Lens-Artists Challenge #80 – Leading Lines

Consulting the rules of composition before taking a photograph is like consulting the laws of gravity before going for a walk.”

Edward Weston

MOUNT FITZROY IN THE CLOUDS

MOUNT FITZROY IN THE CLOUDS

I loved the opening quote by renowned photographer Edward Weston. There are indeed “rules” of photographic composition, which like many other rules, are made to be broken. Whatever their skill level or experience though, understanding and knowing when to use the “rules” of composition can be helpful for any photographer. This week, our challenge will explore a key compositional element, Leading Lines.

THE GREAT WALL

THE GREAT WALL

“Unlike the painter who starts with a blank canvas and builds up his image by the addition of paint, as photographers we work in the other direction.”

Pete Bridgewood

Leading lines carry our eye through a photograph. They help to tell a story, to place emphasis, and to draw a connection between objects. They create a visual journey from one part of an image to another and can be  helpful for creating depth as well.

beach, sunset, kiawah

TOWARD THE SUNSET

“Each picture requires a special composition and every artist treats each picture originally.”

Peter Henry Emerson

There are an infinite number of elements that can serve as leading lines. Nature offers things like the wave above which leads the viewer to the beachwalkers and eventually to the sunset. Grasses and trees can lead the eye across an image…rocks can be especially effective. It’s not so much what you put into your image as it is where you want the viewer’s eye to go and how you get them there.

path, red, umbrella

LADY IN RED

We don’t take pictures with cameras – we take them with our hearts and minds.”

Arnold Newman

Manmade objects such as roads, paths, fences, bridges, etc all provide opportunities to use leading lines. I remember distinctly how excited I was shooting the image above. Seeing the woman with the red umbrella at the end of a perfect path created one of my favorite captures from our visit to China. It was eventually selected by a travel agency to be featured in their brochure.

Mandarin Duck

LORD LOVE A DUCK

There is no better time to crop a bad composition than just before you press the shutter release.

Bryan Peterson

The beautifully-colored Mandarin duck in the image above would draw one’s eye wherever he was standing. But his placement on the dilapidated wooden bridge gave me an opportunity to lead viewers directly to him. I couldn’t have posed him better if I’d tried (OK, maybe if he’d moved just a tiny bit closer to the top 😊).

ROAD TO ZION

ROAD TO ZION

Photography is the easiest art, which perhaps makes it the hardest.”

Lisette Model

Be creative – there are lines everywhere. Footsteps in the sand, train tracks, the walls of a town on a narrow street, a row of arches on a building or of lights at night, a babbling brook or a winding river – it’s up to you to see and shoot them. Position them to lead the viewer where you want them to go (in the case above, toward the beautiful mountains of Zion or below to the karsts of Guilin). Once you’ve focused on their existence you’ll see them everywhere!

boats heading down river, karsts

HAZY DAY ON THE RIVER

Like all photographers, I depend on serendipity… I pray for what might be referred to as the angel of chance.”

Sally Mann

So give us a chance to see some of the leading lines you’ve captured and we’ll follow wherever you lead. Patti, Amy, Ann-Christine and I look forward to seeing your creativity on this one. Remember to link to my original post, and to TAG your post with the “Lens-Artists” Tag. If you’re new to tagging, click here for an explanation of how and why. Remember your post will get more views and comments with tagging! If you’ve not seen our Tag Section yet, click here to see posts that included our tag.

Last week Amy challenged us to share some windows with a view. As always you met the challenge beautifully.

HAVE YOU SEEN THESE?

First-time participant Amy of Bedlam and Daisies  took us on an amazing world tour of windows

Tracy from Reflections of an Untidy Mind gave us a frightening look into the ravages of Australia’s wildfires

Laura Denise shared some windows along memory lane and the perspective she’s gained with the passage of time.

As always, we thank you for your support and participation. We hope you’ll join us again next week when Patti publishes Challenge #81 on her Pilotfish blog. We look forward to seeing you then.

 

Note: For those interested in more detailed information about the how and why of Leading Lines, there’s an interesting article here.

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #79 – Windows With A View

“You have the ability to adjust the lens through which you view the world.”

Jeffrey G. Duarte

Chines wall, windows

MUTIPLE PLACES FOR VIEWING

Amy has given us a double challenge this week – not only are we to include windows but we’re also asked to feature their views. OK Amy, I’m going to give it a valiant effort 😊. I’ve opened with an image from our visit to Shanghai’s Yu Gardens. I love the way this beautiful wall of unique windows gives such a gracefully curved view of the gardens beyond.

Teapot window

VIEW FROM A TEAPOT

“How you see the world may not be how others view it.”

Steven Redhead

Also in China, I couldn’t resist including the “I’m a little” teapot-shaped window from Beijing’s Summer Palace. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage site as a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design, it was built during the Qing dynasty in the mid-1500s. 

church, windows, Galilee

VIEW OF GALILEE

“Distance gives a clearer view.”

Michael Bassey Johnson

Moving to another corner of the world, the window above captures a view of Israel’s Sea of Galilee from a Christian church located on its shore. The church was built on the site where Christians believe the Apostle Saint Peter lived. 

PALMS, OCEAN, COLUMNS

TROPICAL VIEW

“We tend to see what we are looking for.”

Toni Sorenson

Nearby, at the Mount of Beatitudes, I captured the very tropical scene above through beautiful scrolled windows. This sacred Christian site is where Jesus is believed to have delivered his sermon on the Mount.

ancient stone, windows, Angkor Wat

VIEW OF ANGKOR WAT

“If you want to change yourself, you have to change your point of view.”

Nina Hrusa

From Southeast Asia, I chose a set of windows from Cambodia’s amazing Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world and another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Using newly-discovered laser technology called lidar, archaeologists have only recently found that the complex of Khmer cities, temples and canals was actually the largest empire on earth in the 12th century.*

window, live oak

LIVE OAK VIEW

“Only a happy mind will see the beauty of a beautiful view.”

Mehmet Murat Ildan

Finally, from right here on Kiawah, I’ve included a window reflecting its view of a magnificent live oak. In South Carolina these beautiful specimens are all around us. Our most famous example is the Angel Oak, about 20 minutes from my home. Estimated to be 400-500 years old. It produces shade that covers 17,200 square feet (1,600 meters). 

Thanks to all of our participants in last week’s Special Spot Shots challenge – we enjoyed visiting each and every one of them. This week Ann-Christine, Amy, Patti and I are looking forward to seeing your windows as well as the views you’ve captured through them. Please remember to link them to Amy’s original post here, and to Tag them with the Lens-Artists Tag. I’ll be back to host next week’s challenge here at Travels and Trifles. Hope to see you then!

 

* Source: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/laser-scans-reveal-massive-khmer-cities-hidden-cambodian-jungle-180959395/  For more information about this fascinating discovery click on the link

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #78 – Special Spot Shots

“One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.”

Tom Wolfe

B&W,TREES, NYC

NYC THEN AND NOW

This week Ann-Christine’s challenge gives me an opportunity to highlight some of the many special spots we visited during last week’s holiday visit to NYC. I’ve opened with an image that feels as if it might have been made a hundred years ago or yesterday.  As I captured the scene, it reminded me a bit of Paris.  Interestingly the building on the left houses a wonderful French market, bar and restaurant – Le District. I’ve included a colorful capture of its interior below.

French Market, Le District, NYC

LE DISTRICT

“Every true New Yorker believes with all his heart that when a New Yorker is tired of New York, he is tired of life.”

Robert Moses

Le District’s food is authentic French, down to the perfect sandwichs au jambon (ham sandwiches) which took me right back to my days as a student in France. Back then we’d lunch almost daily on crusty French loaves smeared with butter and filled with fresh, thick ham and sometimes delicious brie cheese. Le District makes them exactly the same way, and if you’ve a mind to, their pomme frites (french fries) bar offers 20+ varieties. As a true melting pot, one of the beauties of NYC is its ability to deliver most any cuisine, done perfectly, around virtually any corner.

Lower Manhattan, NYC, Calatrava Oculus

LOWER MANHATTAN – WILD AND CRAZY

“New York City, it is a place apart. There is not its match in any other country in the world.”

Pearl S. Buck

Like most NYC holiday visitors, we’ve spent time in midtown Manhattan visiting the magical Rockefeller Center area and the incredible holiday store windows. This time however, we stayed with our family and took in some of lower Manhattan’s special sights. The image above struck me as quintessential NYC – skyscrapers next to crazy wall art, across from the winged, white Oculus and of course the ever-present crowds awaiting a change of the light.

CALATRAVA AT CHRISTMAS

CALATRAVA AT CHRISTMAS

“New York is the biggest collection of villages in the world.”

Alistair Cook

In the image above I’ve captured a small piece of the interior of the Oculus, a spot made special by its innovative architecture. Once inside one instantly understands the architect’s vision, which he has fulfilled masterfully. The building is filled with light, even two stories underground. Directly overhead there is an end-to-end row of windows showcasing the nearby towering skyscrapers. It is truly a special must-see for anyone visiting New York.

9/11 Memorial, rose

LEST WE FORGET

“A son for a flag is a lot of sacrifice.”

Tucker Elliott

Speaking of special places, the area also houses the 9/11 Memorial and its Museum. The ground has been beautifully preserved and is revered by all who visit. There are two massive, square granite waterfall pools located on the twin towers’ footprints, each covering over an acre of space. The names of each of the 2,983 victims are engraved in bronze around the pools. 400 white oaks surround the ponds (shown in today’s header image), as well as a “Survivor” pear tree found severely damaged at Ground Zero and nursed back to health. The memorial and its incredibly moving museum are imperative special spots for NYC visitors.

NJ from NYC, Hudson River

THE OTHER SIDE

“New York…the most exciting, magical, fraught-with-possibility place that you could ever live”

Nora Ephron

Having grown up across the river in New Jersey, NYC was always a magical place to me. When I was younger I found it immensely exciting, a bit frightening, and happily only a stone’s throw from my more normal life in the Jersey suburbs. In the image above the man at the fence is looking across the Hudson River toward New Jersey – so close by but worlds apart.

Reflecting metal snow sculpture

NYC VERSION OF CHICAGO’S BEAN

New York. The world’s most dramatic city. Like a permanent short circuit, sputtering and sparking up into the sky all night long.”

Cornell Woolrich

I’ll close (at last) with my image of an iconic snowman in the holiday-adorned Oculus. Most everyone walking by took photos of their loved ones in front of this special spot, including yours truly. I thought it took a hint from Chicago’s beloved bean, and did so admirably. I’m anxious to see if it remains, perhaps sans cap and scarf, at holiday’s end.

Thanks as always to our many followers for their thoughtful responses.  Patti, Amy, Ann-Christine and I look forward to virtually visiting your Special Spots. Remember to link them to Ann-Christine’s challenge here, and to use the Lens-Artists Tag to help us find you.

Here’s to 2020, may it be filled with peace and moments of joy for us all. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #77 – Favorite Images of 2019

Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.

Imogen Cunningham

light, lily

LOVELY LIGHT

The great Ansel Adams once said 12 significant photographs in any one year is a good crop“.  So in response to Patti’s Challenge, I’ve chosen 12 favorites from among this year’s  thousands. Each is special to me for a different reason, which I’ve included in my comments below.

To approach the task, I divided my 2019 archives into several categories.  I opened with a favorite of my Flower Images, chosen because of the way the exquisite light gives the lily a transparent purity against the dark background.

Glacier National Park, mountains, clouds, flowers

ABOVE THE CLOUDS, GLACIER

“My favorite photographs speak eloquently, both about and to us.”

Matei Glass

For my second category, Travel Photography, I first chose a capture of the incredible natural phenomenon we experienced in Glacier National Park. Climbing the Going To The Sun Road, we were totally fogged in and worried we’d see nothing of the park’s grandeur. As we rose above the deep mist we had a true AHA moment. The fluffy white clouds spanned the valley to reach the towering mountains on the other side. The purple lupines completed the palette of nature’s perfect painting.

DESERT SUPERBLOOM

DESERT SUPERBLOOM

“A good image can be created, executed, captured, and recorded but it is well before imagined by a mind.”

Lakshman Iyer

My second Travel image features the 2020 super bloom, which had to be seen to be believed. It’s not something one can plan for, never knowing when or if it will occur. I was fortunate to be visiting family in Arizona during the desert super bloom.  It is a memory I hope to have with me forever.

impressionist, fleld worker

IMPRESSIONS OF THE DAY

“Great photography is about depth of feeling, not depth of field.”

Peter Adams

I sometimes enjoy creatively post-processing my images, so I’ve featured two captures from among my Artistic Impressions. I love the feeling of movement in the scene above, which highlights the bright green of Kiawah’s springtime marsh under beautiful blue skies, as a field worker focuses on his task.

Both Portraiture and Monochrome are featured in the post-processed image below. The color’s removal and a touch of grain to me give the image a more nostalgic feel. The little girl is my niece’s daughter – I like that the portrait captures the more serious side of her personality.

Child, beach

DEEP IN THOUGHT

“A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.”

Edward Steichen

Next up, my favorite 2019 Kiawah Creature Images – beginning with our magnificent birds. I’ve chosen the Night Heron from among hundreds of 2019 birds. This particular species is quite elusive, often hiding in deep foliage beside one of our lagoons. They are usually partially hidden and are rarely seen with wings outstretched. The image captures the bird’s beautiful wings and coloring, as well as the intensity of its bright red eye. It is one of my favorite photography moments, simply because it is so rare.

NIGHT HERON ON THE WING

NIGHT HERON ON THE WING

“A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed.”

Ansel Adams

Here on Kiawah, we co-exist peacefully with our deer population – they provide a lovely reminder of the nature that surrounds us. I like the way this image captures the doe within her typical environment;  the catchlight in her eye is an added bonus.  

deer, foliage

SHARING NATURE

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.”

Henri Cartier-Bresson

I simply cannot omit alligators from a Kiawah Creatures category. In this image, I love the gator’s lazy, smiling face and its apparent indifference to the turtles below. I suspect the turtles’ shells offer little protection from the gator’s powerful jaws but perhaps he’ll seek an easier target should he awaken hungry from his nap.

alligator, turtles

PEACEFUL COHABITATION

“I think good dreaming is what leads to good photographs.”

Wayne Miller

Finally, I’ve included some favorite Kiawah Landscapes – a true challenge since our island is so blessed with natural beauty. I love the soft light peeking through the clouds during a rainstorm in the image that follows. Its ethereal beauty speaks to me of Mother Nature’s many moods.

Kiawah landscape, fog

PEEKING THROUGH

“Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”

Marc Riboud

Amazing skies are a frequent occurrence on Kiawah. While the scene below seems dramatic in and of itself, for me the presence of the fisherman adds an extra touch of interest.

fisherman, clouds

UNDER SCARY SKIES

“When I have a camera in my hand, I know no fear.”

Alfred Eisenstaedt

Hurricanes can wreak havoc on a barrier island. This image was captured the day before the arrival of Hurricane Dorian. It left us with many downed trees and no power, but spared us from major damage. I was happy to capture the beachgoers enjoying the churning sea under the gathering clouds of the approaching storm.

Clouds, beach, Kiawah Island, swimmers

CALM BEFORE THE STORM

“I wish that all of nature’s magnificence, the emotion of the land, the living energy of place could be photographed.”

Annie Leibovitz

I agree whole-heartedly with the quote following my final image below. For me at least, it’s the things I’ve photographed that I most remember. The beauty of an autumn sunset on Kiawah’s beach, for example, will be with me for a lifetime.  Hopefully, on this one my choice speaks for itself.

Kiawah, beach, sunset

BEACH SUNSET

“What you have caught on film is captured forever… It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.”

Aaron Siskind

So there you have it, my favorite images of 2019. Sincere thanks to those who stayed with me for my longer-than-usual post 🙂. I’d love to hear your thoughts on which image(s) you prefer and why.

Patti, Ann-Christine, Amy and I look forward to seeing which of YOUR images you count as personal favorites. Be sure to include the Lens-Artists Tag to help us find you, and to link to Patti’s original challenge here. We hope you’ll join us next week when Ann-Christine posts Challenge #78. If you’re new to Lens-Artists, click here for information on how to join us.

As always, our team sincerely thanks you for your participation and  support of our challenges throughout the year. Happy 2020 everyone – wishing you a New Year filled with love, friendship, peace, fun and photography. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #76 – On Display

“A breeze, a forgotten summer, a smile, all can fit into a storefront window.”

Dejan Stojanovic

LANTERNS, bicycle

NIGHT LIGHTS

This week Amy challenges us to illustrate “On Display”. As one who loves traveling, I’ve seen and photographed more than my fair share of wonderful markets and shops around the world. As further evidence that people are the same everywhere, there are always enticing displays to tempt shoppers whether it be in a high-end Parisian storefront, a night bazaar in Bangkok, a street pop-up in Hoi An or the outdoor markets of Prague.

hats

HATS UPON HATS

“One of the joys of shopping is browsing.”

Steve Magee

I’ll admit I’m not much of a shopper, but I’ve often enjoyed browsing the colorful displays tempting visitors in our travels. It never ceases to amaze me how much “stuff” one might accumulate given the opportunity. Personally, having moved from our larger home of 17 years to a smaller one three years ago, I’ve promised myself never to buy another thing that isn’t absolutely necessary. While I may not be executing perfectly on that challenge I do think I’m doing much better 😊.

colorful, scarves, display

SCARVES GALORE

“Anybody can buy. It takes an artist to shop.”

Jennifer Finney Boylan

Rather than shop to buy, I’m much more content to browse and photograph. After all, do I really need one more hat, or scarf, or thing-a-ma-bob?  A good friend told me she has a rule that if she brings in something new, she must get rid of something it replaces. Challenging but not a bad idea. Another told me she puts stickers on every piece of clothing once each year. If she doesn’t wear the item before the next year, she donates it or tosses it depending on how it’s aged.

market, display, dresses

FRENCH FRILLS

“On every shopping trip, there is one indulgence.”

Judy Blundell

There are shopkeepers who welcome browsers, as well as those who welcome only serious buyers. The trick is knowing one from the other and acting accordingly. In open air markets, such as the one above from a market plaza in France, vendors seem much more open to those who, like me, are only there to look rather than buy.

vietnam, cart, merchandise

ROLLING DISPLAY

“Buy, buy, says the sign in the shop window; Why, why, says the junk in the yard.”

Paul McCartney

Amy’s challenge presents us with so many opportunities – after all, isn’t a bird’s stretch of its wings a display? Perhaps it’s a farmers’ market with luscious vegetables on a stand….or a florist’s bounty in the window. As for me, I’ve gone with a traditional set of shopping displays simply because each evokes a fond memory of some of the countries I’ve enjoyed visiting. Here’s hoping you choose a response that brings you a bit of a smile as well. Speaking of smiles, many thanks to those who responded to my Nostalgic challenge last week. Most of us have proven that we look to our past with rose-colored glasses – and why not?  

For this week, Amy, Ann-Christine, Patti and I look forward to seeing your displays, whatever and wherever they may be. Please remember to link them to Amy’s original post and to tag them with the Lens-Artists Tag.  Also, a final reminder that the Lens-Artists team will be enjoying a holiday next week but will be back with you via Patti’s Pilotfish post on the 28th. We wish everyone who celebrates a wonderful holiday and look forward to seeing you then.

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #75 – Nostalgic

“To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forward.”

Margaret Fairless Barber

TWO RED BARNS

TWO RED BARNS

Last week Patti asked us to respond to her  “uniquely modern” abstract challenge. Shortly after I responded, I visited a new community nearby (featured later in this post), which moved me in the complete opposite direction to the idea of days gone by. So this week, let’s  look back a bit with a touch of nostalgia.  

BALES

BALES

“Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days.”

Doug Larsen

For me, one of the things most evocative of the past is the concept of a family farm. Unfortunately, my nostalgic view is probably quite different from reality. While I love things like hay bales along peaceful rolling hills or classic red barns, I have no firsthand experience with the difficulties of truly managing a farm. Up before the sun, totally dependent on the elements, managing livestock – I cannot begin to imagine the effort involved.

GOATS, COWS

LAZY LIVESTOCK

“It’s never safe to be nostalgic about something until you’re absolutely certain there’s no chance of its coming back.”

Bill Vaughn

In the new community mentioned earlier and shown above, they’ve taken a unique approach.  As one first drives in there is a relatively small farm located at the beginning of the property. There they grow simple crops and house livestock like goats and adorable Belted Galloway cows (often called oreos). The crops and goat cheese will be sold through a gourmet store also located on the property. A community farm seems a logical choice for a return to the “good old days” but with an approach that distributes the workload a bit.

SPOONBILLS, LOG, WATER

FLOATING SPOONBILLS

“Nothing is more responsible for the good old days than a bad memory.”

Franklin Pierce Adams

Just around a bend in the road the community fronts the Kiawah River where we came upon a floating log shared by several beautiful spoonbills and an egret. The peace and quiet of the moment brought to mind bygone days when such scenes might have been a bit more prevalent. 

Patti, Amy, Ann-Christine and I look forward to seeing the nostalgic moments that are most special to you. Past holidays, times with family and friends, travel moments, or just something that reminds you  fondly of days gone by – it’s your call. Give us a small peek into the things you’re nostalgic about. Be sure to link to my original post and to use the Lens-Artists Tag.

 

Many thanks to those of you who responded to last week’s Abstract challenge. We enjoyed the diversity of your responses and especially appreciate those in the U.S. who joined us during a holiday week. 

 

HAVE YOU SEEN THESE?

Yvette of Priorhouse Blog gave us a very interesting psychological explanation of the appeal of abstract art

Sue Judd of WordsVisual showed us a number of techniques for creating abstract images

Gina of Photography in Pearls shared some abstract images of holiday lights from South Carolina’s Brookgreen Gardens  

Finally, we welcome first-time responders Jussi Laasonen of Avaruussuo and Vero of Uprooted Wanderers

 

PLEASE NOTE we will not be publishing our challenge the week of December 21 to 27, but we hope you’ll join us next week as Amy posts Challenge #76. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #74 – Abstract

“Do not copy nature too much. Art is an abstraction.”

Paul Gauguin

FUNKY

Patti’s challenge this week, abstract, took me in a different direction than she may have intended. Rather than follow my normal pattern and include a number of different images, I opted to present one image in several different ways.

SOFT AND SWEET

“Abstract artists tell their stories with shapes, color, edges, movement, and value.”

Gwen Fox

I manipulated my original image (included at the end of my post) using post processing tools available from Topaz Studio and Photoshop. The effort was rather time-consuming, not so much because of complexity, but because of the number of possibilities available.

ARTISTIC

“You can’t look at abstract art without thinking.”

Patricia Cole-Farullo

My goal was to preserve the idea of the natural scene – which was really beautiful – but presented in a more abstract way. It was important to me to take a number of very different approaches to explore what kind of reaction they would engender – both my own and that of my followers.

Abstract Funk

“I understand abstract art as an attempt to feed imagination.”

Jean Helion

I will admit I am not a big fan of abstract art. In fact, of all of my images this week the original, unedited version is my favorite, followed by the more impressionist “Artistic” version. I remember being struck by the natural scene as I walked through what felt like a “forest primeval”. It was important to me to capture it as it appeared late one afternoon last week.

SKETCHY

“How do abstract artists know when they’re getting better?”

David Leffel

WILD

“The abstract patterns created by light… simplify design and strengthen composition.”

Ann Pember

I would be interested in your feedback on which of these “creations” (if any) you find appealing, or do you, like me, prefer the original (shown below).

Live oak, forest

THE REAL DEAL

“Abstract painting is abstract. It confronts you.”

Jackson Pollock

Many thanks to those who replied to last week’s “COLD” challenge. Patti, Ann-Christine, Amy and I enjoyed seeing your interpretations from both the past and the present. Here’s hoping this year’s winter is kind to all of us! 

PLEASE NOTE:  Because Ann-Christine is traveling, next week’s challenge #75 will once again be hosted here on Travels and Trifles. Hope to see you then!

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #73 – COLD

Come, little leaves, put on your dresses of red and gold; for Summer is past, and the days grow cold.”

George Cooper

Snow, sweetgrass, winter

WINTER WONDERLAND

Last week I posted some images of our beautiful, pink/purple sweetgrass in response to Amy’s “Waiting” challenge. By contrast, my opening image above shows what happens to sweetgrass when we experience a rare coating of winter snow.

Kiawah, snow, palmetto

BRRRR

“If you think my winter is too cold, You don’t deserve my spring.”

Erin Hanson

Having lived in the south for 20 years now, my husband and I have seen snow here exactly twice. As such, I hesitate to complain when our friends and family in the north suffer much more difficult winters. But last week’s extremely abrupt turn to cold, windy rain prompted me to consider the coming season, which led me to this week’s challenge: COLD.

ice covered plant

ENCAPSULATED

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”

John Steinbeck

In my younger days I enjoyed snow skiing. Back then we had the right clothing for winter temps and enjoyed the rush of adrenaline as our workout on the slopes warmed and exhilarated us. The inevitable return to the lodge, typically with a raging fire and a hot cup of cocoa, was the perfect reward. Let’s just say my days of enjoying the cold are behind me forever 😀. Happily, here on Kiawah we are back in the 60s with lots of warming sunshine – at least for now.

Downed branch in snow

DOWN FOR THE COUNT

“Winter must be cold for those with no warm memories.”

Anne Bradstreet

Despite my feelings about the cold, on each of the two occasions when snow and ice arrived on Kiawah, my husband and I bundled up in whatever warm clothes we could find and headed out to explore the beautiful scenery. I will admit that if I didn’t love photography, chances are I would have passed on the scenic opportunities and stayed cozy and warm at home.

icicles on beach sign, Kiawah Island

THIS WAY TO THE BEACH

“If the world is cold, make it your business to build fires.”

Horace Traubel

I have fond memories of both of our winter storms. In one favorite moment we were watching golf on NBC. Incredibly, there on the screen popped one of my photographs! It was my husband holding the flag on one of our golf greens. The commentator was illustrating the rarity of “snow on Kiawah’s Ocean Course”.  I had posted the image on Facebook for a friend who was out of town. Unfortunately, in my excitement I’d neglected to add my copyright. That’s the last time THAT will happen.

Snow, Ocean Course, Kiawah Island

ALMOST FAMOUS

“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake, it is necessary to stand out in the cold.”

Anonymous

The infamous photograph is included above. You’ll notice it now has a copyright 🙂.  We tried in vain to get the network to send us a video of the moment but alas, never got one.

snow, Kiawah, Beach

SNOW MAGIC

“Often times we call a man cold, when he is only sad.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

For those who may be wondering, I’ve mixed the images throughout my post to show both of our wintery events. My final image above shows Kiawah’s beautiful beach covered in icy snow. Happily it doesn’t happen often but when it does it is truly magical. 

 

Many thanks to those of you who responded to Amy’s “waiting” challenge.  We enjoyed your creativity and as always Amy, Patti, Ann-Christine and I greatly appreciate your support of our challenge.

HAVE YOU SEEN THESE?

Lens-Artists welcomes Wendy of My Plaid Heart, who joins us with a fun post about waiting for whisky (with no e 😃)

Hard to believe it’s “that time again” but Celia of  WordWacker shares her thoughts on waiting for Santa

John of Journeys with Johnbo shares a wait for the perfect moment at Utah’s beautiful Bryce Canyon National Park

 

We look forward to seeing your interpretation of “cold”. It could be snow and ice, or a frosty window pane, or even your favorite flavor of ice cream! Please remember to link your response to my original post as the reader links are not working correctly, and to add the Lens-Artists Tag to help us find you.

Finally, for those who celebrate, we wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving surrounded by those you hold most dear.

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #72 – Waiting

“Waiting is a skill like anything else.”

Lee Child

Sweetgrass, pink

SIMPLY SWEET

Here on Kiawah we enjoy four seasons, but the degree of difference between each of them is far less than in most areas of the country. We don’t get the bursts of brilliant red and gold typically found across the U.S. as autumn sets in. Instead, we wait for the appearance of our beautiful pink sweetgrass to signal the arrival of the new season.

SWEETGRASS-BLOWIN' IN THE WIND

SWEETGRASS-BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND

“Patience is not waiting; it is a quality of waiting.”

Sharon Weil

This year our summer lasted a bit longer than usual, and our wait for the sweetgrass finally ended along with October. The good news, of course, is that it also lasted further into November. The last few whisps of color are just now fading away.

SWEETGRASS ABSTRACT

SWEETGRASS ABSTRACT – FADING AWAY

“What we do while we wait may be more important than what we are waiting for.”

Tim Hiller

My husband and I were happy to have a long-awaited visit from two of my brothers and their wives this past week. We were all fortunate that the predicted cold front didn’t occur until the last day of their visit. I was especially happy that the late appearance of the sweetgrass meant that they were able to experience it for the first time. It’s really a very special element of a visit to the lowcountry, and one can never be sure about its timing.

SWEETGRASS AND EGRETS

SWEETGRASS AND EGRETS

“Instead of waiting for the right moment, BE the right moment.”

Kaiden Blake

Like many of you I’m sure, our weather changed from lovely fall sun and warmth to instant winter 😠 which for us means temperatures in the low 40s f / 4c.  Hopefully we’ll return to a bit more warmth before true winter sets in. Although ours is milder than most, our southern blood is less resistant to cold and wind so we’ll be waiting not-so-patiently for the return of spring! Hard to believe winter’s not even here yet and we’re anxious for it to end.

SWEETGRASS, PALMETTOS

SWEETGRASS AND PALMETTOS

“Sometimes you wait for the right time and you run out of time altogether.”

Regina Sirois

Thanks to all who responded to Ann-Christine’s quest for creepy. It was really fun seeing your responses. Like many others I was surprised to find more creepy images than expected LOL. This week, Amy, Ann-Christine, Patti and I look forward to seeing what it is you’re waiting for. Remember to use the Lens-Artists Tag and to link your post to Amy’s original post here. We hope to see you back here on Travels and Trifles next week as I host Challenge #73.

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Challenge #71 – Creepy

“Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly.”

Charles Addams

Locked doors, cobwebs

LOCKED UP

This week Ann-Christine has invited us to share some creepy images. If you’re anything like me, you tend to avoid such things if possible.  A quick trip through my archives showed me that in fact I do have a few such captures after all – who knew?! The locked and cobwebbed door above for example, is the entry to a crypt that gave me the creeps in the famous Recoleta Cemetery of Buenos Aires.  The question is, were they trying to keep people out, or keep the spirits in ? 😳

VULTURE SILHOUETTE

VULTURE’S VISION

“Just tell yourself they’re only stories.”

Pamela K. Kinney

I’m not quite sure why vultures get such a bad rap. They actually perform an important service, cleaning up the dead animals that would otherwise litter our roads. When we visited New Zealand we were told they have a problem with their “road-kill” because they have no scavengers to haul away the carrion. That said, I must admit vultures still give me the creeps.

Buffalo Skull

CREEPY CRANIUM

“You can only be brave if you’re scared.””

Laurie Halse Anderson

The creepy skull featured above is one that we came across during our Botswana safari. Hopefully the cape buffalo that left it behind died of natural causes.

Dried Bats - Hong Kong Apothecary

CREEPY CRUSTY CRITTERS

“Sometimes the things in our heads are far worse than anything they could put in books or on film.”

C.K. Webb

The image above is from an apothecary in Hong Kong. They had quite a few things on display that many of us would find creepy.  I myself could not imagine any reason one might purchase a dried bat, nor what they would do with it if they did. Just sayin’.

HOME OF THE MARQUIS DE SADE

HOME OF THE MARQUIS

“I write about the scariest monsters: The ones inside us all.”

Aaron Marcusson

The photo above is not creepy because of the disconnected head in a cage. Rather, it’s because it was the home of the notorious Marquis de Sade. The terms sadist and sadistic (taking pleasure from inflicting pain) are both derived from his name.

HARVEST MOON

HARVEST MOON

“It is not what we know that scares us, it is what we do not.”

A.G. Phillips

In closing, I’ll leave you with an image of what might be seen as the kind of moon under which vampires, ghosts and werewolves would emerge. That would be creepy right? Then again, one might see it simply as a beautiful full moon surrounded by cloudy skies. I’ll let you be the judge.

I join Ann-Christine, Patti and Amy in looking forward to seeing what YOU find creepy.  Don’t forget to link your post to the original post here, and to add the Lens-Artists Tab.