Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Intrepid explorers

The other evening, as I went into the back yard to enjoy the tranquillity of my garden, I surprised four young raccoons, just climbing onto the patio over the garage roof.  I let them be, allowed them to explore, but I had recently cat-proofed my fence (with only marginal success) so they couldn't find their way out.  Their mama came looking, and eventually I had to leave the gate open and go back in the house so they could carry on their merry way.  They were so cute!

Count the noses to see all four of these cuties!

Monday, July 14, 2014

My Gardening Addiction

Living in Niagara, our weather is considerably better than most areas of Canada, and that gives us the chance to grow lush, varied gardens that other Canadians can only dream about.  That may sound like bragging (because it is!) but I have lived here for more than 25 years, and I love it!  I have only been a somewhat serious gardener for a couple of years, so I am still in the neophyte stage, and having a shoestring budget means I spend a lot of time of Kijiji, looking for "deals".  I am looking forward to someday getting a few exotics and rarities.  Right now my most exotic plant is a goatsbeard!  Top marks for the cool name, but it's basically a really big astilbe.  Still, I am pleased with them, and they do really quite nicely in the back of my garden bed.  I'll be posting a few photos over the summer so you can enjoy my garden along with me.  Cheers!

Campanula, also called Bellflower

Purple campanula in the shade of the apricot tree

An interesting little green spider that seemed to like my honeysuckle!

Friday, November 9, 2012

A Special Kind of Beauty

And faded beauty lingers still,
Lost forever to the world
But not to we whose hearts will fill
With what our eyes no longer see,
 A memory our thoughts will cherish
Of the beauty that will never perish.

The inevitable has happened, and a hard frost has put a sudden end to the gardening season.  All my lovely dahlias, who stood so tall and proud just a day ago, have turned brown and limp, their stems and foliage black and lifeless.  I gathered a great handful of the fading blooms, and headed inside to photograph their special kind of beauty, so that it will fade no more.

I set up my shooting table very simply.  A large black Bristol board (large sheet of cardboard) makes an excellent base, and my light was a small LED ring light plus a little ambient light from overhead.  I was going for extreme closeups and macros, looking for details and abstracts.  I added a handful of autumn leaves to balance out the flowers, selected my Nikkor 28-80 mm lens to go on my Nikon D7000 and, with my extension tubes on standby, I was ready to shoot.