Lens–Artists Photo Challenge #103–Surprise (Day 116 of being “grounded”

What a delightful challenge for this starting-to-seem-endless, cooped-up time. It comes from:

https://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2020/06/27/lens-artists-photo-challenge-103-surprise/

I am especially blessed these days by my father’s powerful teaching and modeling. His most strongly held spiritual belief was that boredom was a sin, and an insult to Mother Nature. He taught us to always look for that big surprise. He believed we were constantly surrounded by miracles and could find one anywhere, anytime.

Nothing cancels out boredom better than a miracle.

Being trapped in my rooms for so long has been mostly OK because of this exact philosophy. But I have to admit, I almost get to the point of boredom sometimes. When I find myself feeling that, I know it’s time to get outside. Even if just in my country-like, suburban neighborhood. Rain or shine, day or night, peopled or not, the miracles abound.

Here are some recent Surprises!!!

First, water, early morning sunlight, and shadows…a great combination for surprising beauty.

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Next, the bunnies are still around, which means the Coyotes, Owls and Hawks are probably well-fed elsewhere…for now.

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Surprise! The baby Apple Tree has its first baby apples!

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Next, very early sunlight sometimes messes with my mind. At first I thought these lovely plants had been attacked by some strange blight, only to discover on closer examination, was surprised to see it was the sun slipping through the cracks in the fence!

 

I love experimenting with things that close-up, are mysteries….but a step back reveals the origin of the surprise.

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And this one surprised me because I didn’t notice until writing this post, the shadow, light and colors from the Hummingbird feeder look remarkably like a Hummingbird!!

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And lastly, though I’m not sure it will actually work to post this, I had a long-awaited surprise just this morning.

I love my local crows and have been feeding them everyday for many years now. I wait each year for early summer, hoping to capture the Teenage crow “Feed Me!!” phenomenon.

They put on quite the show for me today!! The video is long-ish, and kind of bumpy, but if you listen closely, you’ll hear the reason for the camera jerks.

 

You can hear Miss Lucy, purring her competitive little heart out, and see the results of her head-butting my camera.

What a wonderful, surprising challenge today!!

 

Go here to see others’ creative interpretations of “Surprise”!

https://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2020/06/27/lens-artists-photo-challenge-103-surprise/

Lens-Artists Challenge #90 – Distance 3/31/20

I have been watching the world from a distance since March 6th.

It’s OK though. I am used to some of it already.

I am living primarily in 2 large-ish rooms, separated from my family in other parts of the house. I have two windows, one for sunrises, and one for sunsets, so I’m fine.

And I can see 4 different bird feeders, so I’m good.

I can even see surprise guests sometimes.

 

But my most important Windows to the World these days are the ones I look in from the outside. It’s how I see my son and grandson (they won’t let me take photos). We’ve had some good talks this way, divided by such a small distance created by glass. (So close, and yet so far…).

And, it’s how I see Loki, the new Christmas kitten. We had just completely bonded and then I was cruelly isolated from him when my Doc “grounded” me to my rooms 26 days ago. 🙁

 

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Loki, a couple of weeks before the virus hit

 

Now, my only contact is through HIS Window on the World.

Each day he waits for our window-visit

Then we play through the window…his favorite thing is if I hold up the fish video on my phone.

 

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He has grown so much since we started this isolation.   Sigh…

 

Well, that’s my take on distance for today. You really should check out some of the other responses to this particular Lens Artist Challenge. They are lovely, inspirational, touching posts…I’m honored just to be responding to the same challenge!

https://travelsandtrifles.wordpress.com/2020/03/28/lens-artists-challenge-90-distance/

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #90: Distance

https://shareandconnect.wordpress.com/2020/03/29/distance/

 

And, in keeping with my  commitment to find something uplifting every day, to balance all the frightening news stories, I found this! It’s long, (15 minutes) but delightful (especially if you are an “Office” or “Jack Ryan” fan…)

 

And this:

 

 

https://travelsandtrifles.wordpress.com/2020/03/28/lens-artists-challenge-90-distance/

Lens Artist Photo Challenge #87 Part Two Reflections

I guess these are selfies? Kind of? But taken of the mirror so I could send them to my long-time hair stylist. I liked what she did and wanted to thank her. She’s helping me grieve (and sort of hide) a dramatic, medication-induced hair loss the last couple of years. THAT has sure given me a lot to reflect about…

 

 

Next just a simple series of puddles. I grew up in San Diego and puddles were extremely rare, so now I am apparently fascinated by them..

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And last, some surprise shots of one of our family’s kitties! He was recently very ill and is in his own form of quarantine, (NOT the “virus”!) so this is my main way of connecting with him for a while longer. He has grown so much in just the two weeks we have been separated! Can’t wait to feel that air-like fur again!!

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Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #87 – Reflections

Lens Artist Photo Challenge #87 Reflections 3/13/2020

Oh I love this one. I do love Reflections so I may have to do another post on it…sharing some more recent photos.

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This is a re-blog ( I think it’s called) from LensArtistChallenge #25. I was proud of that one so I am sharing it again. Hope that’s not cheating.

I love reflections. I like to mess with photographing them because there can be surprises you don’t see when looking at something directly.

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Here I am photographing the lights hanging from the deck railing and not until later, do I see the boat coming in…
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And here, I liked the blurry Santa reflection in the window but was later surprised by the clarity of the neighbor’s windows.

That makes me think of how different things can look, depending on where you stand, where you focus and what you are feeling.

20151001_172131
Here I was capturing the coastline from our train window and caught James playing a game on his phone! Busted!!!

I took these photos for the theme Blue, but discovered the trees and clouds afterward.

This is two shots of the same glass, just me deciding which perspective to focus on. (I’m sure there is a “glass half empty or full” reference here…)

I have this great photo hanging in my group therapy room that reminds me to always look at tough situations from different angles before I conclude anything.

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Flipping this upside-down sure changes the feel of the photo, doesn’t it?

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I’m so grateful to my Dad for teaching me that there is always, ALWAYS more than one way to look at something.

 

Here are some other posts I did about Reflections… Let me know what you see.

https://chosenperspectives.com/2017/05/12/reflections-for-wpc-5-12-17-series-3/

https://chosenperspectives.com/2017/05/12/reflecting-for-wpc-51017/

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #87 – Reflections

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #77: Favorite Photos of 2019

I had a slightly startling revelation as I was plowing through thousands of photos from 2019….and No, I don’t mean realizing that I take way, WAY too many pictures. I already knew that.

I had already picked 29 “favorite photos” before arriving at the end of February. I was exhausted trying to choose so I stopped there.

It became clear that, only on occasion do I take a photo hoping it will capture exquisite beauty or be all “artsy”. Instead, often I snap away at images that will enhance a good narrative. Good visual aids for a tale that might interest, tickle or inspire someone.

I guess I’m saying I prefer story telling over photography, which is what startled me. I might be saying that although I am an extremely visual person, and I still hate writing (see my bio), I’d rather write you a story with photos than anything else.

So here are the pictures I picked (for January and February)…with the most brief explanation an overly wordy, *unpolished writer can come up with. (*ending my sentence with a preposition…)

 

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This is the Seattle skyline, especially the Columbia tower. I took this while trying to distract myself, waiting at the Harborview Medical Center to find out about a very blue, slightly broken ankle…and yes, I took pictures of my ankle but will spare you. It was so cool to see the Tower from this perspective, having just officiated a wedding at the top a few months prior.

 

 

Next, we have a poignant plea tacked onto the neighborhood’s most beautiful old tree. The note was written by a very young environmentalist, a precocious 6 year old, when she realized they might cut down this tree in the process of building a new home across the street from hers.

The note didn’t work so I felt compelled to capture as much of the mystery and beauty of this tree’s remains as possible. I did several posts on it.

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Next, I thought I’d experiment with my new point and shoot Canon on the occasion of the Super Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse. I was not that disappointed given the limitations of my equipment.

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We had a ton of snow in January, a bit rare for the Seattle area. I worried about all the birds I feed all year round (mostly Crows, Hummingbirds, and a variety of seed birds). I had wondered what would happen in the snow to the Covey of Quail that visited each morning to clean up under the bird feeder, after the messy House Finches had their breakfast.

I guess I needn’t have worried…

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Throughout the last few years, I have shared about my bugs. I love photographing them (and coming up with silly captions).

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Lucy says “I know, I know…not a toy, right?” (Good Kitty.)
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Giant, Spiny Australian Leaf Bug…GIANT indeed…

 

And of course, my cats. This was Lucy’s way of comforting me while I had to stay off my feet for a while for that ankle thing.

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My favorite photo of Lucy last year though was the one at the top of the page.

You know that thing older people sometimes do, where they are frantically searching for their glasses, only to find them right there on top of their head? Well, I took this shot after a frantic 20 minute household search for Miss Lucy. She has never been outside (our neighborhood is plagued by coyotes) so when I couldn’t find her, I panicked! I called and called her and though she is normally, the sweetest, most sensitive, gentle and affectionate cat I have ever had, this photo captured something akin to disdain. A kind of judgment at my ignorance, having walked literally right under her nose probably 10 or 12 times! sigh.

 

I walk daily, and if I keep my eyes wide open, like my Dad taught me very early on, I can make the same exact walk completely different every single day. I look for anything Nature has re-arranged (since yesterday) for my personal viewing pleasure.

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This is one of my all time favorite photos…a total accident!

 

 

Thanks to the Lens Artist Photo Challenge. This was really fun…and I fear there may have to be more installments. I hope you’ll comment.

And visit more of my Blog in the future!

Happy New Year from ChosenPerspectives!

 

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #77: Favorite Photos of 2019

Lens Artists Photo Challenge-45 Street Art

Great topic! But please forgive my irreverence. I am just now surfacing after writing a particularly heavy article for The Seeker’s Dungeon, and am looking for some LIGHT now! 

So here goes…

 

We don’t get much Street Art around here so I am improvising today.

We have plenty of “Road Art”… mostly created by teenagers or the winter sunrise.

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Then there is the ever popular Driveway Art…featuring the Paper Boy, the local ant population, and the contribution of our neighborhood fruit trees… 

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(I seem to see ART in a lot of driveways…)

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Next we have Pot Hole Art

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And the hard to miss Road-Side Art…creators unknown.

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Oh, and then there is Wall Art (not to be confused with Walmart)…

 

And I guess I should include Driving-on-the-Street Art

 

Also, Deck Art (not to be confused with Art Deco)

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avocados accidentally left outside…for months…

 

But my favorite might have to be Art SEEN from the Street

The Rock, on San Juan Island…

 

I suppose I could count this sentimental shot as Street Art, of interest only to my mush-head family…

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Or maybe this depressing Street Art, warning us of still another upcoming McMansion being built on our tiny lane…

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Or, I we can go to the local yearly Art Fair to see Sidewalk Art…which I have to admit was pretty spectacular…

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But as for actual  Street Art around here….not so much!

 

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #45: Street Art

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #34: Close-Up

https://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2019/02/23/lens-artists-photo-challenge-34-close-up/

I love close-ups. I’m really hooked on macro and still learning the difference between the two.

I know in photography-speak, it’s about the lens but the only specifically macro lens I have is for a glorious, old Nikon film camera.

So these days, everything is just an experiment for me.

This is what my phone camera can do macro-wise. (I do love a photograph where the content is interesting, but impossible to identify.)

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Sometimes, I miss what could have been a great close-up until I mess with the crop feature in my editing program, turning it into a close-up. Is this cheating?

Of course, there are those photos you never, EVER want to see any closer or bigger!

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But there are the really fun shots too, like when the subject just cries out to be photographed up CLOSE!!

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I’m ready for my close-up Mr. DeMille (as in Cecil B.)

And last, but definitely not least, my favorite all-time close-up, courtesy of my dear friend Tracie!!!

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Lens-Artist Photo Challenge #25-Reflecting on Perspectives, Perspective on Reflections

I love reflections. I like to mess with photographing them because there can be surprises you don’t see when looking at something directly.

20181213_163632
Here I am photographing the lights hanging from the deck railing and not until later, do I see the boat coming in…
20181213_183454
And here, I liked the blurry Santa reflection in the window but was later surprised by the clarity of the neighbor’s windows.

That makes me think of how different things can look, depending on where you stand, where you focus and what you are feeling.

20151001_172131
Here I was capturing the coastline from our train window and caught James playing a game on his phone! Busted!!!

I took these photos for the theme Blue, but discovered the trees and clouds afterward.

This is two shots of the same glass, just me deciding which perspective to focus on. (I’m sure there is a “glass half empty or full” reference here…)

I have this great photo hanging in my group therapy room that reminds me to always look at tough situations from different angles before I conclude anything.

20181226_090859

Flipping this upside-down sure changes the feel of the photo, doesn’t it?

20181226_090816

I’m so grateful to my Dad for teaching me that there is always, ALWAYS more than one way to look at something.

 

Here are some other posts I did about Reflections… Let me know what you see.

https://chosenperspectives.com/2017/05/12/reflections-for-wpc-5-12-17-series-3/

https://chosenperspectives.com/2017/05/12/reflecting-for-wpc-51017/

 

 

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: #25 Reflections

Lens-Artist Photo Challenge #22 Happiness is…

…napping with my cat…for 18 years…

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PS I am in the process of writing out my sweet Zorro’s life story. I’d love to hear from you if you are interested in reading it….

 

https://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2018/12/01/lens-artists-photo-challenge-22-happiness-is/

Lens Artist Photo Challenge 10/8/18 Windows

I think this might be cheating (or maybe just a shortcut) but I cannot get WordPress to cooperate this morning. It is refusing to give me access to my own photos.

But I remembered this post I did about my house, quite a while back and thought maybe it would qualify.

Here’s a quote from it. I hope you’ll want to read the rest and see my favorite windows.

She has 32 windows. From 20 of those, you can see right into other windows in the house.

Just think about that for a minute.

https://chosenperspectives.com/2016/06/14/my-house-as-a-life-chapter-one/

Thanks.

https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/393045/posts/2022284190

https://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2018/10/06/lens-artists-photo-challenge-14-windows/