Day 29

Another busy day in Iceland. Took some photos out of the car while I was driving with my sister to and from Reykjavík and the hometown of my grandparents.
I always find the sky here in Iceland so interesting, it is always changing. The first 2 photos show how it was looking at lunchtime over my house :)


Day 28

Yay I´m in Iceland! Have been running erands all day with my sisters so I didn´t have many opportunities for daylight photos. After dinner we took a little walk around the neighbourhood and I took a few shots in the moonlight.


Day 27

Yesterday I was travelling all day so I didn´t have time to post any photos. But I did get some shots out of the airplane window. The alps are always so beautiful and I love flying over the clouds.


Day 26

I really must start taking photos earlier in the day. Tonight I found myself again at 10pm without a photo :(
We went out for a late dinner so I took a few photos of Luca outside the restaurant (he was still working as you can see :) and a couple from inside the car. It started snowing a few hours ago, everything is white and pretty now, we'll see how it looks like in the morning.


Day 25

I had nooo idea what to photograph today so I was driving home from work around 8pm and I still didn't have anything. I've seen so many cool long exposure photos lately and I've been wanting to try it out. Of course this one is nothing special as it's taken from a moving car (yes yes I shouldn't do that :) but it's my first try and it gave me the general idea.
I would love to try it out on a street corner with a tripod but another time.

6 sec|f20|iso 400|28mm


Day 24

Went to visit Luca's grandparents today. They live in the countryside so I could finally get some snow pictures. I walked around the garden trying to catch some nice shots of the frozen branches but it was so cold that my camera gave up after 10 minutes. I'm not so crazy about today's photo but I'm too tired to try to fix them so here we go.

And a big 'Salute' for Luca's grandparents that celebrated 60 years of matrimony!


Day 23

Today I got a belated birthday gift from Luca. Photoshop CS4 AND Lightroom!! OMG I'm soo excited :D I don't know where to begin, there's so much to learn.

I also got a package with the mail today, it was the lightscoop that I ordered 2-3 weeks ago. If you haven't heard about it, lightscoop is a little mirror that redirects the camera’s pop-up flash to a ceiling or wall. I still don't have an external flash and I thought that the lighscoop could be useful for indoor candid shots, when there is not enough light and everybody has to stay really still not to get blurry.

1.8|f4.56|iso 200|35mm|shot in lighbox|background made whiter in photoshop


Day 22

Yesterday I was complaining about needing some colors around me. Well today I decided to do something to lift my spirits. I went to the local florist this afternoon. The selection wasn´t that great but I saw some beautiful pink roses that I liked. We have been invited to dinner with Luca´s cousin tonight so I decided to buy a beautiful pink bouquet for the hostess. And I would have some nice flowers to photograph. I really wanted them for myself...but oh well, I bought a little sunflower to put on the kitchen table.

I still don´t have photoshop, I need my computer wiz to set it up for me. I had this idea to make a collage with the flower shots and then I remembered Picasa! It´s great for little touch-ups and for making ... tada a collage! Plus it´s totally Free!


Day 21

I´ve had enough of this fog. Everything is grey, I need some color in my life.

Unfortunately I couldn´t open photoshop on my laptop today so it isn´t quite as I had imagined. Tomorrow I will try again with a new update and play a little with selective coloring.


Day 20

My grandfather passed away yesterday.
I wanted to make a small tribute to him with today's photo.

My grandfather was a kind man. It was always a pleasure to go to my grandparents' house who lived outside the city. When I was a child, I used to hide behind the coats in the entry, when it was time to go home. They all pretended to look for me while I stood very still, inhaling the comforting smell of my granpa's cologne and the elegant smell of grandma's perfume, happy that I could prolong the visit for a few more minutes.

My grandfather was strong and he was proud.
When my grandmother started to loose her sight, he cooked and did the dishes.
He went every year to police station to renew his driver's licence. He went to the store and he did the shopping when my grandmother didn't trust herself outside anymore.
He walked tall and straight and wouldn't let anyone see him with a walking stick.
He was 94 years old and I feel very blessed to have had him in my life for 29 years.

My grandfather was always elegant, I will forever associate beautiful hats with my grandfather.


Day 19

I had some very sad news today.
I didn´t really feel like taking photos, I didn´t want to post a photo of just anything, not today. So I wasn´t going to post anything today. Then I was driving home late this evening, it was very cold and dark outside but the church of San Giovanni Bosco seemed so warm and light and inviting. That´s what I want to remember.


Day 18

A thick fog covered the city today. I had some free time early this afternoon before I had to teach so I went out with my camera. I don't know about any good techniques for shooting in fog but I tried under and overexposing a little and then compared them on the computer screen when I got back home. A few of them came out ok I think but it would have been prettier if the fog had been near the ground.

This one is overlooking the river, which is completely covered by the fog. Compare this photo to day 12!!

I wondered how the city would look like from above so I decided to drive up the hill to Superga, a 5-10 minute drive from my house. Superga is 672 metres above sea level, and is one of the most prominent of the hills which form a kind of an amphitheatre around the city of Torino.
On the top sits the basilica of Superga, which can be seen from far away.

It was so strange to drive right out of the fog and find the sun shining brightly and a clear blue sky. I wish I knew how to capture this view better. The white tops of the alps looked stunning against the crisp blue sky. This spot is a popular viewing point over Torino and normally you can see the whole city from there.
I couldn't find a spot without any trees in the foreground *sigh*.


Day 17

I had such a lovely birthday. Last night we went out for dinner and drinks with friends so today I wanted to do something nice and relaxing with Luca. I really wanted to take a drive and get out of the city. We drove down to Alba for lunch and some sightseeing, there are so many beautiful buildings in the old towns around here.

We haven´t seen any snow in the city since before christmas but the countryside is still white. I snapped these from the moving car as we were too hungry to stop for photos.

The restaurant (Café Umberto) had very cool wall decorations.

I really like this one because it´s actually a reflection from a black shiny wall in front of us. I´m sitting next to Luca by the bar when I took this.

These are from the city Bra where we stopped on our way back home.


Day 16

Tomorrow is my birthday. I love my birthday, or better yet, my birthday week. It's filled with dinner parties with friends and family, sweet treats and beautiful presents. I miss my parents and my sibling that are now far away, in Iceland and USA. We had many birthday traditions when I was growing up. The birthday boy or girl was awoken early in the morning by parents and siblings, who entered the bedroom holding a candle and singing the birthday song, jumped on the bed showering the birthday boy/girl with kisses and birthday wishes, and then presents were opened and cake eaten while still in bed! My mother made my favorite chocolate cake with white frosting.
Now I make new traditions, dinner parties with new friends and inlaws, presents arrive with the mail (with the italian postservice the even arrive weeks after my birthday) and I bake my own treats.

This is how my birthday feels like now!

1/50|f5.66|iso 800|27mm


Day 15

So long pretty lights and shiny things!

Yes yes I know, I'm unfashionably late taking down my christmas light. It's just that January is so gray and boring that I like to enjoy the pretty colored lights a little longer. As a rule I leave them up until the next little happy point after christmas, which is my birthday. Now it's only 2 days away so it's time to get everything packed down and the place cleaned up.
Until next year my little friends.

1/15|f5.66|iso 100|55mm

1/8|f9.11|iso 100|44mm

1/4|f5.66|iso 100|35mm

These still life, macro shots might start to get a bit boring, but with the bad weather and short days plus not having any cute babies or pets around, I must find something around the house to shoot. At least I'm getting a lot of practise in this area :)


Home-made light-box

If anyone is interested in making a cheap home-made light-box, then you can find the instructions that I followed here and here.

All you need is a cardboard box, tracing paper(I used cooking paper), tape and a white posterboard.
I haven´t invested in an external flash yet, so I use a couple of table lamps for light with good results.
The smurfs in the previous post were shot in the light box.


Day 14

It has been raining all day, so no opportunity for outdoors photos. So this afternoon I made a homemade lightbox from a cardboard box and cooking paper, very simple. It turned out great and for the last hour I have been shooting every little thing I could find, little figureens, jewelry and small stuffed animals. I like how these little smurfs turned out. I have a little lamp on the right and from far above but I think that I need another lamp on the left to get more light and eliminate the shadow on the left.

1/8|f5.66|iso 400|55m


Day 13

For the last 12 days I haven't posted a single portrait, when I think about it, I don't think there is even a person in any of the photos so far. I find it a little hard photographing people, it still takes me a little while finding the right settings, then the background isn't right or the light. Then they want to see the photo immediately, it stresses me out a little, but it's something I have to work on.

I also had this idea to do a self portrait about once a month. I'm going to buy a good tripod soon and a remote, that might make it easier.
Anyway, to the point, today I post a semi self portrait, it's just my eyes hehe. It's not the best of photos as I took it in my car (while waiting on red light), but I like it. The colors are a little off but I opened the little mirror over the driver's seat to get a little light.

1/10|f5.66|iso 800|53mm


Day 12

The weather was sunny and beautiful today. I feel so much lighter when the sun is out.

The river Po runs through Torino, and is another trademark of my adopted city. I only need to go out of my house and around the corner to be at Po's banks, which are lined with tall trees. I think it's lovely to walk along the river, moreso in the springtime when everything is more colorful. On a clear day you can see the alps in the distance.

I went out at lunchtime with my camera for some fresh air and sunshine and the task of todays photo. I had to resist the urge to climb down and pick out all the garbage from the bushes in the front, such a shame.

1/800|f4.56|iso 100|24mm


Day 11

Today I really had a problem finding the time to take photos. But as I was driving to work this afternoon, I was passing piazza Statuto and the sun was going down. I really love the color and style of these old buildings around the square and the reflection of the sun caught my eye.
I find it a bit hard to take good photos of buildings, there are always some street signs or cars in my way, or they end up lookin cut in half.
It's 5 to midnight so these are todays photos.


Day 10

I've had a very nice and relaxing Sunday. Luca and I went for a little walk down town this afternoon. The sun was shining brightly so we didn't dress very warmly. But it turned out to be freezing. I managed to take a few photos before we fled into the next cosy warm cafè. I spotted this lonely bicycle outside the cafè and decided to do another b&w photo to go with the car the other day.
Now I better run to the pub to watch the juventus-milano match...and yes I'm such a nice girlfriend, I allow my man to watch football about once a year ;)


Day 9

Today I am continuing with the theme of the Leone candies. The candy is just as colorful and attractive once it´s outside the package.

The plan was to go skiing tomorrow and I was hoping to finally catch some snow photos. I´ve seen so many beautiful shots on other blogs lately and really wanted to have a go. But it´s supposed to be fog and rain up there so I guess that we are staying in the city *sniff*.

1/15|f5.66|iso 200|55mm


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