Every month the Lethbridge Photography Club has a photo theme. Anyone who is interested, enters a photo and they will critique it for you. It can be a great opportunity to learn but it can also be an opportunity to stretch your wings a bit. I usually enter a photo from my archives but this time, I couldn’t think of one that would fit the theme.
The theme this month is “Balance”. I’m pretty sure the intention is something more along the lines of compositional balance but I get to interpret it however I want and when I think of balance, the first thing that comes to mind is Maddie on Things. Maddie is amazing and I decided to see if I could get Lacey to balance on something. I scrolled through some of Maddie’s photos looking for inspiration. In many of the photos she is pretty high up but I knew I didn’t want to do anything that risky. But then I saw one of her on top of a Nutella jar. So I decided to see if I could get Lacey on top of a peanut butter jar.
I thought I had 12 days to teach Lacey to get on a perch and Amanda assured me it could be done. I had my doubts. Turns out I only had 5 days (I had my meeting dates mixed up)! If I had known that when I started, I wouldn’t have even tried so I’m glad I didn’t know!
The first session was a disaster. I had a little plastic step-stool that I placed on the ground in front of me and tried to lure Lacey on it. She basically did everything she could to avoid it. Lol. She stood up like a gopher, she hopped around it, she leaned and stretched and contorted. The only way I could get her to touch it was to physically place her feet on it myself.
So that night I tried again but this time I started with a large step-stool that sits at the base of a chair she often hops up on. On that stool, she hopped up no problem. I then tried again with the plastic one (about 1/3 the size) and she finally put her front two feet on it quite willingly.
By Thursday afternoon she was putting all 4 feet on the plastic step-stool. By Friday afternoon she was putting all 4 feet on a small bucket I have. I was amazed at her progress.
Friday I went shopping for peanut butter. The largest jar I could find was 2 kg and the size of the lid was about 1/2 the size of the bucket. Gulp. I wasn’t even sure all her feet could fit at once but we tried. It wobbled. A lot. I couldn’t even brace it with my feet. It didn’t take her long to completely stop trying.
Hmmmm. I found a bowl with a base the size of the jar. I turned it upside down and voila! She got on it no problem. So I knew she could do the jar if we could figure out how to brace it.
Saturday, Marlin and I did some brainstorming. I decided to empty out the jar and screw it down to a sheet of plywood. It was still a bit wiggly, but it wasn’t going to fall over. We practiced on Saturday and only got as far as 3 feet up but it was after a long walk so I was hoping she was just tired.
We went out bright and early this morning and… Ta Da!!!!