Art & Ag in Yolo County

Subi Blue, my 2017 Subaru Outback, headed to Woodland on Thursday to a working farm for a morning of photography with friends. Headed out early to hopefully get better light and beat the summer heat.

Camera gear stowed, directions printed, and Jeanne and Laura safely fastened we headed to Fong Farm. Upon arrival Nancy greeted us with a map of this farm. I was told that the Farm gave us unlimited access, but be sure to park on the side of the road. The barn and metal shop provided many photo opportunities.

Time stops for no one!
Shapes and textures abound.
Parts from days gone by
Bolts of some kind
All eyes are on you!

Driving down dusty roads past a tomato field my Subi Blue gathered a fine coating of silty dust.

Barn surrounded by field of tomatoes 🍅.

At some Art & Ag events some information is shared about the workings of the farm. Here our map was our only guide. I wondered how these tomato field was harvested.

Three dogs greeted my car as we rounded the bend. I will give the a treat, and a “Good dogs” for doing the job of watch dog. Came right up I front of the car and tried very hard from discouraging me from driving down the dusty road. Sorry no phot opportunity here. No dogs were hurt, and eventually they trotted home.

Next we passed a field of yellow and orange thistles. Being a city girl I couldn’t imagine why a farmer would plant so many thistles. They are interesting flowers to photograph, but a bouquet of thistles?

Then we checked the map, and discovered we were looking at a field of safflowers. Ok, armed with no knowledge, I am guessing safflower oil?

Safflower field as far as the eye can see

Plein Air artists also enjoy the Yolo County Art & Ag events.

Painting a willow tree along the canal
My artist perspective. Safflower field in the background. Sutter Buttes in the distance.

That ended the tour of the Fong Farm. We went in search for a field of Sunflowers. I had already visited a field earlier in the month, but now I had my new Fujifilm xf 80 macro lens with me.

My best bee capture
One resilient sunflower standing up to time
Shadows captured in the backlit flower
Not ready for prime time
My best side please
Take time to see another point of view
Think about the BEES! Where would we be?
Bowing down. Countdown till the sunflower season ends.

Denny’s for lunch and then home.

One last stop for my Subi Brown. Bob’s Car Wash. Needed to get a full wash including undercarriage. After such a day I am glad that I put off going to the farm with a clean car. Wow!

Come a little bit closer

Instead of looking at the BIG picture, I decided to explore the world close up. Last weekend while I was out photographing the fields of sunflowers I found that I was drawn to the world of things that fly.

Each year the fields around Yolo County bloom with sunflowers. While surrounded by sunflowers I ended up watching the activity around the flowers. Plenty of bees capturing pollen, and there were the occasional butterfly.

I am here!
Row after row of sunflowers
Butterfly shaped shadow
Mezger’s Zinnia Patch located in Woodland, CA.

Mezger’s Zinnia Patch is a delightful place to visit. This flower garden is privately owned and the public are encouraged to come enjoy the flowers, and pick some fresh zinnias for themselves. The idea is that you should also pick a bouquet for someone who cannot get out to enjoy the flowers in their natural setting. Zinnias available in different varieties and multiple colors. As you enter the field, there are pruning shears, vases and water (for flowers only!). The beauty of nature uplifts the spirit in many retirement homes in Woodland. Sharing has been the reason for Mark Mezger’s continued planting of his zinnia fields.

I have stopped by over the years, and I enjoy watching children selecting, and picking flowers.

Carefully selecting flowers, and placing them together in a bouquet

Not only people stop by for a visit. There are plenty of bees, butterflies and dragonflies.

This butterfly paused for a moment.
Another variety and I caught some sunlight on its wings.
On this flower I found a butterfly and a bee sharing the zinnia!

No dragonflies for me this time.

One last stop on this getting hotter Saturday. The UC Davis Arboretum. As we drove in I was reminded of the many, many trip here with my pooch, Libby.

Plenty of information, and signage to educate the visitor to the UC Davis Arboretum.
My favorite color roses!

I spotted a dragonfly who stopped long enough for me to capture an image.

As close as I could go. Now I am inspired to get a macro lens for my Fuji xt2.

A swallowtail butterfly zoomed around but would not stop.

Taken from a shaded bench. A perfect spot!
Pet owners walking their dogs passed the horse corral.

Time to go. Hope you enjoyed this close-up look at nature. My next stop during the week will be to purchase the Fuji x 80mm macro lens. And hope to get even closer.

Summer is here, looking for chill in Petaluma

Camera Totin’ Tuesday folks are looking to get out of the Sacramento heat. Petaluma is located south west of Sacramento, and less than 2 hours away. The day we visited the weather did not disappoint.

Founded in 1858 Petaluma makes an effort to maintain a mid-19th century charm. Located on the Petaluma River and close to the Bay area, Petaluma provided locally grown food to San Francisco and Oakland starting during the Gold Rush. Today, it can serve as a jumping off spot in Sonoma County. Close to the coast of Point Reyes, 30 minutes outside of the Bay Area, and near Napa and there is plenty to photograph is this town.

The Petaluma River provided easy access to transport goods to the coast. Today, it serves as a focal point for the town’s center.

1606_24_Petaluma_073
Bridge over the Petaluma River

1606_14_Petaluma_2779

1606_14_Petaluma_2770
Decaying pier no longer supports train tracks.

The Free Public Library building is filled with such classic details. This library built in 1904 with money donated by Andrew Carnegie is one of over 1600 library buildings constructed in the United States between 1886-1919. The town had to come up with money for books, salaries, and maintenance. Born poor, Carnegie was denied use of a public library because he couldn’t afford the $2.00 library card. He proclaimed “Free Public Library” on the front of this building to show that all could make use of the facility. Carnegie understood that access to information improves a person’s ability to better oneself.

1606_14_Petaluma_2739
Petaluma Historical Library & Museum

Philanthropist  Andrew Carnegie gave away 90% of his wealth.”The man who dies rich dies in disgrace,” Carnegie said. In bestowing charity the main consideration should be to help those who help themselves,” he wrote.

1606_14_Petaluma_2742

The buildings are impressive. I photographed this one in Eureka, California. Many serve another purpose now such as museums, and community centers. As a retired librarian, I hope that these buildings continue to serve the public need for information.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Eureka Springs Carnegie Library

1606_14_Petaluma_2749
The McNears were part of Petaluma history

1606_14_Petaluma_2748

1606_14_Petaluma_2756
Brick wall with window capture my attention

1606_14_Petaluma_2747
Time out for a tune!

1606_14_Petaluma_2767
Small town main street today

1606_14_Petaluma_1000321
Green Tower Clock

1606_14_Petaluma_2762
Display Window of a music store

Lunch was enjoyed at The New Yorker Pizza & Restaurant.  I’m always on the lookout for “New York Pizza”. Though this time I enjoyed the meatball hero. Afterward we wondered into the Shutterbug Camera Store. Money was safely tucked away. This time.

1606_14_Petaluma_2782
Faded sign on side of building

1606_14_Petaluma_2787
Spider makes a home

1606_14_Petaluma_2797
One of many Victorian Era houses

1606_14_Petaluma_2824
Arch and picket fence detail draws me in

1606_14_Petaluma_2820
Always looking for signs. So polite!

1606_14_Petaluma_2811
Bee sure is enjoying a drink

1606_14_Petaluma_2816
Bee has moved on. What is this flower called? Be Gone!

1606_14_Petaluma_2805
Soft purple frilly flower. Do you know the name?

1606_14_Petaluma_2821
Love the lighting on this pretty coral rose. I do know the general name.

1606_14_Petaluma_2806
He loves me. He loves me not? He loves me!

There are many churches in Petaluma. Taking a walking tour we came across a church on nearly every block.

1606_14_Petaluma_2834
Stain Glass found in St. Vincent de Paul Church

1606_14_Petaluma_2833
Abstract lines

1606_14_Petaluma_2836
A friendly, portable tripod

We ended our walk around town. Taking in the architecture, nature, and friendly spirit of my photo buddies. Good bye Petaluma. May be back again.