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Uh Oh, I’m Sick (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 11)

No fun adventures had. No plethora of photos. No good foods eaten.

I went to bed last night with a raging sore throat and hoped for the best, that I’d wake feeling better… but that did not happen.

Despite wanting to get out of bed and make the most of my day this cold was bad enough that it felt best to stay in bed and rest… I slept this day away, not waking until sometime after 5pm.

My throat is about half as sore as it was this morning, so there is improvement. Currently I am laying awake at 10 pm, editing photos because I am having trouble falling asleep… gotta get the photos ready to update to the past few days of blogs that I have already typed up and are waiting to be published.

Paulina was a sweetheart and walked over to Lawson to fetch a salad and a hot lemon and honey drink for me… that warmed my heart as well as soothed my throat.

Here is to hoping that I’ll be fully recovered on the morrow.

 


Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden Was Open! (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 6)

Cooler weather has arrived, though it is still warm and still quite humid. It feels great to me until the mid-afternoon, when I really start sweating and my hair freaks out. I swear… I just cannot look good while I’m in Japan in any other season than winter… naturally curly hair and humidity do not mix well so I get about half a day looking okay and unless I take pains to wash and actually style my hair in the afternoon, then it becomes a wild and woolly mane that is out of control. Because I do not like to fuss over my appearance for more than a very short while, I choose the wild hair rather than look my best. I wonder what this says about me as a person?

My compatriots woke about an hour after I did and we did not take too long to relax this morning since we wanted to make it out of the house and to Shinjuku with time enough to enjoy the park before it closes at 4pm. 

Paulina, Fredrik and I went to our station (Hikifune) and jumped onto the train to Shinjuku. I had expressed the desire for a proper coffee as did Chris, so I looked online for a good place to go… and found a Blue Bottle Coffee right next to Shinjuku Station – oh the joy! They have really good coffee and I was surprised to see that they expanded from Northern California into Japan! 

Chris suggested that he pick up the coffee, since he would arrive shortly before we would, since he was only coming from Shibuya. He also surprised us with some tasty pastries from a French bakery that was right next to Blue Bottle, which we saved to eat in the park. 

Yes, we finally made it into Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden – wooooooooo!

I took SO MANY PHOTOS but I was not alone… Paulina is also a photographer and Chris has gotten the photography bug so it was nice to not feel rushed to move on when I was busy composing nice shots. Prepare yourself for a very photo heavy post today!

This was my second time in the gardens… the first being back in June of 2015 when Chris and I lived in Tokyo for 3 months. On that first visit I was solo, and spent the entire very hot day there. It was 91 degrees F with 90% humidity, and this time it was much cooler, and about 10% less humidity – much more pleasant weather for certain! Regardless of the weather, I feel like I could visit this garden over and over and never tire of it. I am VERY much looking forward to when the leaves start changing their colors – this is one of the gardens that I will definitely be going back to!

The 4 of us strolled the garden and stopped at a large field to enjoy our tasty French treats, and then strolled more…

We had quiet times

 

We walked a lot – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

Chris roaming in Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

Taking closeups of…. something.

Photographing me photographing a tree – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

Wandering Boo. – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

Views like this make me want to move to Tokyo.

Those are my feets with smushed fallen Autumn leaves.

 

…. and silly times

 

We felt compelled. – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

Fredrik… STAHP! (DEUTSCHLAND!)

Caught in the act! – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

It’s THIS way!

Chris demonstrating exactly what this sign means… complete with stick!

Somehow this moment just… happened… and it was glorious.

WHA! A wild Fredrik suddenly appears!

 

and selfie times.

 

Happy people in the happy greenhouse!

We happy!

Happy! – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

 

But mostly, plant times.

 

We liked the greenhouse. – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

photo courtesy of Chris Danford

Something was interesting! It was probably that brown plant that I was fascinated with. – photo courtesy of Chris Danford

– photo courtesy of Chris Danford

I love the greenhouse in Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden!

Just a little bud… I’m sure it will open soon!

I risked life and limb for this shot. – Photo Courtesy of Paulina

I wish that I knew what sort of plant this is…

Potted plants in pleasing arrangements.

The upper level in the Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden greenhouse.

I want to know what this plant is also!

This tree is going to look SO nice with Autumn color!

Why yes, this plant WAS FUZZY! Yet another that I desire to know the name of.

 

Oh, and cloud times too. So many beautiful clouds.

A couple was having kimono times. I’m pretty certain that we got better photos of them than they did of themselves. Thanks, Kimono Couple for giving me a nice photo subject!

 

Thanks for providing excellent composition, Kimono Couple! I think that we had better photos from you being there than the selfies that you two ended up taking. 😀

 

Garden times with my special friends was so needed, and what a sharp contrast to the inner turmoil that I was experiencing the day before! I was feeling completely opposite emotionally and while physically I still wasn’t great, I was much better in comparison.

We were all pretty hungry at the end of our garden visit. Chris suggested Gyukatsu Motomura, another beef katsu restaurant. This place was special! At the table are pots made of pottery that they light up so there is an open flame in each pot. Each person gets to choose their own pot, which is topped with a slab of pottery – this slab gets VERY HOT… 

We actually cooked our meat on these!

The gyokatsu is breaded and quickly deep fried, then sliced up and served with many sides. You take slices of the breaded beef and place them on your hot slab of pottery where it sears the meat – you get to choose how well or not well you cook your meat! 

The accompanying sides were delicious: Pickled vegetable, miso soup that I think may have had a beef base instead of fish, sweet mochi with what seemed like it had a syrup either made out of light molasses or maple, rice with barley and mountain potato which was in it’s stringy form of goodness – I do love mountain potato and on top of rice! OH YUMMERS! Two sauces were included as well… one that seemed like garlic and the other a sesame of some sort? 

After dinner a very tired Chris said adieu… Paulina, Fredrik and I went to Flying Tiger, a store that has origins in Denmark. We found all manner of quirky and useful things! I was after a nail brush and a sleeve for my MacBook…. I found what I needed! A Llama MacBook sleeve came home with me, and I don’t even find the pink background too annoying! x

In Flying Tiger – they had all sorts of fun things.

 

The three of us then went to Akihabara to meet up with Joy and Zach, who had been in arcades all day again… Fredrik left Paulina and I for a boys night out of karaoke with another friend from Sweden – Paulina and I went to a few arcades and then dragged our weary bodies back home with the intent to go to an Onsen in Asakusa, but once we were still and comfortable at home, we decided to not go anywhere. 

I called it a night fairly early – no plans as of yet for the morrow except to find some useable wifi so that I can upload some photos to my blog posts!


Know Your National Holidays… (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 5)

Once again I woke before every one else in the house – around 6:30 am. I was not feeling well, and I noticed that my limbs had swollen even worse and my face was very puffy… I assumed it was due to some digestion issues of a rather uncomfortable nature  – things have… not been moving for a few days. Walking has been very uncomfortable due to all of this swelling and it has me quite concerned. 

Again I was ready to upload my blog to the website, but discovered that my photos were not uploading… finally I received a message that the server was taking too long to respond and it seems that the wifi included with our AirBnB has been throttled. I’m assuming that the 4 others have been using it as well because I’m certain that although I use my own fair amount of data it’s not enough to cause a throttle! 

I tidied my closet, straightened some things in the living room and caught up on messages…. at noon I was still waiting for the gang to get going and out of here and it was, quite frankly, making me very tense and upset. 

We decided to meet Chris in the afternoon but the group decided to first stop for Yakiniku for lunch – we went to a place called Kuidon, which I believe is a chain. We had a private booth with our Korean style bbq table and for just over 1,200 yen I had a feast!

 

Grillin’ dat meat!

We had a private room at Kuidon Yakiniku – a very nice experience and a very nice value.

Bellies satisfied, we moved on to our train and headed to Shinjuku, with the intent to go the the Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden… we enjoyed walking the streets and found some beautiful street murals and funny signs.

 

Part of a mural in Shinjuku – I need to go back and get a panorama of this because it was awesome.

 

We even found a pop up cafe for FIKA! (Fika is a large part of Swedish life… basically it means to have a coffee and a pastry, often a cinnamon bun… but it’s much more than that as it’s a relaxing social time to reconnect with people and relaxation) We wanted to stop for fika but the shop was closed. 

We soon arrived at one of the gates to the garden – only to find that it was CLOSED! As it turns out if there is a national holiday that falls on a monday, then the next day the park is closed. Needless to say we were all quite disappointed… I messaged Chris to let him know that our next plan was to visit the Artnia store at the Square Enix headquarters.

There are SO MANY THINGS that I would have loved to purchase from that store… so much temptation. It’s a special place… sadly, all of the special figures in the museum portion of the building were all empty as the figures were on loan to another exhibit elsewhere in the city.

 

Artnia building at the Square Enix headquarters – a must visit for me each time I visit Tokyo.


After Artnia, we went to downtown Shinjuku and the Monster Hunter Cafe! They charged a 500 yen cover charge per person… despite the cute theming of the cafe I still feel like it was overpriced and we could have enjoyed a peek and a few photos from the doorway just as well without spending that plus the cost of drinks. Gotta say though, Capcom is being smart with all of this promotion and cashing in on the popularity of this game series – well done, Capcom… well done.

 

This Palico was big – a little over a third of my height. Monster Hunter Cafe.

 

After Monster Hunter Cafe, Paulina split off to go home and rest, Joy went back to Akiba for DDR. Chris, Zach, Fredrik and I wanted honey toast, but the restaurant was closed for the night… we did find out that a Tex-Mex bar upstairs also served the honey toast (apparently the building was one large hotel resort thing so the menu was universal to all eating spaces)

Honey Toast is a big loaf of bread, hollowed out, toasted and drizzled with honey… then filled with ice cream and fruit and other sweet toppings. These absolutely cannot be consumed by your self, or even two people… two honey toasts for 4 people was even too much – I think that in retrospect I could have been satisfied with just one shared amongst 4 of us as it was so sweet and filling. It was delicious but I think that now that I’ve tried it, I probably will never have it again. Also of note: It’s tasty, but nothing worthy of your palette… simply novel and interesting.

 

Honey Toast – I’ve got this out of my system now. Never again. (too sweet)

 

Chris was very tired so he said goodnight… Zach and Fredrik and I roamed around Shinjuku a bit longer to see all of the beautiful lights and then we headed home. There were good moments in the day but overall I was rather unhappy and decided that when I want to be active I will just split off on my own and not worry about the group – we can always join up again later. I discussed this with a few of them and they weren’t upset at all and in fact encouraged me to do so.

 

Shinjuku is beautiful at night – I was definitely feeling the Lost in Translation feelings today.

 

I love the detail on the street gates? posts?

 

I am a very active person, and I do believe that my style of enjoying a vacation most likely differs from the average person… I don’t sit still much so taking the day in such a slow manner drives me a bit crazy. 

Many personal things also bubbled to the surface of my mind as well, and I was finding difficulty to keep a happy attitude, all things considered. I think that tomorrow I will get some “me time” and visit a shrine to cleanse my restless spirit.


Technology Fails, Anxiety and also Fun Times (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 4)

A veritable cornucopia of experiences this day most certainly was, as my emotions got tugged to and fro for a variety of reasons and circumstances that were largely beyond my control.

Not to say that I was emotional, as I largely was not but rather to say that things evoked internal emotional responses that were, to say the least, trying and frustrating to a person who just wanted to get things done and organized and out of the way so that she could fully enjoy her day without the thoughts of things needing to be done hanging over her head.

Goodness was the start of my morning – despite being drunk the night before (only my second time ever in my entire life) I was NOT hungover! I drank quite responsibly and for every ounce of alcohol that I consumed, I also drank an ounce of water, possibly more. I slept really well – definitely not having a sneak attack of jet lag woo woooo!

The first order of the day was to finish writing my blog post from the day before as I most definitely did not finish it that night! Second thing to do was to get my new (old) iPhone 7 set up… this is where things started to go south and without going into all minutiae, I had to re-set passwords and download my old profile… this took  F O R E V E R. Also… my MacBook simply would NOT transfer all of my previous day’s photos onto itself for some unknown reason – it’s very frustrating and sad that my iPhone won’t properly communicate with an Apple product… I expect this behavior when I plug it into my Windows PC, but not with Mac! I have had a long history of having to deal with this tedious file management so rather than try and try and try again to get the Mac to take the pictures, I simply emailed the ones that I wanted to myself, downloaded them onto my computer and inserted them into my blog post. Done and done.

Having all of this take literally my entire morning ( I had been up and about since 6 am) I was feeling stressed and very anxious… that anxiousness ended up permeating my entire day, I am sad to say, despite my best efforts to “let it go”.

At noon I finally gave up on getting all of the apps fully restored onto my iPhone. The Swedish Crew and I headed to Shibuya to see what we could find. First stop: Hachiko, of course! We had to say Hello to the OD! (the Original Doge)

We visited Hachiko! It wasn’t too crowded so we were able to selfie with him quickly.

 

Paulina mentioned wanting to see The Scramble from above so after crossing The Scramble ourselves, we went into the Magnet by Shibuya 109 (Shibuya Men’s 109 re-branded building) 

Up we went to the 7th floor, where there is a Fatburger and an onigiri bar (I can’t even imagine how many varieties they serve!)… it’s a cozy atmosphere there with loads of seating away from the main eating areas – I might take my computer there to get some work done!
(I forgot to snap a pic – later)

I really liked this open space leading to the Shibuya Crossing viewing platform.

Mural at the Magnet viewing area… my hair was still halfway decent at this point of the day yay!

 

Outside we went, and got a very nice view:

Twuuuuu Wuvvvv!

Da Boyz

Joy swears that he wasn’t actually trying to give me rabbit ears, that he was just doing a peace sign.

It wasn’t until afterward that I realized that we had almost an exact duplicate of a photo that we all took together in Stockholm 3 years earlier awwww! <3

 

Then one of them noticed that there was a way to have your photo taken from above with the scramble below as well – it was 1,000 Yen so we all payed a part to get these photos! You scanned a QR code with your phone which takes you to a website – you have 100 seconds to snap as many photos as you want by tapping your phone… we all looked up at what we thought was the camera but turns out that we all looked at what would be the spotlight that turns on at night and not at the camera itself – how silly we all felt!

Bird’s Eye view of The Scramble… with us looking in the wrong direction oops.

In the lobby of the Magnet building there was a Hello Kitty photo op… the sign said to be sure to use your flash which we thought was not necessary, but then when we looked at the photo, the black background had turned into a nice collage – that was cute!

We were all hungry (except for Joy) and so we went around the corner to Genki Sushi because it was fast and cheap – not the best sushi of course but to a hungry belly it’s all the same anyway, eh?

From there, the guys split off from Paulina and I. We girlies went to Loft to explore a bit… I showed great restraint by not purchasing a single thing, though many things both needed and just wanted called out to me… I remained steadfast and just looked. After Loft we spent a little time on a side street being silly:

I can’t even

 

A rare sight… an empty train! Mere seconds later two people joined us in this car.

After along while we left, found some unusual KitKat flavors to sample and went home for the night. While out I discovered that my phone data had been throttled… apparently when my iPhone was being set up, for some reason it used my data instead of wifi, which it isn’t supposed to do… so now I have 4 more days of only having enough data to use my maps and nothing else!

We met up with da boyz in Akiba… played some games and then went home.

 

 

 


Akiba Antics (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 2)

This morning found me well rested after a full uninterrupted night’s sleep on my bedroll – our AirBnB has traditional tatami mats on the floor of our bedroom – the five of us share a common bedroom area that has space enough for 10 people to lay comfortably if there are two people per bedroll.

I awoke at 4:30 am to find Joy up and ready to get some breakfast… we took the short walk to Lawson’s to get coffee and breakfast foods while the others stayed in bed.

It was so great to sit and talk with Joy after three years of not seeing each other in person – I wish that we lived closer… it can be so difficult when dear friends live so far away. After talking with Joy for quite a while, he decided to go back to bed while I was not sleepy at all so I decided to shower and then soak my aching muscles in our wonderful deeeeeep bathtub.

About the time that I was finished relaxing, Zach and Fredrick awoke, and Joy followed shortly. The guys went out to run an errand with Zach and I stayed behind with Paulina… they returned and we all laughed and talked for a great while as we decided what we wanted to do for the day.

You have been blessed by the Suntory Lemon Man!

It was decided that we would go to Akihabara to play games at a gaming center for the most part and also check out some shops but since we were all very hungry we started looking for food immediately. Go!Go! Curry sounded good, so we stopped there for some comfort food – I ate the small tonkatsu (pork cutlet) plate and even that amount of food was actually a bit too much! This Japanese curry chain regularly has a contest for people to completely eat a ridiculously large amount of tonkatsu with rice and curry – it’s impressive to see their wall of photos with people who have actually completed the challenge!

Me and the Sweet Swedes at curry lunch.

Bellies full and satisfied, we moved on. I have them convinced that next time they crave curry that we should go to CoCo Curry to see if they like that the same or better… I have a definite favorite but I did not reveal that to them for fear that it may affect their opinion one way or the other!

While walking to the area with the most arcades we kept coming on shops that sell collectible figures… we stopped in two or three and spent a bit of time when my friends decided that perhaps we should stop getting so distracted and get to the arcades.

A Sega arcade was the next stop where there were many rounds of UFO catcher plays – we met up with Chris there. He was kind enough to share his stash of SIM cards with me so now I can roam freely without having to find wifi hot spots… they are abundant but rather flaky at times for connection if you are moving about quite a bit. Thank you, Chris! having all of the data GeeBees is definitely better than relying on flaky WeeFees! XD

At Sega Arcade

Everything is cute in Japan.

Tokyo Leisure Land was the destination because they have a large selection of rhythm games… which we did not get to right away because a couple of my friends (*cough* Joy and Paulina) became obsessed with winning a couple of figurines from a redemption game… after some tries they did win! I made myself content with winning a few small prizes, including a squishy orange Slime from the Dragon Quest (I have a slight obsession with these adorable characters!) series of games and a little plush kitty with a mustache.

YES! DDR in JAPAN!

Paulina won the Alice figure she was after!

My sweet squishy Slime! I won one for Chris too

We spent a few hours at this spot – time passes quickly when you are having so much fun and in such good company! Some rhythm games were played as well, but I did not partake because I felt that I was already sweaty enough with the humidity, which was around 80% yesterday. My poor hair is lamenting this weather – it seems that Japan will never allow my hair to look nice while I am here because my curly hair reacts so poorly to high humidity. Ah well it’s okay! I can still have fun whilst looking like a goof!

After the arcade we came upon the Dragon Quest themed Lawson store! SLIMES EVERYWHERE! I need to back to get better photos and a video of this place – very cute theming!

I FOUND IT! The Dragon Quest themed Lawson in Akihabara!

Late in the afternoon Joy and Fredrik broke away from the group to go home and take a nap… Paulina, Zach, Chris and I went on to a wagyu beef restaurant called Roast Beef Ohno… it is a small restaurant which I guess only seats up to 30 from a quick glance about this small restaurant. Part of the seating is at a couple of tables but the main portion of seating is at the L-shaped bar that borders the kitchen so you can enjoy watching your meals being prepared.

The menu selection is small… literally just the wagyu donburi bowl or the Australian beef donburi but you do choose the portion of rice that you receive. I opted for the small portion.

Wagu Donburi is delicious!

My dinner was accompanied by Oxtail soup – yummy.

The printed menu offers instruction for how to best enjoy your meal, first starting with tasting the meat on it’s own, then mixing your egg and dipping the meat in that and the small trail of Japanese mayo, then trying the pickled vegetable (which I think was cabbage) with a bit of mountain wasabi and cream cheese in addition to your bite of meat. However you decided to combine your tastes, this was a superior donburi for certain! I think that I could eat this meal a couple of times a week and not tire of it.

Instructions for how to best enjoy your meal.

I had requested that we go hunting for some gatchapon (Japanese capsule toys) so Chris did a quick look on Google Maps… on our way there we ran into Joy and Fredrik, who had initially said they were going to go home and take a nap before karaoke with a friend… they never made it home because the made a side trip to a Maid Cafe – Paulina and I were a little cross and disappointed because we wanted to experience that with them, but overall we heard some great stories from those two and I’m glad that they had so much fun. Once again we parted from Joy and Fredrik who departed to go find some Japanese libations and Chris continued to  guide us to a store filled with row after row of gatchapon dispensers! They had signs everywhere that asked customers to please not take photos so I respected that while I was actually in the store. Once I was in, I remembered that I had visited this exact place on my very first day in Japan in summer 2014!

I found two of the VAG series that I was looking for! Morris!

On this visit I found some of what I am diligently seeking… dispensers that sell the VAG (Vinyl Artist Gacha) series! These are special limited edition gasha designed by some famous vinyl toy artists. These particular figures are quite detailed and usually have the distinction of having one or more parts that are moveable so that you can pose your figure! They are 500 Yen so more spendy than the average of 200 – 300 Yen, but definitely worth the price.

I was surprised to find one the winter 2018 releases still available! I am now the very happy owner of two Morris figures, which is a cat-deer combination… a design by Kaori Hinata, also known as Hinatique. http://hinatique.pupu.jp/ – such a talented artist! My keen eyes will continue to keep a lookout for more VAG dispensers on this trip for sure.

VAG (Vinyl Artist Gasha) figure Morris in the two variants that I most wanted!

Our happy hearts and weary bodies decided that it was time to head home. Zach, Paulina and I said goodnight to Chris with wishes expressed to meet again for more fun tomorrow… we rode the train back to our station, Higashi-Mukōjima, and walked home. Soon, bedtime and blessed sleep.

 

 


Planes, Trains and Dying Batteries (Japan – Autumn 2018 Day 1)

Literally the only pic I snapped yesterday… and it was accidental… forward facing camera oops for the win.

This trip started out about as ordinary as it could be… I fussed over packing my necessities, then unpacked, sorted and re-packed… about 5 times. I stayed up late the night before my flight to acclimate my sleep schedule to that of where I was traveling to. I made a loose list of places I would like to see when I visit. I hopped onto a plane and had an un-eventful, and even pleasant flight with no one sitting in the seat next to me.

Then little things started to unravel… my sinuses decided to become swollen and painful… the line at immigration was looooong – it took more than an hour to get through when usually it’s no more than 20 minutes. Lines looked long for train tickets…. and then I learned why. One of the express lines was not functioning due to “electrical failure”… another of the local lines was not running either so I decided on the Narita Express, which I would normally take anyway (but wasn’t going to this time because it wasn’t a direct route to my end destination).

The line to purchase those tickets was L O N G. Like wait for 45 minutes long. Ticket bought, I proceeded to the platform to wait for my train to be cleaned from the prior run.

Boarded train, settled in… time to go! Train does not go. Five minutes later: train does not go. Announcement says that the track is being cleared of something… my heart sinks because I think that it must be a jumper. Five more minutes pass… then another 5 and another 5. In Japanese they ask us to disembark the train and go across the platform to another one… we all do so and sit there for another 15 minutes.

Train is a local one so it stops at every station. Soon we come to Chiba, where we are told to get on yet another train, which apparently everyone else in Tokyo was also getting on to. It’s raining. It’s humid. People are grumpy and shoving onto the train like they’re packing a sardine tin. I feel guilty for having so much luggage, especially when I actually prefer to travel very light. Aching muscles and exhaustion were making me really grumpy… you get the idea.

I made it to the neighborhood where my friends had rented an AirBnB only to have my phone die right as I got the the block where it was supposed to be… EVERY door on that block had the same number so I was confused as to which one I was supposed to enter! Eventually after waiting for my phone to charge enough to turn back on (and it ended up not turning on for another 15 minutes) I knocked on a random door  – a very kind older woman answered and her face lit up when she saw me, which was a reassuring comfort that I really needed at that moment. In very broken Japanese I told her that I was looking for an AirBnB and she knew right where to take me to – she waited until Paulina let me in before she left my side! What a kind woman!

All in all it took me 5 hours from when I left immigration to make it into the AirBnB… exhausted starving and half drenched from a soaking rain I dropped my bags and then immediately walked down the block to a Lawson’s to grab some snacks… that was actually just a few minutes ago. I am completely exhausted and at this writing I can barely keep my eyes open so it’s time to wander upstairs to my tatami mat and lay my weary head to rest. Day 1 of Japan Autumn Trip complete!


Day #76 – A Photo A Day 2013

It’s late! I’m just now getting around to posting today’s pic, one that I snapped two weeks ago when I was roaming around San Francisco. (I miss my new home! Returning there in two days yay!)

San Francisco has no shortage of interesting things to look at and in turn, for me to photograph. 😉

The Holy Cow Mascot

The Holy Cow Mascot

This cow hangs above the door of The Holy Cow Nightclub – when I first moved to San Francisco, this cow was one of the first things that greeted me but then he was a metallic gold! I walked past here hoping to get a better pic than I did last time, but now he’s such a lovely shade of neon pink that I didn’t mind that the gold was gone. 🙂

I used Tangled FX and Photo FX to edit this photo.


Day #74 – A Photo A Day 2013

Another quick post for the day!

I snapped a quick photo as I was driving east on Hwy 14 in Vancouver, WA – Mt. Hood is in the distance:

IMG_9453

Tangled FX with multiple effects layered, then I did a bit of a tilt-shift effect to soften the clouds and bring the focus down to the vanishing point.


Day #73 – A Photo A Day 2013

A quick post for today – a snap I took on Mount Sutro last week:

Mount Sutro Sunshine

Mount Sutro Sunshine

I used Tangled FX layered with a couple of effects and then altered the trees and tree tops with ElastiCam. I obsess over the details, so this edit took quite a bit of time.


Day #72 – A Photo A Day 2013

Gosh, being sneaky with your iPhone to take pictures is HARD sometimes. Today’s shot is a perfect example of this. I found it to be one of the most difficult shots that I have edited lately.

Adorable Boy Riding on BART

Adorable Boy Riding on BART

This little guy was SO ADORABLE and he kept playing peek-a-boo with me… everything in me wanted to set up the shot and leave his Mom out of the picture – I felt like her white shirt was going to be really distracting in the frame. Also, I didn’t want the boy to lose his un-inhibited playfulness by putting the phone up to take a photo.

After I got on the plane at SFO I started looking at all of the shots that I got – the boy’s mom had on that annoying white shirt, and it was ruining this shot!!! What should have been a simple edit took a better part of the flight to do because I just could not seem to find a way to diminish that shirt enough to my liking.

A ton of masking and layering went on. I wanted to age the photo but not make him get lost in the edit. I’m only half liking the results but I could not think of anything further to rescue this photo. In the end I suppose what matters is that I captured a sweet and cute moment and treasure that rather than obsess over what I feel is lacking in the composition of the photo that captured it.


Day #71 – A Photo A Day 2013

Trains are a never ending source of fascination to me and in particular I really like the BART Powell St. Station in San Francisco. Part of this may be a connection to it since my very first BART ride destination after leaving SFO was to that particular station.

I also really like the lines of that particular stop – so many textures and since the tunnel is so long at that point it gives me a chance to get really nice lines in the (excessive amounts of) photos that take of the station.

Warped Speed - at the Powell St. BART Station

Warped Speed – at the Powell St. BART Station

This was taken as I was waiting for BART to take me to SFO last weekend. I really wanted to capture the motion of the train as it was coming in for a stop and I felt inspired to not only run it through Tangled FX but also played around with it in ElastiCam, made by Lucky Clan. I only warped the windows of the train to give it a sense of faster motion while maintaining the integrity of the lines of the rest of the train.

ElastiCam takes a bit of getting used to, not that it’s difficult to use – quite the opposite actually, but fine-tuning just how sensitive you do or do not want the effect to be to the touch of your finger takes a bit of time. At first I found myself over-applying effects, but once I got used to gently dragging and adjusting the strength of the effect, I found it to be extremely fun and satisfying to watch the transformation to my photo.


Day #70 – A Photo A Day 2013

Quick post today – I have much left to do today (I’m in Portland visiting family and friends!) but I’m still committed to making my daily posts!

Today’s is #3 from the #7faceless challenge that Sumsion challenged us to on Instagram:

Day #3 of the #7faceless Challenge

Day #3 of the #7faceless Challenge


Day #68 – A Photo A Day 2013

Since I posted a rather serious picture yesterday it seemed fitting that I post Day #2 of Sumsion’s #7faceless challenge – it’s a much more light hearted post!

Yesterday’s photo was all about a time in my life when things seemed dark and un-fixable, a very sad time for me. Today’s picture is all about where I am today – joyful and content, rejoicing in my life and in the wonderful blessings that I enjoy every day:

Dancing With Joy = #7faceless Challenge

Dancing With Joy = #7faceless Challenge

I really didn’t do much editing to this one – just added a vignette and toned down the colors a teeny bit.
It took SO MANY TAKES to actually capture my dancing without having my face in focus! I finally just twirled several times to get the effect I wanted and even then I took a lot of photos before I finally found one that seemed suitable within the confines of this challenge.

Life is good!


Day #67 – A Photo A Day 2013

Instagram has been one way that I have been sharing my photography for two years now and in those two years I have found quite a few amazing artists that have greatly encouraged me to continue pushing the envelope of my creativity.

One of people who has influenced me the most is Sumsion – I was going to link to his Statigram page, but he’s turned off public viewing, which is disappointing to me because I would love to share his work here as well. (he is simply amazing!)

Sumsion’s latest challenge is a self-portrait challenge but the trick is to not have your face in focus. So far, this has been a very difficult challenge for me!

This is my first submission:

Blown Away - for the #7faceless Challenge on Instagram

Blown Away – for the #7faceless Challenge on Instagram

When I uploaded this to Instagram, some people that know me in “real life” were concerned because it seemed a bit dark. I explained that this is not representative of me now, but rather that it was how I felt at a certain point in time in my past – I felt like who I was had been completely blown away, destroyed and empty. I was having difficulty deciding just how to begin this challenge until a conversation I had earlier that day reminded me of that dark time and inspiration hit me.

I knew immediately what I wanted to do with my self-portrait, and after a couple of hours of experimentation, I found the right combination of app layering to actually achieve what you see here. This was a difficult one to actually upload for public consumption on Instagram – I felt like I was revealing quite a bit of myself without telling all of the personal details and I felt a bit of trepidation as I hit that upload button.

Immediately after, I felt almost a feeling of relief akin to happiness in that moment.

These challenges that Sumsion has presented to his followers have not only been pivotal points that have pushed me creatively but have also been instrumental in self-exploration and have taught me quite a bit about myself, even as far as really revealing to me how I view myself both externally and as a person.


Day #65 – A Photo A Day 2013

Learning to be a little less obvious when I am snapping a photo is proving to be a more difficult thing than I originally thought that it would be and is definitely a big challenge.

I am always trying to get a photo of Chris when he’s not really paying attention – he will be looking at me with the sweetest smile but the moment I bring my camera or iPhone up to capture that sweetness, the genuine smile is replaced with the “camera smile”.

“Camera Smile” more often than not looks forced rather than natural and is definitely not what I’m wanting to capture in a photo.

Lately I have been practicing stealth photography with my iPhone as I’ve been walking out in public. Sometimes I am literally shooting from the hip and trying my best to not look as if that’s what I’m doing. It’s hard to focus on walking, looking casual and cleverly tilting my phone lens toward my subject without actually looking at the screen to see what it is that’s being captured by the camera.

I think that I managed pretty well to capture this adorable dog in motion while Chris and I were out walking this past weekend:

Miniature Husky?

Miniature Husky?

He was SO FLUFFY and he looked like a tiny Husky (is there such a thing as a miniature Husky?) so the moment he and his person were in the right light, I started snapping away. This was the second picture of 5 that I snapped in a row, and the only one that I thought was fit for editing.


Day #60 – A Photo A Day 2013

Surprises are one of the most enjoyable things in life to me, and they don’t have to be a major surprise to be spectacular.

To clarify, I do not mean a bad surprise… like falling and twisting your ankle or waking up with a cold. What I am referring to are those un-expected moments where something good happens that you are totally not expecting and it totally makes your day.

My husband knows that I love surprises – he also knows that I am notoriously difficult to surprise, not because I get suspicious and nosy, but I’m generally a very observant person and I can tell when behavior is just a little bit off and then it isn’t long before my brain does the arithmetic and I figure out what has been planned behind my back.

I don’t know if I have been off my game lately or if I’m just not paying attention because he really surprised me today.

Two weeks ago Chris told me that his team at work was going to have an afternoon get together for lunch and that spouses were invited. The lunch was to be at one of his co-worker’s house, which is near the Muir Woods preserve. My eyes lit up at this, despite the fact that we would be going to the house and not to the woods – maybe I could get a glimpse! It’s been a desire of mine to visit Muir Woods for several years and I just KNEW that being so close and not being able to actually go on a hike was going to drive me nuts.

Today was the day – I laced up my boots and walked to Chris’ office where I met him and two of his co-workers and we started the drive, others on his team following. Our drive was taking us over the Golden Gate Bridge, which I had not done before and once we started across I realized just how awesome those beautiful red towers are! It’s such a different experience being on the bridge itself rather than under one end of it… impressive for different reasons, but what a magnificent sight it was to have the golden sun illuminating that fire-y red against a deep blue sky!

Across the bridge and into the hills we went… there was the entrance to Muir Woods! WAIT! We’re turning INTO THE PARKING LOT! SURPRIIIIISE! The team was gathering here to go on a short hike!!! Elation! Chris did a great job keeping this a secret, no small feat let me assure you! The rest of the team arrived and away we went!

We took the Ocean View Trail which was a challenging one – lots of un-even ground with roots and rocks and many many hills. We were completely surrounded by towering Redwood trees and the fresh smell of the woods was so incredible! I only had my iPhone with me, and I had to catch up to the group many times because I kept pausing to snap pictures. 🙂

At the top of this trail was a hill covered in grasses, and you indeed could see the ocean. I was surprised that we were not closer to the ocean itself as I was under the impression that we would be on an ocean side cliff view, but it was still spectacular nonetheless. At this point, we hiked back the way we came, hopped into our cars and went to Chris’ co-worker Jason’s house, where we had a barbecue and we all talked and played with Jason’s lovely two girls. 🙂

The team ended up talking about ideas for a project they were working on so while they were talking shop I played a bit with a photo that I took while we were on the hike:

Iris In Muir Woods

Iris In Muir Woods

It’s an iris that I found growing along the trail in the woods. I shot the picture with my fisheye lens from Photojojo – I haven’t been very impressed with this lens but I’ve been trying it out in a variety of lighting situations to give it a fair shake. It just seems like the pictures are not turning out as sharp as they should be, like the lens glass just isn’t very nice, and after looking at the original of this flower I think that’s what the problem is.

I took a picture with just the native lens (un-fortunately I ended up deleting it from my phone to make more room for other photos before I backed up my photos, so I can’t put the comparison of the originals here) and it looked much more clear than the original of this photo.

I was determined to make this photo look a bit more interesting with a bit of app layering – I do love a challenge! All in all, I think this edit looks better than the original but I am a little disappointed still with my edit. I think what is bothering me the most is that one petal that is much longer than the rest of the petals – normally I like asymmetry but this just seems out of place to me. I’m posting it here anyway as it was a part of the memories that I will take with me from this awesome day!


Day #57 – A Photo A Day 2013

Yesterday I learned that two tall ships were in town so OF COURSE today I had to go see them, since I have had a life long fascination with tall ships, pirates and the sea.

This afternoon I started the long walk to Pier 40. It was warm today and very sunny so I was particularly looking forward to a long walk that I routinely enjoy. Also, I hadn’t walked toward the tourist-y part of San Francisco in quite a while so I was ready to go.

It wasn’t as crowded as it would be on the weekends, and people were smiley and friendly. Lots of runners and bicyclists and people walking their dogs, apparently oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE TALL SHIPS IN TOWN! How could they not be heading straight there that very moment?! It boggles my mind.

The bay looked like a blue jewel glinting in the afternoon sun and it made me want to take a dip, despite what I knew the temperature of the water to be. I resisted the urge, partially because I wanted to reach my destination and partially because… well, I had no swimsuit! Onward I marched…

Past the Ferry Building, past Boudin Bakery, past In-n-Out – I almost stopped there but NO! I must resist! The ships await! (and because I like this pic, here is a shot of the Ferry Building! It’s an accidental shot, and I haven’t edited it)

Ferry Building - Accidental Photo

Ferry Building – Accidental Photo

I avoided pier 39 completely and went onto…. wait, where is Pier 40? This is 41, where The Balclutha, and amazing ship in her own right (and an original!) makes her permanent home.

The Balclutha is a National Historic Landmark and Pier 41 is in the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park so I asked the park rangers if perhaps I had the wrong pier? No, Pier 40 was correct, and this is Pier 41… It turned out that Pier 40 IS JUST A FEW BLOCKS FROM MY APARTMENT!!! Arg! So I walked miles out of my way when I would have been at the ships in mere minutes.

The park rangers and I had a good laugh at the irony, and they explained the odd-even placement of pier numbers – basically the Ferry Building is the center and everything to the south of the Ferry Building is the even numbered piers and everything to the north of the Ferry Building is the odd numbered piers.

Disappointed, I started the walk home. Tours were due to end at 5 and I knew there was no way that I could walk there in time. (there was only a window of 1 hour for dockside tours) My feet were killing me – I already had some major blisters from a very long walk I had taken earlier in the week and I feared that I was forming blisters under my blisters… so I hopped on the F-Line and started home.

I hopped off at my stop and walked toward my apartment. I realized that I would have JUST enough time to get to the dock to spend a few minutes there so I decided to walk through the pain and make my way there. Fast walking and blisters do NOT mix but I cared not.

Finally I was there! 10 minutes on board the Hawaiian Chieftanso I didn’t have time to shoot many pictures but I took a few and talked with one of the ship hands. Everyone in the crew was dressed in appropriate attire for the late 1700’s early 1800’s as is evident to the photo I shot and edited below:

Aboard the Hawaiian Chieftan

Aboard the Hawaiian Chieftan

Shot with my iPhone 4s, edited in Photo FX, Iris, and ScratchCam.

10 minutes on board was not enough and I didn’t have time to go on board the Lady Washington… I’m going back tomorrow!


Day #49 – A Photo A Day 2013

Visiting another city was on my list of things to do today, mainly because I wanted to go to a fabric sale at Joann Fabrics, and there isn’t one here in San Francisco.

We have a couple of fabric stores here, Britex which is AWEEESOME but expensive and another warehouse-style place on Howard St., the name of which escapes me at the moment.

The warehouse place always has a clearance section and decent prices, but I wanted specifically to catch the 50% off of clearance prices at Joann.

So, I hopped on BART and away I went!

Neither sewing nor fabric nor Joann’s has anything to do with today’s pic other than all of those things were my motivation for going out in the first place, but I digress.

Balboa Park BART Station

Balboa Park BART Station

This trip marks the first time that I have used BART for anything other than going to and from the airport and I thought that it was about time that I get outside of the city for a little exploration. (even if it was just a fabric store!)

I hopped on the first train to come along, which happened to be going to Daily City. What I learned along the way (and I figured this is what would happen) is that I had to get off at Balboa Park to catch another train that would go all the way to Colma. As it turns out, I had a little bit of a wait at Balboa and it ended up being the same amount of time that I would have spent waiting for the right train at the Powell St. Station. Oh well! That gave me time to play with my iPhone and take some pics!

This pic is of the station looking upward and at the sky, layered in the Blender app with an accidental shot that took of the platform in front of me… if you look in the upper right-hand corner of the pic, you’ll see a cigarette butt there!

After layering this pic in Photo FX, Iris and ScratchCam, the sky looks really stormy, but it was actually quite sunny out that day. I love how you can totally change the mood of a pic right there on your iPhone!

It was a fun little trip – I have now dubbed Colma “Dead Town” because in my walk from the BART station to the shopping complex where the fabric store is, I saw no less than 4 graveyards, and big ones at that. I SO need to go back there just to take pictures of gravestones!!!


Day #48 – A Photo A Day 2013

Chris and I have decided to do more things together that are physically active. When we were looking for an apartment here, we saw these basketball courts near one of the apartment complexes that we toured and made a note to go back.

Yesterday we went there to shoot hoops, and ended up going again today, vowing to make this our weekend morning tradition. We had such fun! It made me realize just how awful at shooting baskets I have become but it’s still fun nonetheless and I’m determined to up my skill level to what it used to be. (or at least try!)

Chris was getting some serious air time – he says that he wasn’t jumping high enough, but I was certainly impressed and of course I brought out the iPhone to snap some pics, much to his chagrin but he was still a sweetie and didn’t complain.

Chris - Michael Jordan Style

Chris – Michael Jordan Style

We played at the Berry Street Basketball Courts at the end of Mission Creek Park – there is also a sand volleyball court there too!

It’s underneath Highway 280 which provides some nice shade and an interesting setting. It’s clean and quiet and steps away from Mission Bay and a super nice walkway along the water, which is the route that Chris and I like to take to walk there.

I’m sure we will have many more happy one-on-one games there! It’s a nice spot.


Day #45 – A Photo A Day 2013

Valentine’s Day is today, or if you prefer to call it “Singles Awareness Day”.

It’s not that I am anti-Valentine’s Day, but I’m not really a fan. As a kid I LOVED it – it was a reason to make pretty cards and give them to your friends – that’s something that I liked to do anyway, but people made fun of me for being “mushy” so I just kept the sweet messages for Valentine’s Day.

As I grew up, I realized just how commercial the holiday had become… or at least I THOUGHT had become. Valentine’s Day origins are different from the modern day celebration of the holiday, which didn’t really have any mention until the 14th century.

From my observation, Valentine’s Day has become a day for people to feel guilted into buying presents and fosters the believe that if you’re single, you aren’t worth as much. Not everyone sees it that way, but in my mind, every day should be like Valentine’s Day – show people how much you care – show them how you feel with your actions and your words every day. Make it a celebrated lifestyle and not just one day a year.

There is a tradition here in San Francisco, a way to celebrate the day that everyone can enjoy wether you are single or in a relationship, young or old – it’s the Great San Francisco Pillow Fight and I went to it tonight at Justin Herman Plaza!

Here is a guy blowing feathers at me, and well… me covered in feathers!

Blowing Feathers at the Great SF Pillow Fight

Blowing Feathers at the Great SF Pillow Fight

Me Covered in Feathers

At the 2013 Great San Francisco Pillow Fight!

I’ve never been in the middle of such craziness! I am guessing there were over 3,000 people there, maybe closer to 4,000, most of which were in the thick of things swinging away with their pillows!

Revelers were not supposed to hit people with cameras, but I still got hit… A LOT. Sometimes, it hurt, and twice my iPhone got knocked to the ground, but thankfully it was not hurt!

I was out there in the fray for about an hour and a half, and loved every second of it. The event was supposed to last for another 2 and a half hours, but I didn’t stay… I wish that I had stayed to get pictures of the aftermath, but after I went home Chris and I spend our Valentine’s evening playing Borderlands 2 well into the night.

Giant pillow fights and playing video games probably isn’t most people’s idea of a romantic Valentine’s evening, but I cannot imagine a better way to spend it than doing just that. (I can’t wait for next year’s pillow fight!)


Day #44 – A Photo A Day 2013

A few weeks ago I discovered an awesome website called SF Fun Cheap where there are listings of tons of free or cheap events happening all around San Francisco and the Bay Area and since then I’ve found many great things to do which has introduced me to several awesome people.

As we only know just a few people here it’s nice to find venues that make it easy to meet people with similar interests. It’s not a meetup source but so far a few of the events have made it possible to meet some really nice people.

I went to an event this evening at the Ferry Building – it was scheduled to start at 5:30, but I walked to the waterfront early so that I could catch a few shots of the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, one of my favorite places so far here in the city.

It was COLD. I didn’t think about the fact that it can be a few degrees cooler there despite the fact that it’s only 4-5 city blocks from my apartment, so I was FREEZING after spending a half hour in my hoodie next to the water. So, I walked a few more yards down to the Ferry Building and walked around inside to warm up.

It was time for the event to start… I didn’t see anyone gathered yet, and from the information on the event page, it was going to be obvious when they arrived. Minutes passed… I was not going to go outside and freeze again so I just hoped that they hadn’t changed the meeting place… checked Facebook… no notice there.

I patiently waited at the doors… watching from my nice warm spot, people filling in and out of the building as the ferries came and went – no one even noticed me, which was good because I was snapping shots of people walking without anyone noticing. 🙂

Suddenly, they appeared! The first person I saw was a girl in a cute black and red tutu with hearts all over it… I walked outside, and was glomped by a lady in a huge heart costume! Free hugs for all! The First Annual Operation Street Love was in session!

Crack A Smile!

Crack A Smile!

Only 6 people showed to give random people hugs… a smaller turnout than was expected based on the responses on Facebook, but 6 was still fun! They hugged commuters, scared tourists off with their offers of hugs and high-fived joggers, spreading love and smiles everywhere. I hope that there is a bigger turnout next year – people need to have a reason to smile more.


Day #39 – A Photo A Day 2013

This afternoon I had the opportunity to go on a iPhone Photowalk with some users from Instagram – some were local, some were from as far away as LA or San Diego!

I am so glad that I went! Not only did I take some great shots, but in the company of like-minded people who understand the need to stop and “take a picture of that”. Also… they don’t mind being in your shots, which is something that many of my friends just won’t do.

We met at Crissy Field and walked from there all the way to Fort Point which sits right underneath the San Francisco side of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Fort Point visitors hours were over, so we could not go inside, but there was plenty to keep us busy outside for sure.

The sun was going down, and it was the PERFECT time for shadow pictures – here is the first edit from today, with 4 of the Instagrammers casting shadows for us:

Instagrammers Shadows at Fort Point

Instagrammers Shadows at Fort Point

It was great to spend time with that group, and I’m already looking forward to the next outing! Hopefully it won’t be too soon, because I have around 200 iPhone photos to sort through – hopefully I’ll have a few gems to edit and share!


Day #34 – A Photo A Day 2013

Yesterday Chris and I took a walk to The Presidio here in San Francisco, partially to take a nice long walk, but also our main destination was the Walt Disney Family Museum.

Unfortunately, they do not allow photographs in the museum and it was very tempting for me to snap a few, but I respected the rules. The museum was very different from what I was expecting – many interactive displays done in creative ways! It was a very fun and interesting experience for both me and Chris.

On the way there, I decided to take some pictures “from the hip” with my iPhone… in other words, I wasn’t looking at the screen to see what was going to appear in my shot – I just pointed my phone in the general direction that I wanted to shoot and clicked.

I ended up with several pleasing shots that I want to edit a bit – I won’t be posting them in successive order most likely, but probably all of them will be posted before the end of this month, and I’ll be sure to note which ones are from that walk.

This is one that was most stunning to me:

HDR While Walking - From The Hip

HDR While Walking – From The Hip

Pro HDR functions like this: you tap the screen and it analyzes the lighting, then it takes one picture with a longer exposure (more light) and one picture with a shorter exposure (less light, you see the darker portions of the pic) and then matches the two up as best it can.

This process takes around 30-45 seconds, so if you are moving at all the pic will be blurred. In daylight, if you are walking, you can get some pretty interesting results!

I’m pleased with this result, and it’s something that I plan on trying with Slow Shutter also in the coming weeks. What do you think of this experiment?


Day #31 – A Photo A Day 2013

The first day of MacWorld was TODAY and OH! I am so so SO inspired and encouraged!

iPhoneography is THE next big thing – I’ve been saying this for about a year now, and have been ridiculed by a few, and gently dissuaded by others seeking to keep me from finding rejection of my photos taken with my iPhone.

Interestingly, all of the speakers at these Tech Talks say the same thing – iPhones won’t replace SLRs (big cameras) but rather are finding their own niche of an art expression. iPhone apps offer mobility and ease of use that you just don’t find with editing software for your computer (such as Photoshop).

Photoshop isn’t bad, but it takes a long time to edit your photos. On your iPhone or iPad, I find it easy to find what I want in each app that will make what is in my head translate into the photo or photos that I am merging on my iDevice.

I have been “layering apps” for quite some time now in order to get the results from pics that I am trying to achieve. Most of that work I have not published at all, just a few on Instagram here and there, but I was afraid of rejection.

Not so after my first round of classes today! All of these people giving the talks were either already artists or professional photographers or both, and all of them have found an unusual creative outlet in their iPhones that is very different from their professional (big camera) photography.

Are my edits good enough to show people? I think so, and that’s not an over-inflated view either. Each one of my photos is agonized over to the point where I probably obsess too much over this light level or that color in that exact spot – I am my own worst critic, and THAT is what has been keeping me from moving forward and making my art known.

Starting today, I am not holding back. I will allow my creativity to flow and I’m putting it out there for everyone to see. Will any of this go anywhere? Maybe! I made a few connections today with local photographers, and they have put me in touch with a few other contacts that I think will be great to network with.

Oddly, in one of the classes today, I was reminded that I had entered a contest on Instagram for Mobile Masters, a chance to have your work featured in the Mobile Masters book to debut today at the conference.

Long story short, I checked Instagram (which I had not done in a week), and found this message, which I snapped a pic of on my phone…

Mobile Masters Winning Entry Notification

Mobile Masters Winning Entry Notification

I almost let out a squeal of delight in the middle of the lecture! MY picture made it? REALLY!?!?!?! It DID!

This was my winning entry – the Matterhorn Edit I originally posted here in December when I was talking about Filtermania 2.

Disneyland's Matterhorn Heavily Modified

Disneyland’s Matterhorn Heavily Modified

DEFINTELY a validation moment for me! You can purchase the ebook here at iTunes: Mobile Masters Book for your iPad. I am so honored to be a part of this – my first published photo!

Now comes today’s photo, since this IS supposed to be a picture of the day entry, and so far all I have done is gush a bit about my day at MacWorld.

I give you a photo that I edited during one of the talks today, originally posted here on Day #16

Here is the edit:

Edit of 4th Street Bridge at Mission Bay

Edit of 4th Street Bridge at Mission Bay

I edited this one in three different iPhone apps, but right now I don’t remember which ones – I was editing this as I was listening to the lecture because I was so inspired at that moment to do something creative that I just went with the flow! Funny though… the speaker was talking about her use of color in her art and I was totally in a black and white and gritty sort of mood.

Two words to sum up day 1 of MacWorld iPhoneography Tech Talks? SUPER INSPIRED!