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Master of Good Ideas


You know those moments when you get a really good idea and you’re so proud of yourself for coming up with such a brilliant answer, you actually walk around with a smile on your face chuffed with yourself and being such a Master of Good Ideas.

Yeah? Well I had one of those a couple of days ago. I was ever so pleased with myself.

Refreshing my Twitter account mariannewhooley after months of hibernation, I added ladies from BMB and Judith’s room and all of a sudden a brand new world opened up. I struggled to keep up with it all. RT’s, @soandso’s and it was whilst I was coming to terms with all this new tech stuff on there that I noticed a Brand New Challenge.

A photography blog workshop!

Now I love taking photos. I don’t have a flash camera, I have no training about light and the how’s and when’s but I am snap happy when it comes to capturing moments. Returning from our holidays with 100’s and 100’s of images and dead happy with myself. Sometimes, very occasionally I take a good snap.

So off I pop to the site in question to check out the theme ‘Beauty’ A synch!

I allow myself to think about it for a while.. What shall I do? How will I show Beauty in all her glory.

My beautiful chess set. Of course!

Said chess set has lived in packaging practically every day since I bought it back in 1997 thanks to its fragility. I spotted it in Bolzano’s Christmas Market. I had had a couple of Vin Brule’s, or Gluhwein’s as the Bolzanese would argue, I was with a wonderful group of friends and we were having so much fun. We were meandering through the market filled with the most beautiful art and craft pieces, I wanted to buy the lot!

And there she stood magnificent. I made a bee line to the stall and listened to the softly spoken man explain what materials he had used (Swarovski crystals, cut painted glass) and his thoughts on the Elf Kingdom and the Fairy Kingdom.

Did you hear the scratched record noise halting this post just then?

Elf and Fairy Kingdom?

This guy, I’ll have you know, actually believes they exist. He showed me a photo of himself with an elf in his back garden (yeah right!) but we were enjoying the day and the Vin brule’ was warming us to the idea, ‘Look, a real elf’ we ahhhhrrred amongst ourselves, almost in tears of gratitude with this man for sharing something so touching.


The chess set cost me £1,000,000 Italian lire, which sounds a massive amount. It was! I didn’t have a million Italian lire and I’d bargained with this man to trust me to pay in 3 installments paying the first there and then. He accepted, I wrote out three equal cheques the first with that day’s date and ‘Bob’s your Uncle’, the set was mine. About 300 quid’s worth in ’97.

Each piece is individually crafted from ceramic, painted and fired. The knights are dragons, and the pawns are tiny fierce-looking elves. Each piece has been given a name, Re Elrond, (that’s King Elrond to you and me) of the Elves’ kingdom and his wife Regina Niamb, the Fairy kingdom instead has Re Finvarra and his Queen Regina Donagh.

You get the picture.

So excellent idea now all that needs to be done is the photo.

I unwrap each piece and place it carefully in place after a good clean and sparkle and set it up on the table, but I’m not convinced…

It’s a beautiful sunny day so I carry out the set to the garden and place it on the grass – a contemporary look – but none of the images are doing what I want.

None of my efforts come close to the image of beauty I have in my head.

And this is where I have become unstuck. I cannot translate the glorious image in my head onto my digital camera

It’s just not happening for me, and yet I could see it so well in my mind’s eye.

What’s happened?  Why can’t I do it? 

I think I’m going to have to miss out on this week’s Beauty theme 😦 these images aren’t the beauty I wanted….and in my haste and excitement of having such a good idea, I forgot to bookmark the site holding the workshop!

One day I’ll get it right.

Breaking news 03/03/10 10.01 – The site is Sticky Fingers by Tara and what the heck, let’s go for it anyway and not bottle out eh? I can only get better?

15 Comments leave one →
  1. 02/03/2010 7:15 pm

    Well, I quite like the one on the grass!! I think it looks very enchanting!

    Excited to be doing the guest post swap with you!

    • 03/03/2010 9:48 am

      Grass one was a good idea but the light is rubbish! Gives me something to thnk about, now to get the guest swop sorted out….how exciting 🙂

  2. 03/03/2010 8:59 am

    i too quite like the one on the grass…the blog was Sticky Fingers, Tara cain’s blog. am sure google will find it for you! Glad you have found so many new friends on twitter – it really is such a wonderful place to chat and have some fun.

    • 03/03/2010 9:49 am

      Heather you are a star!!! Still not sure about putting forward my photo though. I’ll see.
      Over to yours to check out the vlog theme…if I remember rightly it was today?

  3. 03/03/2010 11:32 am

    Mari Mari Mari. That is just perfect! I love the story behind it, just wonderful and you’ve described it so well.
    Gorgeous chess set (when you click on the pic and see it enlarged, you can see the detail is just amazing).
    So glad you’ve discovered Twitter and so discovered us! And thanks so much for joining in x

    • 03/03/2010 1:32 pm

      Thank you Tara,
      I really wasn’t sure about joining in but thought – What the Heck? Go for it girl! I think you’ve had a brilliant idea, and hopefuly my poor level of photography will tease others to join in too.. as they can only be better than me!

  4. 03/03/2010 1:29 pm

    I think your photo is lovely and well worth being put forward. I adore crystal anything. I have many items on display and totally love looking at it.

    CJ xx

  5. 03/03/2010 4:58 pm

    I think the photos are lovely! The colours of the chess board are strong and vibrant. The theme was ‘beauty’ and I can see this in the photos, so well done.

    • 03/03/2010 9:25 pm

      Thank you. I’m sure there are plenty better than mine but it’s the taking part that counts. And I really enjoyed the whole process

  6. 03/03/2010 5:05 pm

    Wow, that chess set is amazing!! It’s huge and looks stunning. I know what you mean about not always being able to get a photo that you envisage…I get that a lot with sunsets/rises.

    • 03/03/2010 9:26 pm

      I promise to get better.
      Oh and the chess set has already been packed away back in it’s box to save it from the girls (19 month old twins)!!

  7. 03/03/2010 7:31 pm

    I like the first one but I see what you’re saying about it not looking as beautiful as it could.

    I am no expert (hahahah at the thought) but I would have used mirrors (and smoke? no, maybe not!) and more of a close up.

    It’s still fabulous though… and I’m a little bit jealous that you own that set 🙂

  8. 03/03/2010 10:54 pm

    My Dad was a player and he would have loved your set

    • 04/03/2010 1:13 pm

      You know, my dad taught me many moons ago too, he’s no longer here either. I often wonder if I could beat him these days…probably not!

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