September 2012

featured abandoned house photo


once they laughed
once they played
all that remains
are echoes

On the corner of my street, there is a small house that nobody lives in. Nobody has lived in it since at least 10 years.  A Ukrainian family once lived there, and they brought up their daughter there. The daughter got married and had a girl who was also brought up in the same house with her grandparents. Then one day the little girl grew up and left. Then one day the grandparents died. Then one day their daughter spent only her summers here. Then one day she died. Now the home belongs to the grandchild.  She doesn’t come anymore.

In my memory I have echoes of them all. The grandad who drove a bike wearing a tweed hat and suspenders. The grandmum who made a sweet liqueur from her roses. They had a beautiful garden in the backyard. Cabbage and dill, carrots and potatoes. The granddaughter had long silky blond hair. I see it in my mind all the way down her her back. In later years, her mom  would come here  every summer in a very old Mercedes.  She had some form of OCD and would park, get out of the car, check how far she was from the curb and then get back in the car and back up and park again. Sometimes she would do it 10 times, until she felt she was just the right distance to the sidewalk.  Her appearance was always disheveled and hid the fact that she was incredibly smart and had traveled extensively. Now all that remains is a disheveled home that is falling apart, that doesn’t show the love that once lived there.

featured blog duck for off a duck's back

like water off a duck’s back

Like water off a duck’s back

These photos were taken near the end of August; one last chance to see the ducks before it gets too cold and they leave for another year. They’d grown so much since the last time I went and there were no more babies. The juveniles were all fat and frisky.  I keep bread ends from whole grain breads and they really do enjoy it. Last time I came, the seagulls were much faster than the ducks, but things have changed and the ducks can hold their own. I found a little stump in the grass near the water’s edge and was able to get photos lower than before. Some of them were quite brave and came all the way up to me and steal the bread right out of my hand. Funny how something so simple can get a full grown adult so excited.  I felt like a kid again.



featured for on the prowl

On the Prowl

Again, I’m catching up on photos I took this summer, I’m not loving most of them, but need to work through them and get myself back on track.

I went out one day wanting to experiment with moving the camera to capture image blur and try to create some interesting abstracts created with nature when I saw this gorgeous long-haired grey cat on the lookout for the chipmunks in our yard. She (I’m just assuming, it may be a male) would walk stealthily through the long grass at the back of the yard searching for the little furry ones in the raspberry patch.  Domestic as she may be, she cannot help what nature has given her, her predatory instincts.

She listened and roamed, behind the garage, then behind the roses, and finally as if to reward me for waiting, posed on a old bench close to the flower garden.


Featured chipmunk blog post

Chubby Cheeks

We have chipmunks. They have been living under the garage and sometimes come out if we bring out treats for them, especially peanuts. They are much smaller than squirrels. Although not fearful, they are vigilant and have been hunted both by a big dog from the end of the street and a fluffy grey cat.  When they suspect one of their predators is around, they stand upright with their hands in front of them and are very, very still, listening for the slightest little rustle in the grass.  One day, I came in with my camera gear and had forgotten the half empty bag outside. The next day, I came out to find the bag empty as they had squirreled away with the contents. :-D

featured pond - grasses

On the Road Again!

Since the last couple of years, Simon and I always get on the road one day in the summer, simply looking for some nice old barns, perhaps a couple of cows, and of course, horses.  When you live where I do, there are only a few directions you can take and you don’t want to always go down the same old roads, you want to find something a little different.  This year, the road we took really didn’t have much to offer. We drove until lunchtime and stopped at a roadside picnic area to have some egg salad sandwiches and sparkling water.  This was actually a lucky decision, as there was a pond near by with lily pads and some nice tall grass so we did get a chance to take a few pics and fill our bellies.

After lunch we continued our trek for a few hours and decided it was probably a better idea to go on home and take a chance at a small area where there are trails and the possibility to see some birds.  The day was really hot, in the 30s, and although we had water, we left it in the car, as a friend had told Simon that we would only go into about 100-200 meters and we’d be there. Well, we did get to a little dock and except for a bit of grass, that I have included a picture of there was nothing happening. I did get a photo, also included of a small duck with molting feathers. You know how children get to an age where they are part child and part adult and they are all gangly and look awkward? Well, that is what the duck looked like. A little weird.  Since there were none of the supposedly very cool birds that were supposed to be there, we thought we had to go further in the trail. We walked about 4k and were still on the trail. It was very hot, we were starting to get dehydrated, had heavy camera equipment with us and big trees that did not leave a lot of light so almost impossible to take photos. Finally a jogger came by who said we only  (don’t you love that, only!! :-D ) had 800 meters to go before we got out.

Finally, we spent the whole day out to take only a few pictures but we still had a nice time.


Fair play Featured Image

Fair Play

Fair Play

As I said in my last post, I would today put up images of some of the colorful rides and the people enjoying them. I called this Fair Play because I found the pun was interesting.  I was not as lucky as last year where the sky had clouds and bits of blue and helped create an interesting backdrop to all the craziness of colors.  At first it was just like that, but it was early evening and the clouds were not to last. The sky cleared up and the fresh air pulled in and soon I was shooting and shivering from the cold.  There are some fun pictures, but sadly no jewel. Last year, I got one image that I truly love and I know I cannot always expect such a treasure every year.  Ah, but the hunt shall forever continue. :-)

n.b. the featured image above with taken by zooming in while shooting which pulled  light out in a very interesting way! Try it, you’ll surely come up with something really fun and different.

Enjoying these posts? Like the photography? I’d love to hear from you .

Fairies or people at the fair

Fairies – or people at the fair

I went to the fair twice this year to take photos. I will post some color images in the next blog post of rides etc., but this post will concentrate on the people at the fair.  The  featured image at the top gives you a bit of a clue to what you typically find. People that are so happy and proud to see their children flying high and enjoying the rides, the lady giving her child a huge belly hug and then the ones that look like they’d rather be anywhere but here, but got coaxed into it by their children.

There is an air of excitement and the smell of cotton candy and the sound of horns and attendants asking riders if they want to go faster, faster and yes, even faster then that. Some of the children look like they’d rather not be here. One annoyed child shows her discontent, looking at her mom with quite the sneer on her face, and another cries Mommy!! while daddy thinks it is just hilarious!

The vendors call out and ask you to show how strong and talented you are. One young girl is determined to catch her fish and another  child plays with his favorite toy, a gun. Too small, his dad has set him up on the counter so he can shoot away and prove he’s daddy’s little boy! Most of the vendors are young students and this is their summer job, but there are a few that are quite a bit older; one man works under the hot July sun, wearing a back brace and holding a cane.  For him, not so fun.

There are also those special little moments that you feel privileged to witness; a conversation between a baby and a plastic doll and the loving and tender look of a woman enjoying the day with her grandson.




Give up the funk!

Well, I haven’t posted in a couple months and it all started with this photoshoot of a sunset. It is not my thing, but when faced with it and having my camera, I just felt I needed to shoot.  At first I was very excited about getting the photos and came home and uploaded them to my comp, did the post-processing and was so anxious to show everyone my amazing pictures. Then the axe fell the next day to find they weren’t great at all, and I pulled the blog post.  I hoped nobody or not many had seen it and sort of went into a period of hating everything I did. I took images but just felt nothing was good enough. I was in a funk.

So what to do about it? Well, I’ve decided to post an image of the sunset from that day and a photo of a darling dog that ran all around the water after a stick that his owners would throw and he would retrieve.  Since on WordPress we are not able to post several small separate galleries on each post,  and will also eliminate a very long huge post, I will create several to show what I have been doing this summer. Hopefully, this will pull me out of this weird period and get me back to be creative and happy.  These photos were taken the 10th of July, 2012.