#7 – A Tie!

The esteemed panel of judges (aka me), after much deliberation, decided number seven in 2014’s top ten was a tie. The first picture is from Key West, Florida. Chickens are allowed to roam freely throughout the island and dawn-confused roosters crow all day long. It took me a while to find this very frequent disturber of the peace and a lot of patience to wait for a good shot because the rooster liked the shadows.

The second #7 was taken during an early morning sunrise in a field not too far from home. I like the colors of this image and the defiant weed that had not yet succumbed to the beatdown of winds, snow, and sub-freezing cold.
rooster

sunrise and weed

#8 Mistakes Happen

The adage about rules being made to be broken can sometimes apply to photography. I was taking pictures of swasn at a bird sanctuary; especially swans in flight. While panning a swan in flight with my camera, it went behind a tree and came out the other side. Even though the swan was moving toward a direct shot into the sun – one of those no nos -, I kept shooting and ended up with a rather ethereal picture. Some might delete this “bad technique ” shot, but I rather like the way the image accentuates the delicate grace of swans. As always, I am interested in your thoughts and comments.
swan wASHout

2014 #9

I took a lot of pictures of spider webs this year. The early morning dew and the rising sun give a sparkling radiance to a beauty we often overlook. The architecture of spider webs can range from simple to amazingly complex.

Number 9 in the 2014 countdown (as determined by our esteemed one-person panel) was taken in a bird sanctuary just east of Jackson, MI. Can you see the designer and creator of this web? The spider – by design – blends in well in the lower right of the web. I have included a magnified view of the artist behind #9 below.

Web and Spider

Web and Spider

Spider in Web

Spider in Web

2014 TOP TEN!

The panel of judges have completed their review of nearly 4000 photographs from 2014 and the results are in! Okay, I’m the only one on the panel but these are my top ten photos from 2015. Each is a favorite for various reasons. Some of the photos are from previous posts and some are brand new to this site. Today’s photo is #10.

This photo is a favorite because of the back story. Pat was driving us through the Everglades. The gravel road would frequently have places to stop where the foliage was back far enough to create a pond-like opening. There were Great Blue Herons, various kinds of egrets, a couple of species of ibis, anhingas, and many other smaller birds in various numbers in most of these stops. There were, of course, alligators and the rare crocodile. Yes, crocs exist, in very small numbers in the Everglades. I have a picture of one.

At one stop, the vehicle came to a stop along the right side of the road and I opened my door get out. I would typically looked down to make sure I wasn’t stepping in a puddle. This time, before I could look down, I heard a loud hissing sound. I looked up to the edge of the water, about 12 feet away, and saw the head of a an alligator. I looked down and saw its tail.

I suggested to Pat that she pull up a bit . . . fast! She did and I got this picture of the head of the smiling gator that kindly suggested I not step on his (her?) tail.

The Kindly Gator

The Kindly Gator

Waldron Road

It wasn’t a very exciting sunrise this morning except for a few pink-laced clouds. But, I wasn’t out for the sunrise. I was looking for that golden hour or two that comes after the sunrise on a clear morning. This morning was supposed to be clear but, in Michigan, mostly cloudy is sometimes about as close as we get.

I was traveling the 15 mile or so stretch of Waldron Road that runs south from U.S. 12 (the old Detroit to Chicago stagecoach route) to U.S. 34. The road is hilly and winding, like many roads in this part of Michigan. It is the kind of area where both old trees and old houses are left to be reclaimed by the earth. At spots along the road where I pulled over to get out and take some pictures, I would put on my flashers for safety. Three times gentlemen stopped to make sure I was okay.

Stepping out into the 33 degree morning, I did have a few moments of golden light and some silhouettes that I liked. The sun hit the hilltops first, then the valleys, and finally the swamp land so common around here. These are a few of this morning’s moments.

Swamp Sunrise

Swamp Sunrise


Reflection Circles

Reflection Circles


Tree, Shed, and Sun

Tree, Shed, and Sun


Log Cabin and Corn

Log Cabin and Corn


Treetops in Sun

Treetops in Sun


Weed, Trees, and Sun

Weed, Trees, and Sun

%d bloggers like this: