The World Through My Eyes

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Week 2, Theme #4 Wild Card (“Taking Care of Business!”)

Taking Care of Business

Earlier this week, a friend of mine and I took a trip to the Everglades National Park in South Florida. With Hurricane Michael already churning northward along the west coast of Florida, sunlight was nowhere to be found! But there’s a silver lining around every cloud if we just look for it, and this sunless day was no exception! The clouds kept the heat in check and the storm off the coast provided us with a breeze throughout the day. Even the wildlife seemed to appreciate the cooler temperatures, as well, providing us with many opportunities to get some really nice photos.

Many of the Everglade’s water lilies, wild flowers, orchids, etc., are in bloom this time of year. One such plant (pictured above) caught my eye. Something I hadn’t noticed when I took this picture was the little green insect that was busy at work pollinating the flowers along one of the Everglade’s many canals. It wasn’t until I loaded the picture into my laptop that I discovered this little guy “Taking Care of Business”! Hope you enjoy!




Week 1: Theme #31 Eye Lines (Where is your subject looking?)

Eye Lines

An FYI for those following my blog this year but who are not participants in the 2018-2019 Lakewood Ranch Digital Camera Photography Challenge. Participants are given 52 “themes” and, beginning October 1st, 2018, are required to submit one photograph per week that must correspond to one of these assigned themes (if you are interested in looking at the list, just click on the link at the top of my website, titled “2018-2019 Themes”, and you can look at the entire list. Though we do not have to use the themes in the order they appear on the list, a theme can only be used once during the year thus insuring that each photographer will address every theme by the end of our Challenge year (September 30, 2019). I hope you enjoy following my progress and would really appreciate any comments you might have (good or bad!). Just click on the “Comment” button and I’ll get it. So let’s get started!

While visiting a rookery in Venice, Florida, late this afternoon, I took this photo of a Great Blue Heron, who was first to arrive on the scene as the sun began to set in the west. Every time another heron approached, this one would stretch his neck skyward, fix his eyes on them and let out a screech, as if to say, “Get out! Stay out! Don’t even think about it!” I’ve always been fascinated by the eyes of the Great Blue Heron. Any of you who have used them as subjects know that when they look at you, it’s as if they are staring right through you! Hope you enjoy!



It Happens Over Time

Oftentimes, while looking at pictures like this one that I took in the North Georgia mountains, I can’t help but wonder what this old house would say if it could talk. No doubt, it would speak about a time when things were much simpler than they are today. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not suggesting life was easier back then; it certainly wasn’t. But compare what it takes for us to be content today with the simplicity that characterized the existence of our forefathers. I don’t know how long it has been since this house was occupied but I suspect that the owners never owned a television, a video game, a cell phone, or an inside bathroom. Horror of horrors, they had no air-conditioning, no forced-air heat, no swimming pool! We might be tempted to say, “Poor folks.” But wait! These people actually talked to one another over the evening meal! Their children, no doubt, played outside every day….safely! I’d bet these people took walks in the woods, dangled their feet in the creek, enjoyed vegetables out of their own garden, and, on special occasions, churned up a bucket of homemade ice cream! No, I’m not suggesting that we all go back to living like they did in the “old days”. However, I sometimes wish we could all, somehow, move out of the fast lane, slow down a little, maybe even stop……and take the time to “smell the roses”.



Someone Working

As I was organizing some of my recent work, I came across this picture and thought of the theme, “Someone Working” (Theme #44 on our assigned list). When I was a boy, growing up in South-Central Michigan, we called these “Yellow Jackets”. But I’ve discovered that here in the south there is a much smaller, winged insect referred to by the same name. I’ve had numerous encounters with the latter (they build their nests in the ground, in planters, in bales of hay, etc.) and though they are smaller, believe me, they really pack a big punch (and they can be very aggressive!)! In any event, and no matter the name, insects like the one pictured above play an important part in the grand scheme of things as they flitter about from plant to plant pollinating the flowers and vegetables. Hope you enjoy!



Right Place at the Right Time - Copy

I could not help but think of the theme “Right Place at the Right Time” after previewing a few pictures I took of our two cats recently. The picture probably speaks for itself but I obviously caught Coco, the cat on the left, in the middle of a big yawn! Nothing unusual, you say? Check out the look and posture of our other cat, Prada! She seems to be saying, “Sheesh, Coco, take a breath mint or something, will you?!”



Selfie 2

While participating in the documentation of the 2014 Sarasota Chalk Festival (which this year will take place from November 10-17, in Venice, FL), I noticed, as I walked by a beautiful motor home that was parked nearby, my reflection in the hubcap. Since I had not yet addressed the theme “Selfie” (#38 on our list), I thought, “What the heck?” As you can see, because of the shape and various levels of the cap, it ended up a three-dimensional “selfie”!. Something you cannot see in the picture is that seconds after taking this picture, I lost my balance and fell backward into what appears to be the grass field behind me. I landed on my back, not into grass, however, but rather, a large bed of sand spurs!! For those of you who are not familiar with Florida, that probably means nothing. Floridians, however, KNOW that you do not want to mess with sand spurs! They are small, spherical-shaped plants that have hard, very sharp barbs, and are extremely painful if you happen to be impaled on them! Thankfully, there were others around who were able to pull the sand spurs (about 2 dozen in all) from my back. I assure you, whenever I think of the word “selfie” in the future, my mind will immediately take me back to that “grass” field!!



Raccon Salute


No sooner did I hang a bird feeder in the back yard of our new home than this “Masked” Bandit showed up to snack on what the birds kicked out of the feeder. Because the sun was behind me (thus, in his eyes), he could hear me slowly moving up on him, but couldn’t see me! He peeked out from among the ferns (first picture), with a gesture that almost looks like a salute, and then went back to foraging. As I moved a little closer, he suddenly stood up from among the ferns (second picture), gave me this pose…..and then went back to business, obviously deciding that whatever he had heard was not a threat! One of the great pastimes of my life is observing and photographing the beautiful wildlife our Creator placed on the earth for us to enjoy! Hope you enjoy it, as well!