I’ll post a rather small “Victory” for this week’s challenge. We were in Kauai, Hawaii a couple of weeks ago in a house right on the beach with beautiful breaking waves. I have always been enamored by the ocean and can sit for hours just watching the ever changing views of the surf. What I have never done is try to capture a decent picture of the surf as kind of a stop action landscape. I took many photos that week trying to get something that expressed the beauty and the power of the crashing water. I kind of like this this one as I can almost hear the sound and smell the salt spray – I hope you enjoy it also.
When I think of “Ornate” I always reflect on the cathedrals and monuments that I’ve had the opportunity to see around the world. One of the most incredible is, of course, the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. I could easily have picked many of the pictures I have of that monument but I thought I’d take a slightly different view that many people don’t even know exists. The “Taj” is surrounded by an equally incredible compound that is amazing by itself. The entry points and corners are marked by large, very ornate structures that would be attractions all by themselves if they weren’t just an “appetizer” for the Taj. I chose to show one of those main entryways here. It is impossible to describe the detail of these building but I hope this at least gives you a taste. For context, the white domes that can be seen on the left side of the photo are the actual Taj Mahal…..
We have been very lucky in “treating”ourselves to a couple of recent trips (hence my lack of posts). We first had the opportunity to go on a short notice trip to the Baja in Mexico to spend some time with Whale Sharks.
These incredible creatures come in close to the shore in the Sea of Cortez to feast on the plankton in the water. While that is great for the giant fish (not either whales or sharks), it is horrible for underwater photography due to the lack of visibility caused by the plankton. This photo was taken from our boat which was about 18 feet long – this whale shark was longer than the boat – about 22 feet in length.
From the surface they appear to be hardly moving but when you get in the water to snorkel with them, you quickly realize that they are hard to keep up with and that they can disappear in seconds with one flip of their enormous tails or by just sinking down into the cloudy water.
In any case, it was a tremendous treat to spend some time with these very gentle giants. I’ll post some other photos from our lodge tomorrow and explain a little more about this wonderful trip.
If there were no “Change” there would be a lot of bored photographers out there. Much of photography is catching those moments of change whether it be in a person’s action, or the state of the environment. I’ll use one of the most common changes that photographers focus on – the golden hour between the day and the night. When the sunlight is low in the sky, when the clouds are highlighted, and when everything seems just a little more clear and focused. This photo I call “time to head home” with surfers transitioning to a new part of their day as the sunset starts the change into night.
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge “Grid”, I ‘ll submit this photo I took in a German town square (don’t remember which town it was) while on a river cruise last year. I took it because the “grid” provided a good backdrop to highlight both the old and the new architectures sharing the same square.
India is not exactly a place that I would classify as “Monochromatic.” Virtually everything is awash in color as well sound and aroma. I did recall this photo that I took inside one of the temples in the ancient city of Khajuraho. In contrast to many modern (western) places of worship, the areas inside are small, intimate, and intended for private reflection and meditation. This Indian woman was enjoying a quiet moment inside the temple early in the morning before the throngs of people began to show up. I thought the light coming through the window reflecting against the wall and onto her face made an interesting scene. The tone of the light, the walls, and her face all blend into a single pallet and resulted in one of my favorite photos from this incredible place.
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge, “Today Was a Good Day” I chose to show the end of the day. A week or so ago, we took a short (1 and a half hour) trip out to the Anza Borrego State Park for a one night mini vacation. We stayed at the beautiful Casa Del Zorro in Borrego Springs but we spent most of the evening out in the desert to take photos of the sunset and then the Milky Way. Here are a couple of shots from that trip.
We drove out to a deserted area of the desert and never saw another person. This was a nice little canyon to watch the sun fall below the mountains and create this nice sun star over the cactus.
Another angle at sunset highlighting the local fauna.
And finally, the main event – the incredible views of the Milky Way over the desert. This was actually taken about midnight – the end of a very nice evening and day.
For today’s challenge, “Door”, I’ll take you to the streets of Melbourne, Australia. There is an area in downtown Melbourne where the street artists are allowed to exercise their talents and paint the walls of the streets and alleyways . It is a beautiful collection of work, some funny, some with a message, others just attractive and interesting. Here is a scene from one of those back streets with some of the art surrounding a door…..
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge “ROY G. BIV”, I took this photo yesterday as we were flying into Anchorage Alaska. We were approaching the landing and flying low over a series of ponds and creeks with the sun coming directly across the water. Between the water’s reflections and the polarizer on my lens, it produced these beautiful effects on the water – a nice fit for this week’s challenge.
I recently went to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks precisely because they were “Off-Season.” It was too late for the ski season in Jackson Hole but not too late to get some nice photos of the Grand Tetons. This is shot of one of the very famously photographed mormon barns with the Tetons as the backdrop. You can see the snow is going fast but it is a beautiful sight on a clear spring day.
The second photo is also of an oft-photographed area – Oxbow Bend in the Grand Teton Park. During the fall color season there are hordes of photographers at this spot hours before sunrise to catch the colors. I was pretty much alone as I took this photo. Since it didn’t have the advantage of the fall foliage, I chose to make it a B&W and just feature the scenery and reflections.