Pictures…Are they REALLY worth a thousand words?

I wasn’t always so sure, but if you were to ask me now, I would say “Yes” without even a moment’s hesitation.This week, my torch sessions have gone fairly well. I can’t really complain about my muse being MIA or any of those other dreadful hurdles that we as artisans have to deal with. It seems that my bad karma was reserved for my picture taking sessions.

Carb Coma/Rain Photograph of “Watercolors”

I no longer use a light tent for my photography. Over the past year, I have found that taking my photographs in open shade at a particular time of day always yielded the truest depiction of my work. Since our unfortunate drought, battling the elements to get the nice shots hasn’t been an issue. I became spoiled by the Mother Nature, I guess.

Last week brought a great deal of badly needed rain to the Southeastern US. I was thrilled, as was everyone else who lives in this region. I didn’t give my photography one second thought until the third day of rain began to fall. At that point, I was pacing the floors trying to figure out how I would achieve the clear photography that I was so accustomed to. My light tent had long been destroyed, as I may have accidentally put my foot through it during a bad photo session.

After much frustration and worry, I gathered my things and went outside into the rain. Luckily, a large Coleman beer cooler sat up against the house, beneath our much less-than-substantial over-hang. At that point, my “Lucille Ball” gene kicked in. . .I dried off the top of the cooler with a beach towel, put my gradient paper on top of the cooler and set up my little tripod. I took about 15 pictures in different shutter speeds of each subject that needed to be photographed, then quickly hurried back in to the house.

As I watched the photographs being downloaded from my camera, I began to feel sick. . .They were TERRIBLE and I had listings that had to go up later in the evening!! What’s a girl to do? I’ll tell you what I did. . .I ate chocolate cake and drank two glasses of wine while I edited them to try and make them look decent. By the time I got to the bottom of the second glass, the giddy wine/carb coma began to kick in. . .”Ah!!” I thought, “The pictures look fabulous!” The remainder of the evening was blissful. My listings were done, the sound of badly needed rain was soothing as it hit the top of my roof, my greedy tummy was full and I was warm and comfortable.

The next morning I looked at the listings and I was back to square one. Some of the pictures were okay, but there was one that I just could not live with. It was still raining too and I wasn’t the least bit surprised that my special set of beads for the week had ZERO bids.

Sunny Saturday morning photograph of “Watercolors”

This morning, I took the photograph again and it came out exceptionally well. Let this be a lesson to all who reads this…Do not mix chocolate cake, Pinot Grigio, Ebay listings and digital photography. It can leave you with a false sense of good photo accomplishment.

Lydia Muell is a glass bead maker who blogs in her studio from Lexington, NC. For more information please visit here website at


4 Responses to “Pictures…Are they REALLY worth a thousand words?”

  1. Ellen Says:

    Oh, Lydia, I had a visual of you outside standing over the beer cooler. Made me laugh and remember a time when I was lying on my stomach in my driveway to get a pic. Must be I thought I needed that angle. Too old for that!

  2. lydiamuell Says:

    Ha!! Ellen, I’m glad to hear that I’m not alone!! I tried every way imaginable to make decent photos and many times I’ve lied on my stomach to take shots. . .In the yard, on the deck, in the driveway. I bet my neighbors think I’m nuts!!

  3. Art of the Firebird » Blog Archive » Best of the Week Says:

    […] Watch Me Create — Pictures…Are they REALLY worth a thousand words? […]

  4. Best of the Week - Art of the Firebird Says:

    […] Watch Me Create — Pictures?Are they REALLY worth a thousand words? […]

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