Once again I am late in responding to this week’s challenge: “Intricate.” You have all seen photos of the iconic opera house in Sydney, Australia. It is easily recognizable by its intersecting graceful arches. Have you ever wondered what it looks like on the inside? This is a photo from the lobby of one of the several performance venues within the complex. The architecture is just as incredible from the inside as it is on the exterior. The arches are all formed out of reinforced concrete but with many supports and stringers providing the structure. All of those supports create straight lines which intersect with the arches at a multitude of different angles. The complexity yet beauty of this structure amazed me and I hope you find it interesting also. Have a great weekend!
We woke up like many to learn the news of the earthquake in Nepal. It is a terrible tragedy to a beautiful place and its wonderful people. We were there for a short time a few years ago and got to briefly experience the city of Katmandu and the warmth of the people there. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Nepal.
As someone who takes many photos of wildlife in“Motion.” I am always looking the right approach to catching that feeling. One of the primary ways of doing that is to try and freeze important parts of the scene while letting the motion blur other parts of the scene. This photo was taken at the Bosque Del Apache last year – two snow geese coming in for a landing. It was early morning so I was using a slow shutter speed and panning the camera with the geese. I was trying to capture the bodies of the geese in focus while the background and the wings of the geese were blurred by the motion.
We went to see the new Disney movie “Monkey Kingdom” yesterday – a typically impressive piece of movie making with spectacular nature photography used to tell a story of a troupe of macaque monkeys in Sri Lanka. We haven’t been to Sri Lanka but the scenery, the towns and the wildlife all reminded us of our trip to India a few years ago. I thought I’d post this photo of a slightly different species of macaques in honor of this movie. These two little monkeys were sitting in a tree just outside the entrance to Bardia National Park in Nepal. The sun was just reaching them and kind of lit up their big expressive eyes.
As an aside, I’d like to invite you to visit my new photo galleries on my smug mug gallery site – the link is http://scottseyephotos.smugmug.com. I’m still adding to the galleries from my library of images but there’s plenty there to look through already. Hope you enjoy!
I’ve posted a few photos from our 2013 trip to Alaska but haven’t used my first picture taken at dawn at Silver Salmon Creek. I think this fits the theme “Early Bird” perfectly. The sun was just coming up across the inlet with the sky and mountains on the other side showing their colors. The Bear that was out on the tidal flats was still just a silhouette but I love the mood of this photo. Every time I look at this one, it brings me back to that early, but perfect, morning.
I had lots of options from our recent trip to Australia and New Zealand for this challenge, “Afloat.” We spent a lot of time under the water as well as floating above – on a cruise ship, aboard a dive boat, and even on a small zodiac. What I ended up choosing was a photo of a school of Dolphins that we saw in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand. I took this photo looking back into the sun so many of the details were “blown out” by the glare. I took out even more water detail when I processed the photo and ended up with this version which I think looks like the dolphins are “afloat” in the air instead of their normal watery environment.
Here’s my response to this week’s challenge “Blur.” Photographers frequently use a narrow depth of field to isolate the subject from the surroundings. Its a great technique unless you happen to get the focus point just slightly wrong and catch perfect focus on another portion of the photo while the subject is just a shadow. This is one of my favorite examples of that happening. I was trying to take a photo of a tufted puffin in Alaska who was taking off directly away from the boat we were in. The puffin was my intended focal point but I missed and got some of the “spray” from his hopping take-off instead. I still like the photo as it catches the action as well as a crystal clear image of where the puffin used to be…..
One of the things that I love about wildlife photography is that you are always trying to catch that one moment that captures the beauty or the essence of your subject. These moments tend to happen very quickly and you have to be ready for them – sometimes after long waiting times or disappointments. While we were in Australia, I had caught glimpses of large, mostly white parrots of some kind flying around but in every case, we were either in a car or otherwise unable to capture a good shot of them. As we found out later, the bird was a Sulpher Crested Cockatoo which are fairly common in some parts of Australia – including the botanical gardens in Sydney. I went out one morning and spent a few hours trying to catch a shot like the one below. I think it qualifies as “Ephemeral” because a fraction of a second earlier or later would not have done this incredible bird justice….
I always enjoy taking photos of the little fish that inhabit the various types of anemone underwater. The most popular, of course, is the clown fish made famous by the movie “Finding Nemo”. They are incredibly colorful and lots of fun to “shoot” as they dart in and out of the waving anemone tendrils.
The anemone provides cover and protection for the clownfish while the fish also provide protection for the anenome from its predators and parasites. The clownfish are normally found in threes among the venomous tentacles of the anenome. The largest is the female, the next largest is the male and there are usually one (or sometimes more) juveniles in the group. If the female dies or is removed from the group, the male will change sex and become female and the dominant juvenile will become the male.
There are numerous types of anenomefish which can be found on the reefs. The one pictured above is is a pink anenomefish living in an anemone with a bright red underside. These little creatures are always one of the highlights of our dives as they were in our recent trip to the Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea on the wonderful dive boat Spirit of Freedom.
Once again, I’ll try for an entirely different interpretation of “Wall.” We have just returned from a wonderful trip to Australia and New Zealand where we got to experience many different things and saw many, many walls which would qualify for this challenge. I’ve chosen to take the scuba diver’s definition of wall for my submission. In a diver’s vernacular, a wall is a vertical surface rising from the depths of the ocean. They are always impressive to experience because as you look down, the world just fades away into the blue. On one of our dives while on the Spirit of Freedom in the Coral Sea we had a diver’s dream – a vertical wall falling down to 2000′ below, crystal clear water with visibility over 150′, and no other divers with us on the wall. It was even more majestic as this wall had pristine soft corals everywhere and we were adopted by a single white tip shark that followed us closely throughout the dive. It was definitely a wall, and a moment, to remember.
The photo above gives you an idea of the colorful adornments to the wall. Thats my wife, Dee, examining other parts for the many creatures that live in the many nooks and crannies.
This is another photo of Dee with our friendly white tip. You normally see them just cruising by occasionally but this one stayed close to us for almost an hour.