Rain Drops

Sedum

 

What I love about Sedums is the way rain drops collect and stay put on the leaves  – so convenient for taking photographs. The plant has fleshy, succulent stems and leaves and as it’s clump-forming it makes  it very easy to control and also to propagate. I found out by accident that if a stem breaks off  you can just stick it in the ground and it will grow into another plant …. even better – you can give them to your friends [if they want them].

So, after the downpour the other day, I saw the sedum covered in bright droplets, looking like little jewels with the sun shining on them.  My photos don’t really do justice to what I saw as they can’t completely capture the beauty of God’s creation. Just shows you though what marvelous inbuilt lenses He gave us !

Raindrop

In spite of the monochrome colouring, the sculptural quality of the plant makes it really interesting [at least, to me] and it wasn’t until I uploaded the pics to my laptop that I saw the ‘debris’ in the close up shots of the single raindrops.

raindrop2

Then I had a go at isolating a green droplet against a black and white leaf and stems. I love my Paintshop Pro software! Always found it easier to fathom out than Photoshop – cheaper to buy too….

Black & white

Bye for now – you are very welcome to comment by clicking the ‘comments’ word at the end of the opening paragraph info.     Eileen


For a Short While – The Rain

Splash

I took these photos through the window a few days ago when we had rain as a respite from the heat wave. The forecast seems to be for a bit more of our usual weather shortly, but that’s ok cos I don’t like the heat that much! It’s probably an age thing as all the ‘olds’ I know feel the same , but the young absolutely love it!

Rain

When it rains it makes everything look different and it creates opportunities for me [when the rain stops] to search out things in my otherwise ‘samey’ little patio garden. Plus I can shoot through the glass if it’s pouring down outside. I was very pleased to capture some ‘splashes’ in front of Ollie the owl and his companion [who I haven’t thought of a name for yet].

Ollie and Friend

Ollie and Friend

I will post some sedum/raindrops later today hopefully,  take care all –   Eileen


New Arrivals

 

 

 
Meadow Brown

For weeks I’ve been bemoaning the fact that I haven’t had any butterflies in my garden  – well today there have been several fluttering about and even resting long enough for me to take some pics.  I think this particular lot are called Gatekeeper [Pyronia tithonus] because they have twin black eyespots with white pupils on their forewing. Anyway – I only know that because I did a google search!  I’m delighted – especially as I’m getting more used to using the zoom on my camera instead of the macro setting [which I still haven’t figured out!].
Gatekeeper

I amused myself no end cropping and trying to be generally more ‘artistic’ without it looking too artificial  … BUT – I do try to get the best pics I can ‘in camera’ as is always recommended.  I tend to take loads of shots and discard the majority as many of them are almost the same –  it’s just a matter of choosing the best of the bunch. It’s been a bit on the windy side today, so as well as the butterflies and bees being on the move all the time – so are the plants they land upon unfortunately.

Gatekeeper2

I’ve deliberately kept some images high key to reflect the beautiful sunny weather  – although I appreciate some butterflies suit a bit of drama more.

With Sedum

Even though this Sedum isn’t in flower yet, the butterflies are obviously attracted to it. I’m fortunate in having several Sedums which I love – especially this dark red variety called Purple Emperor.

Gatekeeper3
Butterfly & sedum

I’m looking forward to posting some photos I took  through the window during a downpour yesterday.  I was going to post them today but the butterflies took priority!

see you soon,    Eileen

 

 


Busy Bees

 

Bumbly

I love lavender plants and so do the bees ….  ladybirds and butterflies are in short supply in my garden – well, non-existent really – but the bees are out in force.  So, I thought I’d have another go at practicing with the macro setting on my new camera. Hmm  –  very disappointing I must say – goodness knows what I’m doing wrong.  It must be because I’m treating it asin  ‘auto’ mode I guess – I don’t know if I’m supposed to be selecting other things to help.

Fortunately I’d read tips from someone about using the zoom lens for flower close ups instead and so I’ve contented myself with experimenting with that. These are the results, but I know I could do so much better!  I found it wasn’t much good my trying to set the camera for fast-moving objects either ….  I find it all very frustrating as I really hanker after lovely sharp images.  However – as I’ve said elsewhere – I try to make up for that with being more ‘artistic’ when  sharpness isn’t crucial.  And as I enjoy  using my Paintshop Pro it becomes such a pleasure to do.  I try to get as good a photo ‘in camera’ as I can though and I don’t like to be too obvious in ‘enhancing’ images. But there are instances when it’s ok to go to extremes and a lot of  fun too.

Bumbly2

Bumbly3

Bumbly4
Bumbly5

Bumbly6

Next time I hope to post something completely different to my recent wild-life offerings.  More ‘still life’ or abstracty.  See you soon,   Eileen

 


Pond [er] Again

Ducks
Ducks 2

As well as buying a new camera I went mad and bought an updated version of my Paintshop Pro software – x6.  I tinkered around a bit with the colour on these duck images. They were  in dappled shade which I quite liked, but I think I could probably have got more light within the shadows. If I decide to have another go I may post the results here to compare. There is a  lot that is the same in my update, but a lot that’s unfamiliar to me, so I’m on a learning curve as usual.

Swan

Swans

Signet

Signets
swans 2

I’ll sign off now   …… please leave any comments or suggestions, or even ‘like’ or ‘share’ !    Eileen

 


Pond Pics [cont]

Puppy

Puppy 2

I enjoy chatting to the people I meet over at the Pond and I came across a chap with this little Jack Russell puppy.  He was sitting on a bench and the little puppy was just lying there enjoying the sunshine and completely ignoring the many geese/ducks that were near the water’s edge  – all was peace and harmony . The gentleman said it would be ok for me to take their photographs  and so the fist two pics are ‘en repose’ .

A young lady came along with , would you believe it, another Jack Russell – this one all growed up!  Well – talk about excited – that little pup went absolutely wild with delight … the other doggie didn’t seem to feel quite the same way however – but he good humouredly tolerated the little chap.  How I managed to get any non blurry shots I just don’t know [ LOL – I’ve yet to learn the settings on my camera for fast-moving subjects.]

After the poor girl rescued her dog [she was with child and also on a bike!]  I got chatting with her. The Gentleman was no help whatsoever I’m sorry to say – s’pose he thought that’s just what puppies do.  Anyway – next I looked, the puppy was tearing around like a little greyhound and scaring all the wildlife into the lake …..  still – he was very sweet , as puppies always are.

Hope you enjoy the following pics ….

Man and dogs

 

dogs

dogs 2

dogs 3

 

GET OFF MY BACK !!

GET OFF MY BACK !!

This is the lovely lady  …..

Lady

 

 bye for now – more to come ,  Eileen


Teddy and Flowers

Teddy & Flowers

I was thrashing around again for something indoors to photograph when I saw some buds, rescued from a bunch of pinks that a friend had bought for me. I’d popped them into a tiny empty marmalade jar and placed them next to a pottery teddy that my late hubby had bought for me years ago. So I thought I’d have a go at being creative.

I quite liked this one that has Teddy in the background, though he is the main subject. I’ve been trying to teach myself more about ‘depth of field’.  For ages I’ve been thinking about buying a new camera  and at last I’m doing something about it!  My daughter is taking me to Park Cameras on tuesday. I’ve been looking into Compact System Cameras [CSC] and they seem to be getting very popular … it’ll come down to whether I can afford one or not I guess.  I can’t get bogged down in too much technical stuff , so I always use auto, however – I’m hoping I will be able to cope with the new challenge of using it manually, but even so – I can always fall back on the auto.

Teddy again

A more distant shot, and below I used a plug-in ,  Virtual Photographer – the effect is called Dreamy.  It’s rather high key so I hope I haven’t overdone things here…..

dreamy

see you next time      Eileen


Time for a Stroll

Heron

I was feeling very fed up  last friday afternoon so on the spur of the moment , and believe me – I am not a ‘spontaneous’ person by any means,  I decided to take a stroll down to The Pond again.  It was a glorious, warm, sunny day to take advantage of ….

I felt well rewarded when I came across this Heron.  Usually I’ve just been able to make him out in the distance, across the other  side of the lake.  He was still a fair distance from me , as you can see from the second image, so I used the little zoom on my camera for this one – risking a bit of camera shake in the process.

With a little bit of tweaking in my Paintshop Pro, I think it’s turned out ok. Sometimes when I see all the wonderfully sharp close up pics taken by other photographers here, I lament my lack of ‘equipment’ and camera expertise. But even if I had them, physical limitations would prevent me using them I think.  I really must get my son to take me to Parks Camera shop in Burgess Hill so that I can talk to an ‘expert’ and try handling cameras!

Oh dear,  I fear I’m waffling a bit …. but truly, this is something that keeps cropping up for me and I never do anything about. I could leave the planet before I ever do !  Comments are always most welcome here [ NB. I’ve been trying to learn how to attract more ‘traffic’ to my blogs recently] , and also your constructive criticism of my photographic efforts.  I know there are  web sites and forums where you can submit your work, but I get defeated by the technical know how – ha ha – the attention span is decreasing with age  lol.  Till next time then ,   Eileen

Distant Heron

 

Thought I’d throw in these as an afterthought ….

Fisherman

Feeding the ducks


Ladybird

Ladybird

I’ve been having second thoughts about digging out this achillea plant completely – I may just divided it up instead. My change of heart has come because the Ladybirds have obviously taken a fancy to it. It’s still yet in bud, but the Ladybirds are out in force today.

The sun is so bright that I couldn’t really see anything on the screen display of my little camera, so it was simply a matter of pointing closely on the macro setting and taking a complete chance on whether I’d captured anything or not….   equally, I do find camera shake a bit of a problem as I can’t keep my hands so steady as I used to.  I know my tripod would help, but by the time you set these things up the insects have moved or flown. So – I just hope for the best.

All things considered I feel quite pleased – especially with the depth of field. I tweaked the brightness/contrast a bit with my paintshop software afterwards.

Ladybird 2

Ladybird 3


Enjoying the Sunshine

brightness

As it was a bright and sunny day and I was stuck indoors doing nothing in particular, I decided to take a stroll down to the Ifield Pond again.  Although the scenery is much the same [although changing with the seasons of course], at least the wildlife activity varies and there’s always something different to see.

Disappointingly I’m a bit late to catch the ducklings in baby stage – they look more like teenagers, but there still seems to be a lot of courting going on.

This is a particularly nice little area, favoured by the ducks and geese because people park their cars by the roadside nearby and come especially to feed them. In fact I got slightly wary of one particular large Canada Goose who approached me – I think he though my little camera was something to eat and was waiting patiently for me to throw it for him.

This very handsome drake ‘posed’ for me , but I took the pics as much for the interesting water as any ducks on it.  I confess to doing a bit of enhancing to the colour, as the sun was so bright and sparkly on the water, and what with the reflections of the overhead trees – it was beautiful to see, but hard to capture. I liked the somewhat hazy appearance.

hue2

Let me now introduce the Goose ….080