At the current moment its not found within the landscape of Minnesota as we just had a brush with S-N-O-W and the grass is merely getting into green garb. There are sprinklings of tiny blues as the very early risers – Siberian squills – are dotted in our gardens. (They have also found their way into the grass…). Otherwise there are no inklings of the vibrant summer colors to come. Cue the creative quest of finding color.

What is color?

Color the characteristic of visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, yellow, or blue. Found in the visible spectrum of ROY G. BIV – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo & violet!

Color comes in varying hues, tones and saturation and is found everywhere there is light. (The human eye cannot see color in darkness, only when there are hints of light – cameras have the ability to “see in the dark” with long exposures, and light sensitive sensors.)

Orders of color!

Orders of color head into the days of color wheels and school aged art. There are 3 main orders: primary, secondary & tertiary

Some ways to use color: color schemes!
  • Complimentary colors – directly across from each other on the color wheel
    * blue & orange / red & green / yellow & purple etc
  • Analogous colors – colors next to each other on the color wheel, usually a set of 3
    * blue, green, yellow / yellow, red, orange / red, purple, blue etc
  • Monochrome colors – not black and white, but an image with a single color tone

Let’s get colorful!

A single color (tans & browns are still colors!) Could be considered monochromatic…

We found a some colorful spots – a train car with graffiti and well placed puddle. A mural on the back of the wedge building (this mural has been there for many years). Then the tight alley with a giant butterfly.  Color all around!

Wandered around town for more color. Lots of monochromatic options for bold color. We could use some more murals around town. Or more colors of buildings! (Lots of browns and rusts from the bricks!)

And one complimentary color set! (Red & green!)

Next up visit Linda Perdue with VP Shoots Photography specializing in photographing pets and their families in the Tampa Bay area of Florida and see what she found for color! Loop through everyone until you land back to us!

Butts & Toes – Remember the Details

Welcome back into Fridays! The snow has departed, the mud and the mid spring browns have arrived. Browns and muds usually aren’t the requested backdrops for portraits (pair them with golden hour and they are STUNNING!), so what to do instead of portraits?

Remember the details that make your dog! And to add the challenge we’re going to focus on the details that aren’t part of your dog’s face! (This fits into the weekly theme of  “No Faces”!).

Enter in butts and toes! Butts have swirls of fur and tails attached to them. Toes can be freshly covered in mud, tucked neatly in in a sit or lay or completely relaxed while your dog snoozes. Embrace the details as we wait for the leaves, grasses and flowers to emerge here in Minnesota!

Tips for photographing dog butts:


  • Look for swirls and patterns in the fur
  • A relaxed tail will help camouflage an anus
  • Avoid making the anus a large element of your image
  • The 3/4 angle will help turn the butt away from you slightly for less anus
  • See if you can use the angle as a look over your dog’s shoulder as they watch squirrels (or see if you can get their attention for the suave over the should look)

Tips for photographing dog toes/feet:


  • Get in close and play with different angles (looking down, ground level/eye level, looking upwards
  • Can you find a pattern, texture or color that mimics your dog’s fur?
  • Or can you find a pattern, texture or color that is a complete contrast?
  • Take advantage of sleeping dogs to get super close “beans” images plus images of paw pads and the fur between toes

(The black dog is Axel and the brown and white dog is Bender! They will both be 10 this year!)

Other details non face details of your dog you can photograph: ears, tails, knees, grey hairs and coat colors. Get in close to give each element proper emphasis.  What other elements of your dog can you think of?


Next visit Jemma Martin of JM Photography, specialist pet photographer in Suffolk, UK who prides herself on capturing the character of your best friend, to see her take on no faces! Read through everyone until you end up back here!


From the interim

It’s one of those posts that is challenging to create a title for.

No, we don’t want to be like “oh hey, it’s been awhile” (it has). Or a “hello, sorry we’ve been gone”. Classics when you’ve gone from blogging, to half ass blogging to forgetting that you have a blog (it’s really been nearly two months???).

From the interim.

– noun / the intervening time
– adjective / in or for the intervening period; provisional or temporary

What we’ve been up to since the end of January (the post previous to this one):

  • Hanging out with my stepdad & Axle, Tuesday – Friday
  • Learning to snowboard every weekend in February! (It’s tons of fun and has lots of falling down!)
  • Cover dog sessions for Sidewalk Dog (want to win a session & Atomic Collar?)
  • Watching lots of daytime TV and Roseanne…
  • TONS of updates to Atomic Collars
  • Learning new hobbies for the warm months: longboarding & roller skating!
  • Obsessing about doughnuts and archiving vintage doughnut recipes – frying will commence soon!
    (Stay up to date with those adventures over at Banterings!)

Axle says hi! He’s turning 10 this year….. EGADS!!! How did he get so old and grey?

From here forward, we’ll be able to do sessions in the evenings (starting at 6 pm) until the very end of May when the summer holiday starts. Then we can meet up during the week in the morning for an early golden hour (starting at 5:30 am!) or keep to the evening golden hour.

As for viewing sessions, we’ll have to conduct them in the evenings – we can do them virtually (via Skype) or in person (masks & being socially distant). Editing of your prints might be delayed a bit, please allow for a little extra time until we enter into June!

Remember, we’re booking about 2 weeks out for sessions! This puts us at the first week just after April (and Easter!).

We may have a little green foliage by then, but don’t be deterred by the browns! The golden browns of leftover grasses look AMAZING covered in golden light as the sun sets. Dark colored dogs, medium colored dogs and light colored dogs all would look stellar in the golds!

Or instead of strolling through the parks of browns and golds we can go urban and find bold murals, bricks and alleys, all while the area is quieter (summer could add more people out enjoying the weather).

** Remember: we can do a weekend session but there is a fee of $50 for the weekend – so the session will be $300. 

Days that aren’t available for sessions:

  • June 14th – 19th
  • August 9th (my birthday!)
  • November – December (for holidays & getting prints before Christmas)

The last Friday of the first month of the new year!

Today is the last Friday of the first month of the new year, the 2021 year, and where has it gone?

Mondays are captured by the part time gig, the rest of the week have me adventuring to Paynesville for hanging out with my stepdad, weekends hold variables of low key to high energy. 

New things are incoming for Atomic Collars (found 2″ pink webbing & rose gold hardware!) plus sewing like a fiend. Plus a new way to post the images to the website that invokes the feel of retro & atomic.  Awesome things are coming!

Sessions are less frequent in the January – March timeframe, often due to cold. Though this Jan has been quite tolerable without a single negative temp day (we’re still getting into 10 and below, just not negative!). The pause in sessions allows for reflection, some updates to be taken care of to the website, and any tweaking to service, workflow and the many many areas of a business.  This has captured a fraction of the month’s time. 

Add in ample TV (daytime TV… oh the drama in the soaps!), assorted meals, a bit of furnace repair and odd bits and ends and you’ve got January in a pod. 

How’s your first month of the new year been?

Today, January 29th is:

– National Big Wig Day (wear a big wig to raise funds for the American Cancer Society Look Good/Feel Better division)
– National Corn Chip Day
– National Puzzle Day

Upcoming virtual event: Union Depot’s Doggie Depot! 

Taking place on Saturday February 6th (the last weekend of Winter Carnival) Union Depot will be hosting their dog friendly event virtually. Pop in the morning to do guided yoga with your pup, then visit the vendors and watch the crowning of the King & Queen at 1 pm! There will be tons of giveaways throughout the day. 

For all of the details: Union Depot Doggie Depot 

Vintage Recipe Time!

From our beloved 1896 Cook Book – Friday, January the twenty-ninth, the menu submitted by Harriet Mann of Evanston, Ill. 

Quaker oats
Codfish in puree of potatoes
Bread and butter
Hominy drop cakes

Sardine salad
Cracker toast
Fairy gingerbread

Scotch roll
Shred cabbage
Riced potato
Togus bread
Cheese custards
Bread and butter

Breakfast starts fair (Quaker oats have been around since 1877!) then whisks us into an interesting protein – codfish for breakfast? Interesting! Luncheon holds mild minus the sardine salad, with dinner ramping into a vibe of Scottish heritage (though Togus bread comes more from Canada than Scotland…). Not exactly sure what shells might be. 

Upon searching, shells make be a baked cake or pastry, baked so there is a bowl that fruit or filling can be added to. Intriguing. Togus is a steamed bread with a cornbread base. The recipe is found in this blog post!

Recipes include: Codfish in Puree of Potatoes, Hominy Drop Cakes, Sardine Salad, Cracker Toast (buttered soda crackers heated until golden brown), Fairy Gingerbread, Scotch Roll, and Cheese Custards. 


One cupful of butter, two of sugar, one of milk, four of flour, one-third teaspoon soda, one tablespoonful ginger. Beat the butter to a cream; add the sugar gradually, and when light, the ginger; the milk in which the soda has been dissolved, and finally the flour. Turn baking pans upside down and wipe the bottoms very clean. Butter them and spread the cake very thin upon them. Bake in moderate oven until brown. While still hot cut into squares with a cake knife and slip from the pan. Keep in a tin box. This is delicious. With this quantity enough for several days may be made. Remember to spread it as thin as a wafer and cut it the instant it is take from the oven. 

*Moderate oven: 350-375

Remove the tough skin from about five pounds of flank of beef. With a sharp knife cut meat from the thick part and lay it upon the thin. Mix together two tablespoonfuls of salt, half a teaspoonful pepper, one-eighth teaspoonful of clove, and one teaspoonful of summer savory. Sprinkle this over the meat the sprinkle with three tablespoonfuls vinegar. Roll up and tie with twine. Put away in cold place for twelve hours. When it has stood so long, place it in a stew pan, cover with boiling water and simmer gently for three hours and a half. Mix four heaping tablespoonfuls of flour with half a cupful of cold water and stir into the gravy. Season to taste with salt and pepper and simmer half an hour longer. Good, either hot or cold. 

*Totally not the recipe I thought it would be! Rolls = a fluffy bread served with dinner. Google agrees that Scotch roll are bits of bread, not beef! 

Best of luck on the recipes! Have fun adventuring in the snow (we’re due for a bit more tomorrow) – we’re taking snowboard lessons tomorrow! EEEEEEEEEEK! Give your pup tons of loving!

If you want to banter, suggest ideas for the blog, set up your session, you can reach me via call or text 320-428-0135 / or via the socials: Facebook & Instagram

Mid Month Friday + 2020 recap

An odd snow day to start the mid month out on – crusty, crunchy – and not the 4-10 inches that were forecasted to blanket mid Minnesota today (granted there is still ample time for a rather large dumping of snow…)

Thus far the month has been tolerable for temperatures, with adventures in sledding and the idea of snowboarding (hasn’t happened yet, lessons will be in the works first!) while the daylight is stretching longer into the day with a formal sunset of 4:58. 

Today is: 
– National Hat Day
– National Strawberry Ice Cream Day (National Ice Cream Day happens July 1st!)
– National Bagel Day (first known mention of bagels is 1610, though they could have been around before!)

Our favorite bagel: french toast or blueberry!

Totally realized we didn’t do a recap of the AWESOME clients from 2020! 13 total sessions!

New friends, old comrades (Eli & Margot, Stewart, Kaedo, Willie & Dani) and a horse named Peas too!

Who’s who, from the top:
Rowdy, Clarabella, Mishka, Davey, Eli & Margot, Huey, Ozzie, Stewart, Kaedo, Willie, Stella, pack of 4  (Frankie, Maple, Trim & Billie Jean), Dani and Peas. 

* Fun note: Stella’s session was the very last of the year – it was on New Year’s Eve! And those baby bulldog wrinkles!!!!!!!

Vintage Recipe Time!

Before we adventure into today’s recipe… we made a graham muffin recipe! It was… successful, though the muffins ended up quite dense and non muffin like. No butter in the recipe from 1896, not sure if that is what made them so unique in shape and consistency.

2 batches baked, second batch gained a splash more of milk, ginger & mace. They rose a bit more but still the mouth feel was rather dense. Further experimenting will be needed. (The adventure will show up on the side blog Banterings).

With no further ado: Friday January the Fifteenth, 1896, submitted by Mrs. M. A. Sacksteder of Downer’s Grove Ill. 

Cerealine flakes
Liver and bacon, sauté
Bread and butter
Squash griddle cakes

Welsh rarebit
Togus bread
Mother’s cake
Raspberry jam

Tapioca cream soup
White fish au gratin
Potato puffs
Parsnips fried in molasses
Cream cakes
Orange sherbet
Drip coffee

No idea what chow-chow is… a quick skim of the book and no recipe. Hmmm… onward to the Google machine!

Chow-chow is a pickled relish, pickled in a canning jar,  typically consisting of green tomatoes, cabbage, onion and peppers or a combination of carrots, beans, cauliflower or peas. They can be mild or spicy, with a distinct flavor profile pending on what region of the states you’re in. Southern chow-chow is usually just chopped bell peppers, green tomatoes, sweet onions and cabbage. Northern chow-chow can consist of cauliflower, carrots, beans, onions, bell peppers, and whatever else was leftover from the garden. 

Cerealine flakes were made from corn (flattened between rollers into flakes) and the first dry breakfast food retailed in America. Seems its consistency was akin to porridge more than our notion of cereal. Production ended in the just before the 20s as the market filled with crunchy cold cereal options (corn flakes arrived on scene in 1906) and Cerealine fell out of favor. 

Recipes included with this entry: Liver and Bacon, Welsh Rarebit, Togus Bread, Mother’s Cake, Tapioca Cream Soup, White Fish, Parsnips Fried in Molasses, and Orange Sherbet. 

Grate one pint of cheese. Sprinkle on it half a teaspoonful of mustard, one-fourth a teaspoonful of salt and a speck of red pepper. Heap this on slices of buttered toast and put in the oven until the cheese begins to melt, when hurry to the table. 

Three cupfuls of sweet milk and one of sour, three cupfuls of Indian meal and one of wheat flour, half a cupful of molasses, one teaspoonful of saleratus, one of salt. Steam three hours. Good hot or cold. Enough for several meals. 

sweet milk = regular milk
sour milk = buttermilk
Indian meal = most likely corn meal
saleratus = baking powder

Two gills of orange juice, one of lemon, one cup of sugar, one pint of cold water. Strain and freeze. 

gill = half a cup or 4 ounces

Been sewing like a fiend for Atomic Collars. Bin neckties and a pair of martingales, oh my! Plus there’s a new look to all of the product images – something that fits the “retro” feel of Atomic Collars. Take a gander and let me know what you think!

(Plus there’s a batch of plaids, upcycled from scarves in the ready in waiting stage! EEEEK!)

Stay warm, cozy and snuggled in with your pupper! 

Ample ways to chitchat – about the recipes, questions about photography, just general banter, setting up a session and beyond – email / call or text 320-428-0135 / Facebook or Instagram