“Signs”

My goodness!  It’s been a few weeks since I posted last.

It’s been an incredibly busy time with various other activities claiming my attention.  But I’ve missed blogging.  So, I return with the most recent photography assignment with the topic of “Signs.”  Two of them you may recognize from previous fairly recent blogging posts.

Oh well.  Some are worth repeating, right?

These are my four submissions:

Signs #1 – (taken a month ago)

I thought I’d start my submissions with this piece…..er, tree with peace.

 

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Signs #2 – (taken in March 2017)

Someone was being creative and having a sense of fun!

If you like, you can see my original blog post with it here to read more about where I discovered this sign.

 

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Signs #3 – (taken in April 2017)

As some of you may know, Canada celebrated its 150th birthday recently – 11 days ago – and there were things that popped up here and there even months before the big day…..to get people into that birthday spirit.

I’m sure some of you will recognize the wrapper for a familiar chocolate treat. When I saw this on the convenience store shelf, I couldn’t resist! Haha!

Yep…..I gobbled it up. Right after I took the picture. 🙂

 

 

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And to finish off, here is another one with a touch of humour….to give you a chuckle.

It seems this one is always a bit of a favourite!

Signs #4 – (taken Nov. 2014)

This facetious sign is posted above the washrooms area at The Cove Country Inn in Westport, Ontario, Canada. I was there one evening to go see some friends of mine giving a smaller and intimate concert there. Lovely time!

And, as well, if you would like to read the original blog post which featured this photo, you can find it here .

 

Men to the left because Women.....my photo Nov. 8, 2014

 

 

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“Moving Water”

Yay!  An opportunity to participate in this week’s photography assignment with the topic being “Moving Water.”

The following were my four submissions:

Moving Water #1 – (taken over a week ago) Fascinating circular sprinkler action in the garden of a swanky hotel in the Black Forest that my uncle showed me at my recent visit to Germany.

 

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Moving Water #2 – (Archived from May 2016, Copenhagen). I love fountains! Be they whimsical, artistic, or large and commanding. I picked this one out of my fountain collection, because of the solitary frog spurting out an endless supply of water…..and cleverly missing the tiny human tucked just under the water’s arch….. 😉

 

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Moving Water #3 – (Taken over two weeks ago)….in the midst of take-off sitting in a propellored airplane – Bombardier Q400 – and I sat enthralled, watching the wheel outside my window spinning along, through the puddles that had accumulated from all the rainfall that day.

 

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Moving Water #4 – (Taken just over a week ago)…..on a hike along the shores of the Weitach River on the outskirts of Augsburg, Germany. My friend, Toni, pointed out the family of ducks he’s been keeping track of on his daily walks here. And I immediately began taking oodles of photos of this Eurasian Coot family. Here, the Papa is gliding along towards one of the two ducklings who was curious enough to move out of the nest and Mama’s warm, feathery embrace to join in for some swimming and feeding.

 

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NOTE:  Some of you may recognize this last photo from the blog article I posted a couple of days ago, entitled “Eurasian Coot.”

Focus on Architecture

The way my summer has been unfolding, I haven’t had much time to work on writing and blogging; also less on photography.  And I’ve been missing my set aside time for doing those things, as I do enjoy that kind of work.

So, when this week’s photography assignment was announced, I finally had some time and quickly pounced on the opportunity to put together another set of four.  The theme is architecture, so these are the ones I picked for it:

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Architecture #1

Two curvy buildings,

Artistic geometry;

This is a hotel?

 

Archived from my mini Europe trip this past May, 2016 – we stayed in this ultra cool-looking place in Copenhagen….the AC Bella Sky Hotel. I picked this photo for its unusual building structure design – I love things with bends and curves, haha! – as well as the triangularly designed hotel bedroom windows. Together it all creates such a geometric and artistic effect. There are also two enclosed walkways connecting both buildings of this hotel; one at the top and one closer to the ground. This place was fascinating to look at inside and out!

 

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Architecture #2

Skyscraper windows

Reflecting like a mirror;

Looks like a painting!

 

Taken exactly one week ago; last Wednesday – when I was visiting my parents in Toronto and playing tourist in the downtown area. I have always loved the architecture there…..so much variety in design and effects with glass windows and other outward shapes. This skyscraper, filled with offices, I’m guessing, is flanked by two high towers – condo apartments, I’m thinking. What drew my eyes to the building in the middle is how the glass windows look so seamless….there is no break to show where they start and end. It’s so much like one huge mirror! It even looks like a painting. And lo, see how the clouds and sky are wonderfully reflected in those windows!

 

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Architecture #3

Colourful at night!

Toronto’s CN Tower;

Purple, pink, and white.

 

Also taken last Wednesday in Toronto; in the evening, as my mom and I were at the GO train station, to head back to Scarborough area. This was my first time to see what the CN Tower looks like lit up at night – I was enthralled! I am quite familiar with its daytime look, so this night-time view was super special. In contrast to the tower’s darker lighting hues, you see the bright lights from both platforms at Union Station in the foreground.

 

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Architecture #4

Big islands of rock,

Of Mother Nature’s design;

Born of volcanoes.

 

For my fourth submission, I am bowing to the original architect….Mother Earth. With her beautiful and majestic mountains and canyons, species of tall trees, ice caves, her creatures who construct amazing homes and catch-ems (ie. intricate spider webs), her endless architectural wonders.

This photo was taken in Iceland during that same mini trip to Europe in May 2016 – it’s a view across the sea from the island of Heimaey located in the Vestmannaeyjar Archipelago. As with Iceland, all of her surrounding islands have been created through volcanic eruptions. Outside of one island in this grouping of islands off of Heimaey, all the others are left untouched and pristine…..no human trespassing…..the flora and fauna occurring as nature intends.
They are impressive islands to look at from afar and of a massive size, when up close. No two are alike.
The architecture of our Mother Earth never ceases to amaze me.

 

“Anything Rural”

This week’s theme for the photography assignment was “Anything Rural,” and so today was my opportunity to go for my walk.

I know from occasional comments on some earlier posts that focused on my walks that some of you enjoy joining me, so I welcome you along again.

I didn’t have anything specific in mind, other than I just knew that I’d find something to fit that theme.  Which meant there’d be all sorts of surprises!

 

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Photo #1

There they stand in line,

Square and rounded mailboxes;

Just a motley crew.

 

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Taken in the early evening…..I’ve always found the “jumbled” look of a collection of rural mailboxes fun to look at. They look like a group of old cronies hanging out, just “shooting the breeze” – some leaning forward, some leaning back, some slanted. Different mailboxes have different bases – with cement or just wooden poles – creating that uneven look. And sometimes that jumbled look is caused by a touch of vandalism. Every once in a long while, someone gets the “bright” idea to go waling at innocent mailboxes with a baseball bat…..you get the idea.
The somewhat faded maple leaf pattern on the one mailbox gives a hint as to this country…. 🙂

 

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Photo #2

Shimmering waters,

Some clusters of green brushes;

Home to ducks and frogs.

 

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This spot is a lovely little triangular shaped bit of land and pond – between two country roads and at the bottom end of where I live. It’s a fun little pond which, when the water is at its highest, joins up with the bigger pond on the other side of that dirt road (the one I’m standing on), leading to the dairy farm there….and that part of the road can get a bit “soggy.”
Primarily, this pond is the home of several duck families….and a host of loud and delightfully raucous peeper frogs, singing with heart and soul in the evenings until dusk and into dark.
I love this little wildlife habitat.

 

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Photo #3

Setting sun shadows,

Endless rows of sprouting greens;

The cycle renews.

 

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Since I was walking with the approaching sunset, the lighting has some things jump out more. In this case, I was enjoying the sight of the newly sprouted bright green plantings in another nearby farm field. I love looking at the even rows throughout the field and then a bit of criss-crossing with the oblique lines from the tractor tire tracks.

 

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Photo #4

Three pure white petals

Combined with deepest green leaves;

T’is the Trillium!

 

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Again, for my last submission, I pick my most favie of the bunch….a flower. And a special one at that. The trillium; the provincial flower of Ontario. It only grows in wooded areas, and this one I spotted in a small woods adjacent to a small bungalow, along the main country road where I walk. It’s actually that small wooded area on the left side in my #3 photo. The trillium is a protected flower, in order to prevent overpicking and so that we and future generations may always enjoy seeing its lovely, white, three petalled beauty in the month of May.

 

 

 

 

Photography Assignment – Trees

In this week’s photography assignment, the theme focused on trees, which happens to be one of my favourite subjects.  I love trees! So much variety and beauty in design and patterns.

So I dug around in my archives to pick four for my submissions.  In addition to sharing these photos with you, and in keeping with my usual style on this blog page, I have decided to add in new haiku poems to accompany each one.  I hope you like them.

Here they are:

 

Dead Tree Trunk from Oct. 2012

 

Resting in silence;

No longer alive, and yet

Supporting new life.

 

Trees #1 – (from the archives)  I took it in October 2012, when I was on a hike in a nearby conservation area. I loved the peacefulness of this scene. The tree having transitioned to the next phase of its life in that it provides nutrients and shelter for the life occurring then.
There were all sorts of things that caught my eye. I really liked how this tree stump was positioned…in three parts – stump and long log and end log – in a cushiony bed of colourful leaves….and a cloud of “yellow” leaves up above.
The yellows and oranges having a good contrast with the dark grey of the dead tree and the thin saplings.

 

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Shelf bracken on tree from April 2015

 

Jutting out in groups,

As stepping stones up the tree

For small animals?

 

Trees #2 – (from the archives) For this one I decided to focus on a close-up of a tree, to see its bark texture and other fascinating details. Taken last April of a poplar tree in our back woods – I love how the bark curls with that paper-thin look, the splotches of green moss, and I was especially fascinated with the abundant collection of shelf bracken attached to this tree.

 

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New Zealand Christmas Tree from 2010

 

That familiar shape,

But the needles face upwards?

Gentle, big brushes.

 

Trees #3 – (from the archives, my trip in 2010) – the uniquely shaped “Christmas” tree as found in both the North and South Islands of New Zealand. I took several photos in different places, because this tree continuously fascinates me. I picked this one to share, as with the light sky as background, you can see more clearly the frond design of the leaves – or “needles” –  and how they grow upwards.

 

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The Lost Tree - March 28, 2016

 

Trees #4 (taken in March 2016)

Some of you may remember this one….

I featured it in a previous blog post….with the title “The Lost Tree.”

(complete with haiku and background story)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Reflection Perspective

Oh, what would it be like if there weren’t reflective surfaces in our world?

Our world would still be beautiful and fascinating, except it would be missing that one extra perspective that allows us to see things we are familiar with in a whole new way.

Yay for the mirrors of many sizes and shapes, designed for many uses!  Yay for calm waters in lakes and ponds and rivers that create a view that is regular and upside-down irregular all at the same time, thereby creating wondrous symmetical illusions!  Yay for the tall buildings with reflecting glass windows, so that instead of just seeing rows and rows of windows, we can glimpse at flipped versions of tall buildings nearby!

Earlier today I submitted a photography assignment that included these three photos, and the theme was reflections.  I picked them for having  different reflecting components.  All of them allow us to see a daily thing with a creative twist.

The first one is the side mirror on my car, which generally is used to see traffic behind me while driving or passing.  Here, I used it to show the OTHER side of a road near my home…..opposite to the direction I was headed.  And it’s inverted as well.

 

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In this second one I had the help of the small Mississippi River that runs through the town of Almonte, Ontario, and was particularly calm on this early morning in July.  Such water mirrors transform what we are able to see everyday, but adding intrigue and extra beauty to the shoreline  symmetry in them.

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Late last summer I had the opportunity for a brief one-day stay in Vancouver, B.C., and took a Hop On Hop Off sightseeing bus that drove all through the city.  Wonderful sights of the harbour and city park and stores and streets and museums abounded.   Variations in architecture, too.  And there were several buildings with reflective window glass.  This one shows almost a whole other building in its window reflection.

 

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Depth of Field Photography Assignment

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For a few months now I have been a member of a photography group on facebook.  A friend told me about it and how this group has weekly assignments with a theme, suggested by the admins, and support and encourage submissions by their group members.  The largest part of the fun is seeing the diversity in creative ideas and submissions related to each theme.  So yes, naturally, I joined!

There’s no pressure to have to submit every week, particularly when some weeks can get busier in our lives.  There’s always the next week to look forward to and work on new submissions.

This week’s assignment was themed “Depth of Field,” with the added requirement that the objects in focus would also relate and be connected to the other objects (softly unfocused further away).  So last night just before I went to bed, I thought of ideas for possible photos I could take.  And then during the day, when I was able to set aside some time, I spent it in capturing those particular shots.

The four above are all the ones I submitted to the group and I’ve been enjoying reading some of the comments so far.  The deadlines are always Tuesday evenings, as on Wednesday morning the next theme gets posted on the page.  Some other group members had already been posting some of their photos, so I tried to pick things that wouldn’t duplicate those already posted.

  1.  When I was driving along country roads in the morning, the bright grey of the log fencing caught my eye, and later on I returned to that spot in order to spend some time taking photos from different angles.
  2. I have taken all kinds of fun photos of my little blue KIA car, and since she just recently reached 300,000 kms, I thought she’d like to be included in this week’s assignment.  Again….going for a different angle.
  3. I was inspired to include my drumkit in this assignment….somehow….and when I saw the cowbell, I just went from there.
  4. The chess game idea had also come to my mind…..visualizing even the solitary-looking black Queen against the “horde” of white pieces in the distance.  So, I assembled it on our dining table and with the aid of natural light coming in through the window, I tweaked here and there until I had what I wanted.