Posted on January 1, 2015
Today starts the beginning of a new year and the beginning of a new challenge. The goal of this group is to challenge oneself to pick up their camera and take a photograph. There will be some days when I will want to experiment. There will be days when I am out and something catches my eye. Many days it may be a case of just sitting out on the deck communing with nature and drinking a cup of coffee. Today was one of those days.
Day 1: January 1, 2015
Today was my day to hang outside on the deck drinking coffee and enjoying nature. This little guy visits me for breakfast each morning. He gets a couple of peanuts and a photo shoot.
Day 2: January 2015
Today I walked around the garden looking for something new – I was specifically looking for the topic fresh for another blog when this caught my attention. I really loved the mottled colors that the macro lens created.
Day 3: January 3, 2015
Today I was going to attempt a short walk. I have not walked any distance since my surgery and I have been itching to get out. So off I went. I did not walk far and paid the price for walking but the view was spectacular and it was a real thrill for me to see a Bobcat and her kitten in the wild. Mom was lazy and disinterested in me, but I could hardly contain my excitement.
Day 4: January 4, 2015
Today I made the decision to stay at home and rest my foot in preparation for going back to work tomorrow. My photo was taken late afternoon when went to sit outside on the the deck. The Squirrels came out to play.
Day 5: January 5, 2015
Just keeping it real. First day back at work since surgery, and I am moving into a nice new big office. But this is kind of what it looked like when I started my day. By the time I left it was a little more organized but I need book cases and some drawers. And a working computer That said I am extremely grateful to the guys that moved all the furniture in and then moved the furniture around. They rock!!
Day 6: January 6, 2015
Driving home from work is an hours drive, and when it is in the middle of winter, it is not fun. By the time I get home the sun has set and it is dark. So I could not resist a detour when I saw the sky come alive this evening on my home commute.
Day 7: January 7, 2015
Sunset out back on the canal changes from day to day and as we go through the year you will see the different colors out back. Tonight was mild but I always love to see the ducks floating on the water.
Day 8, January 8, 2015
Morning routine feed time, is to give the squirrels some peanuts before heading off to work. Not too many but a few. However, the Blue Jays have discovered free food, and this particular day there were about 5 of them flying in and out stealing the peanuts from the squirrel.
Day 9, January 9, 2015
Early morning raindrop is what I enjoy seeing outside on the plants and we have had a bit of rain just lately.
Day 10, January 10, 2015
Today I was sitting on the deck. There was not much going on outside except the two Mallard ducks who had finally made their way up to the edge of the dock. When one was eating the other kept it’s beady eye on me to make sure I was not creeping closer. I liked the effect of the blur of grass in front of the duck.
Day 11: January 11, 2015
This morning my Squirrel did not rouse himself until just before 10:30am. The weather has been a bit chilly the last few day and I have noticed that if it is too cold they do not come out. But it is always a pleasure to see them when they do.
Day 12: January 12, 2015
I drive the same route most days, and for the longest time there has been a hedge across the front of this property. Suddenly one day the hedge was gone and this run down old building was in line of sight. I passed it for a couple of days and then one day I pulled over on the side of the road and decided to take this shot. The very next day, graders were in clearing the land. Interestingly they cleared all around the house.
Day 3: January 13, 2015
Sunset out back on the canal varies from day to day, but I am never really disappointed. It was nice to see my Great Blue Heron wading in the water.
Day 14: January 14, 2015
I love tulips. My aunt died a year ago February, and I did a whole photo shoot as a blog remembrance of her beautiful life. Shooting these two made me remember her all over again. How I miss the voice at the other end of the phone that gave sound advise.
Day 15: January 15, 2015
I always get pretty excited when I see a raptor. I was driving home from work when I spotted him sitting on the powerline. However, I was already passing him, so I went on a bit further, did a u-turn and headed back the way I had come, did another u-turn and drove up to where he was. I pulled off the side of the road and started taking photo’s.
Day 16: January 16, 2015
Today I took a walk around the local wetlands. I love to do this. It relaxes me and I really enjoy nature. One of my favorite inhabitants there is this iguana, which is apparently an invasive species to South Florida. Most people dislike them but I think they are pretty cool, especially when they puff up their flap at their neck. This iguana is in it’s mating colors right now.
Day 17: January 17, 2015
We headed out to the local lake so that Richard could play on his new paddle board. I took it easy and did some armchair photography. Today I experimented with black and white, negative space and blur.
Day 18: January 18, 2015
The tulips I posted a few days earlier had finally died but even in their dying they looked beautiful. I could not resist taking this photo.
Day 19: January 19, 2015
This particular morning I headed outside to feed the ducks. I always take my camera outside and it was such a beautiful foggy morning. The ducks had to wait for their food while I snapped my photo.
Day 20: January 20, 2015
My little buddies were around this morning to have breakfast. I always enjoy their antics when I go out there. What I love about this particular photo is the blur all around the Squirrel.
Day 21: January 21, 2015
Heading to work each morning, means I have a limited chance of capturing photo’s. By the time I get home it is already starting to get dark. Today, Big Blue, as I named my Great Blue Heron, happened to fly on in as I walked out. It always gives me a thrill to see him out there on the bank.
Day 22: January 22, 2015
Again Big Blue was out there and this was just a gorgeous morning. I think he thought I was nuts when I got down level with him to take this photo. I loved the colors, the little bit of mist and most of all Big Blue.
Day 23: January 23, 2015
I wanted to do something different today, and I have these Lilies sitting on my window sill. I decided to take a photo using natural light. I loved the color version but I really enjoyed seeing this in black and white.
Day 24: January 24, 2015
We occasionally will get woodpeckers out back. Today was one of those days. It was hanging out at breakfast time with the Blue Jays, Squirrels and the Boat Tailed Grackles.
Day 25: January 25, 2015
Today was an overcast chilly winters day. I had gone out and on the way home, I had stopped to take a photo of a swing. When I go home I went outside to see what the sunset was doing. I got an okay photo and thought that was it. 5 minutes later I saw the sky turn orange and then magenta and this was the final photo I took tonight.
Day 26: January 26, 2015
I love my mornings out back. I typically catch a few minutes with these guys before I head off to work. They always bring a smile to my face. I do think that God was thinking of me when He created the Squirrel. I could watch their antics all day.
Day 27: January 27, 2015
Raptors are not your common every day occurrence. So I am pretty excited when I manage to catch one in a photograph. This Red Shouldered Hawk was just beautiful.
Day 28: January 28, 2015
Work days are really hard to get photo’s. By the time I am nearing home it is already getting dark. There is nothing really inspirational around our office, so I have got into the habit of looking out when I am driving to or from the office. Tonight it was the sunset on a little canal off the main road.
Day 29: January 29, 2015
Another catch en-route home. This Osprey was sitting on this dead tree as I was driving past. I quickly did a u-turn and headed back in it’s direction. I love seeing these raptors.
Day 30: January 30, 2015
I am part of a group called 30 Minutes in Life and this week I got to pick the topic. I choose “Narrow Depth of Field”. On the weekend I get to pick my favorite 5. So today I walked around the wetlands looking for a little bit of inspiration, and some narrow depth of field images.
Day 30: January 30, 2015
Today I was not sure if I preferred the color or the sepia. So I did both. I do tend to lean towards the sepia to be honest.
I hope that you have enjoyed my first month of my 365 project. Look out for the next installment at the end of February.
This is a circle blog, so please take the time to head over to my friend Francesca and see what she has for you. She is new to photography and will hopefully be challenged to pick up her camera as often as possible to take a photo a day.
Posted on December 31, 2014
Time is a fraction, and mine is running out….This month has been a month of adjustments. I started a new job which means my working hours changed, my travel time changed and I face a whole new learning curve. It also means my photography time has been affected as well. Added to that I will be having surgery on my foot on the 18th of this month and so I decided to work ahead and take my photographs early so that everything was done and prepared for the upcoming blog.
Working in advance means that when 30 Minutes decided to make this month a Five on Festive, I was not on the same page. Truth be told, I am not even doing Christmas decorations this year. While it would be easy enough to put it all up, taking it down will be another story. Climbing in the attic on crutches will be impossible for me. So I decided to get a Poinsettia and call it Christmas. Presents can go around that this year. So my blog will not be the same as the rest but I hope you enjoy it anyway.
A few months back I bought a macro lens, 85mm. The person I bought it from told me she never used it for macro but mainly for portraits. I have used it for macro but never for portraits. So when Amy came home for Thanksgiving I asked her to be my model while I tried out the macro lens.
“Do not stop thinking of life as an adventure. You have no security unless you can live bravely, excitingly, imaginatively, unless you can choose challenge instead of competence.
~ Eleanor Roosevelt, The Autobiography of Eleanor Roosevelt
This 30 Minutes marks the joining of a number of new bloggers and it will be exciting to see what they have for us in the future. Don’t forget to follow the circle and take a look at what the other photographers have for you this month. Stacey Markel Photography / Maryland Family and Child Photographer is up next. I always love what Stacey has to offer and I am hoping to live Christmas vicariously through my fellow bloggers.
As this year draws to a close I have to thank all the ladies I have been blogging with this past year. It has been a blast and I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of this group. There is amazing talent in here and each one has helped me grow in some way.
May your coming year be full of love, peace, happiness and joy. May you dream big and may your dreams be a journey that you constantly strive towards.
Posted on December 31, 2014
I love walking in the wetlands. After a busy work week, the wetlands soothes my soul, and puts balance back in my life. 10 days ago I had foot surgery and I have not been able to walk. Last week I started taking baby steps and today I was given clearance by the doctor to put my foot down properly and walk. I also got all the stitches out….ouch!!
Since he said I could walk I decided to attempt limping along to the first rookery at one of my favorite Wetlands – Wakodahatchee Wetlands. I meander. Really slowly. Watching and waiting. Wetland walking is a lesson in patience. You have only a fraction of time to get the shot you want – there is no do over. So patience is a good lesson to learn.
My first encounter was with a Tri-Colored Heron who was wading through the water fishing for it’s food. They generally flap around in the water darting from spot to spot, attempting to catch the small fish swimming in the water.
The Purple Gallinule is part of the “Swamp Hen” family. They are easily identified by their bright yellow legs. They are an amazing mixture of colors. You will often find them dangling on a reed attempting to eat the seeds or flowers at the end of it.
Moving along the broad walk I spot a female Boat Tailed Grackle. She hops up onto the wooden railing right in front of me. I am not necessarily a fan of the Boat Tailed Grackles. They tend to swarm the garden and take over. But she was kind of sweet and I enjoyed seeing her close up.
We are heading into on of my favorite times of the year. The Great Blue Herons are courting and nest building and today the Anhinga were showing their courting colors. They male is typically fluffed up and out. Both bird seem to get real defnition and color around their eyes at this time of the year. There is a lot of posturing done by the male and at times the female will engage with him and other times she will just ignore him. I had to laugh, I overheard a conversation that went something like this. The little boy, seeing the two bird knocking their beaks together, asked his father ” What are the birds doing?” The father answered “It’s like they are sword fighting”. Fortunately the male did not jump on the back of the female or I am sure the father would have told the child that they were wrestling.
Anhinga are interesting birds. They swim in the water to fish for their dinner. However, their wings are not oily so the bird tends to get water logged and has to dry it’s wings out on a branch. So often you will see the Anhinga, and the Cormorant sitting on a bank or on a branch with their wings spread out. The Anhinga in particular, is a stunning sight to see with it’s wings all spread out in black and white.
The Great Blue Herons are the other birds who are doing their courting and nest building. This is a spectacular sight to watch. You will see the female extend her neck out and make a strange barking kind of noise as she calls out for her mate. Next thing he will be flying in with a twig and there is a beautiful dance of wings and beaks as the female accepts the twig from the male. She will push it into the nest and wedge it in the exact position she wants it. The two will hang out together for a while preening each other and then off he goes looking for another twig. Before you know it the dance has begun again. Today this Great Blue Heron seemed to be snoozing.
Reflections are always a nice part of the wetlands and it was not long before I was back to the initial Tri Colored Heron that I had started out with.
Wetland walking is a great way to view up close, or not so close, the natural environment that you area has to offer you. It is a time to meander and enjoy the call of the wild. If you have never done a wetland walk, I would encourage you to take the time to head on out and enjoy what it has to offer you.
“In order to see birds, it is necessary to become part of the silence”
~ Robert Lynd
Posted on December 28, 2014
Sunsets and sunrises out back on the canal, the ever changing skyline of the Everglades that I view each night. I recently decided to print myself a calender of these different views. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.
Posted on December 28, 2014
Project 10 is a group that I have participated in as a guest blogger for the past year. I really enjoy their choice of topics. Sometimes I come up with something, sometimes I am totally stumped. Sometimes I come up with the topic after the fact. This month was a good month for me. I love to walk in the wetlands. It gives me the opportunity to de-stress from my day to day job which has just changed again. Same company different workload. Another learning curve. That is all I seem to have done the past 2 years.
Walking in the wetlands also offers me something else. The opportunity to see wildlife in it’s natural form. Birds, gators, raccoons, bobcats (although I have yet to see it close up), otto’s (them too). I love it. I grew up being taught to appreciate nature. We had all sorts of critters in our home. Taking this walk just really settles my soul.
However, you can only take a Moorhen so many times and it becomes a little boring. So when I walk I tend to look for different things and experiment a little with how I take the photo. So here is the simplicity of nature as I see it through my eyes.
” A Withered Maple leaf has left its branch and is falling to the ground; its movements resemble those of a butterfly in flight. Isn’t it strange? The saddest and deadest of things is yet so like the gayest and most vital of all creatures?”
~ Ivan Turgeneve, Fathers and Sons
Thank you for letting me post in this group. I have really enjoyed staying a part of it and I am glad I was able to get it done. I hope that you all have a blessed Christmas and a very happy New Year. May you dream constantly, and may those dreams come to fruition in 2015.