Catherine’s Ah Ha Moment – It’s a Wiggly World!

I can hear you all saying, “Another post from Catherine so soon?!” Well, there are several reasons for this post.

First, Sam and Darwin are trying to take some time off this month. As you read in Kennel Boy’s post, he was crazy busy while at Gone Wild Kennels.  Sam slaved over the computer most of the time except one day when we both toodled off to Canmore. We spent some time strolling down the main street, stopping for a nice creamy latte and then heading to the deli to purchase a turducken for the festive season.

Christmas Dinner

©Catherine Byram – What do you mean, “Guess who’s coming to dinner?”

Keep your eye on the oopoomoo posts because I can see a story here!!! One day last week,  Sam and Darwin went out into the forest just to have FUN. No further explanation was given.  I don’t believe cameras were involved, so I guess we will leave the definition of ‘fun’ to our imaginations! They deserve some time off so I’ll  help them out by doing this post.

Reason two for this post is that I had one more assignment to complete for my Instructor at SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology). He told us that he was so impressed with our creativity that the doors are wide open for our last assignment. The one restriction is that we cannot do any post production. While working on my assignment I came across  a ‘discovery’ that I thought I would share with all of you.

The third reason is that I am not running around buying chocolate, marshmallows, candied fruit, dates and all the other goodies needed for the Christmas sweets. I am not out in the woods looking for a six foot tree which, by the time it gets into the house, is ten feet!!!! (it looked so much smaller in the forest!)  AND…I am not fighting off crowds of people, listening to crying babies who are all bundled up in strollers like wee  cocoons, or standing in line for one hour only to find out that the 2012 Christmas gift fad is all sold out!! Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE Christmas!!! We celebrated ‘Christmas in July’ because it’s so difficult to get all family members home in December.  Yep, this year we had our Christmas Polar Bear on our front lawn, some strands of lights in the trees, our Christmas tree dressed in its best, presents waiting to have their outer skin ripped off,  stockings hanging and the wonderful, delicious smell of ……………barbequed hamburgers. Hey! It’s too hot in the middle of July to have the oven on for five hours while the bird cooks!!! We enjoyed our meal on the back deck with family and friends and some even enjoyed a soak in the hot tub! Our neighbours thought perhaps Ed and I had really lost it when we were decorating the front yard with Christmas decorations on July 10th .  They were convinced we belong in the loonie bin on July 14th when we were on the deck unwrapping Christmas gifts !!!

Soooooooooooooo, I have some time on my hands. What better way to spend some of that time than writing an oopoomoo post?

Now, to my AH HA moment. The pressure is on. Twenty Continuing Education Students need to be photographically creative. We are a competitive group, in a friendly way, and this is our last chance to  ‘show our stuff’. However,  I don’t know if I can top the RED BRA in a snow covered  tree image shown last week in class. NOOOO, I did not submit that photo.

I should work on my Portrait Challenge Sam and Darwin have given me and kill two birds with one stone. The challenge is to be finished by the end of the year and the portraits are to be of strangers. I need to develop a rapport with them prior to ‘shooting’ them. But, I’ll tell you a secret if you promise not to mention it to Sam or Darwin…….They neglected to tell me how many portraits I am required to hand in. Ha ha ha! I know I can grab one image of a person before New Years Eve so I’m not in a big panic.

For my SAIT assignment I decided to do some water droplets on glass photos. I have never done this before so I knew there would be some trial and error happening.

The first step was to find a small piece of glass. Downstairs I went. After rummaging through some boxes I saw just what I needed – an 8×10 piece of glass from a broken photo frame.

The second step was to get my tail over to the local ‘tires and everything else store’ to buy some Rain X  which causes water beads to form when water contacts the glass.

After washing, drying, Rain-x-ing and dropping little droplets of water on the glass it was now time to set things up. Camera was attached to the tripod. Small items to put under the glass included a lizard figurine,  red and green confetti, a red and white card shaped like a mitten  and one of Ed’s  treasured collectors matchbox cars (this is another secret, okay?)

©Catherine Byram

I held the glass between the mitten shaped Christmas card and the lens and  played around with distance from the card. I focused the camera on the droplets. Not bad…… good depth of field and you could see part of the card in some of the droplets. Snap. Ummm, what are those funny lines all over my image??? Okay. I need to keep the glass absolutely still.  Out come four small boxes. With the glass carefully placed on top of the boxes I snapped away again. Still wiggly lines! Wash, dry and a super polish this time. Snap. Nope! What the heck!?!? Must be poor quality glass!

I downloaded the images on to my laptop to have a better look at the wiggly lines. Ummmm, these lines remind me of something I’ve seen before…..???  Relaxed and stretched out in my recliner (I do my best thinking in this position) I was in heavy thought and staring up at the ceiling. That’s when I had my AH HA moment! WIGGLY LINES!!! ON THE CEILING!!! The textured ceiling was reflecting on the glass and because of the lighting I was getting a perfect reflection!

I replaced the red mitten card on the table, focused on the wiggly lines and SNAP. Here is what I got.


©Catherine Byram

I put the lizard under the glass and focused on the lizard through the glass. Here is an image of the set up.

©Catherine Byram

Then I focused on the wiggley lines.

©Catherine Byram

The images I shot today were not what I was hoping for but they are kinda neat. I won`t submit any of them for my SAIT assignment but I may come back to this technique at a later date and see what else  could be done with glass and ceiling. Perhaps when I succeed with my water droplets on glass project, I will share them with you.

About the Author

I am a retired school teacher and enthusiastic photographer and traveler.


  1. Clara
    December 16, 2012

    Neat pictures and story telling and a Lady!!

  2. Ian Carroll
    December 16, 2012

    Hey Catherine, and Sam & Darwin too!

    Fun post Catherine! Ain’t serendipity dandy??!!

    I had a similar eureka moment shooting carp in a pond this autumn:


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