Self-diagnosed SAD

16 02 2010

Yep, that’s me. I proclaim myself a victim of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). According to Wikipedia: SAD, also known as winter depression or winter blues, is a mood disorder in which people who have normal mental health throughout most of the year experience depressive symptoms in the winter.

As I look out my studio window this afternoon, I see more snow coming down. Projection: 4 inches of the inconvenient stuff. White stuff on top of older white stuff. It was pretty the first time it snowed this winter (Dec. 19), but after the first 4 inches, enough was enough. It was 26.4 inches total for that first snowfall alone. I think it has snowed at least six times since then, including the 30″ we got over February 5. Fortunately, we were in sunny Florida during that blizzard, but we came home to the aftermath, followed by the additional 10.5 inches we got two days later on February 10. Ah yes, it was pretty the first time. Now it is just a pain. If I wanted this kind of snowfall, I would have already moved to any one of those snowy states starting with the letter “M”—Maine, Montana, Minnesota or Michigan.

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Well, whaddyaknow—there is actually a named disorder for the SAD condition experienced in summer—Reverse Seasonal Affective Disorder, which is accompanied by anxiety (come experience an oppressively hot D.C. summer and you’ll know what they’re talking about!)

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Hmmmm…what cheers me up? The promise of spring (32 days and counting, although by the looks of things, I beg to differ). And gardening. And lots of flowers to photograph. And on that note, I leave you (and temporarily, my SAD symptoms) with a series of collages of photos I shot in my Garden Club members’ gardens a few years ago. Sigh….somewhere under the “white crap accumulation,” there are bulbs hibernating and dormant plants dreaming of the sun. Keepin’ the faiiiiiiittttth, yay yay yay yay, keepin’ the faith…

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Signs of spring

8 03 2009

The snow from earlier in the week (see my Currier & Ives posting about Monday’s snowfall here) has melted, and this afternoon I discovered the harbingers of spring—Hellebores and Crocus—were blooming wildly in the front yard garden. We had just returned from the Meadowlark 2009 Photography Expo at the Meadowlark Botanical Garden in Vienna and I had my camera handy. Jeff Evans, friend and fellow photographer, joined us for this adventure. I recently blogged about Jeff’s exhibit at Gallery West in Alexandria here. Although the show ended February 1, Jeff’s work is on display there and in A Show of Hands, a Del Ray area gallery that recently relocated to 2301 Mt. Vernon Avenue in Alexandria, Virginia.

Each year I have to remind myself to look for the Hellebore blooms. These downward-facing flowers are quite shy and always hide their beauty, so when I catch a glimpse of the lime green, pink, or purple hues, I grab my camera. I posted a nice shot of one in bloom in last March here. As I plunked myself down in the middle of the bed of Pachysandra to photograph these blooms this afternoon, I was forced to assess all that needs to be done to get the garden looking good again. There’s work to be done, that’s for sure!

Speaking of the Meadowlark 2009 Photography Expo, I bought a Lensbaby Muse from Hunt’s Photo and Video‘s booth. I also discovered David Honl’s product line, HonlPhoto, at Penn Camera‘s booth. I bought the HonlPhoto Speed Strap, Gel Kit, and the 8″ Speed Snoot to use on my strobes and Nikon Speedlights. I’m always on the lookout for accessories to improve and stretch my flash capabilities. These products are reasonably priced, simply designed, and will take up very little room in my already full camera bag. Check ’em out!

I’m also debating on whether to get one of the HonlPhoto Speed Grid attachments. Read about their application on the Strobist site here. By the way, this website is an excellent resource for photographers who want to learn more about lighting!

The show continues tomorrow (Sunday) and if you’re in the area, it’s worth a visit. All of the vendors offer show prices on their products during the show. The entrance fee is $5. And don’t forget to check out the juried exhibition of photos from local camera clubs.

And after not checking the mail for two days, I discovered my Nikon Speedlight DVD, featuring photographers Joe McNally and Bob Krist, had arrived.

Photo inspiration. Photo chat. Photo gadget bargains. Beautiful weather. First blooms of spring. Neighbors out to chat. Something other than bills arrived in the mail. Today was an especially good day!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

helleboresinbloom