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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

obstacles - part 2

Edited with Image Blender and Phonto apps
iPad mini

using Kim Klassen's textures:
kk_bamboo (Soft Light 64%)
 kk_canvasgrunge (Multiply 26%)

font: CicleFina

quote from
a book I picked up Sunday morning
in our church's
Eucharistic Adoration Chapel

original photo SOOC
iPhone 5
Monday morning, September 24, 2013
on the now-flooded path
around Crown Hill lake

a couple more shots from my iPhone...

several Mallard ducks have taken over
the paved path
next to the lake...

...as well as the dirt path next to
the paved path
(the extensive flooding is a new development)

Linking up with

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

the obstacle is the path

iPhone photograph
Saturday morning, September 14, 2013

I saw this proverb on a poster in Erin's doctor's office last Friday. The following morning as I took my morning walk around Crown Hill Lake, I noticed this flooded trail. On my second lap around the lake I stopped to capture it with my iPhone camera. I've been pondering these words ever since, toggling between life's micro and macro situations of late. I've recently blogged about some of the micro. As for the macro, read on...


After almost a week of non-stop, torrential rain here in Colorado, watery devastation on a massive, catastrophic scale has spread across over 4,000 square miles...from picturesque mountain canyons and valleys, to peaceful foothills dotted with quaint villages and small towns; and now the floodwaters are endangering towns and farmlands in northeastern Colorado - downstream in the great river basins flowing east of the Continental Divide.

Folks here are incredulous:
  • at least eight people dead, and still hundreds unaccounted for (mostly -  hopefully - due to communication difficulties in the mountains)
  • over 19,000 homes damaged or destroyed, and hundreds of businesses as well
  • dozens of roads and bridges washed away - many of them crucial links to mountain destinations
  • ongoing helicopter rescue operations that now dwarf those of Hurricane Katrina
  • the high plains east of the Front Range now resemble the Mississippi Delta, with flooding on a scale unheard of in these parts
 And keep this in mind: flooding in the mountains means flash flooding...which means seek higher ground ASAP. With steep, narrow terrain this means a 'wall of water' rushing down a narrow space:

Check out these links:
Fox News, (Sunday) for a national, breaking news perspective.
The Loveland Reporter-Herald, for a local columnist's perspective.


iPhone photograph
Monday morning, September 17, 2013

This view from Crown Hill - where I've been walking every morning recently - belies the tragic story: the worst of the flooding is less than 100 miles away, easily visible from here. You are looking north at the gorgeous mountain vista of the Front Range: the Flatirons near Boulder, and beyond that 14,259 ft Long's Peak, in Rocky Mountain National Park (which, for now, is reachable only via the muc farther, western slope entrance, due to washed out roads). 

Daily I watch and I pray: not far from our home in a suburb west of Denver - which was also not immune to flood damage - are people and places, homes, businesses, entire communities...devastated.  Favorite weekend destinations - we honeymooned in Estes Park...so did Kelly and Aaron last summer; I've picnicked, camped and hiked countless times, traveled those roads, visited those towns, loved those places since I was a little girl...


After a failed attempt to get the desired results with iPhone apps (I'm still pretty new to this, and at this point don't have much control within the process), I imported the top photo into Lightroom and then CS6 for further editing and texturizing:

I went back through the archives of Kim Klassen's 2012 Beyond Layers class and more or less followed one of her tutorials, incorporating a layer of kk_jessica (Soft Light blend mode 25%). Then I added one of Roxi Hardegree's Photo Textures (Multiply blend mode 28%). I'm still not quite satisfied, but it's time to 'fish or cut bait.' I did finally figure out the screen capture thing though. Small victories.

Linking up with Texture Tuesday and Tuesday Muse.


The obstacle is obvious.
The path to recovery seems insurmountable.
The two are inextricably linked.

Friday, September 13, 2013

the calm...before the storm

Sunrise at Crown Hill Lake

Edit done with Modern Jr. app
iPhone 5
Monday, September 9, 2013 10:17 AM

...photo editing done while in the waiting room at
Panorama Orthopedic Physical Therapy

original photo SOOC
iPhone 5
Monday, September 9, 2013 7:07 AM

...photo taken while on my daily early morning walk
around Crown Hill Lake


Back home a few hours later it looked like this:
not snow...hail.

original photos SOOC
iPhone 5
Monday, September 9, 2013 4:35 PM

...photos taken while surveying the aftermath
of the hail storm
that hit our neighborhood
earlier that afternoon.

We were fortunate to experience
only minor flooding in our basement.
Bob had just gotten home moments before;
he hurried outside with a bucket and
bailed hail out of this stairwell -

- the unused 'inlaw entrance' which flooded my art studio/sewing room.
Then he hurried back inside, where I was damming the flood with every big towel I could find.
We hurriedly unboxed his newly purchased Shop Vac
while I frantically read the assembly instructions:
You gotta remove the filter before vacuuming water!
We emptied the big nine gallon tub at least four or five times
into the shower in the adjacent bathroom.
Tight quarters in this tiny, narrow bathroom...especially for two of us in slings,
using only one good arm each.


Hail piled up about 6 inches deep in our yard.
Just two blocks away the hail was two to three feet deep.

This video pretty much sums it up:

 Jonathan Dismuke shot video of the storm
that washed away his newly poured cement patio this afternoon.
Hail and rain flooded many areas in Golden, Wheat Ridge, Lakewood and Arvada.
viewer-submitted video uploaded Monday from 9News (KUSA) website Monday night

The hail finally stopped after about 20 minutes,

Check out this blog too.


We are truly blessed.

Our situation is a minor inconvenience
compared to the folks in surrounding areas.

up in the heart of Boulder County.


The Lord is my rock,
my fortress and my deliverer.
My God is my rock,
in whom I take refuge,
my shield and the horn
of my salvation,
my stronghold.

Psalm 18:2


Linking up with

Thursday, September 5, 2013

road race!

As you might imagine, I'm already missing my bike, and it looks to be at least a few months before I will be able to ride or swim (or hold my Canon 6D, for that matter). Kim's recent posts on street photography got me thinking about my own approach...and why I don't feel comfortable with my camera in public. It seems to be only when I step out and play the Photographer. It's not always this way...doing the tourist thing: no problem.

And neither was it on this day: August 28, 2011. It was the 6th and final stage of the inaugural USA Pro Cycling Challenge. A kind of mini Tour de France - right here in our own back yard! On one of our own personal favorite routes: Lookout Mountain. Neither Bob nor I are particularly crowd-lovers, so to get us out in the middle of massive crowds - and on a hot summer day is really saying something. We hopped on our bikes early that Sunday morning and pedaled westward on our normal route to neighboring Golden, where things were just warming up.

Looking at many of my photos (taken with a little Sony point-&-shoot camera) I now realize that, on that day, I was not the least bit self-conscious about photographing in public: probably because just about everyone there was doing the same thing! Bike race groupies were rubbing shoulders with tourists and professional photographers - and we were all after the same thing: some memorable shots of a memorable event. There were almost as many cameras as people.


the starting line in downtown Golden

 that's me checking out one of the support cars
that zip along the route with the cyclists

one of the racers
warming up before the start

each cyclist signed in at the grandstand,
then was interviewed and photographed

the racers - and support crews - were assembling at the start line down the street
while the crowds vied for the best spots along the route

this handsome fellow didn't mind me taking his picture
(that's Lookout Mountain in the background,
with the giant Colorado School of Mines 'M'
painted on it)

 he even agreed to pose with me
(we much prefer this photo

 here comes the peloton

in just a split second they passed us
(it was literally 'just a blur')

As soon as the peloton sped past us, Bob and I got on our bikes and raced back home - via the Coors Greenbelt trail, so that we could set up with the crowds along 32nd Avenue (just a few blocks from our house) to watch them speed by again, on their way to the finish line in downtown Denver.

We missed the race last year, with the last stage scheduled on Kelly & Aaron's wedding day. And this year...well, we were otherwise 'distracted.' It's been fun re-living this event today!


I thought I'd try taming all the chaotic color and unify everything with an old-fashioned newspaper look in these shots. Encouraged by Kim's tutorials in her Start 2 Finish class, I played with some black & white and duo-tone processing, which I did in Lightroom. I cropped each photo, then added a subtle vignette with a preset. I finished up in Photoshop, with a simple edit: one layer of kk_dollard_grunge (Multiply blend mode 40%); plus one layer of kk_oro (Soft Light blend mode 60%). I tried to create a Photoshop action out of this, but it didn't work, so I did it one photo at a time. I will try again another day.

Linking up with: