The Natural State

Darn! It looks just like me! D'Oh!

Natural 'around the house' state most mornings . . . and well into the day.

Camera mounted on tripod, self timer set for 10 seconds . . . run around the corner into the kitchen . . . flash! . . . and there it is.

+Project52-2012 +GPLUS::P52::2012 created by +Giuseppe Basile, curated by +Greg Berdan +Gretchen Chappelle +Shelly Gunderson +Gary Munroe +Sue Butler +LaDonna Pride +Kate Church
#2012Project52 #selfportrait #selfy


Background Becomes Foreground

Having the wrong idea all week makes you go for what's handy.

So . . I was confused for some reason about this week's theme until I saw someone else's post and looked at the theme calendar. D'Oh!

This is the extra large white towel that has served as background on a couple of other photos for Project52. Not a lot of processing, except that I duplicated the original layer, gave it a Gaussian blur and set it to hard light blend mode to give it a slightly diffused, dreamy look. Then I did a bit of dodging and burning on a merged layer to lighten up some vignetted corners and darken down a couple of spots to restore details.

+GPLUS::P52::2012, +Project52-2012 Originated by +Giuseppe Basile, curated by +Kate Church, +Greg Berdan, +Gretchen Chappelle, +Shelly Gunderson, +Gary Munroe, +Gene Bowker, +Sue Butler and +LaDonna Pride.


Hey! Look At Me!

Flowers are so vain. But they're beautiful anyway.

I'm not certain if this is really contrasting colors or complimentary colors, or maybe they're the same things in some cases. I kept looking around all week for something to take a picture of, and there were, you know, things that would work, but didn't offer anything especially photographic except the contrasting colors. On my way into my workplace I spotted these flowers in a tiny bed that is mostly neglected, yet certain plants seem to thrive on the minimal attention they receive.

Here we have the yellow against the . . . what color is that, heliotrope? . . . and that color in turn against the green. The wall behind was fairly bright, so I muted it with an overlay. I was using GIMP this time, as I'm at work and haven't yet signed on for the Creative Cloud . . . but I think I'm going to do that, as I'm much better versed in PhotoShop, with which I might have done more cleaning up– just because I know how to do it there.

#2012Project52 +Project52-2012 +GPLUS::P52::2012
Curated by +Kate Church +Greg Berdan +Gretchen Chappelle +Shelly Gunderson +Gary Munroe +Gene Bowker +Sue Butler and our founder, +Giuseppe Basile


Business Conducted Daily

They take their Spanish architectural heritage seriously around here!

In the Mission San Jose district of Fremont California many of the buildings reflect the Spanish Mission architectural heritage of the original settlement which was founded in 1797. This neighborhood was an independent town until 1956 when it incorporated with four other nearby communities to form the new City of Fremont. At one time, briefly, Fremont actually contained more land area than the City of Los Angeles. Not people, just land.

#UrbanSnap +Urban Snap


Park 'n Pray

Stop and meditate a while.

This little shrine is literally in a small car park adjacent to the Mission San Jose in Fremont, California. It's in good condition except for needing a bit of clean up and for the fountain to be working. No idea if it is something of recent origin or has a historical significance. (I didn't get out of my car to read the placque!) The point is, the Spanish architectural influence extends far and wide in the neighborhood.

#UrbanSnap +Urban Snap



Mission San Jose's Museum.

I don't know what the original function of this building was, but it currently houses the museum of the Mission San Jose in Fremont, California. The 18th century Spanish architectural style is evident here as well as throughout the complex.

#UrbanSnap +Urban Snap


Spanish Style Architecture? Deep In The Heart Of China!

Those monks really got around!

Our plane landed in Xian, China, on Easter Sunday morning, 2009. When we boarded our bus and were getting acquainted with our new tour guide, 'Linda,' some of the group asked if it might be possible to stop by a church because it was Easter. Linda thought for a moment, then said that the cathedral where most Westerners would go was on the other side of the city, and too far to go. But, she said, she might know a place.

The bus made its way into central Xian, with our guide having to give directions as we went. After a while we turned onto a side street and pulled up in front of a gate. As we gazed through the gate, we saw this- a Spanish style Catholic church. Not just that, but a busy place with people of all ages having come out for Easter services. The courtyard was dressed up with banners, and just inside the gate was an inflatable rainbow arch with some kind of sign attached. On either side of the church were banners, and throughout there were people of all ages: old folks who had survived revolutions, both literal and cultural, middle class families, young people and little children.

Some of our group went inside with our guide who, to their surprise, knew the priest already. Hmmm. She acted as translator while he gave them a short homily followed by Holy Communion. It couldn't have worked out better.

I stayed outside taking pictures. I felt a tug at my sleeve, and there was a young girl looking up at me. I smiled. Then she spoke haltingly in English: 'You are very old.' My grin widened, and I replied, 'Yes. I am 59 years old.' I had been warned that my blond hair and white beard would get me recognized as Santa Claus in China. Old men with white beards are respected.

I asked the little girl, 'How old are you?' and she said, counting on her fingers to help remember her English numbers, 'I am ten.' I spotted her mother nearby with a camera, so I asked the girl, while making signs to her mother, if they would like to take a picture, and they both enthusiastically nodded.

And so somewhere in a home in Xian there is a photograph of me standing next to a beaming Chinese girl who met a 'very old' American man at church on Easter Sunday.

#UrbanSnap +Urban Snap #Xian #China #Church


I Got Yer Spanish Style, Right Here!

California is someplace where Spanish architecture abounds, both old and new.

Mission San Jose in Fremont, California, was founded in 1797, with the original adobe church building being completed in 1808. Sixty years later it was destroyed by an earthquake, leaving a few buildings including its adjacent convent. A wooden church structure stood on the site until 1982, when it was relocated across the bay in San Mateo where it still serves an Anglican congregation. Between 1982 and 1985 the adobe mission church was reconstructed on its historical site as it existed in1830. Saint Joseph's has remained an active Catholic parish since its founding.

Although it shares the name, "San Jose" with the city located 13 miles to the south, they are not related historically or politically.

#UrbanSnap +Urban Snap