Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #174 Shapes and Designs

For this weeks photo challenge PA (Patti Moed) asks us to  take a closer look at shapes and designs. Sometimes when I go out on a photo shoot I focus on one of these elements.

Mirror Lake at Yosemite
One of my first quilt I made
Designs created by these tumbled rocks along the American River
Colorful rectangles leads me into some scrumptious Shave Ice on Kauai
Can you guess what these are?
Animal patterns

Keep a sharp eye out for shapes and designs that surround you!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #155 – On the Water

This week John doesn’t, “…want participants to think that this challenge is all about oceans, lakes, and rivers. The theme “On the Water” encompasses whatever manner of water floats your boat (or doesn’t).” 

A Sacramento summer calls out for water. In my case I can choose between a shower or the blue pool I have for my puppy. Or I can sit in front of a fan and look over my photo library. Being from the east coast I am drawn to the beaches found on Long Island, N.Y. Many a 4th of July was spent in traffic on the causeway leading to Jones Beach. I get a calm feeling listening to the waves crashing. My last year of college I had an apartment a block away from Long Beach (New York), and in the spring mornings I would go down to beach, and nap on the sand. Now on the west coast I enjoy the waves found in Pacific Grove, Ca.

The crashing of waves at Laguna Beach in Southern California
Pacific Ocean off of Kawaii

As a photographer water takes a big step forward in my search for subject matter.

I like to look for reflections.

Taken in Yosemite National Park

There is a certain playfulness found when people are around water.

Catching the last frog in the fall before winter hibernation. Taken at Effie Yeaw, a nature center in Carmichael, Ca.
Heading north from Santa Cruz on Highway 1 we stopped to watch wind surfers.

The ripples in the water reminds me of impressionist paintings.

I use shutter speeds to freeze droplets

Frozen droplets
Action stopped by fast shutter speed during a swim meet

Or create a silky flow created by using a slow shutter speed.

Waterfalls in Hilo Hawaii
This fountain dances to music in front of the Bellagio
Playful fountain of water.
More fountain playfulness.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #152 Shades and Shadows

As the temperature rises here in Fair Oaks, California everyone is attempting to stay out of the sun. My next challenge comes from Ann-Christine. How do our photographs use light? This time I look for photographs that use shade and shadows.

On this sunny beach in Carmel, Charlie’s shadow appears.
When I am out with friends I like to grab a shadow photograph
Chalk It Up and Me!
We stop for a shadow image on the Island of Kawaii with my photo friends Anne and Laura.
Interesting shadow forms from one leaf to another.
Shadow pattern on the leaf in the shape of a heart! Love it!
A dragonfly casts a shadow on a lotus leaf!

Looking through my library I notice that I take many more shadow images. But working with some of my images I now see that the contrast of shadow and sun can highlight a subject.

Capturing this golfer from my hotel window, the shadow and sun contrast draws my attention to his swing.
These ducks are framed by the shade.
The shade and sun helps to draw the eye to the subject.I

Thank you for following along in my photographic journey. And if you decide to step into the sunlight be sure to protect your skin.

Some Sad News. Followed by some Happy News.

Charlie ended his short life last week. It was sudden. It was very unexpected. I was totally blindsided. This little puppy was finally becoming a trustworthy dog. If you have been following along on our journey you know that he was my special little pup. Coming to me during the CoVid quarantine really bonded us. He was not so comfortable with the outside world, and being aware of this I worked doubly hard to share many different experiences with him.

I hoped to have a dog that would be able to share my world, and so he needed to get used to riding in the car. Short trips, and then longer times accomplished this. He loved his car. Not so much getting out of the car. He was always happier to get back into the car. And he could spot the car in a parking lot full of cars.

Such a beautiful boy

I wanted a dog that would accompany me on walks. He walked with me to the mailbox every afternoon. He knew the words, waited till I got the keys, and attached his Easy Walker Harness. A dog lives near the mailbox, and Charlie always got excited to see this barking dog. But his training was paying off, and I would tell him to sit while I opened the box. Sometimes he would see some of our neighbors and wag, and play the “Don’t touch me” game. That was getting better.

Well, he never wanted to walk past our court. I really don’t know why. So if I wanted to get a walk in we would hop in the car, and go find a park path to follow. Most of the time we did ok. It wasn’t a given that my anxious dog would be happy along the path. Bikes and scooters stressed him. And once he saw that we were headed back to the car he was in full pull mode. That I would not allow, and so we often had to stop until the leash loosened up.

First puppy haircut.

New to me was the process of grooming. Every evening Charlie would get on his grooming table after being enticed with 2 pieces of kibble. I was slowly getting all the supplies needed to start doing a full groom myself. CoVid disrupted the supply chain and I finally got the clippers I wanted in May. Yesterday I spent boxing and returning all the items I no longer need.

Charlie at 1 yr old.

Last winter Charlie visited Lake Tahoe. There was snow on the ground, and he would dig and put his face in the cold snow.

Charlie in the snow at Lake Tahoe

Two weeks ago I took my dog on a vacation to Pacific Grove. It was my first ever time to take a pet on vacation. I am so glad to have had that memory. He absolutely enjoyed the beach. His tail was flying high as he dug into the sand. Then he placed his face in it. I will alway have that to remember. I brought along a pop-up playpen and he went right to sleep for the night.

My happy Charlie
Digging away!
A mouthful of sand!
Visiting Fisherman’s Wharf in Monterey

I was proud at his progress, and I was beginning to see him start to adjust to the world. Starting at 4 months his skin rash would be infected. Under veterinary care antibiotics cleared it up. But it would return. Allergy was suspected. So when this happened a third time, Charlie started seeing an animal dermatologist. A strict diet was adhered to, and I started dehydrating treats for him also. After culturing the skin site the vet said that the staph infection would not respond to regular antibiotics. We tried a bleach treatment, and the staph infection spread. So the next step was a stronger antibiotic. Now we did a blood test, and repeated it 2 weeks later. The liver enzyme increased. The staph infection was gone, and the medication was discontinued. But over Memorial Day weekend Charlie stopped eating. On Tuesday his vet admitted Charlie into an iCU hospital. His liver was failing. And on my birthday I said goodbye.

This was a very hard blog to write. I have many photographs of Charlie, but I know that there should have been many, many, many more years together.

Well, Charlie must have some special pull, and he knew how much he would be missed. He knew I was a good dog mama. Just before we went to Pacific Grove my neighbor invited me in to see her litter of Golden Retriever puppies. All the time at Pacific Grove I was thinking maybe Charlie would like a sibling. But I put that out of my mind. On Thursday June 3rd my husband and I went over to see the 5 week old pups, and Moxie will be joining our family in two weeks. Phoebe and Bailey have 9 pups, and my neighbors are happy that they will be able to see her grow up in the neighborhood. The bonding process is starting because she has visited her new home twice. So puppyhood starts again.

A puppy pile of Goldens
Present Moxie!
Moxie comes to visit
I get a visit from Moxie at 5 weeks

I guess you can expect many new puppy photographs!