Sunday, October 31, 2021

Sunday Stills #26 ~ Light

Funny how this was on my mind when I went out to exchange SD cards on my Trail Cameras.

The low afternoon light was rather fun and it set the moss glowing on the downed logs.

I had some trolls in my pockets. I mean, doesn't everyone? I wanted to try and get some sun-flare or backlit shots of them.

This morning I walked past my kitchen trunk and saw this....

Light or lack of light

Star trails:

This shot was more messy as I was pointed right at the milky way...

Me walking through a photo with my headlamp while watching the skies for an Aurora Borealis. [Taken with the Infrared converted camera and no filter]

And last. I was trying to do a 'Stars' selfie with a head lamp.
It didn't turn out as I turned slightly because I heard a noise during the 25 second  exposure.... I like it anyway because it speaks to me of all the fun I had last night.

Light. I love it and also those days with a lack of light.

Sunday Stills #26

Saturday, October 30, 2021

The Wintergreen Trail

When the weather is crappy or I just need a nice trail that goes out and back, I like to hike the Wintergreen Trail. In every season it has something to offer that is interesting.

Summer provides cool fungi and hoardes of skeeters if it is damp. Winter can provide hidden Ice Falls and a frozen river along with colored ice from places where water seeps across the trail.

Fall can provide stunning views of the river before the green grasses turn brown. The oak and maples leaves cover the trail in a reddish hue which makes you gasp as you walk along.

Red and green. Nature's own way of decorating! Friend Bill and our fearless leader, Charlie took us on this hike. Charlie hangs out with Bill on a bench because when Bill eats an apple, Charlie always gets more than one piece of apple.

We had a conversation about this hiking sign. I told Bill that it was a warning to hikers that there were Carnivorous Trees in the area. 

I always make up some silly story regarding trail markers in the KVR. I can't help it. Bill kept trying to figure out what I meant. But that is Bill. 

He had a laugh when we reached the end of the bluff and I said "This is where the Little Ponies wanted to stop and look around!"
I dumped some My Little Ponies out of my back pack and started to arrange them in the unique ferns.

Bill just smiles and shakes his head when I do the toy thing.

Hey, MLP like to go on adventures too!

I climbed down to the prepiece of the bluff and studied the variety of moss and lichen I found there. There were so many colors and kinds.

I guess I'll need to get my Moss and Lichen books out to see if I can even find something that look similar.

We ambled back to the parking area and parted ways. Charlie was more than ready to take a nap in his car seat. 

Tonight I may have a chance to see the Northern Lights. I need to brush up on any sort of photo skills I could try to get a picture of them. If not. I will just enjoy the experience.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Not as it seems?


"When we look at a rock, what we are seeing is not the rock, but the effect of the rock upon us."
~Bertrand Russell

I found myself looking for reflections that were odd. It didn't start out that way. 

I had no intentions of looking for anything specific when I took Charlie for our hike in the forest yesterday. 

However, my feet found their way to the valley and the creek where I could find some water.

I just became fascinated with the little creek and all of the neat reflections I found. I hadn't hiked this area most of the summer. 

I kept finding interesting perspectives.

This is Rich's favorite shot from my walk, he loves this one and calls it The Floaty Rock.
He usually doesn't take much interest in what I discover. But he really liked this one.

It isn't even in perfect focus, but I'll keep it anyway. The odd part was the plant reflection. It looks out of place and strange. Enough to make a person question their eyes.

In another spot, as I got ready to take a reflection shot, a slight breeze rippled the water and it looked like the water was hand painted.

I had a few good Up/Down shots that turned out. Here is one that feels out of balance. The photo looks upside down but I included the edge of the tiny pond and Charlie [out of focus].

When I turned back west towards our fence I glanced up the valley and was startled to see a white tree with brilliant red leaves. I thought it odd and impossible.
So I pulled out the camera and zoomed in....

If I had been standing in any other place, it would have been evident that the birch was just in front of a tall oak. But from a distance it looked pretty strange.

On our land portions of our creek are bone dry. I think some of the springs may still flow but not where you can see them. Here is the view of our creek bed that is normally at least ankle deep and knee deep in the the spot where  the large rock is.

Parting shot, from my upside down world.

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

That old Trunk and other things

That old trunk I moved into the kitchen area happened to end up staying there. Somedays I use it for a laundry folding spot, some days I used it for...well,

 I had a huge list of to-do's and some of it included the 'other' half. But just after his coffee and breakfast he went back to bed. Such can be our routine.

I thought I'd let it warm up a bit outside before I approached installing the large tank heater. If I busied myself with laundry and doing something creative, I could stay in the house and keep an eye on things.

My friend at the Farmer's Market had set aside a couple of neat gourds she thought I might like for me on Saturday. She said, "I thought of you and your pictures!"

So how could I not use them to do a bit of still life?
I admit, I don't have a studio and I don't have the fancy lighting stuff, but this will have to do for right now. I enjoyed picking out some paper to use as foreground and backround and trying to arrange things in a pleasing manner.

According to some Still Life experts, I don't follow the rules of just 3 objects, dramatic lighting, and moving from tall to short.

I have tried and tried to emulate some of those amazing and dramatic photos, but I keep coming back to just having some fun. 

I mean who can keep from smiling at Groot and a tiny wooden deer?
I have a feeling that Groot will keep showing up now and again.

Then of course, I had to clean up and organize things.
But not before just a bit more fun...
toys behaving badly....

Mice in the cupboards? 

Then I had to put things away and make lunch and tend to my mules.

The above is a sample of the odd box I found. The bottom piece is the only drawer our old kitchen had. Yes, you read that correctly. Our old kitchen had one drawer that was long and narrow. 

After tending to hubby and his lunch, I was able to find football highlights on YouTube for him to watch while I changed out the tank heater and did some in hand work with Siera. She seems a bit off in attitude with all the other mules. She is generally bossy and has been hanging out away from the others.

I have a call into the farrier for a trim anyway. He is fantastic at spotting any issues.

Finally, Charlie and I headed for the woods to collect SD cards from the cameras and have some quiet time.

Who can resist a Halloween themed photo....


The photo above was taken at my mailbox. My neighbor lives on this ridge and we share the upper part of the driveway. It drops steeply down into a hollow.

There is something magical about the late afternoon light on all those maples and oaks. I could pull up a chair and sit there all afternoon to watch the leaves and trees. 

This week we've had some amazing sunrises. I mean brilliant and startling in colors. 

Sunrise at PeeWee's: Harvest time.
Sunday morning

The Sumac Tree I have been watching since August:

We had a killing frost two nights in a row so the garden flowers are all done it and turned into slimy gobs of gooey green. But at least I could appreciate them just before they turned.


Other jobs for the Autumnal weekend were replacing the stock tank heaters and pulling burrs from my an-ni-mule tails. The redheads always get into parts of the forest where stick tights and burdock are, no matter how diligent I am about pulling or cutting them down.

That is Sunshine staring at me. 

I'm happy to report that their winter coats are soft and fluffy. 
After this last blast of color, November ushers in the Brown Season or the colorless season.
I find it hard to be motivated to take photos of anything in our forest during November. 

But I generally use that time to tidy up the house and do indoor projects anyway.
I have a new 'old' Christmas Chair for this year that I found in one of the sheds. A old bent Hickory.

But since we are all thinking about the end of October.....let's enjoy these days were the temps are still above zero!

Do you like winter? Yes, I do. 

Monday, October 25, 2021

Comparisons trees & brush

 Bittersweet May 1st in blossom

Bittersweet August 20th

Bittersweet September 20th

Bittersweet October 22nd

This was one plant I was pretty sure of. I was able to photograph it from spring to fall.
Properly dried Bittersweet is often sought after by the old timers as a Fall and Thanksgiving decoration in vases or on wreaths. Who can blame them? They are so bright and cheerful.

Here is the mystery bush that turned out to be a Hazelnut.

These are being sought after also as a alternative crop. Hazelnut coffee? The wildlife and humans both adore the nut. See? I will have to pay attention next year!

Hazelnut bush September 9th

Hazelnut bush September 24th

Hazelnut bush October 9th

Hazelnut bush October 22nd

Then there is the Dogwood. I didn't even know we had dogwood around until after I'd visited my son and he'd shown me some of his beautiful varieties in his yard. I recall looking at the blossoms in the early spring along side our road.

Dogwood Blossoms May 1st

August 20th 

October 22

Oak Tree May 1st

October 22

Another oak variety with rounded edges on the leaves.
White oak.

I think that is about it for today. I'm actually haveing some fun with trying my best to learn more about tree and how to ID them. This has evaded me most of my life.

However this summer while at my son's place, we spent quite a bit of time looking identifying trees around his home. For whatever reason, I found that really interesting.

I always start out with these exact good intentions every spring [to follow a plant from spring to fall] ... and usually forget about it. I didn't do too badly this year.
I'm looking forward to some winter ID'ing and more!

I need to get back to where I saw those Witch Hazels at KVR! That will be my goal next week!