Photo-Heart Connection: July 2014

Heat. That’s what I feel in this image. The heat of summer, direct sun, scorching and uncomfortable.

And yet… the promise of coolness. Once you get away from the edges, move through that heat, there is a deep relief.

Tree Leaves Oregon Forest Summer Kat Sloma Photography

There is a saying people use where I work: “Run to the fire.” It speaks to the idea that you shouldn’t run away from challenging things, but run to them.

This image speaks to me of running to the fire. Of running to the heat, dancing at the edges where it is uncomfortable, seeing how far you can go. And knowing, always, there is a retreat to come back to. There is relief away from the hot edges.

I think you can’t fully enjoy the delicious respite of that cool retreat if you haven’t felt the heat. If you haven’t pushed yourself into the intensity of it, seen how much you can take, you can’t relish the contrast. Cool becomes cold quickly when you stay too long in the deep shade.

Run to the fire. Feel the heat. Relish the cool. It’s the contrast that makes life interesting.

It’s no surprise to me this would be my Photo-Heart Connection for July. My life is on the busy side lately, between taking on new challenges at work, in my photography world and a kitchen remodel. I’ve definitely been running to the fire, and, knowing what I have lined up, I will be hanging out near the hot edges for the next six months or so. There is a small part of me that views everything with trepidation, worried about my stress level and whether I can do it all. But there is a large piece of me that says, “Bring it on!” I know I love a good challenge and will rise to the occasion. In the end, I’ll be able to look back and see what I’ve accomplished, truly enjoying the respite of the cool shade. I am encouraged; my Photo-Heart Connection tells me I can do this.

What is your Photo-Heart Connection telling you this month? What message do you find in your images? Share it with us here, and then visit others. We all have much to learn through our photography.


Yesterday I went for a hike on a trail I haven’t visited in a while. It was barely light as I got to the trailhead and started walking with Zoey. I couldn’t even see color. As the sky lightened I noticed the forest around me had changed since I had been here. Sprinkled throughout the trees were the yellow leaves of fall, showing just how many deciduous trees are here, hidden among the fir. Summer and winter these trees blend in with the forest’s green and brown, but in the fall they say farewell brightly, as if to remind us of how much we’ll be missing for the next few months.

In the pre-dawn light with my iPhone I couldn’t hope to capture sharp detail but I could capture impressions. Impressions of bright color in the forest, a fleeting moment before fading into the winter palette of greens and browns. Impressions of an ever-changing forest.


Creating the Sun

It’s summer again, and I’m so glad. For about a week there, it wasn’t summer around here. A lot of rain and grey skies; muddy trails and wet dog. I wanted to wear my summer clothes – not my rain jacket – but didn’t have much of a choice.

I did have a choice in what I created, though, so I created my own personal sunshine through my art. Summer-y flowers and leaves in bright colors filled the bill. I could change my mood with a choice of brilliant oranges and reds, like this one…


…or lemon yellow and lime green, like this image “Looking Up.” Ahhhh, hello sun.


My husband complained that some of the colors were too bright. They hurt his eyes.

That sounds just about perfect to me. If they are too bright for you, just put on your sunglasses. I’ve achieved my goal, and created some sun.

Bright and Sleepy

Continuing my brightly colored play today! Last weekend I caught a photograph of my sleeping cat Stevie with my new fisheye lens for iPhone. These little lenses are fun but they are a little tweaky with focus so I haven’t quite figured out how and where I want to use them yet.

Sleeping Stevie, however, came out perfect for a bit of colorful editing fun. All the while I was editing, I was singing, “Soft kitty, warm kitty, little ball of fur…” Who can give me the next line?


Apps used: Popsicolor, Image Blender, Handy Photo, Aquarella HD, decim8, Portray.