Friday, August 26, 2011


It is not often that I talk about politics. I try very much to keep this blog free from personal politics, but today I wanted to celebrate. See, on this day August 26, 1920, the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United states finally became law.

So, ninety one years later, and one hundred and sixty-one years after women began formalizing the right to vote at the Seneca Falls Women's Rights Convention, in 1848, I want to take a look at where we are today.

Written by Kellyanne Conway in, What Women Really Want. Her book tracked trends in female voting and discussed how to reach out to today's women for voting.
"In the 2004 presidential election, more than half (54.5 percent) of women between the ages of 18 and 24 did not vote. However, women in this age bracket voted at a higher rate than their male counterparts, only 40 percent of whom cast ballots. At the other end of the age spectrum, only 29 percent of women aged 65 to 74 did not vote, compared to 26.1 percent of men in the same category. The top reasons women offer for opting out include “illness/disability” (19.8 percent), “too busy/scheduling conflict” (17.4 percent), “not interested” (10.7 percent), and “did not like candidates or campaign issues” (9.7 percent). Excluding the final two responses, it is important to note that nearly nine in ten women did not participate for reasons other than a lack of feeling engaged."
In ninety one years, women have fought for the right to vote, staging rallies and protests from literary to chaining themselves to courthouses. Many of the most outspoken voices in the US women's suffrage movement, like Alice Paul were incarcerated in terrible conditions for months on end, seven in her case, for peacefully protesting, holding signs in front of the White House.

Paul herself, outraged over the conditions of the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia, began a hunger strike. This led the workers at the facility to place her in the psychiatric ward of the prison, force feeding her through a tube a diet of raw eggs. The women at the turn of the century suffered, literally so that politicans would be bombarded and reminded that they wanted equality. I personally admire the tenacity and courage these women endured to ensure that women around the world and eventually with the Equal Rights Amendment, to create anti discrimination laws on the basis of gender, race, religion or national origin.

But, the trend shows that women in older age groups vote more often than their younger counterparts. Most likely, the women who lived through the Civil Right's movement recall the struggles more than women in the 18-24 year old age bracket. Young women are still voting at higher rates in that age bracket than the men, so is this a concern?

I would like to think that if we told every young woman about women like Paul and her contemporaries or even all the people throughout the decades working on equality that they will be inspired to vote. But, I'm not sure that will work. Young people do not feel like they have a voice in today's democracy.

I wish I could inspire and celebrate more people voting. So, I am doing what I can and celebrating the accomplishment and hopefully encouraging those who read not just to take part in your government, but to celebrate those who's passion for equality and equal rights should not be forgotten!!!

Get up and be heard in the world...fight for what you believe in...make a difference for people hundreds of years in the future!!!

I know I want to!

<3~ Traci

Friday, August 19, 2011


I am raffling an hour long photo shoot for folks in the greater Columbus area. This is a very fast raffle, to end a week from Sunday (8/28)

See, I have these two friends trying to start up a business and I want to help. Some may recognize these two persons as Seamus and Grove Priests. They have, in no way, asked me to do this (and I hope I'm not overstepping my bounds here) but when asked, they have never turned down a request to lend an ear, offer a blessing and bring forth a level of piety and generosity I want to try and emulate.

So, to the nitty gritty details, I will be providing raffle tickets for $3 each or four for $10. This includes an hour long photoshoot, with a copy of all the images and reproduction rights ad infinitum. All I ask is that I can add my favorites to my portfolio and with the model's permission post a few to my deviantart page and blog. Please contact me via e-mail if you are interested in purchasing raffle tickets.

ALL of the proceeds will be going to the Magical Druid to help defray their startup costs.

Examples of my photography sessions can be found here and here at my blog.

PLEASE help me help Seamus and Mike and the Magical Druid. And if you'd rather, feel free to visit their site and facebook page and SUPPORT THE MAGICAL DRUID!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Cake Toppers

I was commissioned to create a wedding cake topper set for a couple's wedding.

While I didn't think I could create what they wanted (and ended up making them rather large for the top tier of their cake) I gave it a shot and this was what I created.

I wish I had more progress pictures making these two figures, but I am really pleased with the turn out and it seems the couple enjoyed them. I loved hearing comments while people passed saying they were a really creative representation of the bride and groom.

I was really proud of the work and so happy for the couple!

Thank you for giving me an assignment that proved to me I can go outside my comfort zone!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

More Photography

So last night I threw together another photo shoot involving light painting.

The model (it makes me feel so silly to call my friends models, but it's the appropriate term) is Nathan Ross. And he wanted something he could use for character portraits. So he brought his costuming and was extremely patient with me, despite being stuck in a deathly warm gas mask and top hat.

Anyways, here are a few of the pictures I took...(and LOVE if I may say so!)

Comin' atcha!


He makes it look so easy.

Feel free to check out the other shots on my deviant art page.

The process is really fun, but it can be tricky. Each time I set up a shoot, I never know how the lighting is going to work. So at the beginning, there is a lot of trial and error.
If you are interested in doing long exposure photography, make sure you have a camera with an adjustable exposure/shutter speed. This allows more light to be viewed by the lens and allows you to move the light source after the initial picture has been taken.

Set the shutter speed to around 10 seconds and then set up the shot. If you are wanting to have a picture that looks normal with some light painting, make sure your flash is up. Whatever is in the frame for the initial flash will be the photograph and whatever light painting you do will be in the darkness after the flash fades.

(Tip: If you are doing background work, like flashing lights around, try to wear dark colors and move quickly, so you are not spotted in the shadows.)

I will be posting a tutorial hopefully next week.

Hope this is helpful!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Dedicant Oath

So it is official, I will be giving my dedicant oath Thursday at the druid moon/business meeting. This is well over twenty months in the making and I am very excited to get the feedback on my dedicant work.

For those not familiar, the Dedicant Program is the first study program of ADF. It is not mandatory, but is the first step in any of the other study programs. The final oath is the oath one gives at the end of the study program. It details your dedication to your faith, your commitment to the kindred and your desire (if any) to continue this course of study. In short, you profess in front of the community, your desire to continue to live a virtuous life and maintain the lessons you learned in the course of doing the study program work.

You don't ever have to continue, finish or even make an oath...but if you wish to continue, it is important to make the oath public.

I wish I had been completely focused on the dedicant study program, but I am really encouraged to complete this portion and begin a more specific and in-depth study of my faith. I am nervous, don't get me wrong, because this is a very big step in my personal journey and it has certainly been a long time coming. But I am walking into this excited and energized and looking forward to the next phase in my life.

Now, I just need to finalize my written oath and feel out who I will be calling to specifically if any.