Lens-Artists Photo Challenge # 171 Weird and Wonderful

This week Ann-Christine invites me to have the opportunity to share my weird and wonderful images in this challenge! By accepting this challenge I will showcase some of my images of natural weirdness, items I found strange to photograph, and images I created through photo techniques.

This mutant Sunflower captured my attention! Was it an overachiever?

Here in Sacramento we are starting to get a taste of autumn. On Sunday we experienced record setting rainfall. They called it a bomb cyclone. It was time to dust off those raincoats and galoshes. Since California has been in a drought many of us were caught off guard. My puppy Moxie has never experienced rain, and was not too impressed. She was glad to wear her raincoat for our many, but quick outings. After the rain I just discovered the weirdness of mushrooms popping up. One minute nothing, the next minute fully formed fungi. Don’t know the toxicity of these mushrooms, but I am taking no chances on Moxie discovering them.

The next couple of images are part of the life cycle of decay. There is a certain beauty in observing rot.

These post have changed over the 30 years in my landscape, yet there is life.
Tis the pumpkin season. I see the heart of the pumpkin!
Decaying squash
The salmon come up the American River to lay their eggs and die.
Each gull finds its own rock!
A certain weirdness to the play of fish and bubbles.
This image speaks to me. It says, “Halloween is just around the corner. Get those treats ready or you will be tricked!”

The following are strange images I came across.

There are probably drivers on the road who follow this sign. Not me! Beliefs are another story.
What do you see? Found around old farm machinery.
Does this meet with your definition of weird?

The following images were created by painting with light.

A bouquet of flowers
Think of a scary movie!

What’s happening on the farm?

Started this post about a month ago. I’m just now catching up.

Three weeks after spine surgery, and I am out with my friends and my camera. For California we are having a wet winter/spring. Hopefully, this will quell the noise of a drought during the summer. Our group has to be flexible because each day brings a chance of rain.

I brought my Fuji x100f which is a light mirrorless single focus camera. My first outing was to two farms in Woodland, Ca. Yolo County farms provide a time once a month where photographers and artists are invited to visit. This time our invite was to Valley Oak Wool Mill and Fate Sole Olive Oil Orchard.

Came a bit late for the full tour of the Valley Oak Wool and Fiber mill in Woodland, Ca.

Walked around to another farm that produces olive oil.

Frate Sole Olive Oil tasting room

Friendly dog welcoming our arrival

Yolo County Art & Ag monthly invites artists, and photographers to enjoy the scenery and get to know a bit more about their local working farms.

Painter capturing the olive orchard

We stopped for lunch in the city of Woodland for some Thai food at Bangkok Cuisine.

Loved the old signage along Main Street


Fixing musical instrument in Woodland, Ca


Spring is here and I have been out taking many photographs to share in the upcoming posts. Stay tuned!

Lumbar Spine Decompressed

No more tingling feeling! Sometimes tingling can be caused by excitement. That’s good. But the tingling, numbing feeling I lived with is not. Surgery on March 8th went well. New equipment now makes this microscopic surgery possible. Nerves are given room to be “happy”. My doctor’s term. Herniated disc relieved.

I went home with a bunch of pain medications, walker, and instructions. No bending, twisting, lifting and stretching. Given all the information regarding taking opioids I was very careful, and only needed relief for a couple of days. At my 1 week follow-up a new med was added to try and alleviate back pain. 12 days out and I am much improved. I expect physical therapy will start after my 6 week follow up appointment. Muscles are healing. Back pain is telling me so.

Started getting out for short trips. We had a sudden burst of spring-like weather and so on Sunday we drove over to the American River at Sailor Bar. Got my Fuji x100F out for a couple of pics. I realize that taking photographs will also be limited while I heal. Eye-level only for a while. My CTT group had a virtual outing this week. We were asked to post photos and explain our processing ideas. Here is my contribution.

My husband is serving as my driver while I am recovering from surgery. No one wants to be driving around while taking pain meds. And also with my limited flexibility I will not twist and turn easily. Sunday, the weather was nice and we went out Sailor Bar. Located a short mile from my house. This is off the American River. When I processed the photo I wanted it to look old fashioned so I used some of my quick plug-in tools. First I went to Lightroom and cropped the image. Took it to Topaz Studio where I added a wood-like texture. Brought it to Luminar where I found a Sepia tone, and added a slight vignette.

This is my original photograph.

Here is the processed image.

This next one may make a 1000 piece puzzle to drive some to drink. I wanted the rocks and texture to pop.

Looking down.

Better?

Hope to be out and about with more photographs to come.

See you soon!

Drop me a comment. Would love to respond.


Kauai – Looking for Water on the Coconut Coast

The last time I visited the Garden Isle I spent much time at the beach visiting my son and daughter-in-law. This time photography pushed us to explore, explore, explore. There are 4 distinct areas to visit. West Side: Waimea Canyon and Hanapepe, North Shore: Kiluea, Hanalei and Princeville, East Side: Coconut Coast – Lihu’e, Wailua and Kapa’a, and South Shore: Koloa, and sunny Po’ipu.

Surrounded by ocean, with waterfalls and rivers interspersed there is no shortage of water. Landscapes full of green provide much appreciated photo opportunities. Especially when you travel from California after a summer of drought.

Opaika’a Falls enhanced by cloud cover
Looking for a closer view, a longer and heavier lens might do!

Our trusty Nissan rental provided our only means of transportation. Maybe if I return I may plan a trip down the river by boat. Not being able to get close to the waterfall kind of took away some of the excitement for me.

Wailua River found on the other side of Opaika’a Falls.

On to our next waterfall of the morning.

Beginning of a muddy trail to find the Secret Waterfalls
Meeting a much younger and experience hikers returning, I decide the Secret Waterfalls will remain as such. My friends and I enjoy the jungle atmosphere.
Looking out from the jungle path is a clearing with goats and bird friends.
Muddy, broken flip flops abandoned by a more adventurous hiker.

Lunch in Kapa’a at Bubba’s Burgers and a quick stop at Kapa’a Beach. Ocean

Plenty of wait time. Amusing signs always capture my attention.
Wild ocean waves on Kapa’a Beach

Last stop of the day is the Wailua Waterfalls. Picturesque, but did not get my heart thumping like Niagara Falls. What can I say.

Wailua Waterfalls
Amused to watch selfies be taken.
I guess this sign does not apply to the lizard attached!

This ends the exploration of the Coconut Coast. Didn’t photograph any coconuts. I understand that this side of the Island has groves of coconuts. Something to see, next time?