Tag Archives: Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit

This is my first blog in a few months. Summer is over and it is time to get back to it.

I recently spent time on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The beaches are endless and great for surfing and boogie boarding. I spent a week camping and enjoying the grandchildren and some fun in the surf. Playing in the waves brings out the free spirit in all of us. The wind and water sets the soul free.

I am free

thrilling and free

Cannon is loving it

boogie boarding on Vancouver Island Canada

with the surfing dog Lucy

Supermoon and its Moonshadow

Last night I photographed the “super moon of 2012.”Our beautiful moon was at its closest for the year. It is on an elliptical path, and this coincided with the full moon phase this month, making it extra special, extra bright and beautiful. The moon was 14% bigger and 30% brighter than other full moons of the year.

I wasn’t thinking of the “weekly photo challenge: Unfocused”, I wanted a good photo. I wonder if this qualifies?

Everything went perfectly, no clouds in the sky… when I looked at what I captured, I found this:

The super moon and it’s shadow?

The wonderful old song by Cat Steven came to mind… “Moon shadow”. A song of hope in desperate times. A song about looking for the good in a bad situation. A song that reminds me that no matter how things look, how tough the road I am on seems, God is there and He is faithful. Shadows may be following me, But the Light is always with me. Remember that there is always something good, always a bright side.

Oh, I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow,
moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin and hoppin’ on a moonshadow,
moonshadow, moonshadow

And if I ever lose my hands, lose my plough, lose my land,

Oh if I ever lose my hands, Oh if…. I won’t have to work no more.
And if I ever lose my eyes, if my colours all run dry,
Yes if I ever lose my eyes, Oh if…. I won’t have to cry no more.

Oh I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow,

moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin’ and hoppin’ on a moonshadow,
moonshadow, moonshadow

And if I ever lose my legs, I won’t moan, and I won’t beg,

Yes if I ever lose my legs, Oh if…. I won’t have to walk no more.
And if I ever lose my mouth, all my teeth, north and south,
Yes if I ever lose my mouth, Oh if…. I won’t have to talk…

Oh I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow,

moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin’ and hoppin’ on a moonshadow,
moonshadow, moonshadow
 
Did it take long to find me
I ask the faithful light
Did it take long to find me
And are you going to stay the night


I’m being followed by a moon shadow
Moon shadow moon shadow
Moon shadow moon shadow
Moon shadow moon shadow

I did manage to capture the moon in all its glory.

The Super moon of 2012

Reaching for the Sun

 I asked the children to touch the sun. “That’s impossible ” they all laughed together at such a silly notion.

I am too small to touch the sun.

“We are just too small.” the six-year-old explained with all the wisdom of his years. I suggested they climb higher, reach higher, try harder.

So they climbed the tower at the park.

They climbed to the top

.

One by one, they reached as high as they could climb

.

and they touched the sun

.They touched the sun

They held the sun in their hand

.

Even the skeptical six-year-old succeeded and learned that he is not too small after all.

. Grandma’s aren’t so silly after all.

 

 

 

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Sun

I love this song by the beatles.. written by George Harrison..

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right
Little darlin’ it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darlin’ it feels like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right
Little darlin’ the smiles returning to their faces
Little darlin’ it seems like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes”

Photo taken in Bryce Canyon, Utah

on the edge of the canyon, a dead tree tried its best to block heat of the sun. It provided little shade, however.

Dead trees are great for sun photos, I like the play of shadows with the light,  and the twisting and gnarling of the branches. Sometimes, if you look carefully, you can see the haunting look of the trees eyes, a rather ghostly look.

Can you see them?

Arizona sun

Journey to find the Ultimate Outhouse

This week, the Weekly Photo Challenge is journey. I would like to take you on a journey… a journey to find the ultimate outhouse. This is an essential search when travelling to the northern parts of Canada, where towns are few and far between.

the endless highway... on and on and on.... not an outhouse in sight.

Sometimes the outhouse is out in the middle of a field with a small parking lot and nothing else around.  It seems all exposed and alone.

In the middle of nowhere

I wondered about the sign on the door.

WHAT?? Really? At what age can we leave them?

Do people tend to drive off leaving a child in the outhouse?

This cute little blue one was on a bit of a tilt. The bushes are growing around it. The door was left open. Is it safe? I was a little skeptical.

Is this safe to use? Maybe in a pinch. How desperate am I?

Some are doubles, Men on one side, Ladies on the other.

A family the pees together....

Is this an outhouse or and in-house? I suppose it was much preferred over going outside in the middle of a dark and cold night, but I would hate it in the morning.

I am glad I am living in the era of indoor plumbing.

Some Outhouses are super fancy, dressed up with plants and flowers, covered in vines. A treat for the weary and desperate traveler.

wonderful.. this outhouse is complete with flush toilets, a shower, laundry and books, if you are planning a longer visit.

Sometimes, there is a conveniently placed outhouse, but one has to wait for a turn. I waited and waited and waited and waited.

He looks a bit constipated... I wish he would hurry up.

After a long drive, searching for a sign, desperate for a rest stop, I was ready to give up and find a conveniently located bush when “what to my wondering eyes should appear”, but a cute little log outhouse nestled in the bush. I was so excited and about to be relieved.

Isn't this sweet.. a log outhouse...

I opened the door. Maybe…

I have waited so long... maybe...

Maybe not.

Absolutely NOT !!

It was time to find that bush.

A little way down the road..  I was caught.

outhouse relief.

I hope you enjoyed the journey. If you plan a trip to the far north, I can tell you that I have become an expert in finding relief behind a bush.

 

 

An Arctic Journey

The journey to the Arctic began at the Arctic Circle.

Crossing the Arctic Circle

The Dempster Highway starts in the Yukon, and continues into the Northwest Territories. We travelled for 734 km on the dirt highway, our destination: Inuvik.

We had to quickly shut the windows to protect us from the dust storm this transport truck kicked up.

The highway is built up above the permafrost. It is hard to see the steep drop on the side of the highway. We did not want to slide over the edge on this journey. I am glad there was not too much oncoming traffic.

The journey continued to the Mackenzie River. As we drove down the mountainside could see the community of Tsiigetchic as we descended to the river. There is no bridge. We had to catch the ferry.

The crew allowed us to climb up to the top deck, past the “no admittance” sign so that I could take some photos. I could not resist a photo of our very dirty van.

The ferry was not busy, they let us climb up to the "crew only" area

A great view of the approaching “dock”. The ferry simply runs up against the gravel, lowers the ramp and we drive on and off the ferry.

The road is built right to the edge of the river. The ferry is an extension of the Dempster Highway and is free.

We made it to the final leg of our journey to Inuvik , NWT Canada, home to the famous Igloo Church.

The Igloo Church in Inuvik

Serenaded by a Northern Cardinal

Yesterday the sun was shining. I visited a friend, then, as I pulled out of her driveway to go home, I was drawn to the lake instead. I drove along Lake Drive heading north along Lake Simcoe. I love looking out at the lake. The flash of red caught my eye and I had to pull over. I got out of the car, camera in hand and walked back, hoping I could find him.

Enjoying the spring sunshine

Sure enough, his song led me right to his perch in the still leafless trees on the edge of the lake. The Northern Cardinal is one of the most distinct birds in our area. The male is a beautiful red and his song is equally distinctive.
Both male and female have the same beautiful sound.
Sometimes it sounds like purdy purdy purdy… whoit, whoit, whoit, whoit.
Another call resembles what-cheer, what-cheer … wheet, wheet, wheet, wheet.

looking out to sea

Large birds are easier to identify

The Red Tailed Hawk is probably the most common hawk in North America.  Red-tailed Hawks (also known as a chicken hawk in the USA) soar above open fields, slowly turning circles as they hunt for prey. Other times you’ll see them atop fence posts, eyes fixed on the ground to catch the movements of a vole or a rabbit, or simply waiting before climbing a thermal updraft into the sky.

Both male and female Red-tailed Hawks build the nest, or simply refurbish one of the nests they’ve used in previous years. Nests are tall piles of dry sticks.  Red-tailed Hawks typically put their nests in the crowns of tall trees or cliffs  where they have a commanding view of the landscape. They will lay 1-3 eggs in the spring. While the female most often sits on the nest, the male will sit on the nest when the female goes to hunt. The male brings the food once the eggs hatch.

The babies known as eyasses, and stay in the nest for about 45 days. Then they start to learn to fly and hunt. At this stage they are known as  fledglings. It takes about 10 weeks for the fledglings to mature and leave the nest.

Red-Tailed Hawk

The Great Blue Heron is the largest heron in North America. This large heron has yellow eyes. It has a white head with black stripes and black plumes sticking out of the back of its head. They find a new mate each year.

Great blue herons are waders. They can be seen along the edge of lakes and streams, walking slowly or standing in the water, patiently waiting for a fish to come within range. Though they are best known as fishers, mice constitute a large part of their diet, and they also eat insects and other small creatures.

Great blue herons’ size (3.2 to 4.5 feet/1 to 1.4 meters) and wide wingspan (5.5 to 6.6 feet/1.7 to 2 meters) make them a joy to see in flight. They can cruise at some 20 to 30 miles (32 to 48 kilometers) an hour.

Though great blue herons hunt alone, they typically nest in colonies. They prefer tall trees, but sometimes nest in low shrubs. The nest can be a meter wide. Females produce two to seven eggs, which both parents protect and incubate. Chicks can survive on their own by about two months of age.

Osprey and its young

Osprey are a large raptor, found around the world near oceans, rivers and lakes. They each fish which they catch with their large hooked talons. They build their nests on the top of dead trees, on telephone poles or other high structures including manmade nesting platforms.

They return to the same nest year after year. The female will stay close to the nest, while the male will bring food to the young.  They have a wingspan of 1.6 metres.

This post is part of the Sunday Post challenge started by Jakesprinter. You can find out all about it at http://jakesprinters.wordpress.com/2012/03/31/sunday-post-nature/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Arranged

It is a beautiful sunny day, I was taking some photos in the back yard, checking on the dove in the nest, my husband playing with Sydney. I noticed the arranged patio stones. While I took some photos, the dogs shadow fell across the stones. I caught the kong in mid-flight, its shadow fell in front of Sydney’s shadow.
I thought this would be a good entry for arranged… I not only arranged the stones, but also the photo.

Sydney playing with the Kong on our arranged patio stones

Patience is hard to find.

A photographer needs patience. Waiting for the right moment, the time when the lighting and mood is right, waiting is hard.

Into the gray.

Landing

I love to take photos of birds. I need to get out into the wild with my telephoto and a tripod. I am looking forward to hiking and exploring this summer… Today is gray and cool. I need patience… one of the hardest things for me is waiting..

Patience is power. Patience is not an absence of action; rather it is “timing” it waits on the right time to act, for the right principles and in the right way.”    ―      Fulton J. Sheen

I am in a test right now. Waiting for the Insurance company to approve all the repairs so we can finally clean up after the flood. I cannot wait to get our rooms back to some kind of normal. I have boxes of food all over my kitchen and it is easier to order pizza than it is to cook. ( OK there are benefits.)

Francis Bacon said: “Whoever is out of patience is out of possession of his soul.”

I read that and started to wonder. I know I have been out of control at some points in my life and it is not somewhere I want to return to. I must be patient, with myself and with my world.