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Showing posts from August 11, 2013

5 Sites for Wonderful Beach Illustrations

Many years ago my husband and I noticed a shift occurring in our summer entertainment — away from the beach and towards music and classic cars.  A good deal  therefore,  is now spent travelling from show to show, venue to venue.  It currently fits our lifestyle and interests perfectly, so I don't generally miss  lazy days spent beach side which we can no longer fit in. Yet, every once in a while when I hear the b-word a subtle yearning takes hold and I think of the soothing lap of surf hitting shore, of soft sand squishing between my toes, of spectacular sunsets over crystal blue.  I see myself comfortably settled in a lounge chair, book in hand,  glass beside me with nothing to distract me but the symphony of water and birds. I can't imagine anyone who doesn't have some fondness or affinity for a day at the beach.  It's quite probably the one thing that's as enjoyable in reality as in memory.  My happy childhood recollections of summer vacations at Sauble b

Free Vector Graphics Editors

Last summer was a busy one in our family, with a wedding for one daughter and the arrival of a new baby for another.  As a result there were parties and celebrations throughout the season.  Which meant invitations, thank you notes and other similar items were required. Our bride has always been the artsy one in the family — and thrifty to boot. She decided to create her own wedding stationery needs, starting of course with the right graphics. Wanting to ensure she was not stealing someone else's work she went to iCLIPART.com ,  a site offering royalty-free images at great prices. She quickly found the perfect illustrations, ones that suited her black-and-white theme, her personal style and the level of taste expected. Whether you're a graphic designer or a grandma working on a special family memento,  the right image is obviously a great place to start. For novices, however,  if using an image isn't going to be as straightforward as one hoped it can seem intimidatin

How to Photograph Children Outdoors

Had a visit from my darling granddaughter the other day. If there's one occasion guaranteed to bring out my camera it's this.  Actually, the favourite joke around our household now is if you want your picture taken you better be holding Little Missy. The newest addition came to our family with personality. From the beginning, she was clearly an independent.  Her serious observation of the world around her (giggles were hard earned and came at a premium)  convinced us she wasn't easily impressed.  Even the camera for the first seven months of her life was regarded with mild suspicion. Fortunately — while we still think she's a keen observer —  that changed. Our little lady now adores the camera as much as it, and the people taking the pictures, love her.  On her most recent visit to Grammie's house we were enjoying our usual photo shoot, this time outdoors as she explored the garden.  Looking at the pictures later that day I was thrilled by how many great ones

The Spectacular Sunflower

It's always seemed a bit of an anomaly to me.  A rural area, densely populated, the peppering of tiny settlements lining a seriously-busy,  four-lane highway.  The desire to race through is tempered by the plethora of police cruising along the road, or parking alongside it. Despite the similarity to the 400-series roads, this one has long been known as a speed trap. My husband and I take this route frequently as it leads to our daughter's home.  The frustrating ebb and flow of drivers desperately eager to speed along, but cognizant of the ever-present officers,  can make what's essentially a short drive seem tediously long.  Any beauty in the countryside is lost in the congestion of traffic and houses. Yet, recently, there was a bit of a surprise.  Approaching one rare open space we noticed a huge line of cars parked at the side of the road. Drivers and passengers were exiting their vehicles and working their way up the road. The reason? To photograph a field of sunfl

Time for Back to School

The time is getting closer. How close depends on where you live. For some kids, those living in California for example, the return to school is imminent, while there are others who still have a few weeks left to make the most of summer vacation. In my youth, the months of July and August, when no school bell started my day, when there seemed so many long and lazy hours to idle away time with fun and sun,  were eagerly anticipated. There would be trips to my cousin's farm, to my big sister in the city, to the beach with Mom and Dad, all linked by childhood activities with friends at home.  We ran the neighbourhood from the time we could get organized in the morning, until the shouts of parents cut through the dusky light of evening.  There were ball games in empty fields,  hours of cooling off in the public pool and exciting games of tag and chase. As carefree as it was, however, I oddly looked forward to back to school too.  You can get too much of a good thing and I think