Author Archives: Vanessa Lee Thomas

Facebook Fans and Florals

My Facebook Page has just gone over the 5400 Likes mark – and I am delighted! I also however recall the days when I posted a floral photo and got more than 1 like and was thrilled!

Asters blue

The “liking’ culture is complex – but I think of it like grading exam papers. There are always those who instinctively are critical and judgmental and would never give anyone an “A” as they feel it is unattainable and then there are those with rose-tinted glasses who think everyone deserves some sort of acknowledgement just for putting in the effort. So it’s no surprise that the number of followers outrank the number of likes but that’s ok.

Granted when  photos are amazing I am more likely to ‘like’ them but sometimes just getting someone to share a pic of a bloom they noticed while out walking or gardening is even more beautiful. They were captivated and for a brief moment they could rest and breathe in the beauty.

Dahlias pink on lobelia.jpg

If you’re new to blogging and sharing what you care about it takes time to find your tribe – it’s taken me 5 years to get this far – so don’t be discouraged – just keep shipping.

In a world where kindness, compassion and encouragement are rarely seen how hard is it for you to like the photo your friend or family member just posted about something creative they made? We can fuel each other’s endeavors to bring more beauty into the world.

I love flowers – always have and always will – they give me a chance to pause and appreciate simple moments of nature’s beauty. It’s why I share photos of them – I think my photography skills have loads of room for improvement – but I still love to share blooms that make me stop, pay attention and show appreciation.

Have a fabulously floral day!

Camelia red in bloom

Beauty in a Single Bloom

There are times when a single bloom in a bouquet captures my attention. A combination of vibrant color and intricate details that shouts out to the universe – isn’t life wonderful!

Its also an opportunity to practice mindfulness, to pause and reflect and appreciate a moment of stillness and the times that bring us joy.

My husband recently gave me a bouquet just before Valentine’s Day and he knows I like a collection of various types of blooms and colors. The one that stood out for me was a yellow Gerbera Daisy, bringing a piece of my African homeland to my home.

This description was taken from the ProFlowers Blog “The Gerbera daisy was discovered in 1884 near Barberton, South Africa, by Scotsman Robert Jameson. While the flower’s scientific name, Gerberajamesonii, recollects the name of its founder, the meaning of its common name draws from German naturalist Traugott Gerber.”

Here are two of the photos I took which are now for sale on my FineArtAmerica site.

Photo 1: Vibrance

Gerbera two tone yellow

Photo 2: Hopes

Gerbera daisy single on sparkle fade

 

1 of 8: Seth Godin’s Publishing Master Class

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while are aware that I am a huge Seth Godin fan. Today on his blog he posted about a Publishing Master Class that would be taking place in his office so of course I applied! Eight people will be selected to participate but I am sure that the reach of this intensive workshop will be far wider than Seth’s office walls!

Photo 1: Unveiling

Sunflower unveiling

My Floral Photography has led me to my current project of the Dublin Art Collective which is about to host its first free Networking Event for Artists and Makers this Sunday, October 22.

The freedom to blog about things we care about is a remarkable opportunity and I’m interested to know from other artists and makers how blogging has influenced their creativity and the impact of being connected to other like-minded creative types. Please leave your comments below.

I will leave you with some food for thought “What’s changed is that more people than ever have a device that connects them to the town square. They have access to information, to courses, to opportunities that weren’t even imagined just twenty years ago. Twenty years! It’s an extraordinary thing to waste. And we’re mostly wasting it. Wasting it by waiting for a guarantee.” Seth Godin

Photo 2: Sunflowers

Sunflower pair bright

 

Poppy meanderings from UK to USA

Your art is an intrinsic part of your being and is thankfully something that goes with you wherever you are in the world.

Spring Poppies Painted.jpg

Photo 1: Poppies In California, USA

We are coming up to our 4th anniversary of living in the beautiful and vibrant state of California in the USA after leaving the lusciously green and peaceful area of Sussex in the UK.

The definition of home has taken on a new meaning for us and we have learned to value the connections we make with others on our journey. My enthusiasm for Floral Photography continues to drive me to explore my surroundings wherever we may find ourselves and thankfully nature is able to offer an unending collection of floral delights.

Poppy field low res

Photo 2: A field of Poppies in the UK near Brighton

Nature gets our attention with a Solar Eclipse.

There is so much excitement locally around the pending total solar eclipse tomorrow, Monday August 21. I was rushing around last week looking for approved viewing glasses for my kids but I was way too late as stocks were already sold out.

Some parents I know even pooled resources to Fedex a shipment of them to get here in time but due to damage in transit they could not be delivered leading to severe disappointment.

I was intrigued by this solar fascination and how the wonders of our universe sometimes stop us all in our tracks and call us to pay attention.

In a way though it also saddened me that Nature has to put on such a dramatic visual display before we really notice the world around us.

The endangered bees and butterflies, the declining forests, the melting polar caps and the death of the Great Barrier Reef all come to mind.

There is beauty and wonder around us every day! Nature is battling for survival and we need to pay more attention more frequently to what is happening in our world even though it doesn’t always happen on such a spectacular scale.

With these thoughts in mind I created the image below from the intricate detail and coloring of a single Gerbera bloom and a photo of a decorative iron garden trellis.

Nature deserves our attention – our survival depends on it.

Photo 1: Solar Celebration

Sun face and flowers

Photo 2: A Single Gerbera BloomGerbera Orange on grey

Nature: Care a whole awful lot

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." Dr. Seuss

My thought for today – we are fueled by the things we care about and we benefit from things that others care about.

Nature nurtures us all and we will all be better if we care about and for her a whole awful lot.

Photo 1: Better is Beautiful

Daisy profusion

Photo 2: Daisy Profusion

Daisy profusion bw

 

Be gentle with yourself

Sometimes life hurls moments at you that are uncomfortable to process – things that hurt you and that we would prefer to be outside the realm of our life experiences. My father passed away last month only a couple of years after my mom and they had been married for half a century. Yesterday was their anniversary and a stark reminder that they are no longer here but the day also triggered memories of happy times celebrating with them.

A friend sent me a note that simply said “be gentle with yourself” – I found it both profound and comforting in my time of grief and it inspired the name of this image.

“Be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars. In the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.” Max Ehrmann

Photo 1: Be Gentle

Rose soft two tone

Winning, shipping and “Tiny Miracles”

“Tiny Miracles” has won 1st Place and Logo of the Month of June 2017 for the Beautiful Flowers group.

Absolutely delighted that the image of a yellow spider Chrysanthemum in bloom has been selected as a winner in the Beautiful Flowers Group on Fine Art America. The comment by group administrator Maria Urso “Exquisite work, detail, color and clarity. Absolutely stunning.” is the kind of feedback that every artist thrives on.

As Seth Godin says we need to keep inventing our future “not all of it, just a little part. But enough to make a difference.” This post is dedicated to all those who ship their art and make a difference – whether they receive recognition or not.

Tiny Miracles

Mum 1 yellow

“Life is a series of thousands of tiny miracles. Notice them.” Mike Greenberg

Gratitude and Roses

“Gratitude is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul.” Henry Ward Beecher

Photo 1: Yellow roses in the breeze

Roses mini cluster blur

A friend I’ve  had for more than two decades recently succumbed to cancer and was laid to rest. She fought bravely and throughout her entire battle she resisted and she lived! While out on my walk the next day, camera in hand, I was very aware of the joy and beauty that surrounded me, of the miracle of life and the wonder of simply breathing.

Photo 2: Gratitude

Rose mini yellow

I am grateful to have known her and to have been inspired by her indomitable spirit, so today I am sharing these miniature yellow roses in honor of her life and our friendship. It’s always a good day to appreciate good friends.

Photo 3: Friendship blooms

Roses breeze mini

 

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