Sunlight

Joining in with Wild Daffodil’s photo challenge.The prompt for this month’s photo challenge is Sunlight.

All of these photographs are from the archive.

First a water lily and it’s shadow.

water lilyA rose glowing all the more because of the sunlight.

RoseSun on a spider’s web spider's webcreating shadows on the grass.

Shadowsand lighting up a cloud. sun behind a cloud

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We had more snow!!!

I had to go out to Eastleigh on Saturday because my washing-up bowl had a crack in the bottom and the one I had purchased from John Lewis, although ostensibly the same size, in fact had a smaller base and my everyday plates wouldn’t lie flat in it. I had brought the previous one from Robert Dyas and now the nearest Robert Dyas was in Eastleigh.

As I set out on the bus there were a few white specks flying through the air but I didn’t expect them to amount to much, however by the time I came out of the Swan Centre clutching my new bowl the air was full of large swirling flakes of snow. I didn’t try to take any photographs at this point but the next morning when I looked out the snow was thick on the ground. Maybe not as thick as the last time and it looked more powdery. snow on stepsAlthough I am over my cold sensitivity, for now, I decided that I would not try to make a snow something both because the snow didn’t look as if it would work very well and because I decided that maybe my health suggested getting that cold was still not a good idea!

My Lenten Roses were back under cover! Lenten Roses under snowand out the front there was a trail of footprints and tyre tracks in the road. footprints and tyre tracksEach cars was covered in a blanket of snow. cars covered in showLater in the morning I stopped and talked to a woman who was trying to remove what was a very thick blanket of snow from her car, in order to go out.

These first few photographs were taken with my camera but later I decided that I would see if I could catch a bus and get to church. On the way I saw lots of trees embellished with snow, just has I had coming back from Eastleigh. I tried to take a few photographs of the trees I found on my way after I got off the bus but the difference between eyes and the camera is that eyes can ignore the background but the camera doesn’t. I did take a photograph, though, of this interesting grid pattern snowy gridand a nearby pub. snowy pubOn the way back I did manage to get a few photographs of trees and snow without a distracting background on the wide area of grass and trees in the middle of the Road known as The Avenue. Though had I stopped in the parks I could have got much better ones.snow on treesNot sure my phone got the focus quite right for this one!

snow on treea bit better perhaps!

I had to go the hospital early this morning, I couldn’t get a taxi but luckily the ground was not too icy so I walked. Waiting at the bus stop to come home I took this photograph. tree, snow and ivyThe snow is receding.

I did some gardening! and snow!!

Last weekend I noticed that the fuchsia in the pot in the front was already putting out shoots. So knowing that once I’d had my next infusion I would have to keep in the warm I decided that I had better do some pruning.

I also have a Mrs Popple fuchsia in the back garden that I have shown you before in flower. And you can see it in the front of this picture And here it is pruned. I think last year I pruned it back even more because it does grow so big, but it was cold in the garden and I didn’t want to kill it so I was cautious.

I was also cautious with the one in the pot at the front. This is a variegated one: grown from a cutting take from the one in my younger daughter’s garden. Smaller flowers and I think you can just see what the leaves are like.

Apart from the need to prune them every year, hardy fuchsias are very easy plants and flower for ages over the Summer and early Autumn.

Snow!!

We don’t often get snow in Southampton but we were promised it for Thursday (today) and when I woke up there it was.

All these photographs have been taken from indoors in the warm.

Not maybe yet enough to make a snowman (unfortunately I won’t be going out to do so even if we get more. 😦  ) snowy garden

The daffodils and crocus I photographed last week are suffering. daffodils and crocus in the snowThe Lenten Roses even more as far as I could see. Maybe even dead. I couldn’t bear to photograph them.

And here is the pruned fuchsia now. pruned fuchsia in the snow

No worse for the snow as far as one can see.

Signs of Spring

Today I allowed myself a little time in the garden, inspite of it being very cold, to take a few photographs and sprinkle eggshells round vulnerable plants to keep off the slugs.

Luckily I have a good view on the garden so I have been able to keep in touch with what has been growing, even if I have stayed indoors.

I am pleased to see that the snowdrops are still holding on and happy to see that the daffodils are finally here. There is also one lonely crocus. back over the other side, near the snowdrops, my Lenten Roses are giving a great show. Well it is Lent!You can see the remains of the Christmas roses at the front.

I am a great admirer of Leanne Cole and especially like her macro photographs of flowers, as that is something I enjoy experimenting with.

Recently she wrote an article suggesting how to edit macro photos using Lightroom – http://leannecole.com.au/5-tips-for-macro-photography-using-lightroom/

Now I don’t have ‘Lightroom’ but I was able to apply some of her ideas to the photograph of the crocus and produced this – What do you think?

One a week Photo Challenge – Nature

Ah! how to encapsulate nature in one photograph?

View of fields and mountain
If you click on the photo you can see a bigger version which shows the beauty even more clearly

Of course one cannot, but instead of giving you a collection of photographs that show different aspects of nature, I will share just this one photograph that seemed to me at the time to encapsulate the true beauty of nature as found in Britain. In this case in Wales, near Tywyn.

I took it when I was on my second holiday in the area when out on a walk.

Photo Challenge – Creation

When I think of the word creation, my first thought is not of those things that I create but of God’s creation. Now putting all of that into a one photograph is a bit difficult and even if a photograph including the night sky might hint at something, night skys are very disappointing in the middle of a city.

But then I thought of the poem by William Blake (the first few lines of “Auguries of Innocence”)

Where he writes:
“To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.”

So I will try to capture the wonder of the whole of creation in an image of just a tiny part of it. photo-challenge1649-creationJust look at the amazing detail in the humble spider.

I have never been able to take a really good photograph of a spider’s web but this is maybe the best one. 0534-spider-webAfter all this too is a creation – of a spider!

Photo Challenge – Wild

I suppose there are many ways one can interpet wild but the word reminded me the the last verse of Gerald Manley Hopkins’ poem “Iversnaid”:

What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and of wildness? Let them be left,
O let them be left, wildness and wet;
Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet.

I didn’t see myself being able to go out and find real wilderness but I happened to be on Southampton Common last week and although the common is managed there are plenty of areas that are left wild. I didn’t have my camera with me but the photographs my phone takes are good enough at this sort of resolution, as long as I don’t want to do anything fancy, so here is my chosen photograph for the challenge. photo-challenge1647-wildI cropped this to my preferred 4×3 format but my phone takes 16×9 format and here are four others that were in the running.

The first place I stopped0530-wild-2The one I thought was prettiest. 0530-wild-3One of the wildest. 0530-wild-4And one with interesting branches.0530-wild-5

 

Photo Challenge – Autumn

I looked around and decided that the Autumn colours are not at their best yet and so I decided that instead of taking a new photograph (and how can you capture Autumn in just one photograph anyway) that I would create a gallery of some of the Autumn photographs I have used on my blog previously.

If you click you will get to see each photograph full size. Not all the same as they come from different posts. Note the Gallery does not work in the WordPress Reader you have to go to my blog!

Photo Challenge – Fern

Now this was a tricky one as I am not especially partial to ferns. Bracken on a Welsh hillside mountain, yes, your garden ferns, no!

Up to now I have tried to stay ahead with my photographs but being so busy with my garden, there I was on Sunday with no photograph; so I resorted to a visit to East Park in the city centre on my way home from church.

Luckily, and I do mean luckily because the place I had hoped to have ferns didn’t seem to have accessible ones, I found some almost at once. Not entirely easy to photograph and they are obviously just waking up after a winter sleep and I couldn’t really step on the beds to get a better angle but I did find this. Photo Challenge16019 - fernSuch a lovely spring time green and though it’s hard to see at this resolution a tiny snail attached. Tiny snailI also took this photograph that I thought if you ignored the scale could be some sort of alien life. Alien life?Though of course just a fern waking up like a sleepy animal uncurling.

Maybe it isn’t a Jacaranda!

On Saturday morning I meet a friend and we walk past Parkstone Place Park on the way to visiting a nearby cafe. Last Saturday before I made my post we had discussed the tree I showed you and what it’s name might be.Unknown treeJill of ‘Nice piece of work’ had suggested that the flowers looked like the Jacaranda so it just might be that and when I checked on the internet they seemed exactly the same to me, so I assumed that must be what it was.

Now at this point I hadn’t seen much in the way of leaves on the tree in the park or pictures of Jacaranda trees but when I eventually found some I wasn’t sure because the leaves of the Jacaranda tree looked like mimosa and I didn’t remember seeing anything like that.

Today I met my friend again and we had another look.

I hadn’t got my camera with me so I used my phone.LeavesAs you can see the leaves are not at all like the feathery leaves of mimosa but more like regular leaves.

My friend, who is obviously more observant, also pointed out that there were old seed pods on the tree.SeedsThey were not like the flat pods of the Jacaranda either. You can see the leaves more clearly here.

I did pick up a couple of dried half pods to bring home to photograph.PodsNow this same friend had been looking in her garden books and she said that she had found a tree with similar flowers called Paulownia and also the foxglove tree (I said originally that I thought the flowers looked like foxgloves!) but she thought the leaves were much bigger in her book so maybe it wasn’t. So now I am not sure what it can be.