Monthly Archives: May 2012

Teen Photographers Help Fund Gardens for Breast Cancer Patients

Summer reminds me of my grandmother’s garden. An explosion of color from zinnias, petunias, and marigolds (interspersed with tomatoes) delighted all the senses. My garden doesn’t achieve that, but I’ve been looking for new ideas.Reading Country Home’s Country Gardens, I came across an article about Hope in Bloom, an organization that creates gardens for breast cancer patients.Whether garden plots, pots, or window boxes, Hope in Bloom plans the gardens to meet specific needs and wants , at no cost. The gardens provide a focus and tranquil setting to enhance relaxation for those facing breast cancer.

In Massachusetts, the Sharon High School camera club gained new purpose when the club leader, Erica Greenberg , brought the idea of raising funds for Hope in Bloom to her fellow students. They shot photos of gardens and nature to create notecards for sale. Students also began to volunteer in other roles within the organization.The cards are available on Hope in Bloom’s website.

What resonated with me was using photography to inspire and raise funds, getting teens involved and stimulating/furthering their interest in photography. I’d love to hear about other projects in which young people can use their creativity and photography to benefit charity.If you are aware of others, I would love the opportunity to write about them also.

Hope in Bloom provides beauty and support for a very worthy cause. It is based in Massachusetts and is an idea and organization to grow.You can reach them at http://www.hopeinbloom.org.

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Exploring an Abandoned Antebellum Home

Roaming the back roads in southern Mississippi, out the driver’s side window I spied a tall chimney and jigsawed glass  windows.The challenge was to find the house and take a closer look.After a quick left  and several wrong turns, we finally found the driveway.

Posed in front of us stood a neglected brick dowager melting in the sun. As I wandered around the outside peering in windows, untouched marble fireplaces and intact chandeliers surprised me.

The front door stood open and invited us into the shade. Stepping inside I caught my breath. A pair of beautiful pier mirrors flanked the door.The home still wore tired eighties decor.Peeling wallpaper and flaking paint sprinkled the floor and tempted my camera.

Climbing  the front stair, nervously I tiptoed – unsure what might be waiting.A hammering sound stopped me. I hadn’t seen a truck or van so I wasn’t expecting workmen. Calling out, there was no response. Two rooms down the hall, I found a shade slapping the window frame in the breeze.Laughing at myself, I explored a bit more and headed down the back stair.

Hard to imagine abandoning a home such as this, a variety of stories played in my mind.Taxes, inheritance problems, relocation, none of those seemed romantic enough for the home’s history.

Amazed and grateful that there was no sign of graffiti or partying to mar her fading beauty.I hope that she will be restored and home to a family who loves her.


WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge : Summer Enjoying the Porch Swing

Swaying on the porch swing at my grandmother’s house is one of my favorite summer memories.A breeze would drift through and it was cool in the shade. The pillows arranged comfortably and a glass of sweet iced tea with so much lemon that it could almost be called lemonade at my side, I could read or play contentedly. Until my cousins arrived……….


WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge : Summer Turning Towards the Sun

In French sunflowers are called  les tournesols, turn towards the sun. I love the sound of the word as well as its meaning. There are so many times it’s easy to give into moods or annoyances and turn away from those who provide the light. In summer, controversy over tanning aside, feeling that sun on your face and shoulders relaxes you  and gives you a sense of well-being ( unless you live in Memphis and it’s 98 and humid then you feel more like a dishrag). This photo is a combination of two that I shot in the south of France while savoring the fields of sunflowers.Next year I am promising myself to plant some in our backyard.


Grab a Brush and Add Some Color !

I love the drama and reality of black and white, but it’s time to add more color. Color brings dimension to ourselves, our surroundings and the lives of others.Grab a brush and go for it!


Summer Vacation Begins Today!

Time to relax and try new challenges.


WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge : Hands of the Aged at Yad LaKashish

I have always been fascinated by hands and the work they can do, so I was so excited by this week’s WordPress photography challenge. As I searched through my work, I found a collection of photographs that focused on hands and creating.I shot them in Israel , in Jerusalem, at an organization called Yad Lakashish which means Lifeline for the Old.

Everyday 300 seniors come to LaKashish to create. There is a bookbindery, pottery, art studio, paper and metal-working shops. Each of the people is trained if necessary and creates and explain their pieces to visitors as they are working. Their artwork is sold at the shop and online all over the world.The website is http://www.lifeline.org.

In return, the participants receive a monthly stipend, any medical or dental care, meals while they are there as well as friendship, a sense of purpose , dignity, and a place to create.

The impact of my visit has resonated with me more than I can describe. The studios form a community. Flowers bloom everywhere and there is a sense of peace. I left trying to figure out how this model could be used at home to benefit our senior citizens. Having the opportunity to create, to feel useful, and connected while benefitting financially would be a great gift.


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