2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup all purpose flour
3 tbsp butter
1 large onion diced
1 celery stalk diced
1 small bell pepper chopped
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 can tomato paste 6 oz
1 can whole tomatoes 16 oz drained and chopped liquid reserves (I use Rotel Brand Tomatoes)
4 cups chicken broth
1 tsp Tabasco pepper sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp black pepper
3 pounds frog meat (15 to 20 legs) or 8 to 10 carcasses
In a large saucepan over medium high heat, combine the oil and 2 tablespoon of flour to make a roux. Stir constantly until the roux is a light to medium brown about 15 minutes. Stir in the butter and add the onion, celery, green pepper and garlic and saute' for 5 minutes or until soft. Add the tomato paste and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the tomatoes with the liquid, chicken broth, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce and black pepper. Cover and simmer over low for 45 minutes.Meanwhile dust the frog legs or carcass with the remaining 2 tablespoon flour seasoned with a small amount of salt and cayenne pepper. Coat a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray or a small amount of oil, add the frog meat and saute' until lightly brown about 3 minutes on each side. Add the legs to the sauce and simmer for an additional 15 minutes if frog legs and 30 if using carcass meat. Serve over rice. If using cut up chicken, saute the meat 5 to 10 minutes longer until nearly cooked through, and simmer for 25 minutes. If using catfish, add directly to the sauce and simmer for 20 minutes.
1 cup oil
1 cup flour
2 large onions, chopped
2 bell peppers, chopped
4 ribs celery, chopped
4 - 6 cloves garlic, minced
4 quarts chicken stock
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoonsCreole seasonsing or to taste
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 large chicken (young hen preferred), cut into pieces
2 pounds andouille or smoked sausage, cut into 1/2" pieces
1 bunch scallions (green onions), tops only, chopped
2/3 cup fresh chopped parsley
Filé powder to taste
Season the chicken with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning and brown quickly. Brown the sausage, pour off fat and reserve meats.
In a large, heavy pot, heat the oil and cook the flour in the oil over medium to high heat (depending on your roux-making skill), stirring constantly, until the roux reaches a dark reddish-brown color, almost the color of coffee or milk chocolate for a Cajun-style roux. If you want to save time, or prefer a more New Orleans-style roux, cook it to a medium, peanut-butter color, over lower heat if you're nervous about burning it.
Add the vegetables and stir quickly. This cooks the vegetables and also stops the roux from cooking further. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes.
Add the stock, seasonings, chicken and sausage. Bring to a boil, then cook for about one hour, skimming fat off the top as needed.
Add the chopped scallion tops and parsley, and heat for 5 minutes. Serve over rice in large shallow bowls. Accompany with a good beer and lots of hot, crispy French bread.
YIELD: About 12 entrée sized servings.
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c. melted butter
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup pecan pieces or halves
1 tsp vanilla or rum
1 9" unbaked pie crust
Thoroughly beat the eggs, add the sugar, salt, melted butter, and corn syrup. Stir in the pecans and vanilla or rum. Pour in the pie shell and bake for 40-50 minutes at 375 degrees or until a toothpick comes out of the center clean. © 1984 John Albrecht, CEC
Check back soon for details!
So last night in the wee hours, after burning too much midnight oil getting stuff packed and hauled into the boys' rooms, when the iPod was all formatted up and loaded with a buncha songs, I plugged myself in and...
I'm a convert. Completely. I am in love. And it just gets better - there's a calendar I can upload from my Outlook, and an address book. (OK - so I know millions of you already KNOW these things, but I told you, I never wanted an iPod, because I always just thought, well, it plays music - whoopee - so does a radio...) Tonight, after I finish packing up some clothes and moving some more furniture, I may have to take some time to upload my calendar and address book and a few hundred of my favourite pictures... Woot woot to the Nano Nano!!!
I guess I better get up the nerve to ask my Mom to babysit the guinea pigs soon, hey?
My sister is in town as well. She was up in NWT doing some research before heading home. Since she's passing through, we're going to bury my Dad's ashes this weekend. I'm not sure what I'm expecting of the day. I don't foresee any kind of closure - the idea of burying ashes in a graveyard seems odd to me. I'd be more tempted to let them sink to the bottom of the lake where he spent so much of his fair weather time. But it isn't up to me. Hopefully it'll bring some of the closure my step-mom needs. We made it through all the 'firsts' already. The last 'first' to cover is the first anniversary of his death. I ask for grace and patientce, and above all, the strength to make it through the day without freaking my kids out too much. Wil's new baby brother or sister is scheduled for c-section on August 3rd, and so it begins that August 3rd can return to being a day of joy, for my uncle Adolph & Auntie Doris's anniversary, for remembering my Daddy's time on this earth, and for celebrating this new baby's birthday.
(This is my lame way of letting everyone know I'm still alive - just really busy getting the house ready for the hardwood guys to come!)
So this little fishy says, "Blub blub blub..."
Behaviors related to this mechanism may include an exaggeratedly positive opinion of one’s worth and abilities, unrealistically high expectations in goals and achievements for oneself and others, vanity, extravagant style in dressing (with intention of drawing attention), pride, sentimentalism and affected exaltation, snobbism, a tendency to discredit other’s opinions, forcefulness aimed at dominating those considered as weaker or less important, credulity, and others.
Social aloofness, daydreaming, isolation could also be associated to the Superiority Complex, as a way to evade the fear of failure related to the feelings of inadequacy to face real world.
I admire this bike every day.
They're creating 'water' spaces all over campus, and the one that is situated adjacent to my building was sporting, of all things, a water lily!
This is the somewhat abysmal-looking hallway I enter my office via each day, viewed from behind the security-locked stairwell door. I promise it's a much more cheerful place than it looks...
THE PRESIDENT: I want to thank Peter Doherty -- where is he? Yes, Peter, thanks for working hard here. You get a lot of credit for making sure this thing works. And one of these days Laura and I are looking forward to coming and actually see what it's like working here. I've never toured -- I've never even been able to get beyond the podium -- (laughter) -- if you know what I mean. As a matter of fact, I've always felt comfortable behind the podium in front of you, kind of as a shield. (Laughter.) But I would like a tour.
Q Bullet-proof --
THE PRESIDENT: Well, it's not exactly bullet-proof. Some of your bullets are able to -- verbal bullets -- (laughter) -- are able to penetrate. But you've been around a long time, see, you know what it's like to query Presidents. You've been -- you're kind of an older fellow. (Laughter.)
Q -- (inaudible) --
THE PRESIDENT: Yes -- proudly so. Thanks for the birthday greeting, too. I appreciate that thoughtful gesture.
But, anyway, we're glad to join you for this ribbon-cutting, and we thank you very much for working with Hagin and the bunch to make sure this thing -- deal works. And it's going to. And it's going to make your life better and, frankly, it's going to make the lives of future Presidents better, as well. And so it's a good contribution that you all have left behind. And we're glad to have been a part of it. And so -- wait --
Q What, do you think I'm going to ask a question?
THE PRESIDENT: Yes, I did think you were going to ask me a question, yes. (Laughter.)
Q I am. (Laughter.)
THE PRESIDENT: Well, maybe some other time.
Q Oh, but do you think you open --
THE PRESIDENT: See what I'm saying? (Laughter.)
Q You can't come to the press room, especially a modern press room --
THE PRESIDENT: Wait a minute, let's do this -- let me cut the ribbon, and --
Q You think anything has changed?
THE PRESIDENT: Let me cut the ribbon -- are you going to cut it with me, Steve -- and then why don't you all yell simultaneously? (Laughter.) Like, really loudly. (Laughter.) And that way you might get noticed.
Q It doesn't sound like you're going to answer --
THE PRESIDENT: No, I will. I'll, like, listen --
Q And leave?
THE PRESIDENT: -- internalize, play like I'm going to answer the question, and then smile at you and just say, gosh -- (laughter) -- thanks, thanks for such a solid, sound question.
Here we go, ready? I'm going to cut the ribbon. (Laughter.) Then you yell. I cogitate -- and then smile and wave. (Laughter.)
Are you going to come, Laura? Here we go.
(The President and Mrs. Bush cut the ribbon.) (Applause.)
Q -- (inaudible) --
THE PRESIDENT: Brilliant question.
Q -- (inaudible) -- cogitating that, right?
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you all. See you soon.
Q We look forward to seeing you come and do a little --
THE PRESIDENT: I will see you soon, thank you.
Q Y'all come back. (Laughter.)
*I* didn't know. I do now, and so do you.
Now. This is all fine and good, but it does raise a few moral and ethical questions for me, personally, as I am very uncomfortable and creeped out by strangers wanting pictures of my kids or me and am sensitive to this fact in those around me. For what purpose do you want a picture? Are you a hobby photographer and just think we're cute? Are you going to go post my child on some pedophile hot-or-not site? What the hell, how am i supposed to know, you know? Then of course sometimes the issue of money gets involved. If I shoot a street scene and there happens to be a person or 12 sitting in it who are obviously the primary subjects and not just the unsuspecting flotsam and jetsam sitting around the fountain I am photographing, and I manage to sell that image to a newspaper or magazine or enter it into some sort of competition where I receive a cash or kind prize, the subject(s) may feel entitled to all or a portion of the funds. It becomes a question of whether a person's right to their own image trumps a photographer's "art."
This is not a new debate. The Supreme Court has seen cases come and go, with rulings in favour of both sides, for any number of reasons - location, age of subject, content, monies received, lawful or unlawful uses, etc. and I waffle on how I feel about this issue on any given day. This is the set of laws that gives me the freedoms I have and as a photographer I genuinely appreciate the ability to photograph, say, the Empire State Building, without needing a permit to clear everyone out before I can do so or model releases from all of them before I can print it. I also genuinely appreciate the fact that shooting all variety of street scenes, regardless of how prominent or recognizable the subject(s) might be, make for some mighty fine art.
Now, for the most part, the people I photograph obviously pay me to do it, and consent is express and/or implied that I am supposed to be doing that. However, I do go street shooting, and no I don't always ask for permission, but I do tend to carry a huge stack of business cards, a deck of smokes, and pocket change, just in case I get busted shooting and need to explain. Usually though, I am very sneaky about it. I'll shoot from behind trees or bushes, or from inside the van. The reason I take this approach is because when you identify to most people that you are taking their picture, they 'pose' whether they mean to or not. They carry themselves differently, walk differently, change the expressions on their face subtly, and the scene then loses its spontaneity and sense of random everyday-ness. I also often try and respect a person's privacy by taking pictures in such a way that the subject isn't necessarily recognizable. Most of us walking down the street aren't looking into people's faces. We're watching the ground go by - a series of shoes, a brief blurry sideways glance at a group of people playing hacky-sack, a couple holding hands over a romantic dinner, some pigeons on a rooftop... Save for a few that stick in our minds for whatever reason, I doubt most of us would recognize half the people we pass by on a day-to-day basis if we were shown their picture even 5 minutes let alone weeks or months or years later, because we saw them in a blur. Therefore, when I go street shooting, I try and embrace this feeling of walking along in a series of fleeting moments, taking no more time to focus and compose what I'm shooting than I normally would my vision while commuting from point a to b. (The "crotch shot" I always reference is great for this, which really is only taken from the crotch on occasion and can also be accomplished by merely holding the camera at waist height, or poking it out of a pocket, or pretending to hold it under your arm and shooting backwards...)
So if the (primary) subjects in the photo are readily recognizable, I am tempted to introduce myself and hand out a business card, and I make my models sign a model release. It is implied as well as written for clients that I retain 100% copyright of my images and am free to do whatever I lawfully choose with them, while they are given limited rights to make reproductions and enlargements for personal use only. I did have a legal issue once with a client who entered an image of her child that I had photographed into a competition, in which she won a monetary prize. I took her to small claims court not because I gave a damn about the money, but because she took credit for the image based on the fact it was a picture of her child. Small claims court was the fastest, easiest way to make my point about copyright infringement, instead of a lengthy drawn-out court battle which she would ultimately have lost and been ordered to pay me anyways.
I also know some people who, despite the fact they frequent public places, are intensely private. I have a couple of friends who, although I've taken many pictrues of their kids, they prefer not to have any recognizable images of their children splashed on my website or blog, and I completely respect that. And although I often share stories and pictures of my family, I am myself a very private person, who loves using her married name and making it as difficult as possible for people I have no desire to talk with ever again find me; hence, although I don't really CARE if a picture of me is posted on the internet, I don't want you to 'tag' or otherwise identify me in photos on Facebook or the likes.
Anyhow. The questions that always arise are pretty much the same no matter what the circumstances are. Legally, it's: Does the photographer or the subject own the rights to an image? On a personal level it's: How do you feel about other people being legally allowed to photograph you and your family, your children, without your prior consent? Would you feel entitled to compensation if a photographer won or earned money from an image unknowlingly captured of you or one of your children? Would you be mad to see pictures of you or your children prominently featured in someone else's pictures posted on the internet by whatever stranger just happened to be in the right place at the right time to snap you? Would you be comfortable allowing a stranger to take and use pictures of you if they asked for prior consent? Why or why not?
Wade on in, peoples!
I'm suddenly transported back to the last time I saw my Dad. He seemed so small and grey as he curtsied at me and said, "Bye Hopey, I love you," and I remember noting how strong his hug felt in spite of him being a very little old man, the skin of his papery smooth cheek with not even a day's growth of stubble brushing against my cheek and leaving me smelling the traces of his aftershave for hours after.
I wonder how much of this has to do with the fact we're finally putting his remains to rest in 2 weeks' time, burying the plastic block full of ashes between my grandfather's and my uncle's headstones.
>insert deep cleansing breaths here<
This week what I am hoping to do is step well outside that comfort zone and capture and manipulate colour photographs. I'm going to make some loud 50's beach party technicolor-saturated pictures, and some delicately tinted pictures, and some pictures that feature the bane of my existence: R-E-D.
(This bit's for you, TM.)
Most really vibrant happy colours DO NOT convert well to (my preferred) black and white. Bright happy blues, obnoxious pinks and noxious oranges, vulgar fluorescents and poppy reds lack depth when they are shot in black and white, and come out looking like bland flat featureless bits, lacking the lovely gradations that are the only thing you have to worry about in B&W. A loud gerbera just does not look as lovely as a pastel one when you're wanting a nice black and white image.
(Note the difference between the yellow one and the pastel peach one on the botton right.)
So here's a lesson to all y'all about those fancy coloured filters you might have seen on some people's lenses - they aren't used for colour photography. They are so that the reds or blues or greens will they have depth when shot in B&W. But I digress.
Where was I? Oh, yes. The beach, as the pictures might have hinted at.
Today we set out to take my sister and the kids to the beach. We stopped at a beach we'll call Ghetto Stank Beach first, hoping to make a happy mistake, but it was just a mistake... The day use area was about 12 metres wide, smelled like rotting fish entrails and duck poo, and was inhabited by a hodge-podge assortment of trailer trash that seemed to have migrated north for the summer from someplace down in Inbreed Park, Alabama . I'm still trying to eliminate the image of a very large cottage-cheese textured woman in a not large enough bathing suit chowing down on a whole family-sized bag of ketchup chips, crumbs on her lips and ample bosom, who decided to heft herself up with her butt facing me, exposing the dead looking hamburger flesh between the tops of her thighs. I wasn't trying to look. And God help me, I did not look away fast enough. ~shuddering~
We vacated shortly after gagging down our picnic, which tasted a lot like rotting fish entrails and duck poo since that was kind of the overpowering scent in the air and headed for the beach at Elk Island, which although smattered with its own healthy collection of ducky doo (and maybe a buckalo plop or five) was guaranteed to be a vast improvement. We enjoyed several hours there digging in the sand, netting tadpoles and minnow, and dodging duck poop. The sky and the clouds started turning and we got to watch the rain storm build over the lake and follow us home on the highway above the fields of canola - the clouds were bloody amazing, and made for some really awesome colourful pictures.
Colour week. Bring on the red.
I was working on a texture picture (above) which she thought was nifty enough to try herself, so here she is duplicating what I had done (below); I'm really excited to see her version of it!
She humoured me and I managed to finally figure out the follow shot (mostly) with her as my guinea pig, and I've been churning them out pretty consistently since.
The flowers on campus were positively popping, and so I decided to swap 'composition' week in favour of getting a jump on colour in week 2.
We spent most of today putzing around the newly renovated Rundle Park (awesome park! Bring a loaf of bread or some stale buns for the ducks and seagulls!). I was having WAY too much fun with the seagulls!
Babzy's critiques of my pictures brought up an interesting train of thought for me, one I've kind of been having for a couple of days already, but it's in pretty clear focus now, pun entirely intended... ~snicker snicker~
What I've found the most interesting is people's reactions to the technical approach I have taken this week. Yes, it's dull - I'll be the first to admit it. My clients, friends, and family are saying weird things to me about it, like, "Oh - that's nice dear..." and, "Oh, that's different...." in that kind of pseudo-patronizing way that indicates they aren't quite sure what the hell I am doing but feel obliged to say something pseudo-supportive. My husband is simply "very surprised" with the work I've been churning out this week. (read: he doesn't understand what the hell I am doing)
My sabbatical - it's an exercise, of course, not unlike doing piano scales. Start at the beginning, practice makes perfect and all that jazz. This is a deconstruction of the things I take for granted, that I've gotten out of practice with, in order to heighten my awareness of these elements so that when I am shooting on the fly it's second nature to notice the lacy pattern of shadows cast by the leaves or the way there's light dancing on the water or birds silhouetted against the horizon that I may overlook until I am pleasantly surprised by them after the fact.
For the most part, though, because I am experimenting on a technical level, for me it lacks spontaneity, emotion, fluidity, personal touch, and spark, the kind of qualities that I am usually complimented on. Putting this much forethought into what I shoot has really run me through the wringer. This week has frankly been a real stretch for me, going about methodically looking for the "money" shots. ~snore~ I'm usually a 'shoot from the hip' kinda gal. My brain aches, and I have a totally new level of respect for people like the immensely patient and hugely talented Becky (link on the right) who manages to take stunning pictures of the very things that I struggle to photograph with any kind of flare or style. She truly amazes me, and I can't even hope to duplicate her skill or eye with my silly little exercises. She seriously kicks my lily-white butt in this department.
Some of the playing has been decidedly amusing and definitely broadening, while other bits incredibly monotonous and uninspiring - in short, a real return to the 'basics' for me. I've always known that the technical aspects of photography, though I am fairly well versed in them, really bore me. But of course, mastery of the technical aspects allow for greater latitude when the time comes to break or even better rewrite the rules. It's like practicing scales on a piano - something you gotta know before you can compose a symphony, even if you have to figure it out by ear.
Although Babzy & I won't always see eye to eye on the same things, it's apparent we have similar taste in photographic qualities. I find a lot of the work I've been doing this week challenging, with the results less than spectacular. I like bold images, both to look at and create, with super white whites and pitch-black blacks. Mind you (and here's where it gets especially interesting for me) I have also realized that I tend get into a black and white rut both as a person and a photographer, so exploring the many shades of grey has forced me to become conscious of the more subtle nuances I'm usually blind to, thereby encouraging growth for me both as a photographer and a person. Even if I don't manage to get my sparkler pictures done before I switch to composition studies next week, this realization alone has made the week a success. The rest is all gravy.
Huzzah for me!
There was initially a glass jar on the kids' picnic table, casting this funky warped light (see little sour green apples below) which inspired me to play more with light and glass (above, bottles on picnic table.)
water and a bowl
This was way too much fun. I initially figured I'd let Mads drop apples into the water while I tried to snap a shot of that exact moment it broke the surface tension or as it plunged to the bottom and set up symmetrical sprays of water... however... trying to coordinate a 6 year old to do that when simply filling the bowl up at high speed using a Tupperware container was far more entertaining proved more difficult than one might have hoped. In the end, I had to employ my husband's services to get the plunging apples, only to discover that the ones of the Tupperware fast-fills were infinitely cooler. And of course the beauty of it all were the shots that I couldn't have even dreamt up had my concept gone as smoothly as I'd planned. There's just so much going on in the picture below it almost takes my breath away.
Sarah Dog takes a cooling dip in the river
Very typical of my style, and of course very attractive to my eye. Again, lots going on in this picture - the texture of the water, dirt, fur, the blur of movement as she prepares to shake herself off, the paw poised just above the ground, the light playing in the grass, the streams of water dripping from her emerging body. It has a very frenetic quality to it.
May your day be filled with good food, friends, and family, and your night be full of sparklers!
P.S. Bill & I are playing with sparklers and the cameras tonight - I'll put up my own sparkler pictures later!)
Why are they interesting or boring? Ignoring composition, are they successful (or ineffectual) at portraying the elements of light, texture, and motion? I'm looking for technical feedback, and hopefully an emotional reaction from one or two of them - is one of the images particularly attractive? Disturbing? Fun? Happy? Depressing? Annoying? Dig deep. Think harder. Look with a critical eye as well as your heart.
can YOU spot the burger in this ad?
"Forget About It. Men's Preference Will Never Change. Fit Light Yogurt."
I thought I'd share these ones with you, though. Each student was asked to choose a biblical passage that they felt spoke to them, which was read as they took the stage at the beginning of the ceremonies.