A funny thing happened on my way to retirement: I got a camera. I hadn't had a decent camera in 20 years. And, OMG!, it was digital, or an EOS as they're called. The last time I used photography in my professional life, digital was taking its baby steps and I have to confess, I didn't see it replacing film any time soon.
Yeah, I'm a Luddite sometimes.
Meanwhile, though, digital photography made great advances. Images became clean and crisp, plus they're easily downloaded and manipulated. And, wonder of wonders, one can take umpteen bazillion shots and not spend a penny. Sold!
I started taking pictures. Critters. Landscapes. A lot of birds (because in retirement, birding can become a thing). Some stuff started coming back to me ... the ISO settings, the aperture, the shutter speed ... none of that had really changed even though there was no longer any film. Nonetheless, there was (and still is) a long learning curve. (No, you dummy! The smaller the number the wider the aperture!)
My Amazon Wish List became camera-centric and my computer started filling up with images. Fortunately, since they didn't cost anything, I could drag a half a bazillion into the trash. Buh-bye. The ones I particularly liked I'd send to people or post on Facebook.
After reading about a cool technique involving macro lenses and some common household items, I started creating what I call my Bubble Pictures (and what my other half calls "your Timothy Leary visions").
Then one of my devious children bought me a mat board cutter. Here, she said, start matting and framing some of those pictures of yours (sucka!).
So I did. It only took a few days to go through the sample mats included in the kit. And just a couple of weeks to realize I needed a bigger, more elaborate cutter. And more mats. And some frames. I scoured the resale shops for usable frames. I amassed knives and straightedges, hooks and eyes ... and the coolest tool of all, an ATG adhesive applicator.
Before all this, I didn't know what ATG adhesive (or tape) was, let alone there was an applicator for it. I thought I was in for buying bulk quantities of double-sided tape.
I began giving ready-to-hang photos to friends and relatives, whether they wanted them or not. Matting, like photography, is sort of a Zen thing. When things are going well I can mat and frame for hours. Then there are the times when I screw up mat after mat, or I discover the glass has a flaw, or while cutting glass, it shatters to bits. Or the time the 18-lb. cat jumped up onto the work space and landed squarely on a frame, causing a a neat corner-to-corner break in the glass. Yeah, the less said about that the better. (The cat is fine!)
It's a rainy, foggy day up here on the hill, a lousy day for taking pictures, but a good day to mat and frame a few pictures. Besides, the cats are asleep.