Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #205 The Eyes Have It

Tina challenges me to explore the concept that, “In photography, the most successful portraits will, with rare exception, include focus on the eyes.”

Eye Spy billboard captured in Times Square

The movie titled “Big Eyes” told the story of an American artist Margaret Keane. These murals reminded me of that style.

I have been shooting this smiling sun for over 20 years when I stop in Gilroy, Ca. for cherries on the way to Pacific Grove in May. I try to photograph this from a new perspective.
I printed this photograph many years ago and called it, “Peeking”.

The Sacramento Zoo provides many photo opportunities. This time I was focused on the eyes.

Alpaca after shearing. What is she trying to tell me?
Fish Eye

A salute to a dear photo friend who left us too soon. Greg loved to wear hats. Here he is at the Highland Games in Woodland many years ago.

Greg Morris

I found these odd eyed dogs at some dog events around town.

My Liberty (Libby) Love expressive eyes

Charlies had the most beautiful eyes

Moxie is really starting to vary her expressions. Raised eyebrow when the word “treat” or “dinner” is mentioned.

Did I hear the word, “Dinner”.

Thank you for stopping by to see how I focused on EYES! I would love to read your comments!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge # 203 Local Vistas

What are your local vistas? Where do you photograph when you don’t have a lot of time or are not on vacation? What about your hometown excites you? Is it the countryside, city, gardens, amusement venues? This week, Anne Sandler: Slow Shutter Speed wants me to tell and show local vistas.

Sacramento has been home since 1980. Yet with my local camera group I still find new things to photograph. There is a certain seasonal flow of vistas that show up during the year. For instance, Anne and I visited the Lotus Flower Garden “Peace Pond” this week. When I turned on the television Rob on the Road was interviewing the person responsible for this amazing Sacramento site. Started in 2005 this is now another reason the go to Land Park.

Within Land Park there is also the WPA Rock Garden. Always something to photograph.

The Sacramento Zoo is also located in Land Park, currently. There are exciting plans afoot in the coming years to move this zoo to Elk Grove so that it can provide a better habitat for the animals. Just a little further to drive.

The flamingos welcome you at the entrance of the Sacramento Zoo

In the coming weeks the sunflower fields located in Yolo County calls for photo captures. This image was taken last year.

No sunflowers were harmed in the taking of this photograph.

For people watching I head to Old Sacramento. No matter how many times I visit I find something new to focus on. But it is often the people wandering around. And people with dogs are my favs.

Trawler and his owner live on a houseboat that was docked in Old Sacramento.

This dog wants to share a drink.
Musician on a lunch break. His dog has his eyes on the fries!

Located in Old Sacramento is the California State Railroad Museum.

I find museum locations good when the temperature rises. This week June 2022 the temperature will be over 100° for multiple days. Also a good time to be home and blog!

Well that is just a touch of what I find locally around Sacramento.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #202 Minimalism/Maximalism

Sofia’s challenge is called Minimalism/Maximalism. It could also be Simplicity/Complexity or Sparce/Full. It’s up to me to show how I approach this challenge. I’ll have to think about this as I look over my library of photographs.

Life during the pandemic gave me time to think. Since I was home, as many of you were, I had time to look around my house. The idea of ‘Decluttering” and “Reimagining” space in our homes found its way into the media. Television, podcasts, and how to books popped up. I think I vacillate between the two. When I have my cleaning staff come to may house, I put away many things on my counters. The house is cleaned, and when I look around I have some satisfaction. But I still need some eye candy. On my new kitchen counter I place a Nixplay Frame. In the morning I turn it on, and throughout the day I am reminded of times in my life. l love my frame, and I am constantly adding new photographs. I also have some kind of silk flower arrangement, and two plants that require little water. Anything else makes my kitchen feel cluttered.

I ebb and flow between straightening out things, and letting life happen. But then the sentimental side shows up. I enjoy having things around that bring back good memories. Some items came from my parents house from when I was younger. Other items were given to me, and I remember the occasion. And other objects just seem to fit in a particular space.

My photography finds new ways to grow. Looking over my library I discovered that the coast is a great place to create minimalist photographs.

Taken on Florida’s beaches with my Nikon D70, my first dslr
Simple structure at Pt.Reyes
Seagull joins the family on the beach.

Many of my photographs have a busy quality. One teacher criticized me for this. I just say that it is my artistic preference. Sometimes I like to let my eye wander.

Taken on a photo shoot to Bodie, Ca. with my class. This is an example of “arrested decay”.
More from a town frozen in time, Bodie, Ca.

In the following photographs I like to look for familiar things within. Pareidolia used to be seen as a mental illness, but now is considered normal creative thinking.

Black Chasm Caves in Volcano, Ca.
Do you see what I see?
Here is an example of maximalism in a window display in Carmel, Ca.
Putting a smile on your face with some minimalism to end this post.

So I guess minimalism and maximalism both have a place in my photography.

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.