Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #198 Light & Shadow

This week, Patti asks me to explore the interplay of light and shadow–at different times of the day, in different seasons, under natural light, in artificial light. She encouraged me to choose whatever conditions I like. I will look at processing some images in black & white.

My film days started at age nine. I had all my photos printed in black & white. In my twenties I started using Kodachrome. My catalog is filled with silhouettes, shadow designs, and backlit images.

Photographers are often left out of family photos. When I realized this I started taking shadow selfies just to show that I was there.

Fall in the Sierras. The grass is all dried up!
The long shadows indicate that I am shooting a field of sunflowers in the afternoon. The sunflowers are saying goodnight.
On the beach in Maui!

Eventually, I started having friends join me.

Long shadows help those who are height challenged.
A happy greeting!
What’s going on? Looks like I have an unexpected guest.

You can see this in the design subject created by shadows.

Am I going up or down?
Afternoon swim practice
Light dancing through the fountain
A story told in the silhouette I captured in the park
Bridgeport Landscape in Monochrome
Bodie Hotel in Monochrome
What kind of creature can be found in the woods?
Does the creature appear more ominous here in black & white?
Has the creature followed me to the vineyard?

These photo challenges allow me to take another look at the images I have captured over the years. I hope you enjoyed the journey in Light and Shadows.

Moxie Turns One

It is said that puppies grow so fast. This is my girl when I first picked her from Mom Phoebe and Dad Bailey’s litter of 10.

Here she is on New Year’s Eve @ 8 months.

Her birthday starts off at 7:05 a.m. Moxie is my new alarm clock.

She first starts with a subtle whine. This evolves over time. I get up, dress quickly, and out we go to potty. Now we are ready for a game of fetch. Most of the time she is a good retriever. The ball is either dropped by my feet or she wants to give it to me. Sometimes, I think she likes the idea of tug.

Moxie can get distracted. I have a small secluded backyard. My neighbor’s landscaping could be called “natural” foliage mixed with strange stuff. I was surprised to see an airplane parked in the yard behind my house when I looked up a satellite map. Looking through the fence I also see an abandoned Edsel, and another vehicle I can’t identify. I have lived here for over 4 years and I have only heard interesting sounds from there. The latest was heavy equipment jackhammering for 10 minutes at 10 p.m. I hear the usual mowing of the field. Last summer welding went on and on as a shed was built from scrap pieces of metal. It sure would be interesting to get a camera drone and see the field.

But I digress. All kinds of stuff fall into my yard from this neighbor’s yard. I am learning the life cycle of pine trees. In Spring, pine flowers fell on my patio an inch thick, after a big wind. Then the occasional pine cone, often eaten by squirrels. Then come the pine needles. Again, not good for dogs to consume. Now, a wild berry tree is dropping blackberries into my yard. Moxie enjoys searching, and eating these berries. She even lets me think she wants to play ball, and off she trots with her ball to the berry patch. So far, there are no digestive issues. On the other end of the yard, they have a very large, very old, brittle oak tree. In the winter/spring branches fall. Today, a large branch that has been dangling over my yard finally fell down. No one was injured. but we were standing a couple of feet away. In the fall I go out and pick up acorns before Moxie grabs them. Acorns are not good at all. Learning what is good and what is toxic for animals is the number one question I ask at a nursery.

Moxie settles down for her breakfast. I imagine that she thinks if she eats it up fast I will forget that I even gave her anything. I grab some coffee and sit in my recliner with my Golden in my lap. Read a couple of emails, check out FaceBook, and plan the day. Today, a photo session is on the agenda

Her birthday photo session.

We try and groom Moxie every night. I have all the equipment I used on Charlie, and so I started early with Moxie. She even looks forward to having her teeth brushed. At first, she liked the taste – peanut butter! Now we do a full brush!

Moxie just finished her first heat cycle with no issues. The vet is now changing the dialog once again. Spay before six months, wait for at least the first cycle or 18 months to never spay a Golden Retriever. Something to think about.

Around 8 months of age Moxie developed a couple of fears. Her biggest is large trucks. This has interfered with our peaceful walks, and car rides. I have not settled on a crash-tested car harness because Moxie settles herself on the floorboards behind the passenger seat. With the harness, she was getting so tangled up. We both were stressing out. Each day I try and take her somewhere. During her heat cycle, we just drove around and made a stop at Starbucks. Now, we have started walking around Oak Park or Phoenix Field. I use a Gentle Leader on her, and it helps to get her to focus on walking with me instead of leading the way and pulling me. Also, we are back to going to Basic class with Carley, and we practice all the commands throughout the day. Some days are better than others, but today I feel that progress is being made.

Just like when I had kids, I arrange dog playdates. Moxie loves to play with other dogs. Right now we were sticking to girl dogs. But soon our next-door neighbor’s puppy Seven will come to play. Moxie’s Mom Phoebe lives across the street and sometimes comes to play.

So between feedings, playing, grooming, napping, training, and walking Moxie keeps me plenty busy. Having a puppy is a full-time responsibility, and I am glad I am up for it! Well, most of the time.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #196 Humor

John asked me to dig into my photo archives and find something humorous. (Please, nothing that might be injurious of anyone or anything, of course. WE, the collective Lens-Artists that we are, must retain our civility.)

I’m not one that usually tells jokes. As a matter of fact, when I was the librarian at Rio Americano High School my principal would stop by and ask me to share a joke he might use as an opener for an upcoming meeting. Sadly, I could not provide one, but I did get a book of jokes, and story openers for him to use. But when I am out with my camera I often look for funny signs, or happenings. So here goes.

Giving directions in a positive or negative way

Public restrooms often are a source of amusement

Heed these warnings

Some suggestions to follow.

Some food-related signs

Katz’s Delicatessen encouraged the home front to not forget soldiers fighting during World War II.
Can you relate? Sometimes, I can!
Candy Heaven in Old Sacramento allows customers to taste.
This Monterey’s Fisherman’s Wharf restaurant brings in customers with a
life-altering cioppino! We gave it a try.
Catering to a particular customer in Monterey.

The following signs are a mixed bag of honest information that might make you smile.

Are you sometimes overscheduled? Just hang up a sign!
The Truss Bridge in Folsom has quite a history.
This sign leaves me confused.
I wonder when this plant will figure things out?
Good to know. Sometimes I’m not sure.

Some more suggestions that may keep you from getting into trouble.

And sometimes I come across situations that are just too funny not to grab my camera.

I’m not sticking around
I met Trawler and his owner as he was tied up at the downtown waterfront on the Sacramento River.
30% off a bargain price. Get down to Bye Bye Baby for a limited time!
This sign caught these girls’ attention
Never be overcharged in Rough and Ready, California
Well, they tried.
It’s up to you to create this caption.

That’s all folks! Now it’s your turn to leave me a comment.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #195 Colorful Expressions

Anne wants me to show how color affects my photography. After studying basic, and intermediate photography I took an eye-opening class in color photography with Patti Felkner at Cosumnes River Community College. After understanding light, composition, and focus points, I learned to focus on color as my subject.

RGB complementary color scheme is Red/Cyan, Green/Magenta, and Blue/Yellow

Blue and Yellow
Green and Magenta
The farmer’s market is great for finding color

There is something calming in this monochrome image.

Layers and layers
I’m still tempted to pick it and blow the seeds, are you?

Some more examples of monochrome photographs

Often I will look for just a splash of color in my photography.

This alpaca was just sheared.

A splash of color makes for interesting photographs. Don’t you agree?

How about this splash of red!

Some more examples of how just a splash of color catches the eye.

Photographing my dog I learned that I needed both an understanding of light, dog behavior, and color.

I still miss my first dog, Liberty Love. Here is her splash of color!

So after looking over my many images, I look for either monochrome images or those with just a splash in the right place.