observed by Diane » photo journal for those who enjoy vignettes of an ordinary life

  • Welcome to my photo journal

    Living on Vancouver Island in B.C. Canada Diane loves the scent of forests and rain, the rhythms of the sea, and holds discoveries and stories in high regard.

    Where mornings begin with a drum roll! --Diane M Schuller

    Updated each Monday ... simply an online journal of an ordinary life. Come on in to enjoy a breath of West Coast air.

    Prints & Fine Art Prints

    Note: This blog format does not allow for the best viewing of photographs. It restricts size and therefore a great deal of detail is not evident. If you would like to see any of these photos in larger format, please contact me and I will upload it to my personal online gallery for enhanced viewing.

    All photos here are Copyright © Diane Schuller, All Rights Reserved. Do not copy or download.


    Diane Schuller Photography … capturing Life’s Sweet Ordinary

    I love working outdoors, in natural light, with people, with animals or not, to experiment, and capture the natural beauty in all things.

    Several of these photos are available as prints for your home or office. Please send me a note or email to enquire about any that interest you. I am also available in Alberta to cover events or to come to your home to take candid photos of your family, and/or your pets or livestock for you to treasure and enjoy.


    All images posted on this blog and at Flickr are All Rights Reserved, Copyright © Diane M. Schuller — that means you must not copy or download any part of these contents. If there is something here you would like to reproduce in some way, please contact Diane by email: dianeschuller AT gmail DOT com to make a request. Thank you for your respect.  


    Although most of the images here appear with my watermark, when you purchase prints or I do a photo shoot for you, my watermark will not appear on the prints you purchase.

    All prints are professionally processed in a lustre finish with a thin white border. Fine art prints are printed on high quality Hahnemuhle photographic paper. They will arrive in a photo-safe mailer inside a cellophane envelope for extra protection. Shipping is extra.

    For a sampling of the wide range of my photographic interests, please visit my daily Photoblog or my website.

    I post process using Lightroom and some Photoshop. My personal philosophy about post processing is to proceed with a ‘light touch’ and to avoid extremes for the most part although I love offering prints with a special touch, whether vintage, Velvia, sepia or a range of other options through my digital darkroom. 


    Diane M. Schuller, Alberta Photographer

    capturing life’s sweet ordinary — through a lens



    Alberta, lifestyle photography, candid photography, candid photographer, commercial photos, stock photos, fine art prints, event photography, event photographer, dog photos, dog photography, horse photos, horse photography, pet photographer, candid family photos, Canada.

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    Coming Soon

    Diane Schuller’s photoblog is opening soon. Stay tuned for candid images of everything from nature, gardens, pets, working animals, to people and places within the province of Alberta.

    All Images are Copyright © Diane M. Schuller. It is illegal to copy or download any of these images. All Rights Reserved.

    I’m a pleasant person, so if you wish to use one of my images please simply send me an e-mail. Then we’ll see what we can work out okay? In the meantime, thank you for respecting my copyright and for doing the right thing.

    If you’re looking for some special prints for your home or office, or perhaps would like me to take some photos of you and your family/pets, please contact me and we’ll work something out that is just right for you!

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    Okay, so I’ll be unpopular …

    Here goes, I might as well come right out and say it, “I hate really, really dislike Blogger.” There, I said it out loud for everyone to hear read. A couple of you already know my stance on that frustrating blog host, Blogger (those with blogspot.com). I used to have both my canine blog and the previous version of this one over there. As a user, it was frustrating enough. But as a visitor to the Blogger blogs, it is stark raving and insanely frustrating. Some of the Blogger blogs are very slow to load and heaven help those who are on dial up (as I was until a year ago) because one page can take up to 20 minutes or more to load (yes, a person has to go do housework or bake a cake in the meantime).

    How can a blogging tool from a company as efficient as Google be so inefficient and ineffective? 

    The thing that has been driving me nuts is visiting a Blogger blog and trying to leave a comment. Bah! I’ve quit visiting many a blog just because it was too much trouble trying to leave a message. There are still less than a handful of blogs I would like to visit, even if only on an occasional basis as time permits, but …

    I give up visiting Blogger blogs. They are far too time consuming and the frustration they cause when I try once, twice, three times to leave a blinkin’ little note! Some of them are worse than others. I think the reason might possibly be the ones that are loaded with all kinds of widgets and links and other paraphernalia, tend to be the most problem prone for visitors. And for the ones that are slow loading, I bet the nice folks don’t realize they should reduce the size of their photos before uploading them. It’s a shame really because there are a few fine writers, or those with wonderful and beneficial content but I can’t let them know by leaving a comment. I realize some of you may be offended if that’s the host for your blog and I know I’ll be unpopular with this post, but I just can’t keep my frustration inside any longer. Sorry 🙂

    A sample of other blogging hosts (the popular ones):


    WordPress.org – for those who are technically savvy and want to play with their own designs/themes


    If you’re really serious and looking for one that isn’t free but has lots of capability, check out Squarespace.

    And for photoblogs, well! there are a plethora of them in all sizes, shapes, and possibilities.

    I kind of like Aminus3, but hey, there are oodles of them out there.

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    Negative Space

    Negative space, when referring to art and photography, is generally defined as, “the space around the subject of an image.” That means the ’empty’ space around your main subject. It’s a shame it’s referred to as “negative” since it is a very important component of the whole image. The negative space actually enhances or makes the image successful.


    Those of you who have read my most recent posts, are aware that I’ve taken a solid step back from too much time on the Internet while stepping back into spending time with real life. It has been like that spruce cone in this image, being allowed to ‘be’ in the real world allowing my best parts to emerge by the negative space surrounding me (which enhances its main subject: me). I’m not referring to the physical me, but the inner me.

    Since my mother died nearly two years ago, I plummeted into a deep depression and had to work extremely hard trying to scratch my way back to some new normal. I’m still working at it though I’ve finally emerged from the depths and am settled on the cool snow, waiting for the sun to melt the rest of the chill away. During this time, because I live in such a remote place and have so little contact with others (often going weeks — yes weeks — without seeing another human being other than my husband), that struggle came with other side effects. I lost the desire to write and began to seek creativity in new or renewed ways. I also turned to the Internet community to replace the missing human component in my life. But I realized, it was the human face-to-face contact and energy of real-life I was really needing to help me move along on this journey.

    Picking up photography, after years of denying myself that pleasure, has helped me see my tiny secluded world with a kaleidoscopic view. I sought out the positive space (that’s what the focal point or main subject is referred to in art and photography). All too often the negative space surrounding me was cluttered. In clearing out the clutter, I discovered one great solution to finding the right kind of negative space: Shutter Sisters (an inspiring community of creative women photographers). The negative space of using Shutter Sisters as my inspiration and my connection to the real world (since I live such a secluded life), like a good photograph, has been an important component in discovering my own positive space.

    Although I seldom spend time with humans (though I would dearly love to do so), like an emerging photographer working with limited tools & landscape, I’ve truly worked hard to move forward, develop, and be creative. I’ve taken photos of ornaments, forks, glasses, plates, snow and more snow, horses, dogs, birds, twigs, bark, fences, barbed wire, toes, flowers, dandelions, food, corners of my home, and so on. I’ve created where I sit, where I am stuck, yet have seen so much through my lens, developing and growing as I went along.

    Yes I do hate where I live and how I live but the only way to change either of those would be to leave my husband and I have absolutely no intention of ever doing that. So instead, I endure and seek out the kind of negative space (that enhancing kind of space) that is available to me.

    If you’re feeling stuck, lacking creativity or inspiration, dig deeper. Perhaps you need to move away from the computer and the Internet or perhaps you need to find one or two very selective spots on the Internet (as I have done with Shutter Sisters). Seeking out the right kind of negative space to enhance us (the main subject) is up to us as individuals. Where we focus is just as important as it is in photography. Finding and using the right kind of negative space to surround us also is as important as it is in photography.

    “When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we took so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened up for us.” ~ Helen Keller

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