I was a very fortunate girl last night. A friend and her husband treated my guy and I to a fabulous night out as a belated birthday gift.
As it is any time people are with friends, this occasion involved lots of chatter and chuckles. Other highlights were a delicious meal served by the lake, followed by a walk along the beach to wear off the unnecessary-but-oh-so-fabulous crème brûlée.
The night was gentle, the temperatures balmy. A barefoot stroll through the shallows was an inevitable end to a perfect evening for this long ago beach bunny.
There's nothing still about hanging out with friends. Even a quiet evening spent at home is never static. While you might not be up and moving, conversation, along with good wine, tends to flow.
With friends there is always laughter, which can shake a body up. With friends we indulge in retail therapy, play games and participate in sports. With friends we eat, drink and be merry.
So if we think about illustrations that perfectly tell the story of friendship, perhaps animations would say it best. Here's a great collection from AnimationFactory
Friday, July 31, 2015
Thursday, July 30, 2015
We also tend to depend on them for everything from nurturing our spirit to being ready for a little retail therapy when required.
Friends support us when things are bad, they share our joys when things are good. They are an ear to vent to, a shoulder to cry on and always just a phone call away.
With them we have mutual interests and hobbies. We enjoy many of the same things and tend to look at life in the same way. A good friend will often provide balance and grounding when we've taken a bit of a tour through the clouds. Conversely when we're taking things just a little too seriously they're there to remind us to lighten up.
A good friend is always good for a laugh. At least one.
That is one of the best things about friends. We are meant to, and usually do, have fun with them. There are generally good for plenty of smiles and chuckles, some over worthy subjects, others just because. Author P.C. Cast has said, "If you have good friends, no matter how much life is sucking, they can make you laugh."
Too, too true.
So in the spirit of fun and friendship I scoped out a few friendly-fun projects:
Photoshop Your Friends Into Iconic Photos
Turn Your Friend Into an Avatar
Fun Tutorials to Try With a Friend's Picture
And finally a warning. Never pass out in front of a friend:
Can You Please Use Photoshop To Make My Friend Look Sober
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
I learned a long time ago that pictures of the people who mean a lot to us are invaluable. When a young family friend passed away her copious collection of selfies brought comfort then and still — a decade later. I made a vow to myself at the celebration of her life that I would never let a special gathering go by without taking plenty of pictures.
Thus, when an old friend came to stay this past weekend, the camera had to come out. Uncharacteristically, however, I'd been so caught up in the social aspect that it slipped my mind until she was getting ready to leave. As a result, we were left with grabbing a quick pic of the two of us standing together. When I thought of all the opportunities there had been for much more entertaining shots I was a bit chagrined.
What makes a good picture with friends? How do you avoid the uninspired photo I ended up with? Sure, it was a nice picture, taken in front of the 'clubhouse' where her kids and mine had autographed the walls when little, but it really didn't give the impression of the fun we had.
Next time will be different. I will remember to bring the camera out from the beginning and, having found these helpful tips, should be able to get pictures that tell the story of the visit:
How to Photograph Your Friends
Tips on Photographing Friends
Party Shots of Yourself With Friends
How to Take Pictures of Friends
Take Great Photos of Friends
Tips and Tricks for Girlfriends Photos
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
I like that quote from American writer, artist and philosopher Elbert Hubbard. Given that the majority of my truest friends are old ones it has always seemed quite fitting.
One of my besties is a woman I met when she walked in to our Grade 5 class as a new student unmentionable decades ago. Turned out, she and her mother had moved just a block away from me so our conversations to and from school helped to solidify what would become a wonderful lifelong bond.
Another was a chum from preschool through our teens. At that point, we joined ranks with four others, forming a little gang. While the years sent us in different directions, four of us try to see each other when we can. Though we don't find the opportunity as regularly as we'd like, when we do it's as if the conversation from the previous time never stopped.
All of these women knew me when I was as yet unformed, when immaturity and angst ruled my emotions and decisions. They were there for the melodramas, the mistakes and at times mild mayhem that dominated teenage life in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Through breakups and other assorted tribulations we supported each other, forgave theatrics and defended against hurtful outsiders. When silliness was required we rose to the challenge. When it was a shoulder to cry on, it was there, no questions.
Long before I read Hubbard's quote, I used to say that my childhood friends had seen me, warts and all, and loved me anyway. That special bond is celebrated in these wonderful photos:
Monday, July 27, 2015
I consider myself very fortunate in my friendships. I gave up on the notion of a bestie a long time ago. Now my circle is full of a group of special women, who enrich my live on a variety of different levels. There is the shoulder to cry on, the comedienne; the counsellor, the flake.
This past weekend I enjoyed a visit from a long-time friend, who is a combination of most elements. She has helped me gain perspective with a voice of reason. She has calmed me and supported me.
She also has the wonderful ability of making me laugh regularly and reminding me that it's okay to be a little silly sometimes. She loves life and people and I feel blessed to count her as a friend.
Our time together Saturday involved an event that put us in contact with one of my new friends — a solid, no-nonsense sort who offers me a little grounding when needed. With her I share a love of late nights and loud music, too.
It was awesome to spend an evening with these two special women, who truly would walk in when the rest of the world walks out on me. So in celebration of all the wonderful friends out there, in their many and varied forms, here are some awesome illustrations: