I gots me a new camera!!!

August 2, 2006

So, this is the 15th image I took with my new digital camera (a big thank you to Sean for helping me justify this purchase). It was one of the first to come out half decent. Kinda funny since it is a picture of my shoddy craftsmanship from putting together the Weber Q Grill (which I dearly, dearly love — almost as much as my new camera). I put the handle on upside down, and well, I just never bothered to fix it. I think about it sometimes, but then it makes me smile, so I leave it.

That’s all for today. I’m going back out to play. I will have to get out this weekend; Campbell is a little too suburbia to inspire me to shoot.


for the Love of Otters

July 31, 2006

I missed the San Jose Grand Prix, again. Not that it’s really a problem. Unlike last year, where I just sat on the couch the entire weekend, missing both the Grand Prix and the Garlic Festival, this year I opted for a cooler end of July weekend. I headed for the aquarium in Monterey.

This is the second time I’ve been to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and while I wasn’t rushing as much as the first time, I didn’t get to see all of it. But, I did hit the highlights.

The boyfriend and I decided we wanted to see the Sharks & Myths exhibit before it ended in September. Since I will be out of state for most of August, we thought we’d better go while we had the itch to. Plus, when we weighed the options (hot downtown San Jose, pavement, and more heat from the cars, vs. the cool ocean breezes of Monterey and fish) we decided it wasn’t much of a competition. The exhibit did not disappoint, though we did sort of rush through it because it took us a while to find it. And, I kept getting distracted, wanting to show the boyfriend, who had never been here, all of the cool exhibits.

My first stop in the aquarium, as last time, was the sea otter tank. It’s central in the aquarium, and it’s my favorite spot. Otters of any kind have long been a favorite of mine, since my first visit to Bays Mountain’s otter exhibit in Kingsport, Tennessee. I could spend hours sitting and watching the otters float, swim, groom, and play. One of the things that made me fall in love with the Bay Area is that you are likely to see these playful creatures in the harbor or at the beach (or, if you don’t see otters, there’s a great likelihood of spying on sea lions or seals). One of the things that made me fall even more in love with the boyfriend was the night I saw an otter in the harbor, and he just enjoyed sitting there with me watching the otter for however long I wanted to be there. There was no rushing, we just sat there and watched the little guy play and twirl around in the dark, inky water.

Next, I drug him into the Jellies: Living Art and the Outer Bay exhibit. We spent lots of time there watching the huge bluefin tuna, the sunfish, a few sharks, and other miscellaneous fish swim around.

We did see lots of sharks during our tour. There were hammerheads and Galapogos sharks in the Outer Bay exhibit, we finally found the Sharks & Myths exhibit that had not only sharks but lots of rays, and we found our way to the shark tank after a brief stop watching the Kelp Forest (which had some sharks as well, and an ugly, ugly eel) which featured some beautiful leopard sharks as well as 7-Gill sharks and some more hammerheads and rays.

Unfortunately, I forgot my camera again this trip. So, for now I’ll just have to post an image of the sharks at the Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans (images from 2003). Next time, oh there will be a next time, I will not be without a camera. Although by then, the blacktip and whitetip reef sharks, zebra shark, pajama catshark, and all the other species that were featured in the Sharks & Myths exhibit will be gone. But maybe they’ll have another Great White by then! And, maybe I can get there earlier so I can devote an hour or two to chilling and watching the otters play…


the South

July 26, 2006


I’ve long wanted to do a photo series on the south, but never could figure out exactly what I would do. Whatever it was, I wanted to portray the south in a good light — portray my culture as I see it, not as much of the rest of America has seen it up until the last couple of years: Backwards, slow. Hillbilly/red-neck country. Barefoot and pregnant at the age of 16.

In my excitement to go home, I’ve been thinking about this a lot, and I’ve come up with one of the reasons I love the South is it’s timeless. No, not stuck in time, but it just has a timeless quality. It’s a place of family, friends, neighbors and gatherings. A place where you can take the time to enjoy the small things, the things you often don’t notice on a day to day basis. It’s a place of just stopping by to say hi and meeting new people who you find out you may already know through so-and-so or from such-and-such. It’s a place that still has carbs, fat, and calories (and it’s not a sin to consume these). A place where a person cooks meals that were passed down from great-grandmother to grandmother to mother. A place where you can feel the dampness of the air on your skin and you can hear the bugs chirping in the morning and evening. It’s a place where I can run barefoot through the grass, or through the dirt. A place that’s laid back and casual — it’s okay to walk into the convenience store wearing a t-shirt over your bathing suit, hair in a tangled, pulled up mess, slathered with sunscreen. A place where you leave your front door unlocked and when someone knocks you just yell, “Come on in!” Of course, they’re already half way in, because the knock is just meant to announce that your here — you know you’re welcome.

So, I’ve decided that’s it. I want to capture the timeless qualities. Maybe in early September you’ll see that, maybe you won’t. Art is, after all, shaped by a person’s experiences. If I’m successful, the photos will show the South that I know, even to that person who’s only contact with the South has been Jeff Foxworthy and Civil War history.


Happy Puppy = Happy Courtney

June 6, 2006


And we have the beginnings of a new look!

June 2, 2006

As promised many months ago I have given the diary my own look instead of the standard blogger template from before. It’s only the start — there will be some more additions to come. I need some eye candy on here 🙂

I’m slowly rolling the look out to the rest of the site, as the day job allows, and should also (really) have a shop up soon (really, I’m not lying).

So let me know what you think — all two of you who read this!