Pat: I'm glad to hear that your heat went back on and that the weather finally broke. Thanks for your supportive comments about smoking. I seem to be having a particularly difficult time. Even after writing what I did, I slipped again - although I only had 3 on Thursday and 5 yesterday. Maybe it works like those ancient religions, in which even speaking the name of the malevolent deity was thought to conjure up it's power. From now on, I think I'll shut up about it. :X
Lindsay: I agree with your comments about learning from Pat. She's a great teacher.
Your waterways project sounds like a lot of fun. I too struggle with the issue of just "jumping in" versus planning carefully. I imagine it would be even more difficult for you, since you clearly have a lot of very creative ideas - the excitement of those I suspect would make it more difficult to go slow.
Angela: See my comments above to Pat about the Malevolent-Diety--Whose-Name-Shall-Not-Be-Spoken
You had asked earlier about my camera: it's a Nikon P2, a mid-grade digital that I got on sale at a terrific discount.
It has a lot of automatic settings, but also allows the user to set most of them manually. I'm still learning about it, although I've had it for nearly a year (I have preferred to learn about painting, I guess, rather than photography.) I generally try to take pieces outside to photograph, although it also has a "Museum" setting for photographing art inside without flash that generally works quite well. For some pieces it doesn't though, and throws the colors off, which is why I really do need to learn more about how to use the "White Balance" settings. I think I need some sort of card that shows a 15% gray, or something like that, in order to use the white balance properly. Yours seems to be professional grade from the little I read about it. Very nice, Angela- you lucky girl!
The weather here has been much as it usually is this time of year: rainy one day, then sunny the next - or sometimes both in one day. Yesterday was sunny and I left the sliding glass door open for a while - I noticed that lovely "smell of spring" for the first time this year.