My PhotoShop skills are still in the crude, cave woman stage.
My photography skills are lacking.
But these are what I practiced on this week. When I wasn’t playing nurse to a small boy with a headache. Or doing umpteen loads of laundry. Or scrubbing toilets. Or teaching PE. Or asking the boy, repeatedly, “Why? Why can’t you just sit still and do your homework?” (There’s a whole subject for a blog post! Can little girls sit still while they do their math homework? Because the boy needs to bounce and jump and squirm before and after every multiplication problem that he works. And then he has to moan about doing homework, and complain about doing homework, and tell me over and over how much he hates the homework.)
Clearly, I still need some children to practice with, in the realm of photography. The boy, bless his heart, has had it with my camera. Actually, he had it with my camera before Christmas arrived. His smiles now are forced. They seem to say, “I’m smiling, and I just want to get this over with. Please snap the picture, and tell me where else I should stand and strike a pose at.” So, if you have children, and you want to subject them to thirty minutes of horrid torture, the likes of which war criminals would go to jail for, by all means, loan them out to me, and I will tell them things like, “Stand here,” and “Tilt your head a little more to the left,” and “Can you not show all your crooked teeth when you smile?” And then I’ll throw the snapshots into PhotoShop and do my very best to ruin them completely.
This first one is of the boy. I think I bribed him by promising him a Hershey’s candy bar, if he just smiled nicely and quit hopping around like he was swinging a light saber. The boy adores Hershey’s. He doesn’t get them very often. There’s a reason for that. It’s so when I need a decent bribe, I can use that one.
This one is of my five-year-old niece, Miss A. I actually took this way back in November. I didn’t have to bribe her at all, and she never acted like she was fighting Darth Vader with a light saber, either. Miss A was born for the camera. She actually told me where she should stand, and her ideas for poses shot mine all to pieces. Within minutes, I learned that I should completely listen to Miss A and trust her sense of what locations would look the best. She didn’t disappoint me at all.
These next few are of the boy’s good buddy, Kellen. Kellen’s mama had her birthday on Sunday, and I was trying to think of something fun to give her. Kellen was at our house playing after school one day (he and the boy were smashing each other with sticks, pretending that they were swords), and the boy had to run to piano lessons. You would have thought that a 30-minute piano lesson and separation from the stick battle was going to kill the poor boys, they were so disappointed. I dropped the boy off, and then I looked at Kellen and a light bulb went on. I said to him, “Hey. I’ll give you chocolate if you let me snap some pictures of you for your mom’s birthday. But you have to smile nicely. Otherwise, I’ll take your sticks away, and your sword fight will be done for all eternity.” Needless to say, Kellen was in the mood for both the chocolate and the sticks, so we spent fifteen minutes taking pictures, while the boy pounded on the piano.