storyteller and all-around creative distraction

week #1/52: sun birds

week #1/52: sun birds

Sunlight came through the blinds of our bedroom window, splitting her skin into slats of light and shadow. It reminded me of the first time we kissed, in her parents’ living room, wet from the pool, late afternoon sun beaming through tall windows, my hands on her wet, cold skin. Our bedroom now was not very much unlike the one she grew up in, with its yellow walls and white bedding. She even brought her cork boards, pinned up with old movie tickets, prom pictures, and one of those paper origami birds I used to fold for her.

– Danny, chapter 1, Paper Birds


week 1: and so the project begins?

The idea here, and for the next 52 weeks, will be to see if I can capture a piece of my stories in images. And further, to see if I can illustrate a variety of different story subjects, and continue to do so every week for 52 weeks. Because the idea for my novel series will require one well-planned (and hopefully interesting) image almost every week.

The second idea here is to practice my photography skills. To take better, more interesting, and more adventurous (= less lazy) pictures.

So this one was tricky because it required a very particular time of day, and sunlight, which was much harder to come by (being January) than I assumed. It was mostly cloudy all morning with only these occasional bursts of sunlight that I had to run and grab quickly when they happened. That, and my camera works for bunk in low lighting, and I’m still trying to figure that out.

I ended up taking over 400 shots through the morning (burst mode, people!), and this was the one I narrowed it down to. I chose it for the light versus shadow, and that the birds managed to face each other. I felt it reflected the intimacy of the story excerpt 😀

So there – week 1 down!

I’m expecting these next 52 weeks to be very eye-opening for me. Either I’ll learn a lot and be well-prepared to start my novel series… or I’ll be ready to pull my hair out and run screaming 😉

I’ll still write the novel series even if the photography thing doesn’t work out, but I do hope I can keep this up.

Feedback/advice is welcome.

Some outtakes in my Flickr stream:
sun birds: outtakessun birds: outtakes

6 thoughts on “week #1/52: sun birds”

  • Man, if this is you as a novice, I cannot wait to see the photos you’re taking in Week 52! The outtakes are lovely but I think you definitely went with the right shot for “the” photo.

    Sidenote but I’m also impressed you can make paper cranes. Mine are always a big fail.

  • Oh! I love both the photo and the snippet (also very much like the title Paper Birds, ESPECIALLY now that I know there are actual paper birds in the novel!) (I also want to learn origami now, wonderful :P).

    Interestingly though, the snipper did make me pause, because it made me think about something, maybe not what you wanted for the scene but for me being the age I am and everything him (I’m fairly certain this must be… Danny, was it? Well, it’s a male, right?) thinking back on the fooling around in her parent’s living room, because I recall you saying somewhere that they’re a young married couple. And for some reason that made me think of all the teen romance books out there, all the guys and gals (and gals and gals, and guys and guys) who find each other at 16-18 and in their books it seems like it’s happily ever after, forever. And it made me think about the people I know and their relationships, and how some have broken up and how some are moving in together.

    And somehow, all that made me realise that while finding someone while young might work out wonderfully for some, I’m really not sure if I could do that. I mean, I’d love to get a boyfriend, but at the same time not having one gives me the room to explore myself and other things fully and I’m not sure I’d feel like I could do the same if I was with someone.

    In short, your little snippet made me think about lots of things, even a few things that worry me (will I always be like that, needing to be independent and not wanting to commit to someone because I’d feel stopped somehow from exploring? And also how I DON’T really want to do all of this alone, right now, yet a larger part of me refuses to go looking for anyone anyhow…) and well. Perhaps it did exactly what it should do, that little snippet? 😛

    Anyhow, love the image (both the one the words evoked and the literal one) and the text. Love the idea of the project, it’s similar to my tumblr one except that I a) don’t use my own pictures b) write a snippet (and only a snippet with a vague sense of it being connected) AFTER I’ve found an image and c) that the images sometime say less and bring less to the snippet/story overall.

    Still, my tumblr project is more of a training ground of sorts. Letting me try out different personalities (so far it’s a bunch of girls writing these entries) and finding out how to express their voices which I SUCK at.

    /end ramble

    TL;DR: Good, awesome, wonderful! Please continue!

  • Carla, thank you! These are just about the only origami I can do – I taught myself just for this novel. Don’t worry, I’m a complete fail at anything else, lol!

    Vilde, that’s one hell of a comment! I love it! 🙂

    Wow, I’m very impressed you remembered Danny! Yes, this was him. And I’m honored that my excerpt could prompt so much thought!

    I do know what you mean about happily-ever-after stories though – I have the same beef with romantic-comedy movies. Like you know the couple goes on from that happy ending to end up just like everybody else… have kids, hate their jobs, get fat – and half of them make it while the other half get divorced. <-- don't think that book would sell well with the romance crowd, lol! 😉

  • Laura! the snippet you shared with us is beautiful – the structure of the language stunning. On top of that the picture is lovely – really nice work and I LOVE your project idea. Keep at it, all of it – really great stuff here.

  • Courtney, thank you! I’m really excited about this project. I think it’s going to be both very educational and a lot of fun too! 🙂

    Illandrya, thank you! I’m glad it makes sense now – I was quite sure nobody had any idea what I meant when I first started talking about it, lol!

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