Winter’s first…

snowfall.

illuminate [iˈlo͞oməˌnāt]

light up, clarify, explain

The first snowfall of the season illuminated by the glow from a single streetlight.

The last tomato.

One tiny ladybug.

A three bear summer.

The rest of the year will fly by as it always does but I will enjoy each moment and slow its passage.

Across Canada…

Happy Thanksgiving!

road leading to a mountain shrouded in mist

thankful [ˈTHaNGkfəl]

a feeling of gratitude

Today, people across Canada are celebrating Thanksgiving. In a year that has brought extreme changes to how we do everything, I’m grateful for where I am at this moment. There will always be challenges, but those challenges viewed from within the context of a life lived, hold different weights. When I was in a particularly difficult time of my life I remember saying to the woman who was sharing it with me, “Enjoy this time because when it’s gone, you will miss even this.”

Happy Thanksgiving to those celebrating today. None of us know where the road will lead but we can enjoy the journey!

Choosing…

words.

pheasant walking away on a snowy road

walk away [wôk] [əˈwā]

a strategy for no-win situations

I enjoy conversations about human nature but have learned to curb my expectation that people can be something other than what they are. I love the words associated with this type of conversation.

intrinsic · fallible · flawed · inherent · nurture · behaviorism · causation · rational · biological · mimetic · potential · innate · entitled · narcissistic · gaslit · envious · manipulate · cognitive · dissonance · hoovering

They roll off your tongue but linger in the fetid air…

One creative…

man.

[ˈpäp ˌärt] pop art

art movement that began in the 1950’s and incorporated everyday objects

I saw my first Warhol in the 80’s, when a friend, now my husband, brought me to an art exhibit in the 80’s. Its simplicity, combined with the smooth commercially printed look, appealed to me and every so often I find myself digitally editing one of my images in that manner.

Warhol, was an incredibly interesting artist whose creativity and experimentation appeals to me still. He truly was a man who looked beyond the everyday objects, and found ways to make them fresh again.

Evening plans…

for morning light.

[ˈtwīˌlīt] twilight

neither full daylight nor complete darkness

The blue hour.

One of my favorite times to photograph, when light’s blue wavelengths dominate the sky.

“Why do you go to bed so early?” they ask.

Maybe this answers the question. It makes us feel like kids again. Slipping out the door while the world around us sleeps. Hopping on our bikes and racing out into the darkness.

The dragonflies chased mosquitoes, we sipped coffee, and Venus danced with the moon.

The Covid lifestyle…

I’m full of questions.

sunflower with partially opened petals

[ˈintrəˌvərt] introvert

someone who prefers calm environments, solitude, and small circles of friends

It’s easy to see who’s been the most affected by the changes Covid has brought to our global world. Psssst. It’s not us introverts.

In some ways this global wake-up call has put the stamp of approval on being a homebody. I’m curious to see what the lasting effects of this will be, particularly on our youngest people.

It’s a terrifying virus. For some, asymptomatic or no worse than the common flu, while for others, deadly. No one knows for sure what category they’ll fall into.

Masks confer an anonymity to the wearer that presents other issues to society. I miss those little moments of connection that smiling at a complete stranger brought. Maybe we should bring back the peace sign? A small gesture but one that says “I see you.”

Interesting times we’re living in. While watching a movie, it opened on a scene shot in an airplane. No masks. Will everything going forward look so dated? What will the future look like?

Nature…

it’s already amazing!

lightning bolt across the sky

[inˈteɡrədē] integrity

The quality of being honest.

I had a moment this week when I saw an image posted by a respected, long-time photographer who had his start in the days of film, as did I. Now I have no issue with editing a digital photograph, particularly when you shoot it in RAW and the camera has not imposed it’s algorithm onto the image. SOOC (straight out of camera) is often waved as a badge of honor but those images, when shot in JPEG, have already been altered by the camera and the settings that you’ve pre-programmed. I used to be more judgmental about the digital editing process until I’d educated myself about it. Dunning-Kruger effect…google it for more information but essentially it breaks down into you don’t know what you don’t know until you learn more about the subject.

This image I saw was a nature one and was so edited that it hurt my eyes to look at it. As a test I took a similar image I’d taken and edited it in his style just to confirm my thoughts. It matched…I could make my image look identical to his “Oh my God, the most brilliant amazing _________ I’ve ever seen shot.”

Does it matter? Probably not, but as an ethical photographer it irks me. Why? Because it creates a completely unrealistic expectation with people who don’t know better.

The problem with this is, I recently had a photograph widely shared where one individual stated that I’d painted in the lightning strike. Is that possible? Yes. Had I done that? No. Have I ever done that? No. I’d crouched at the edge of a field during a lightning storm to get that shot. Today’s image is a new lightning shot and if you decide to try this, know the risks.

I’ll bring my rant to a close. Be ethical in your photography. I love beautifully edited images but if it’s digitally enhanced or filtered to death, why not admit that? If it’s a composite, say so. Nature is amazing enough as it is. That’s good enough for me.

One…

in three bites.

honey bee on flower

[ˈpäləˌnādər] pollinator

something that moves pollen from the male anther of a flower to the female stigma of a flower

My foray into gardening this year didn’t mean just planting vegetables to feed us. I wanted the bees to have their own oasis. With ongoing reports about their decline, planting a package of seeds seemed a small thing to do. My garden is wildly unmanicured but for me, judging by the variety of bees it hosts, I’m calling it a success.

Pillowy pockets…

of cloud

[ muhmah ] mamma

type of cloud that often forms on the base of storm clouds, towards the back of a weakening storm system, formed in part by sinking air

One of my favorites of the cloud world! On this morning my husband called me after spotting them, knowing how much I love them. These ones were perfection! They lasted for perhaps five minutes before disappearing.

Don’t forget to look up! The sky is but one large canvas…