H2O – Weekly Photo Challenge

No single drop of water thinks it is responsible for the flood…….Unknown



Jubilant – Weekly Photo Challenge

All I can say is Wow-ee.  Look-a where I am.  Tonight I landed POW, right in a pot of jam.  What a setup, Holy Cow, they’d never believe it.  If my friends could see me now…. Sweet Charity

I’m an absolute sucker for old musicals.   I have watched most of them over and over again and can still sit happily watching them for the umpteenth time.  Saturday afternoons on television when I was growing up was full of movies to sing along to.  Elvis, Tammy, Doris Day, Cliff Richard, Bing & Bob… the list goes on and on.  Some of my very favourites were anything with Shirley MacLaine in it.  My Geisha, Irma La Douce and of course the brilliant, Sweet Charity.  The music, the weak  recycled storylines, the glamour, the costumes.  They hit the mark on every aspect. They made me feel jubilant.

Sweet Charity was on late night tv late last year and I watched enthralled but with different eyes to what I used to see.  This time I was looking at the cinematography.  The scenes left me longing to recreate them.  I sat with my mobile phone in hand, snapping photos of every scene that sparked my imagination.  I have them all in my inspiration folder and will get around to them eventually.  But I knew I definitely wanted to do something along the lines of Charity dancing on the cigarette holder of a billboard flapper. The happiness on her face as she danced was so contagious.

I started looking for the suitable costumes for it and mentioned it to my friend Cheryl.  She started looking on Freecycle for me and within a day she’d uncovered a white tuxedo jacket.  It did  have a stain on the arm but I managed to get that out.  It was free.   Bargain.  Then she went op shopping and found a shirt, bow tie and vest all for the fantastic price of $10.  I went to a cheap shop and scored a white top hat for $4.95.  I was starting to see it come together.

My model, the lovely Sally, was on a friend’s facebook page and I got my friend to ask if she’d be interested in modelling and she was.  Then I went onto Ebay and got a flapper dress, head band and feather boa for just $10.  I already had a yellow wig from a previous photo shoot and the cane belonged to my grandmother.   I raced to the op shop and grabbed a pair of pants for the princely sum of $2.00.  Sally brought her own shoes with her, so all up, I spent $26.95, not counting the wig and cane which I already had.

As I’ve spoken about previously, costuming for a photo shoot doesn’t have to be expensive.  It just takes a bit of planning and lots of searching for the right stuff at the right price.  I ended up doing 4 different characters with Sally and you’ll see the others when I’ve finished them.  They may take quite a bit longer as they are a lot more complicated.

Among the Whisperings of the Champagne & Stars




Face – Weekly Photo Challenge

Shadows of the past wander with unseen & unheard footsteps beside us. Nameless faces lost in time……Livonne

Lost in Time



Admiration – Weekly Photo Challenge

If I could go back in time, I’d embrace that sad little girl I once was and who still lives inside me.  I’d tell her how beautiful, how precious and how brave she is and how much I admire her…… Livonne

This week’s Weekly Photo Challenge is Admiration.  It may seem conceited to say I admire my inner child but I do.  I have always been able to step out of a bad situation and become a third party onlooker.  She taught me that.  She went through a desperately unhappy childhood, feeling unwanted, unloved and betrayed.

Yet, she survived.  And because she had such strength and tenacity, I am here to tell our story.  I really do admire that sad little girl.  I think she’s much braver than I could ever be.


The Inner Child

Future – Weekly Photo Challenge

Children are happy until we point out everything that can go wrong.  They step on the cracks without fear. They learn from adults to fear, to hate and to expect the worst……Livonne

Whitney Houston sang, “I believe children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way.” This  week’s photo challenge theme is Future, so what signifies our future more perfectly than children.  They aren’t born with fear or hatred.  It is taught to them by word and deed.  They believe that life is wonderful until we point out that it’s not.  They believe that everyone is beautiful until we convince them that ugly is a thing and we should all look a certain way.

We have to ask of ourselves, what sort of future are we leaving for our children? Will the rivers be dried up?  Will hatred and war ruin all the natural beauty this earth possesses?  Will everything becomes a disposable commodity, even people?  I hope not.

To see innocence and trust in a child’s face gives me hope that the next generations will make a kinder impact on this world than the last few have done.  The future really is in their hands.

The photo is a composite of 3 different places in China.  The Fangsheng bridge is in Zhouzhuang. near Shanghai.  The river has been replaced with the paved area surrounding the Olympic Bird’s Nest in Beijing and the beautiful little girl was happily wandering around Tienanmen Square in Beijing, unaware of the crowds of tourists or the armed guards.  She only saw beauty and it was mirrored in her eyes.

We need to be more childlike and look only for the beauty.  Take a risk and step on the cracks.  Maybe nothing bad will happen after all.

Step on the Cracks



Half Light -Weekly Photo Challenge

Like a bridge over troubled water, I will lay me down…..Paul Simon

This week’s photo challenge is Half Light and we were asked to share a photograph of half light which is inspired by a poem or song or book.  One of the most beautiful songs of all time, in my humble opinion,  is Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge over Troubled Water.  I can remember hearing it as a young child and feeling angel wings wrap around me, with an unheard yet loud voice, promising to keep me safe.

I still hear that promise today, as clearly as I did all those years ago.  It keeps me strong.  When times are hard, I play the song to find a way out from the murky waters.  The beauty of the words, the magnificent voice of Art Garfunkel, the grounding harmonies of Paul Simon and the promise of an angel to protect me, all blend together to calm my soul as it did when I was a child.  The song still makes me cry with it’s beauty.

When you’re weary, feeling small,
When tears are in your eyes
I will dry them all
I’m on your side
When times get rough
And friends just can’t be found
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

When you’re down and out
When you’re on the street
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you
I’ll take your part
When darkness comes
And pain is all around
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Sail on, silvergirl
Sail on by
Your time has come to shine
All your dreams are on their way
See how they shine
If you need a friend
I’m sailing right behind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind

© 1969 Words and Music by Paul Simon

bridge over troubled water



Floating on Air

Your love has me floating on air….Livonne

I’ve been working on this photo now for a few months.  It has never done what I wanted it to do and I’ve been more than frustrated with it.  I was lucky to have a crazy bride who was happy to climb up on a picnic table, grab a handful of balloons and pretend to float away.  I had great plans with it but it just hasn’t been cooperating with me.

I find the best thing you can do with a photo that’s not working is to walk away.  I’ve walked away from this at least 10 times but like the true masochist I am, I kept going back to it.  Today, I attempted it again and I’m finally almost happy with it.  I’m posting it but I know I’ll have another go at it later on down the track until I’m perfectly happy with it.

That’s the thing with art.. Just because it doesn’t work first time around, don’t give up on the concept.. Just keep trying until you start to achieve the vision.  It may be the piece that constantly eludes you, but you’ll never be bored with it.

floating on air