Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

January 17, 2011

Picture Winter Day 17

Filed under: Photo assignments — Karma @ 3:03 pm
Tags: , ,

“Stark Raving Magnificent”

 (That heading is Ms. Clark’s title, not mine, BTW!)

At first glance, today’s prompt seemed simple enough, with no real interpretation needed: “Whether your world is covered in snow or you’re on a white sandy beach, capture some kind of starkness today.  Think minimal beauty. Think simple.”  One of the pictures of the dogs racing through the snow popped to mind when I read the prompt.  I thought maybe if I went back to the part of the yard I was in and shot the scene without dogs, I’d have that stark, minimal beauty.  Somehow it didn’t feel quite the same today, so I tried different angles, settings and lenses.  Out of my backyard shots, I ended up liking this one the best, but I’m honestly not sure if it goes with the prompt.  What do you think?

While I was musing over whether this shot actually fit the prompt, I glanced out the window that faces my front yard and noticed what a gorgeous blue sky we have today.  I wondered if I could capture that gorgeous color with something that fit the prompt.  I also submitted this shot to the gallery today:

It is definitely stark, but I’m not all that excited by it.  Maybe I needed to move beyond my own yard to have a truly, starkly beautiful shot today. Spending lots of time outside searching for the perfect shot, however, isn’t part of today’s agenda, especially with the high temperature at about 20 degrees. (BTW, does anyone know how to make a degree symbol here in WordPress?  The code I found for Microsoft Office doesn’t work.)

I’d be curious to know your thoughts here.  Do either of these shots seem to fit the prompt to you?



  1. I love the sun in the 1st shot!

    Comment by livvy30 — January 17, 2011 @ 3:10 pm | Reply

  2. Tough prompt! Sadly, I don’t get ‘stark’ or minimalist in either of your shots, but the second one is closer. There is still time. 🙂

    The meaning of stark is desolate. When I think of stark, I think of something in the middle of nowhere, making it appear small. As I look out my window, I can see the sun glinting off the snow and a single twig sticking out of a snowmound. That could be stark.

    When I look at your first shot, I notice the white shed doors….hmmm, perhaps you could go out and shoot just the doors (fill your frame vertically). They are ‘stark’ white! 🙂

    Comment by milkayphoto — January 17, 2011 @ 3:26 pm | Reply

    • For a prompt that I thought did not require much interpretation, it did need quite a bit in the end. I wish you could have access to the gallery to see the huge variety of pictures people submitted. If I went with the definition “sharply delineated,” then I think #2 could fit.
      I have one of those twigs too – and took a picture of it- but it didn’t do anything for me.
      I’m thinking this is one of those prompts I will let go as not a favorite and move on.

      Comment by Karma — January 18, 2011 @ 8:44 am | Reply

  3. I do like the sun & shadows in the first shot, but I am completely jealous of the gorgeous blue sky!! We have had so little blue sky around here lately, I’m starting to forget what it looks like!

    Comment by photobyholly — January 17, 2011 @ 4:39 pm | Reply

    • That blue sky was quite amazing yesterday! Today we are back to gray and snow and freezing rain, so I’m glad I got that picture.

      Comment by Karma — January 18, 2011 @ 8:45 am | Reply

  4. Count yourself lucky that the beauty in your life today is sunny and bright. What if you found an off-kilter angle through a window, or looked at tiny details rather than the big picture? Find a piece of stark beauty in the midst of the gorgeous day.

    The HTML for the degree symbol is & deg ; (without those spaces–I think if I type it without the spaces–°– it might just make the symbol). You can also insert symbols of all kinds from the “kitchen sink” of tools in the Visual Editing screen.

    Comment by Gerry — January 17, 2011 @ 5:03 pm | Reply

    • The sun was lovely yesterday, especially since we are back to gray and snow and freezing rain today. That sounds like a great idea, Gerry, but with the exception of icicles, most everything out my window is white right now!
      Thanks for the tip on the kitchen sink of symbols! Never noticed that before.

      Comment by Karma — January 18, 2011 @ 8:48 am | Reply

  5. Minimalist makes me think of a shot of a tractor in a vast snow covered field. Or a piece of driftwood on an empty beach. Or a snow covered car on an otherwise desolate city street. The focus would be on that subject, but it’s focus or importance in the shot would be in conjunction with it’s massive surroundings.

    Comment by plainmama — January 17, 2011 @ 6:57 pm | Reply

    • Those sound like perfect scenes for a prompt like this Amy. I’ll admit to not wanting to search one out yesterday.

      Comment by Karma — January 18, 2011 @ 8:49 am | Reply

  6. Stark can sometimes be difficult to convey. I think you were getting close with your second shot. (Beautiful blue sky, btw!)

    I use the alt keyboard codes for symbols such as the degree sign. Hold down alt and type 0176. That should give you °

    Comment by Robin — January 18, 2011 @ 8:27 am | Reply

    • Yes, it was much harder than I thought it would be! Especially here in suburbia. I think if I really wanted to nail yesterday’s prompt a drive somewhere a bit less populated might have been in order, but I did what I could. Today is a new prompt day!

      I did try that Alt code and it didn’t work for me!

      Comment by Karma — January 18, 2011 @ 8:52 am | Reply

  7. I was thinking the same as Tracy when I saw the shed doors. Personally I don’t think “minimal beauty” and all that gorgeous white, (almost) untouched snow just don’t belong in the same sentence 😉
    Out of these two, I would have submitted the second one, too.

    Comment by thedailyclick — January 18, 2011 @ 4:21 pm | Reply

    • That prompt definitely was harder than I thought it would be. Better luck next time, right?

      Comment by Karma — January 19, 2011 @ 8:35 am | Reply

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