Thursday Thoughts – A Delightful Colour
Temperatures are rising here already, and flowers are coming up. Not any of these though, but I wanted to celebrate with a gallery of flowers in one of my favourite colours. I hope these might put a smile on your face!
LAPC #233 – One Lens Walk
Annes challenge for us this week is to take a lens for a walk. Yes, to choose a lens and walk. We can also use our cell phone or point and shoot camera. Another trick, when using a zoom lens, is to pick an aperture and stay with it. It is of course also possible to go for our archives. The important thing is to have fun! Remember to link to Anne’s original post and use the Lens-Artists tag.
I usually walk with my Fuji 16-80 lens, or my 35 prime lens. But my absolute favourite is the Tamron 90 macro. It is not a coincidence that my blog is labelled with a quote from William Blake: ”To see a World in a Grain of Sand…” The complete line goes: ”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.” To me, this is the essence of Life.
As there are very few flowers and insects to photograph right now, I have chosen some of my old macros to show the different possibilities of this lens. Close-ups and macros yes, – but you will notice it is very versatile.
For macros I normally use f/11, but f/8 – f/11 works fine. I always use a tripod, and that is why most of my macros are shot in my own garden. I don’t carry a tripod on my walks. Not only because of the weight, I want to feel free. And, I often have my dog, Milo, with me too. In the beginning I tried to hand hold the camera, but there were too many photos to throw away, so Milo and the tripod are two of my best friends.
Droplets and frosty petals are always a treat, but even with flowers and other subjects that often don’t move much, I also use the timer in order not to risk accidental camera movements while pressing the button. The photo with many droplets, to the left in this gallery, was hand held. When I don’t take close-ups or macro with the lens, that works fine.
When we get really close, like in the first and the last picture, and the roses, the photo turns almost abstract. Other worlds open up and lets our fantasy work magic.
We enjoyed looking back with all of you during Sophia’s challenge last week. You sent us unique and interesting responses – some surprising ones too. Now we are looking forward to seeing your one lens walks!
Next week our new team member, Donna Holland of Wind Kisses, will be leading the challenge. Be sure to visit her beautiful site for inspiration!
If you would like to participate weekly in our Lens-Artists Challenge, click here for more info.
Macro Monday – To cheer me up
Macro Monday – European spindle
LAPC #223 – Flights of Fancy
John leads this week’s challenge, and it is no surprise it involves a ”flight”…
I was a little bookworm, a girl with my head full of dreams. Many dreams of foreign countries I read about in books and saw fascinating pictures of. Mostly special places in these books, not so much whole countries. I never thought they would be more than dreams, but then I met a young man as eager as myself to see the world. We started travelling together when I was 16 and he was 21. And we never stopped. Today I am very grateful that so many ”flights of fancy” from my childhood really came to fruition. Of course I have many dreams left, but in fact there is only one more great travel dream, and that is to see the cherry blossom and the wisteria tunnels in Japan. Somehow I don’t think that dream will come true – but it feels good to still have dreams!
Please go to John’s site for more inspiration!
I have picked three different ”flights”… big and small, and in two out of three there is a real flight involved.
One of my first ”flights of fancy” was this house. As a young girl I used to spend every summer in the public swimming pool of our village. And on my way to the pool, every day I passed this white house, surrounded by a big garden with lots of birches, apple trees, plum trees and pear trees. It was built on a bit higher ground than the other houses, and I also knew that one of the most handsome young boys in my little village happened to live there…
Little did I know that my boyfriend and I would buy this house when I was only 21 – and we have lived here since then, for 44 years now. And, it is still my dream house!
This image is from quite some years ago, when we had both Mille and Totti waiting for us to come home.
Another ”flight of fancy” was going to New Zealand. I had a pen friend when I was 11 (one of many…), and this girl sent me a calender with photos from both islands, North and South. I was so mezmerised, so in love with these extraordinary nature sceneries, that I started dreaming of getting there one day. In my mind, no other country could literally have ”everything” I loved: high mountains and glaciers, volcanoes and hot springs, magical forests and jungle, unimaginable animals…yes, everything. A dream which of course sounded absolutely impossible…NZ was at the the other end of the world – the New Zealanders are our antipodes.
Then there is another ”flight of fancy” involved too. I had always loved the novels of JRR Tolkien, and especially Lord of the Rings. Our children loved it too…so, finally we arrived in NZ, North Island around Christmas 2011. We travelled the islands for a month, and of course we had to visit Hobbiton! And do you know what – it looked just like in my dreams.
Yet another ”flight of fancy” started with a novel, James Hilton’s Lost Horizon. I dreamt of the magical Himalayas and mystical Tibet, but realised I would never get there. This was literally another world. But, in 2009 my family took the train from Beijing over permafrost and the Tibetan Plateau to Lhasa. It is the world’s highest railway, 5,068 meters at Tanggula. The cars are equipped with oxygen supply to avoid altitude sickness. Still today, we all think this was one of our greatest adventures.
Over the last years, our home has become a ”flight of fancy” for birds and insects, plants and hedgehogs. I try to make it my own Shangri-La, a hidden paradise behind birches, bird cherry and lilacs. I cannot save the planet, but I know I can be of great help to make this little piece of Earth thrive.
According to John, and to Dictionary.com, the idiom “flight of fancy” refers to “an unrealistic idea or fantastic notion, a
pipe dream. For example, ‘She engaged in flights of fancy, such as owning a million‐dollar house.’ This idiom uses
flight in the sense of ‘a soaring of the imagination,’ a usage dating from the mid‐1600s.”
I believe we all need imagination and flights of fancy to survive in this unruly world, so, keep dreaming…
A big thank you to Amy for a spectacular mountain challenge – and to you all for your fabulous entries! Now we are looking forward to seeing what was your flight of fancy (or someone else’s) that came to fruition? Please link to John’s original post and tag Lens-Artists.
Next week, Sofia hosts challenge #224 – Exposure. Be sure to visit her beautiful site for inspiration. Until next, stay calm and kind.