five facts

Posted in random bits by nikkipolani on February 23, 2008

I haven’t been tagged for some time now (and this is not an open invitation!) but I liked White on Rice Couple’s photographic tag post, in which they helpfully supplied text as well :-) So here are five facts about me:

1. I alphabetize my spices. Except for the one lazy susan of flavor extracts and baking spices, the rest are arranged alphabetically because it seems like I’m always short of time when I’m cooking. I tend to gather ingredients as I read them and fumbling through spice jars is not fun (btw, not in alphabetical order are the salts and peppers on the right, but you already saw that, I bet).

2. I love Bach. Though I like some post-1700s music, my music of choice for soothing melodies or complex polyphonies goes back to Bach, particularly the French suites. My brain can’t hold words and music together – I can hum along to a lot of my favorite classical pieces, but, with a few exceptions, I can’t remember the words to my favorite hymns or any other music, for that matter.

3 . I get asked this question every now and again about what camera I use, so I’ll answer it here: I have a Canon XTi with a 50mm f/1.8 lens. I don’t have any setups (reflectors, lights, etc.) and usually shoot food photos at the window by my kitchen sink. In my Amazon wishlist is the 50mm f/1.4, a 24-70mm f/2.8 L, and a 580EX II flash. The 50mm f/1.4 just may get moved to the shopping cart soon.

4. One thing you’ll hear often in my house, Have you seen my macro filter? I inherited a few that happened to fit my 50mm lens. But I’m not at all methodical when it comes to taking photos. I usually take about 10 seconds to position my food subject, take maybe two or three shots, and fling off the filter because the cats are climbing the walls in the hallway and I want to get that shot. So the hapless filter often winds up by the stove, behind the coffeemaker, next to the phone, tucked in with CDs, in my back pocket . . . .

5. I’m currently feeling: exhausted. We had some painful layoffs this week. Because of budget cuts, colleagues I cherished and some not so much were handed a box to pack up their personal belongings. Though sometimes a finger of worry would try to work its way in, God reminded me in several small but clear ways earlier in the week that He was providing for me (as He always has), but that this time, it wasn’t my turn to be laid off.

16 Responses

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  1. fiwa said, on February 23, 2008 at 8:58 am

    You are so phenomenally talented with the camera.
    I wish my spices were as organized as yours – but as with everything else – my excuse is I don’t have the room!
    I’m so sorry about the layoffs. I know just how hard that is, and the survivor syndrome you feel for not being cut yourself. It takes awhile for an office to recover from those sorts of feelings. Hugs to you. You are there because you are supposed to be, plain and simple. Because as you said, it’s where God wants you to be. And also because, I am sure, of your talent and your work ethic. I hope you enjoy your weekend. lovins -fiwa

  2. dawn clement said, on February 23, 2008 at 9:43 am

    ok. wait. you can use a macro filter on a regular lens? i have the same camera as you do but, haven’t purchased any fixed lens’ yet. i’m totally in awe of your photos. =)

  3. Dawn said, on February 23, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    Great Meme, I love the added photos. I should alphabetize my spices too, perhaps when I get a new cupboard for them. I hate digging through all of them for the right one. I have kids who won’t put them in the right place either so perhaps I should just wait until they move out.

    I love your photos too. I look forward to getting a good camera one day.

    So sorry about the downsizing at work. It isn’t a good thing even if it isn’t you going. There is always a lot of tension. I went through it with a buyout when our company bought out the other company and I was sent to learn the lab system, and then I became the supervisor. There was some tension. I hope you weather that storm okay and get strength in knowing God is caring for you.

  4. Wandering Chopsticks said, on February 23, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    I alphabetize my spices too. Or well, the ones in the spice rack I bought. The ones in my spice drawer are sectioned into Chinese, Indian, and miscellaneous spices.

    I thought you used a Nikon because your photos always seem to “pop.” And I usually only think that about Nikon photos, rarely the Canon Rebel photos. :P Although I do love my Canon point-and-shoot.

    I’m glad you survived the lay-offs! You have seemed a bit exhausted lately in your posts but I just figured you were working too hard.

  5. nikkipolani said, on February 23, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Fiwa, I too had the too-crowded cupboards until I organized them and realized I had three containers of herbes de provence, four (yes, four) jars of ginger, reeeeally old breadcrumbs, etc. Got rid of the older duplicates, combined stuff, threw out the 2 tablespoons of some obscure grain I was experimenting with…. and voilĂ ! Room! And thanks for the hugs. They’re so needed for post-layoff blues.
    Hello Dawn Clement :-) It’s probably in my ignorance that I used these macro filters! A friend had switched to bigger zoomier lenses and gave me his filters. Since getting my DSLR, getting used to these non-point-and-shoot features has been a learning experience. Glad you’re enjoying the photos – and welcome :-D
    Dawn Colours – Do you think there’s any likelihood they would put spices back in the right place if they were alphabetized? My problem was never remembering any thematic plans for organization. But the alphabet – I think I can remember this!
    WC – I don’t think I have near as many spices as you do – just not as adventurous. I was always amazed that you’re doing some Persian dish or Korean or German… I used my Canon PowerShot A95 to take the photo of my Rebel and let me tell you, it was painful to go back to an older P&S. I got a Canon a zillion years ago and stayed with the brand (the lenses make you do it), but it seems that the pros favor Nikon. Though I’m discovering more photographers who use Canon.

  6. kate smudges said, on February 23, 2008 at 5:29 pm

    I wish I had enough spices that they needed to be alphabetised… mine all fit into one wire lazy-susan thingy. Your photographs are always such a treat to see.

    I was sorry to hear about the layoffs. It’s always tough to lose friends. I hope that’s the end of the layoffs.

    Big kisses to your little sweethearts … I hope there will be pictures of them tomorrow!

  7. mary said, on February 23, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    I used a Canon XTi last week and loved it – borrowed it from the college but I haven’t seen the photos I took with it. You are a wonderful artist/photographer, Anne!

    It’s rough when layoffs occur. I’m happy it didn’t affect you, although I know it causes you to worry about your colleagues. My husband’s company closed their doors in October and gave 350 employees a one hour notice. So, I know the feeling.

  8. Lisa's Chaos said, on February 23, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    What a fun meme! I think you challenge yourself with only using one lens and you do great!!!!! with that. :) It’s kinda funny how you leave your filters laying all over the place. :)

  9. Christine D. said, on February 23, 2008 at 10:09 pm

    Sorry about all the layoffs and worrying at work. Your last picture really speaks exhaustion with the stack of papers and the “done” “start” on the monitor. Seems like at work when you’re done with one thing, there’s always something else to start on! =(

    Great pictures and meme!

  10. Ginni said, on February 23, 2008 at 11:40 pm

    I enjoyed learning more about you. No wonder your photos have such great depth of field! I recently got a 50mm f/1.8 lens for my Canon XT and I simply love how photos turn out! It took me a while to get used to a prime lens, but it’s about all I use for indoor shots now.

    These are wonderful shots and loved the meme!

  11. Louise said, on February 24, 2008 at 1:15 am

    I could tell you had a cupboard full of lovely spices, placing alphabetically saves time in the long run, and gives you more time to make more of these delcious dishes of yours. Great to see the camera that takes all these fabulous photos. When I first came over to your blog after a recommendation from Flighty, I was so impressed with them, and still am! Will that lens be pointing towards those two bundles of fun in the near future, I do love your cat posts?

  12. Julie said, on February 24, 2008 at 4:36 am

    Thanks for showing your camera!!! And details…it is a wonder! Just like you! God bless you, and I am very happy you were not laid off, but sorry for your friends that were. God will provide for them as well. “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven”.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1

  13. Sis said, on February 24, 2008 at 6:40 am

    Hey, girl, I loved this post!

    And I have to say, I am a pro photographer (although not well known, haha) – but I do have a part-time photography business – and I have a Canon 300D (the first digital Rebel) and a Canon 5D – wouldn’t trade them for anything! Well, except that big ol’ $8,000 Canon 1DS Mark III hahahaha!

    But ya know? It’s not the camera, so much…it’s the photographer. You would take awesome pics with a Polaroid one step.

  14. nikkipolani said, on February 24, 2008 at 6:28 pm

    Kate! Your comment about your spices (or lack thereof) made me smile :-D Pics of the fuzzy ones very soon.
    Mary, if you do get the XTi, you may want to consider skipping the lens that comes with it in order to get one that’s zoomier. 18-55mm isn’t much for the bird photos you shoot.
    Ginni, I was very pleasantly surprised at how much brighter the humble 50mm was than the kit lens. I don’t currently shoot in RAW so I’m still fiddling with white balance.
    Louise, you are so sweet. Yes, more kitty posts soon. They are beginning to react to the camera by immediately sitting down and posing. It’s getting harder to capture them doing the fun stuff!
    Thank you, Julie, for your blessings and a reminder of Eccl. It’s not like I haven’t been laid off before, but am glad to be spared this time.
    Sis, I want to ask you about the whole full-frame thing in relation to lenses. Some day, i’d love to move up to the 5D and wonder if my current lens choices will still work. I’ve heard that with the higher end Canons, there’s no noise shooting at 3200. That’s pretty cool!

  15. Sis said, on February 26, 2008 at 4:28 am

    I think they should still work…the L glass for sure, when you get it. But the ES series only works on the digital Rebel…EF works on both.

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say there’s NO noise at higher ISO’s, but it’s significantly reduced and you can get rid of more in photoshop.

    I do love my 5D…and there are features on it that I love to use, that other photogs don’t use much or ever, like the Monochrome setting. But you know? Many say if your camera is working fine, just spend that money on L glass instead of a new body. It’s a matter of opinion, I think…and I do so covet L glass.

  16. White On Rice Couple said, on February 29, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    These are the five facts of a true Renaissance Woman! I want to see more…please….anyone who gets tagged….tag Nikkipolani again!! Can’t get enough of her!

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