Wreath on edge

I’m trying with the titles, people, I swear.

Recently I ordered a few floral hair wreaths to use in my upcoming photo shoot on March 17th, and for some reason Wednesday I decided to snap photos of them. Unlike almost every single photo I upload to my blog, these are pretty much SOOC with the exception of one, and I’ll explain that one when we get to it. I did do some RAW editing before converting the files to .jpeg, but that’s it. I did this mostly because it was late in the evening when I took the shots, and I didn’t want to invest too much time in processing them, but also they just didn’t need much work. I used the ExpoDisc again so the white balance seemed fine, and I had my new 50mm lens on the camera which created some lovely, lovely bokeh and interesting focus, so I just kept the editing to a minimum to get things done.

Two of the wreaths are dried florals; one is baby’s breath and the other is dried violet. These two were bought off Etsy from a fairly new shop there called Junkyard Dandelions – they only have one review, and that one is mine. They are both incredibly pretty and well-done, with nice ribbon detail to tie in the back. They’re sturdy but appear delicate and they look exactly like the photos on the site.They shipped very quickly, and the seller/designer was pleasant to communicate with. Also they were not expensive – about $30 each – and for the price I think the quality of these is outstanding:

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Adorable little bunny tag

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Lace detail

I also bought, from another Etsy vendor, a floral wreath with very large flowers; it was only $20 which seemed like a steal for such a large piece. However, when I got it in, I felt it looked a bit cheap and fake (the flowers are silk). In spite of that, I still like it as I think it will work for other portraits if I end up not using it in this one (it was much more colorful than I really wanted for this shoot anyway). When I photographed it, it actually looked better than it does in person, so it’s all good. Plus, it really was a good deal for the size of the thing:

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And now, for the grand finale to wrap up this little post, is the one shot I did more editing on after processing the RAW file. When you see it, I think you’ll understand why, because this shot was worth putting out the extra effort for sure:

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If you ever needed proof that Sprocket is one seriously special dog – photogenic AND patient to boot – well here it is. He is so sweet-natured that even though he clearly did not enjoy having this thing on his head, he sat there with his head up like I asked him to so I could pop off a few quick shots. The framing isn’t great here, but that’s because I did have to snap the shot in a hurry, but it’s still a winner. This beats the time I managed to get a shot of him wearing angel wings, I think. And this shot also gives you a sense of how big that wreath is. Sprocket’s a ninety-pounder, so that sucker is big.

Eh, what the hell, I’ll upload one more Sprocket shot. I processed this one too, beyond the RAW processing. I like his facial expression more in this shot, but the focus was on his nose and it blurred out the flowers a lot, so in my opinion the one I shared above is the better photo of the two. Let me know if you disagree (and the flowers are around his neck here because this was the second attempt I made to take pics of him with the wreath on, and he would not sit still for me to put it on his head again. He just wasn’t going to fall for that twice).

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Meet Simon.

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When I posted this photo on Facebook with the same title as this post, someone immediately commented, “That was quick,” which I took to be a judgment because I am paranoid. But yes, it was quick I suppose. However, this is how I do when it comes to my pets – as soon as one dies, I want another, because I know it’s the only thing that will heal my heart. I am not like this with people, and I don’t think it makes me callous, I just know it’s the only thing that allows me to move on after losing a pet.

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Perhaps they said that because we still have no proof Ramone won’t come back. But Doug and I talked about it, and together decided that if Ramone did come back, and we suddenly found ourselves with two cats instead of one, that would be wonderful; we have had two cats before. But neither one of us thinks it’s going to happen; we feel Ramone left us to die in peace. Truth be told, I was willing to wait a week or so, but my husband got up Sunday morning and was walking around the house talking to the dogs and saying, “Don’t worry, babies, Mama is going to get you a new kitty real soon,” which I took to be a big huge hint that he wanted me to do so that day.

Allow me to explain:  I am always the one who goes out and picks our pets. Doug can’t stand going into animal shelters; he gets upset and wants to adopt every animal in the place, as well as give them all his money, so we’ve learned to leave him at home and let me do it myself.I never have preconceived notions about what I want, I just act as a divining rod for the treasure that will be our new pet. I had this feeling I really wanted to bring a cat home today, though, and was concerned about the local shelter as they won’t let you bring home any pet until they’ve been spayed or neutered. I of course was thinking we’d want a brand new kitten (of which they had tons), but in the end I went with a four-month-old because he was already neutered and ready to bring home. Sorry if that sounds superficial, it just felt like today was the day to get it done, and I was able to do it this way.

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Took me all day to find him though, because it was Sunday, and the shelters have weird hours as well as going out to local pet stores for afternoon adoptions, so although I got in my car around 10:00 AM, I didn’t find Simon until around 3. It was a long day, but Simon is home now and fitting in nicely with our two pups. He had to hiss and swat at Sprocket a few times before he got the message not to be overbearing, but I appreciate that this kitty isn’t intimidated by Sprocky’s size and exuberance. Sprocket is now sufficiently cowed, and Penny is showing her usual feigned indifference. He has successfully used the litter box, found and eaten his food, and investigated the nooks and crannies of the house. He has also learned the power of the water spritzer when he tried to get into the fireplace, behind the refrigerator, and into my plate of food. I like it that he learns quickly and will take no for an answer – if it comes with a squirt of water that is (never sprayed into his face, of course!).

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The paperwork we got on him said he likes to lick, cuddle, and play – and so far those things are all turning out to be true. I have my usual nagging fear that he is carrying some horrible illness with him from his time in the shelter ,and that he is either going to cost us thousands of dollars to get well, or die (he’s sneezed several times since we brought him home, and I’m particularly worried about that). But I have a load of errands to do Monday and am taking a day from work to do it all, and getting Simon to the vet will be one of those.

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As a bonus, he poses nicely for the camera.

We did OK last night but about 4:30 in the morning he got really feisty, so I took him out into the den to let him run around and slept the rest of the morning on the sofa. I have way more patience with puppies and kittens than Doug does, and actually enjoy even the nighttime disruptions, so I usually take charge in this area. Our sofa is quite comfy, anyway, and aside from a few foot attacks Simon nestled into one of our den chairs and slept through the night.

I still have loads of photos from this weekend’s air show to share, but I wanted to show you Simon with this post. So air show pics coming tomorrow!