Tag Archives: Personal

{place} PICK MISSISSIPPI

Of all the places I could live, I’d still pick Mississippi. There’s warmth in the hearts of her people found nowhere else. Her soil yields crops which provide for the world. Manners are still valued. Churches are still full. My momma and daddy dwell in her Delta. Porch swings swing and fireflies fly. Yellow planes dust crops and thrill the travelers. Her river is mighty and proud; her cotton, white with purpose. And when it’s cotton pickin’ time, that’s my cue to grab the camera and make a trip through the Delta! Miles before I ever reach my hometown of Greenville, my heart is at home as soon as I see those countless rows of boles!! So for all my Delta friends who won’t be passing through this time of year, these images are for you… because I know you’d still pick Mississippi, too.   

Teresa Russell Photography RIDGELAND MS-1
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Like they say, “There’s no place like home!” No truer words have ever been spoken. Mississippi will always be mine.

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{floral} MAGNOLIA

Been busy.  I know we’re all busy, but 2012 has been non-stop for me.  Until now.  I’m finally finding time to look up from boxes and decisions on where to put things.  And this is what I see outside the French doors of my new home office.  A beautiful magnolia tree entertains my each time my wandering eye glances that way!

 

And I can hardly believe that I see on it some of the first signs that fall is indeed just around the corner.  Here in Mississippi, when we see these bright red seeds bursting out from the broad, shiny leaves of the stately magnolia tree, we know that cooler months are not far behind.

 

And for me, it means I actually did survive moving during August, the hottest month ever.  With humidity, we’re talking heat index of 110 degrees!!  But I’m thankful that my husband and I are nearly settled in our new home and all the selling/buying/packing/moving/unpacking chaos is behind us.  In February, we helped one of our daughters move into her new home – which is really a very old home – which needed lots of love.  So until about May, we spent lots of time and effort getting things like they should be.  Then we decided to put our own home on the market.  And you know what that means!  Constantly clean  house!!  And to our surprise, it sold very quickly, so we were once again making trips to the liquor stores for boxes, and packing for a move.  The last 8 months have been a blur.  I’ve hardly touched my camera.  But it’s time to get it out and go exploring my new neighborhood.  This is my favorite time of year!

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{just for fun} WATER PLAY

We have a beautiful outdoor shopping center nearby that is home to a magnificent marble fountain.  It’s beautiful from every angle.  Renaissance at Colony Park in Ridgeland, MS, welcomes shoppers with a massive, hand-crafted Italian fountain made of quarried marble.  It’s designed in the likeness of a fountain in Rome which has four sea horses.  This exquisite creation  is 16-feet tall and sprays 14,000 gallons of water per minute into the lower chamber.  Ever since the first day I saw it, I have been wanting to take pictures of it.  Why?  Because of the water, of course!  One of my favorite things to do with my camera is stop water or blur it.  While driving past the shopping center this past weekend, I excitedly realized I had my camera with me.  So I quickly requested that my husband run me by the shopping center for a moment.  He said, “Sure, what do you need?” – as in what store did I need him to pull up to.  I replied, “Oh, no store!  I want to play with the water.”  With a puzzled look but no further questions, he turned into the parking lot, and as we passed by the fountain I yelled, “Right here, you can stop right here!”  “In the parking lot?” he asked.  “You want me to stop right here?”  Then I pointed to the marble fountain and said, “Yes, THIS is the water I want to play with!”  So he parked the car and out I hopped and the next 45 minutes were total fun.  Even though the sun was going down and I didn’t have my flash with me to help capture crisper images, here are some of my favorite photos from that play time.

Fountain at Renaissance at Colony Park
Fountain at Renaissance at Colony Park
Fountain at Renaissance at Colony Park

 

I cannot imagine being so gifted as a craftsman that I could cut a chunk of marble to the point of it looking life-like.  But this artisan surely was; and he surely did.  These horses seem to have emotion.  They appear forceful yet graceful.  I could just sit and look at them for hours.  Beautiful.  Entertaining.  Why is water so mesmerizing?  The same with watching the flames of a fire.  They just draw you in!  The next three images may look the same, but the difference is in the water behind the horse.  Subtle yet different captures of the water flowing on and around the horses.

Fountain at Renaissance at Colony Park

 

In the image above, the horse looks powerful.  In the one below, it appears soft and gentle.  This is a great example of how the framing of a shot can provoke a particular emotion from a photograph.

 

This is one of my favorite photos.  It looks as if the horse is charging right at you, running with all his might.  And the water seems to add a sense of speed and force to the image, too.

 

And then as I was walking back toward the car, I spotted these pretty flowers and just couldn’t pass up such a pretty photo op.  These colors together just make for an eye-pleasing image.

 

I love purples and greens together, and this flower bed was nothing but purples and greens!  Click.

 

Whenever I shop at Renaissance, as I pass the hand-crafted fountain, I always roll my window down and enjoy the refreshing sound those 14,000 gallons make as they spill over and down upon the chiseled horses.  I am reminded of God’s gift of craftsmanship to mankind.  And of His refreshing the earth with water.  And for that very fleeting moment, I feel refreshed, too, and am thankful for His many blessings; the great ones as well as the simple.  As you hustle and bustle through your day, don’t miss the gift of beauty that surrounds you!

Special thanks to Jeff for always being willing and happy to stop the car for an impromptu photo session of whatever!

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{snapshot} BACKYARD

You know those days!  The ones when the skies are blue and the wind is blowing and the sunshine is calling you outside.  Well, I heard the call and with camera in hand went out and took the time to enjoy the beauty of the everyday colors in my own backyard.  Have you ever looked at a cactus so closely?  No wonder it hurts when you touch one!

 

This yard ornament turned out crazy wild!  That great texture is from a window screen.  Shot right through it.  Anytime I can see light coming through purple glass, well, that makes me happier than you can imagine.  Love it!

 

And speaking of purple, this mushroom beauty nestled in a pot of aloe vera sitting in front of a screen window with ferns on the other side is one of my favorites of the day.  I love the purple and green combination.  Always my favorite two colors together.  And again, the screen added the perfect touch of texture.

 

Clematis.  White Clematis.  If you don’t have one of these beauties climbing a tree or trellis in your own yard, you are missing out!  This one is called Henry Clematis.  More specifically, it is Clematis x henryi.  It’s a classic.  Gorgeous in the moonlight.  If you don’t have one, go get one!  I’ll always have one of these growing in my yard.  When you plant it, make sure the roots are very well covered with shade.  The vine needs sun; the roots like to be shaded.  I have a broken piece of tile on the ground over the area where the roots are.  Don’t ask me exactly why I do this.  Just read it somewhere.  Seems to work!  This vine is easy care with lots of show-stopping blooms.  The next few images are all from the same vine.  The first one even has a busy little bee in it.  Love when I load my images and discover an extra surprise!

 

It’s not often my husband is out in the yard relaxing instead of working!  I get to enjoy a beautiful backyard mostly due to his keeping it looking so nice.  I plant the flowers.  He keeps the beds looking good.  Teamwork!  Glad he humored me with a quick pose even though he was enjoying reading the newspaper.  He can read a newspaper like nobody else!  Covers every square inch.  Marketing guy.  Guess that’s why.

 

Ah, the purple iris.  My favorite.  Well, one of my favorites.  But it is an absolute favorite!  Actually, I love any type of purple iris.  This one is a purple swamp iris.  I have yellow ones, too.  Purple and yellow together in the same flower bed make a stunning presentation.  I started with a few of these and now have tons.  They multiply every year.  What’s not to love?

 

And here’s Sarah Cat, the neighbors cat that spends all her days in our yard.  Ain’t that the way it goes!?  We like having her visit every day.  She was hiding in one of my flower beds and when I got close she sprang out and decided it was time to head home.

 

I like this shot because it has the birdhouse that my dad made me.  Make that “one of the birdhouses” my dad made me.  Have lots of them around the fence.  Several have little baby birdies in them right now.  As I walked around the yard, I could hear little chirps coming from some of them.  This one has a bluebird family that has come back the past three years.  At least I think it’s the same family!  Hard to tell.  And I like that it has some of the yellow swamp iris showing in the background.  And you can see all the stages of the flower: a bud, a bloom, and  . . . hmmm, what do you call it . . . a spent bloom?  Whatever!

 

Thanks for stopping by and scrolling through my images.  I look forward to reading any comments that you leave.  I’m already planning out what I’m going to do with my camera on the next sunny day that I’m free to go out and play.  Way too much fun!

 

 

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{event} OLD-FASHIONED CHRISTMAS

I can’t believe it’s here, but it is.  Christmas is in the air and in the house!  Our tree is sporting its big, fun, colorful lights this year – topped off with lots of tinsel.  You just can’t look at this tree and not smile.  For me, it not only brings back memories from my own childhood, but from my children’s as well.  When my daughters were still very young, I began collecting dated ornaments for all three of us each year.  So when they have their own families with their own Christmas trees, we will all have many of the same ornaments reminding us of our past Christmases together.  There’s nothing like nostalgia during the holidays!

Even the gift-wrapping is old-fashioned.  Brown paper and colorful yarns pretty up all the packages under the tree.  Simple, quick and inexpensive.  Can’t beat that during the holidays!  The gift tags are handmade from card stock and personalized with stickers.

From the Russell home to your home . . . Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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