My younger son still knows what I'm talking about, and my older son loses me completely because he's always talking military time. ;) Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks so very much, Dianne. Such kind comments. Your visits are always such a treat. I saw your reminder comment over at Frank's about more Benny videos, and I should have one coming up in the next post or two. So stay tuned. Thanks always for your warm words. :)

• Thanks, Debra. Much appreciated. He's an easy capture as he hangs around me a lot. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks kindly, Kevin. I'm glad you like the shots. Perhaps you just like the colours or perspective of the candle holder photo. Or perhaps it's the rocks like Clowncar mentioned. I think it's a guy thing. ;) Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

G said...

Your indoor photography is as irresistible as your outdoor. :) Skittles is a beauty.

lime said...

i have to say the two shots of skittles really amazed me, especially the closeup. i don't know too many cats who would let anyone that close with a camera. i do love the close ups and would so love to get a proper camera and macro lens so i can play like that too.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

wow, those tea candles? tres pretty!

carmilevy said...

I think Skittles is a lovely gato. I miss our cat, Shadow, who we sadly had to put down four years ago this month. I still sometimes expect him to come skittering around the corner.

Your comments about your watch are very timely (sorry, couldn't resist.) Seriously, I've always had issues internalizing time from a digital watch. It just doesn't give the same tangible sense of time that an analog watch does.

But being a deadline-driven journalist and a time-driven cyclist, I need the precision of a digital, plus all the doodads - countdown timer, stopwatch, alarm, etc. - to manage my day.

Solution: combined watches with hands on top of a digital face. A Timex Ironman for everyday use and a Citizen Navihawk for dressup. And for good measure, I have a lovely old Mickey Mouse dress watch because it makes the little folks smile.

Yeah, I'm nuts.

Indrani said...

Beautiful shots again. My 8 year old loved your Skittles shot. :)

Dave said...

You are very successful with your macro photos Hilary, and they are very interesting to look at. Alfie and Skittles would be good mates. They both have similar personalities I think. - Dave

Woman in a Window said...

This is by far my favorite set of photos by you. There is something in that golden light of inside, isn't there, that suggests the moment.

Jo said...

Your photos are beautiful, and I love the way the light strikes them. You are an extremely talented photographer.

I didn't know a Croton could go outside for the summer. I learned something here. Thank you. :-)

Cheffie-Mom said...

These pictures are some of my favs. I love the candle holders. It's amazing how you bring out the beauty in every day objects. (:

Susan English Mason said...

Your home looks like a very lovely place to live. My favorite was the watering can with the dried colors because I absolutely loved the colors.

Kappa no He said...

They are all gorgeous. Fantastic aperture work on the row of candles!


Suldog said...

I've said similar many times, but I think you're the best photographer in the world. I mean that. Every one of your shots is wonderful. That one of the watch could have easily come from a full-page ad in a magazine such as Esquire or GQ. You should be getting mad bucks for this stuff.

Anonymous said...

Skittles is darling. I now want to see your dining room LOVE the colors.

Andrea said...

Skittles is such a cutie...looks just like a cat I had with me for a while. Wonderful photos....such great colour and clarity!! :)

Hilary said...

• Thanks very kindly BPG. Your kind words mean a lot to me. Skitty too. ;) Thanks for stopping by. I miss your blog posts. :)

• Thanks, Lime. Both Skitty and Zephyr are incredibly calm, patient and sweet-natured cats.. though Skitty has been known to go nuts tearing through the house. I'm really pleased with this camera which has a 12X zoom as well as its own macro setting. I'd love to have a DSLR one day, but for now this one does a lot for me. Thanks for the very kind words. :)

• Merci beaucoup, Gary. :)

• Thanks for the kind words but sorry to hear about Shadow, Carmi. I know what that like when you think you've caught them from the corner of your eye, and it's just a sweater or something discarded on the sofa. That's an interesting combination of timepieces you own - particularly the Mickey Mouse watch. You may be a bit nuts, but that's part of what makes you fun. ;) Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks, Indrani. I'm glad your little one liked the shot of Skitty. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Thanks for the always-kind words, Dave. Skitty is pretty calm for a cat, and he's been known to get along with guinea pigs, most dogs and even crazy Benny to some degree. He tends to draw the line at other cats (aside from Zephyr) though.. but you never know. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, WIAW. I'm glad you like these photos. They are indeed a change from my usual outdoors shots. Thanks very much for the kind words. :)

• Thanks very much, Jo. I appreciate your kind comments. I had this plant (all of my plants, actually) outside for the full summer in a spot which received short bursts of direct sunlight. They all did quite well out there. We sprayed the Croton for possible insects before bringing it back in. Thanks for dropping by. :)

• Thanks very kindly, Cheffie. Your always-kind words mean a lot to me. :)

• Thanks very much, Susan. I'm glad you liked the photos. My colour choices usually get eye rolls (you're rolling your eyes right now, aren't you, Frank?) but I like them. Thanks for the kind words. :)

• Thank you, Terrie. I appreciate your kind comment. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you so much, Sully. Your always-wonderful comments never fail to make my day. Truly. :)

• Thanks very much, Amy. I'll photograph more of it eventually. And more of Skitty and Zephyr too. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks kindly, Andrea. Your kind words mean a lot to me. Thanks for the visit. :)

Nancy said...

Love your pictures of everyday items and the "game"! How fun! Wonderful perspective.

Anonymous said...

Shots are lovely and the best one is the watch. I liked the lighting surrounding it

Hilary said...

• Thanks very kindly, L of L. Much appreciated. And yes, the game is fun. He just found it last night after a several weeks, and now, I suppose it's my turn again. :)

• Thank you Vinita. I'm glad you like the photos. Thanks for your kind words and for stopping by. :)