“The artist’s gaze, the photographer’s eye, when cast on a subject begins a relationship. That relationship can grow into a deep affection and a profound wisdom. It is that aspect of relating to your subject that I invite you to explore in this challenge.” Thank you Priscilla of scillagrace.
Photography has always helped me to see the world. It may be the quiet moment when I am out and can appreciate nature. It allows me to take a deep breath and slow down. You must be still as you press the shutter button.
Sometimes I am occupied looking for the unusual. This may be a funny sign, or an object found out of place.
Other times I see faces or animals in many of my images. This is pareidolia.Merriam-Webster dictionary defines pareidolia as, “The tendency to perceive a specific, often meaningful, image in a random or ambiguous visual pattern.” Hey, photography has even opened me up to learn new terms.
My photography has helped me get away from my introverted self. I like to people watch, and I use my camera as my lookout point. Some images are candid moments, some environmental portraits, and some tell a story
Photography has been with me since I was nine years old. It helps me connect with people, places, and things around me!
I have gone on a couple of photoshoots since the reopening from quarantine. Each was outside and I mostly stayed to myself. Usually, after an outing, my CTD group likes to grab a bite to eat. I’m not there yet and pass on the friendly banter with my fellow photogs.
Old Fair Oaks Village provided the backdrop of my first time out with my friends. Easy for me since it is about 5 minutes away.
WPA Rock Garden and Land Park Pond provided a nice opportunity to get out and use my Fujifilm 80mm 2.8 macro lens with my Fuji xt2.
Walking around William Land Regional Park I find all kinds of wildlife enjoying the pond. Dragonflies, ducks, and turtles all using the pond in peace.
Now this is how to keep social distance when meeting friends.
The Sacramento Zoo has now reopened. As a zoo member, I was invited to preview the new format as it reopens. Only members were allowed during the first two days with a set appointment time. CoVid 19 guidelines are stated online. As I entered the zoo I was reminded to stay with my flock, wear a mask, and stay 6 feet away from others. I had a 1pm appointment time. Not my usual zoo time since I like to visit first thing in the morning. I was lucky, and the weather was very mild. Perfect.
The zoo has been closed for 3 months, but the facility has been making some changes to accommodate new zoo occupants. Flamingos welcome the visitors.
And these flamingos have gotten all sorts of mixed signals. It’s confusing! And possibly not in the best interest of the flock, or in the case of flamingos a flamboyance.
An ostrich, a duck, an emu, and a Himalayan Monal all walk into a …….
Usually, when I arrive at the zoo in the morning the Red Panda is sleeping. Found this one ready to pose for a close-up.
New residents here at the zoo.
As a nod to Tom Paxton and the cd Goin’to the Zoo I’ll call this “Allen gator. A little alligator with a great big bite, he was Allen gator he wanted to do what’s right!”
Macro photography done well, takes patience. I usually think of myself as a patient person. To get a good image it should be clear. That means I need to stop motion. A small breeze on a summer’s day appears like a gale force wind when seen close up. I stepped away from using past macro lenses because each time I placed the lens on the camera the winds would start up.
I recently converted a concrete birdbath into a succulent garden. Last year I cleaned, filled, and refilled the birdbath. I bought a water stirrer gadget to encourage birds to visit, and keep mosquitoes away. With all my effort I only saw an occasional bird stop by. Word did not get around my neighborhood. So this year after holes were drilled in the concrete I filled it with many different succulents. The up-side is that these plants are not subject to the wind.
So armed with my new macro lens I ventured out to my backyard. My first attempt to use the Fujifilm xf 80mm lens with my Fuji xt2 camera.
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.
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.
Not only people stop by for a visit. There are plenty of bees, butterflies and dragonflies.
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.
I spotted a dragonfly who stopped long enough for me to capture an image.
A swallowtail butterfly zoomed around but would not stop.
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.