sum, sum, SUMMER! Our short, but oh-so-very-sweet seven week summer break is here and we are squeezing the life out of it! We are spending most afternoons at the lake, making new friends (even Mama) and taking lots of pictures. Weekends find us out and about as usual, soaking up the sights and adventures so abundant here in Switzerland. I realize this project is challenging, but truly if I cannot take at least one photo every day in summer, something is seriously wrong with me! I am pretty excited for what’s coming this fall, too. A move, a new school for my little guy and two new business ventures (at least) for me. Stay tuned for more info on that coming very, very soon! xxoo Kate.
Just a simple after-dinner walk through town. St-Prex, SwitzerlandInspired by the work ethic of bees. Freelensed. St-Prex, SwitzerlandThe giant pretzel floatie has sadly met an untimely death. Remind me to tell you about my dream Ghost Mom photo series. St-Prex, SwitzerlandOne from July’s edition of our international mothers’ freelensing project, Into Something Better. Official post coming later this week. Tolochenaz, SwitzerlandTournesol/Sunflower. Field after field after field of these beauties here in Vaud. Etoy, SwitzerlandI used this photo to teach my son a lesson on indirect storytelling through photography. We can tell he’s at the lake without seeing any water. St-Prex, SwitzerlandMore double-exposure goodness. St-Prex, SwitzerlandMy son picked out this 30CHF skateboard last week and he only had 11CHF to spend. I refused to give him a loan (he asked), but told him if he really believed that it would be his, it would. Less than a week later, he has enough money plus six extra CHF by working for some neighbors and has also beaten a bad habit of biting his fingernails to earn this thing. If you can see it in your mind, you can hold it in your hand. Aubonne, SwitzerlandMore swirly freelensing goodness. St-Prex, SwitzerlandA typical Sunday walk for us. This is very close to where two mummified bodies were found last week and also close to where I was airlifted off the mountain last year. Just a coincidence, I’m sure. Col du Pillion, SwitzerlandCelebrating summer. Above Aigle, SwitzerlandThere is nothing quite like bubbles to bring the kids around. Suddenly, my son is the most popular child at the lake! St-Prex, SwitzerlandOur new normal. Such a privilege to live here. St-Prex, SwitzerlandLove her sun-kissed curls. St-Prex, Switzerland
Maybe I got caught up in my elation over winter finally ending. Maybe the end of the school year and the switch to summer mode confused and confounded me. I’m not sure what happened….but somewhere I lost a week. I kind of knew it when Summer Solstice rolled around and I was on Week 25 instead of Week 26 – which is halfway to 52. Anyway, I’m not curious enough today to go back and discover what happened. I will just chalk it up to being one of my life’s great mysteries.
How I Lost a Week of My Life in a 365 Photo Project by Kate Cuénoud 🙂
Here are my images for weeks 26 and 27 because I went on an amazing adventure in France last week and didn’t want to be online. Also, I lost all but 10 of the images I took on that amazing adventure. This was the first time since switching from film to digital seven years ago that has happened. Let’s hope it’s the last.No other flower delights me quite like the poppy. The bees love them too. Freelensed. St-Prex, SwitzerlandOne of my favorite spots for a daycamp. There is also a tower. Tour de Gourze, SwitzerlandIn just two years, I have taken countless images one this dock. “Our” dock. I’m not one for a lot of repeat shooting because I think it’s boring, but I loved the moody light here. St-Prex, SwitzerlandMy daughter went to Europa Parc with her soccer/football team and so we took our little guy to Valais for the day. I love the texture of this image and this ingenious wood storage system – no need to step out into the cold! Grimentz, Switzerland.He really does thrive on solo parenting time. Grimentz, Switzerland.As close as I usually get to a selfie. I really do love playing with reflection. St-Prex, Switzerland.And motion. I love playing with motion, too. She got a new skirt and could not stop twirling. St-Prex, Switzerland.I continue to explore the world of macro photography. I am fascinated by the arrangements that nature makes. This is a banana plant leaf. St-Prex, Switzerland.Our neighbor for four days last week. A gorgeous horse with lovely tiny white spots on her coat. Autrans, France.I did something called Dog Trekking that I have never done before and likely will never do again. I had never even heard of it. I think it’s a summer activity for sled dogs. I am highly suspicious of people who use animals for commerce, but these lovely animals were very well cared for and so happy to be working, pulling people through the French forest. What an amazing time! Autrans, France.We took the kids to a nearby adventure park for an ice cream and the view above Rolle, then I sneaked away for a moment to shoot this lovely gazebo. Freelensed. Signal de Bougy – Aubonne, Switzerland.Another adventure to Vallorbe means I got to capture how the river runs through the town and powers these waterwheels that demonstrate the power of the forge in this museum. Vallorbe, Switzerland.Some kids go through a dinosaur phase, some a Barbie phase, my kids go through a baking phase. Although this one had her first cupcake catering job (pictured here) and she is really motivated to continue baking! St-Prex, Switzerland.Although to have or not have a pet is an on-going and losing battle for my kids, there are many opportunities to give and receive love from a variety of cats in our small town. St-Prex, Switzerland.
Thank you for stopping by for this double dose of my project. I am still really excited about what this year has brought and will bring me as I develop my business and my brand. Look for some special announcements soon! xxoo Kate.
The photo a day adventure continues! Most people who embark on a project of this kind report that shooting every day really helped them develop new photography skills. Sadly, I don’t think that’s the case for me – at least so far. However, I am amassing hundreds of new images for my portfolio, my kids’ photo albums and our family scrapbooks and wall art, which I love. Maybe what I’m learning is to (ironically) not shoot so much because the editing load is crushing at times! It’s a good thing I love to edit – more to come on that topic. If you follow me on Facebook you can see these images a month at a time and if you follow me on Instagram you can see my weekly collages. Hey, come and follow me on Instagram and Facebook! xxoo Kate.Freelensing in a field of wildflowers. Vallorbe, SwitzerlandHigh above Rolle. Signal de Bougy adventure parkAt eight and 11, my kids still love the playground. Vallorbe, SwitzerlandSometimes, the light is just divine. Yens, SwitzerlandCounting down the final days of the school year. St-Prex, SwitzerlandMorning sunlight in the sprinkler. St-Prex, SwitzerlandI resisted the water squirter for two years, and then he got one as a birthday gift. Lots and lots of rules for playing with this thing, but so far, no complaints from anyone. St-Prex, Switzerland
It’s month two of our new international blog circle celebrating mothers and children in nature. The group was created to provide an escape from technology for our children and an opportunity for mothers who are photographers to use the specific technique of freelensing during these adventures. This project is already proving to be a powerful force in my work and I can honestly say that I am loving the work I’m creating during these sessions. While I typically shoot at least a couple of shots using freelensing during each of my photo outings, shooting an entire session freelensed is something new for me. I love the dreamy quality of the entire story told this way and when I do happen to shoot a normal shot, when I see it later while editing, it almost seems intrusive.
This month’s images were taken near Les Grottes de Vallorbe, a grand collection of underground caves carved by a powerful river. Where the river comes bubbling up from underground, there is a beautiful forest and sweet little refuge. It was there that we celebrated Fathers Day this year. On any given Sunday, you will find my husband and myself with our two little kids somewhere in nature. Most often, we are in the forest.
Sleeping In The Forest
by Mary Oliver
I thought the earth remembered me,
She took me back so tenderly
Arranging her skirts
Her pockets full of lichens and seeds.
I slept as never before
A stone on the riverbed,
Nothing between me and the white fire of the stars,
But my thoughts.
And they floated light as moths
Among the branches of the perfect trees.
All night I heard the small kingdoms
Breathing around me.
The insects and the birds
Who do their work in darkness.
All night I rose and fell,
As if water, grappling with luminous doom.
By morning I had vanished at least a dozen times
Kate Cuénoud is an American family adventure photographer based in canton Vaud, Switzerland. You can contact Kate by email at email@example.com or through the contact form on this blog.
It’s nearly 10:00pm here and the sun has just set. These late spring (almost summer) days are looooong here in Europe! I often wake up at 5:30 am and the sun is already shining. These long days remind me that waiting until late in the day – also known as the Golden Hour – to shoot pictures is just nearly impossible. As I’ve written about before, photography has to be fun and easy for me and restricting myself to a mere hour during the busiest part of my day doesn’t sound fun OR easy! As a result, I’ve become adept at shooting in all kinds of light and finding good photography conditions when the light isn’t ideal. And yes, there is a certain time of day that just doesn’t work for me. It’s OK because that’s around 5:00 and I’d rather sit down and have a glass of wine instead. Here are the seven images I’ve chosen to highlight this week – xxoo Kate.
This place is a lovely little hidden gem that was absolutely overrun with people on this day. In this image I had to edit out four people! Photo editing is something that I really love to do, though. La Sarraz, SwitzerlandGardens are now in full bloom and the public containers are bursting with color. I love these roses on the side of the vet’s office across the street from my house. Freelensing makes this scene even more romantic. St-Prex, SwitzerlandBecause summer means Annabelle’s pineapple/mango/coconut milk ice cream. St-Prex, SwitzerlandOur tour of forest refuges in canton Vaud continues. We named this one the Mosquito Forest. Much pain and itching followed. Apples, SwitzerlandThe foundry at the Musee du Fer. It was really cool to see a working foundry and the model trains. My husband is fascinated by water systems (who isn’t, right?), so he loved seeing the system of water wheels in the river that drive the forges. Vallorbe, Switzerland
My sweet eight year old. St-Prex, SwitzerlandThis beach has become a favorite that we return to often. That is saying a lot about this place, considering we think of ourselves as recreational gypsies who constantly seek out new adventures. Morges, Switzerland
Kate Cuénoud is a family adventure, travel and landscape photographer in canton Vaud, Switzerland. If you are interested in finding out more about a family adventure session, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact form on this blog.