July 31, 2010

A Question

I have a question I'd like to throw out into cyber-space. But first some background.

As I look at all the post I've written - via my dashboard page - I realize that I have only 'published' around about half the posts that I have written. I haven't published these posts for a variety of reasons - they weren't good enough, they didn't say what I needed them to say, I wasn't happy with them, they aren't suitable for the public at large or I've lost interest in them for one reason or another.

Does anyone else experience this? Do you ever find yourself faced with the question that I ask myself constantly?

To post or not to post.

But what is the answer?

Music That Moves Me

I love to write, take photos, paint and generally pursue creative endeavors. While I'm off on these creative jaunts I always have some sort of music playing. To that end I thought I'd start sharing my favorite music of any given week - that's right another weekly post.

I am currently experiencing the worst case of writer's block - something that happens rarely. In order to get the words flowing once more my iTouch is currently blaring Explosions In The Sky on a continuous loop.

Here's a one of their tracks entitled Time Stops.

I have a question for all the creative types out there. What do you listen to to get the creative juices flowing.

I'll let you know if Explosions In The Sky helps me in my creative effort.

July 29, 2010

Search, Dream, Hope

Search Dream Hope

~ by Tafline


For understanding

For sanity

For peace


Of a time

Of a place

Of a space


For perspective

For acceptance

For change

Image found here

July 26, 2010

Flickr Fave!

Can you believe it's been a week since my last 'Flickr Fave' post? Where is this year going?

So my Flickr Fave of the week is ... drum roll please ... Lissy Laricchia.

I must confess that I can't find much information on her. But what I do know is that her images are simply lovely.
How beautiful is the above shot? I would love to be able to take images like that.

I particularly love her 'Get Back In Your Book' series. This one is inspired by 'Beauty and the Beast'.
I have NO earthly idea how she manages to take such photos. I would love to KNOW and I would love to TRY it!!

Her photos seem like daydreams and fairy tales come to life. Completely sigh worthy.

I would love to be able to take such breath-taking, lovely, dream-like images. Take a look at her photostream it's well worth the time.

The Poetic Musings of Monday

~ by Tafline

Finding herself at sea

Holding onto nothing

But a bit of driftwood

Hanging on –

To a piece of driftwood

So flimsy, so frail

Utterly lost at sea

Lashed by the waves

Towering over her head

Seawater starts to fill her lungs

Each breath becomes painful

Unable to get a clear breath

Coughing, heaving

All the while holding on

To a flimsy bit of driftwood

And hope

But the ocean is so big

So vast, so wild

She uses her final breath

To utter her last words

“There is ALWAYS hope..”

Image found here
These words are the property of my mind - please ask for my consent.

I Went For It... And I Fell and Failed... But That's Okay... I think

I recently went for something that I really wanted... This is quite out-of-character for me as I usually don't even bother and just sit on the sidelines. But this time I decided to throw my hat into the ring...

I failed. What makes this even more difficult is that what I went for seemed so me. It fit my character, my passions and skills. I saw what life could be like - an adventure, pursuing what I love, moving states and generally shaking things up. I liked what I saw.

Now I am left wondering if I really do have the skills or if I've just been deluding myself into thinking I had some talent. Questions of: Am I worth it? Am I on the right track? Am I good enough? Are currently running around my brain at a million miles an hour.

I know that what's meant to happen will and does happen. But a little, rebellious part of me had a mild temper tantrum for a second there. Some major complaining went on. It isn't fair! Why does it always have to be so hard? Why doesn't life ever turn out the way I want it to? Can something go right, for once? Things like that were playing in my brain for a while.

But then life isn't fair and it was never promised that it was supposed to be. At the moment I'm attempting to re-aligning my focus, trying to figure out if I should make some changes and generally taking stock to my life.

I mourn the loss of what I saw life could be like. That's okay. It's okay to grieve just as long as you don't stay there too long.

So I suppose the concluding question is: What's next?
Image found via We Heart It

July 21, 2010

I'm going to do it

I've decided I'm going to take the plunge...

I'm going to buy a HOLGA camera.

Why you may ask since I own a beautiful DSLR at my finger tips?

Well just look at some of the pictures you can get from it...
I am fascinated by the idea of film. I love it that Holga pictures are unpredictable with weird lighting effects, differing results, vignettes, blur and other distortions.

They are made completely out of plastic - lenses included. The idea of film has a slightly romantic, nostalgic feeling and I'd love to give it a go to see how it turns out. Holga's seem like the perfect accompaniment for my foray into film as they're inexpensive and the pictures are meant to be unusual. You can't go wrong!

Now the big question... Which one should I get?

Anyone out there own a Holga? If so, what do you think of it?

What's on your 'must have list'?

July 18, 2010

Flickr Fave!

So I've decided to have a regular Flickr Fave post. I love finding beautiful pictures that inspire and delight me. I thought I'd share a few of my favorites.

Here's my current flickr fave: Natalie Kucken (click her name to go to her Flickr photostream)
This is one super talented young lady!! I just love the dreamy quality of her pictures.

This stop-motion movie stops my heart for just a second and my breath is taken away. The music and the quality of the pictures are just lovely.

Please take a look at her Flickr photostream. It is simply beautiful and inspirational. All this from a girl still in her teens.

I am a HUGE fan of all of her work. It give me something to aim for.

Note: No copywrite infringement intended

July 14, 2010

My Kingdom for a Piece of Cheese

Note: This post had nothing to do with the title of the post. I have just always wanted to use the phrase

I have been musing lately that (as a vast generalization) we are very quick to complain about poor customer service and let everyone within earshot know not to go there - and rightly so. But there is generally not much said about good customer service. Sure we thank them as we leave but that's usually where it ends.

I wish to change that. I wish to shout it from the rooftops when I get great customer service. I'm talking above and beyond the call of duty. I intend to tell all my friends, make glowing recommendations, write awesome reviews and make sure they know that the service was fantastic and that I appreciated their work.

One prime example of fantastic and simply sublime customer service that I have recently experienced was when I was fitted for contact lenses.

I have been wearing glasses for about 10 years and I've always wanted to give contact lenses a try. I especially wanted to see if I could use contacts for when I'm using my DSLR (tying to look through your glasses and the viewfinder can lead to interesting results read: blurry). But I was hesitant. I didn't know if I could put contact lenses in or not (my fine motor skills aren't the best because of my disability). The whole concept had a big question mark over it but I wanted to at least give it a go.

I fronted up to the local Specsavers store (yes I did just name names. Yes I am giving them free advertising. Yes I was that impressed). Right off the bat I was greeted by a couple of super-friendly workers who made a distinct effort to pronounce my name correctly. BIG points right there. Do you know how many people pronounce my name incorrectly even after being corrected?

They took my vital details down and called my previous optometrist to obtain my prescription. I was ushered in to the optometrist (read: one of the nicest people in the world). The optometrist immediately put me at ease chatting happily on a myriad of subjects and making a sincere effort to get to know me. After checking that I could actually wear contacts and confirming my prescription he put a pair in for me to wear around for a while and see if I liked them.

Wandering around the shops a bit I found I liked them. I like them a LOT! Back to the optometrist for the moment of truth. The moment that I had been dreading. I had to see if I could put contacts in myself. Now I was even more scared because now that I knew how fantastic contacts could be I wanted them BADLY!

I sat there for ages trying to put them in getting more frustrated, my fingers locking up, gathering a slight coating of sweat and tears leaking from my eyes. The whole time my optometrist encouraged me, giving me tips and space when required. He told me I would find my own way and he was positive I could get them in. He cared enough to want to understand my disability and my limitations. He cared enough to let me give it a go and not call time on the whole idea. He understood I needed to do things my own way and at my own pace. Goodness knows he probably had other things he wanted to do with his day but I was never rushed. I was only given support, patience and encouragement from my optometrist and the customer service team.

To cut a long story short I am now able to put a pair of contracts in within 5 min. They rejoiced in my triumph and celebrated with me. They praised me for persevering. I have to say that if it wasn't for that optometrist and the supportive customer service team I probably would have given up within the first few tries and never considered the idea of contacts again.

I don't think I realised how much contacts meant to me. Even now it's hard to put into words. I was given freedom and something which I never thought I'd get. I think at the back of my mind I always thought I would never be able to put them in successfully. To be given something you've always wanted but never really thought possible is a major high point. I wanted the team to know what they'd given me and the gratitude I had for the support, encouragement and patience I had been afforded.

I wrote them a card. I gave them chocolates. A small measure to express my gratitude. Sure, as I dropped off my gift I felt a little silly. I had bouts of nerves - stressing about breaking social conventions and that I was laying myself open to reticule. I worried, I tossed and turned but in the end I knew I had done the right thing. Because stellar work should be rewarded.

You know what? They liked it! Every single team member that I spoke to sincerely thanked me for my card. They appreciated the feedback and it made them feel good. They appreciated being told.

My point is that I intend to be slower to complain and quicker to praise (where warranted). I think there should be more of a focus on the good rather than the bad.

Just two questions remain: Have you even received great customer service? How did you thank them?

July 10, 2010

There are times I feel absolutely nowhere... even though I know I'm on the road to somewhere.

So many thoughts, feelings and words rolling around in my brain at the moment.

There are things that need to be said and words that need to be written...


July 2, 2010

On My Own Path

Robert Frost's poem has been rolling around my mind for a while now. Give the poem a read

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

At some point in my life I took the road less traveled. Now, I'm not talking about decisions of Faith which in and of itself is taking the road less traveled.

But today I'm talking about something different. I have come to the conclusion that I am exceedingly odd even more than that however is the fact that I LIKE being unusual. I revel in being different.

I have chosen to take the road less traveled of individuality rather than conformity.

This fact and my natural personality make it hard for me to fit in to group dynamics. I sometimes wonder if my celebration of my difference puts people off. I so badly want to be accepted into groups and have deep and lasting friendships. But I want that without sacrificing my individuality. I begin to wonder if that is even possible.

I do not wish to waste my time on this Earth trying to be what others expect me to be. I wish to live by my own expectations and follow my own dreams. I want to meet people who enjoy individuality rather than uniformity. People who push the boundaries, think outside the box and can hold their own in a debate on a myriad of topics.

I decided to take the road less traveled. I am therefore forced to ask: has it made all the difference or has it just made life more complicated?