April 2017


For the Love of Tulips

I thought I’d do a blog post with some of my last photos, which are mostly tulips. Why do I love them so much? I don’t know, but although I find most flowers beautiful, there is something about how elegant yet humble they are. To me they are just so expressive. The long pliable stems makes it possible to create images where they look like they are tumbling over or have sensitive emotion. To be honest, although people send roses to express love, I think I would much rather receive tulips. Sort of makes the time you can send them very short.. heh.. but not receiving any grand gestures of amorous activity lately or in the near future.. but that’s alright,  I’m doing good; well I would be doing better if it were not that I have caught a cold and feeling just a bit under the weather but much better than yesterday so should be back in tip- top shape soon.

So anyways, back to the tulips ;-)

This image called Spring is Calling is one of the first tulip images I did this year. I put it on facebook and I was very lucky that someone saw it right away and knew it would look lovely in their living room. They ordered it on canvas and within a week have received it and it’s already hanging on their wall. I received a note from the buyer today, saying it was beautiful, that the quality was great, it was very well packaged and they were happy. This black border on the image was not included, as it’s only a border to bring out the image on the blog and is not intended to be shown. They did mention that the mirrored edges, which mirrors what you see on the sides of the canvas looked good on the side where you would mainly see it but the little portion where the leaves are, did look a bit odd, but since it was not the main view it was fine but it is something I need to be aware of in the future. She was happy though and because she received it within a week, I’m also happy! Spring is Calling

The next image I did was Love is in the Air. Sometimes people see images that I have with a violin and think that I can play. Gosh, I wish it were so, but sadly, no. A friend of my son had bought the violin to learn how to play it and then his life got busy and he decided to give it to me to use as a prop. It’s not a very expensive violin but I just love it.  I placed the tulips on the violin and composed with the scroll  to make a wide image that I liked the composition a lot. I actually really liked the shadows created by the scroll and the tulips on the wood. That’s kind of sexy.  Flowers and Violin music could only be better with the addition of some really great chocolate! :-) Love is in the Air

Next came Phantom Spring. The image is called like this because frankly, we still have snow outside and although tulips give the illusion of spring, it’s not really here. The illusion is why I thought of a phantom and I liked this composition where the tulip at the bottom has turned in a odd way but to me makes the composition that much more interesting. You will often find that I like odd things, but slightly odd.. and not way out there, but just enough that they are not every day. Again, all the black borders on these images are for the blog sake only and are not on the images if they are to be bought. I’ll put a link up to my online sale place lower down but if you are in the Abitibi region, most of these images can be bought directly from The Gallery Gaetz where the owner would work with you to choose the perfect mat and frame for every image and you would not incur any shipping charges either!

Phantom Spring

I then added an image that is from a small bouquet that I bought. It had some nice flowers, but it also had many that just were not up to par and that I had to take out and not use. This is basically what I was left with but I liked them. I created a nice little bouquet but felt it was perhaps a bit too traditional and although there is nothing wrong with that, I wanted to give it a bit of a twist so set it in black and white. I actually like black and white florals as it forces you to put color aside and just concentrate on shapes and texture. I called it Bouquet in Black and White. As you can see, I’m not a writer! :-D

bouquet in black and white

If you thought I was done with the tulips… come on.. you know better! :-D Of course not and in the days to come, I’ll probably put up more but with this cold I’m carrying around, I want to take it a bit easy. This image is called Tulips in a Teapot. I love this teapot as it has such a lovely shape and I also love the polka dots but I’m not much of a tea drinker. I sometimes have a tisane (herbal tea) especially at a time like now when I have a cold but normally, just give me a rich, bold coffee and you are making Maggie a happy girl. Please none of that coffee that is so weak that it’s almost a crime to call it coffee. I only have a big cup every day, but it makes me very happy. So, basically, I really don’t use the teapot much but have found that I love it as a prop. Someone like me who adores doing still life images finds that having props to use really is essential but can also be expensive so you will see the same pots and cups etc., in my images, over and over because that’s what I own, baby! :-D

As for this image, I draped this wrinkly white cloth and put some books under the cloth to bring the teapot up because I needed the space so the tulips could be free. I love this composition with the tulips sprawling out of the teapot but the light still coming right through some of them.  A photog that I know because he’s a friend of Carol’s (who is at the moment in Patagonia taking marvelous images – can I be a little jealous?? ) called Peter Lin, told me that he was scrolling on Facebook and noticed this image and knew instantly it was mine. This is not the first time someone has told me they can recognize my images as I have a certain style. I think that is true. My images are often pretty and sensitive and many of the things that people say good art is not. It doesn’t show destruction, desolation, world hunger, climate change, illness, sadness, hunger, garbage on the side of the road etc., but there are plenty of people doing that and they are great at what they do and probably live in places where it is more appropriate to take those images. I tried for a bit but I didn’t enjoy it and I felt it was not me and that I was portraying what others wanted and not what I wanted. Be true to thine own self if nothing else. As for this, Tulips in a Teapot, is an image I am pretty proud of as I love the composition. I love the flowers all bent over and gracious and I love the light through the leaves and the upper tulips. I think an image with good composition has great bones and light is what makes an image interesting. It gives it life and depth and emotion.

tulips in a teapot

Here is a link to my images where they can be purchased if you are interested:


In other news, a few weeks ago, I created a book of image of my favorite still life photographs from the last couple years. I created a book about 2 years ago with a mixture of images but it is on sale on Amazon, and I will attempt to take it off and put it on blurb as Amazon only sells it to the US (which excludes the rest of the world.. d’uh!) but also, Amazon takes a heftly commission. If these books were el cheapo, then that would not matter but they are of high quality and the paper used in the images are almost as high quality as what I print my gallery images with. Seriously, I would not want people to cut up the book to put on their walls, but they could. Anyways.. back to my new book.  I was really pleased with the quality of the book and everything looks amazing but again, the book is not cheap. The quality is there, but they don’t give it away and when they give out sales, it is usually to the authors so unless you uploaded the book, you could not partake of getting a discount as a fan. I wrote to their facebook page and was answered that they do once in a while have sales for people who want your book to keep an eye out. I know that Johanne had asked and I told her to wait for a sale and last night, I got an email, for 25% off. All you have to do is add the code: SHINEON25 to your order and that’s it. Oh, very important.. offer is only good until April 13th, 2017. That does not give a lot of time, but if you want the discount, you need to act soon. I would say to not pay for express shipping because seriously, standard shipping is very fast; it takes a couple days to make the book and a couple for it to arrive.. Think a week in all. Only thing express shipping would do is perhaps get the book there one day earlier and empty your pockets for no reason.

Book still life images

Here is a link to purchase the book if feel so persuaded. You can preview what is inside the book and to purchase, simply click on the little shopping cart. Remember to use the code: SHINEON25 for the 25% rebate.


I know it is still not given away, of course, and I understand that you may not be in the means to purchase the book. I really do understand because as an artist, I know that many of you are also, that money doesn’t grow on trees or fall from the sky. If not, I would really appreciate it if you could perhaps share a link to it on some social media platform hoping to help me out a bit.

That’s it for today and I assure you there will be more images forthcoming and most probably more tulips. I hope you are not bored with them yet! :-) Maggie

Any comments let me know you passed and make me feel good… you want me to feel good, right? :-D


Partially Fixed

When I started on Facebook, I thought I’d take a temporary reprieve from writing here because I was also posting on Google +, Pinterest, and Twitter and it was all new and I felt it was a lot and I wanted a break… but then as life often is,when I decided that I should get back to blogging here, something had happened to my website. One of the things was my website background was not showing up. I thought it would be an easy fix, but everything I tried didn’t work. So it was pretty bland (to be honest, it was just plain medium gray) and I hated it and I would just leave it on its own for a bit then try again, and again couldn’t fix it.

So on the weekend, I asked Janne if he could take a look. Although he’s a graphic designer for the company he works for, he’s actually really good at CSS and stuff and I knew that if anyone could, he would be able to. Well, he went in during his lunch hour and looked through the work and somehow the CSS was telling the website background that I added to be invisible. Can you believe that? I cannot fathom how, or whom, or what happened. It’s ridiculous. Anyways, I should have asked way earlier, because he fixed it. It looks like it is supposed to.  Well almost…

There are a bunch of little things that are no longer working or showing up properly. Now before I go on a tangent and ask him to fix that too, I will see what I can do on my own, but if I have not figured it out in a week, then I’ll ask. I hate to bother people when I should be able to fix it on my own, but I know he will be helpful.  My sharing icons are gone… so no FB, Tw, Pinterest, Google+ that you just press on to share, which is too bad because I not only would put up images that I want in my portfolio, but show images that were good but didn’t quite make the cut and I go through my procedure, my thoughts, how they come about and although I don’t have a huge audience here, people that come have enjoyed what they have read and looked at.

There are also other problems. Little things that are annoying to me but may not be noticeable to the casual looker. Normally when you come on to the site, you can either use the menu, or you can click an icon which makes the images that are in the slideshow at the beginning go full view, so it is not obstructed. It’s minor, but it would look so much better as its supposed to be.

So, besides that, since I’ve begun selling online, I thought it would be interesting to others how it came about, and what I’ve learned and if they should do the same and as always, add a bit about my process. To me, that is the fun part because I do a lot of still life images, they are not what is presented in front of me, but rather how I decide to compose them and what works and what doesn’t. I’ve another website that I want to start working on again (shuttertactics.com) where I would do some photographer interviews and also some tutorials either by me or by other photogs that I know. I don’t know how many interviews I will do, but I think some fun tuts would be interesting for me and others to read. We’ll see. First I need to get this thing working again.

I hope you all come along for the ride.