Garden Visitors

I’ve mentioned before, I’m sure, that I am fortunate to have a little patio garden and I’ve been making an effort this year to attract more birds and butterflies. The Bees have always been plentiful. I’ve been unsuccessful with the Butterflies as usual, but now that I have a new bird table and bath the birds [and squirrels] come several times a day. The bonus is that all the cats I used to see prowling around over the years have either moved away or died off. There is just one grey cat left from the flat upstairs. I am a cat-lover, but they can be a nuisance stalking the birds.

I also have a family of foxes playing on the grassy areas in the evenings and I throw them left-over scraps or old fruit if I have any.

I’m mostly behind the glass windows to watch the birds etc , so the pics aren’t super,duper quality, but I hope I’ve captured the fun that I have trying ….

ignore ‘im dear
Al Fresco
Shall I?
Whey – hey ….
Thirsty Work
The Lookout

That’s all for now, have a great day, Eileen

Advertisements

Macro Flowers

Much of my time is spent indoors and I love using cut flowers as my photographic subjects, sometimes in Still Life but mostly exploring them in macro.

I don’t think I’ve spoken much here about the cameras and lenses I use. Some years ago I decided to upgrade from the simple auto ‘point and shoot’ cameras I was using because , although they do take marvelous images, I wanted to achieve more. I was, and still am, an avid reader of helpful articles and tips – I wanted to learn all I could to develope my camera skills.

I asked for advice in a Parks camera shop what camera to start with and the Olympus Stylus1 was recommended, so that’s the one I went with. I couldn’t really afford to go for an all-out DSLR and lenses – too heavy for me anyway! So it was a matter of initially learning what I could with this camera before moving on when I felt ready to buy a camera with separate lenses.

As the Olympus Stylus had served me well [and I still use it for convenience when I’m out] I decided, mainly because of it’s light weight, to stay with Olympus. Started with Olympus OM-DE-10 and now learning to use the Olympus OM-DE-10 mk lll. My favourite lens is the 60mm macro – used for these shots.

The big nuisance for me though are the over-complicated menus , which, at my age and the accompanying tired and less efficient brain, are a pest to navigate and remember. I’m awful with the techy side of things and hope I can get by with the artistic side instead. [I learned about composition, colour,texture etc when I used to paint almost every day!] And now, over time, certain camera settings have become a habit with use and practice , so it’s easier to find things !

I often admire the work I see from other photographers and find myself looking at the equipment they use and it’s very tempting to think ‘if only I had the cameras and lenses they have, I could achieve so much more !’ But, as the saying goes ‘the grass is always greener on the other side’ and I’ve learned to be content with what I have and thank the Lord for His creative gifts … ha ha – there’s no way I’d have the strength to hold that heavy DSLR and goodness me – those Lenses !!!



Well, that’s all for now dear friends, hope I will have helped someone who may be just starting out on the same journey , Eileen


Busy Bees

I haven’t posted any pics for such a long time – I’m afraid ‘life’ intervenes – as it does for everybody of course, but it gets more frequent as you get older! It isn’t as if I’ve been completely inactive with my camera, for when I couldn’t get out and about, I still did indoor shots, but couldn’t sit long at my pc without getting migraines etc But, no matter, and you don’t want me to add my woes to your own!! I love my photography and thank the Lord every day for His gifts and it’s great to have this blog to share them on.

I also have my pics on Flick’r – if you are interested, just do a search for Flick’r Eileen Thompson and it should find me.

Anyway – I will endeavour to post more now ….

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’ll be posting some of my indoor macro pics next [I hope, Lol!] See you soon,and God bless you, Eileen


Time to Catch Up

A Cup of Muscari

I’m a bit fed up with myself today and it occurred to me I should catch up on my photo posts. I spend quite a lot of my time on Flick’r now and ‘age’ doesn’t allow me the same concentration that I used to enjoy , so I’m afraid my Blog has suffered a bit of un-intended neglect !

I hope these pics will compensate for that …

Thankfully my love for taking photographs hasn’t waned and I’m still keen to try to make little works of art, although it seems a little presumptive to assume that other people will enjoy looking at them! Still – I can indulge myself here and from past experience I’ve found everyone really friendly and encouraging, and that’s been a real blessing.

A Petite Still Life
I have a collection of small cups and saucers and this set seem to suit the lovely Muscari that suddenly showed their faces in my equally petite patio garden.

Corylus Contorta



Also making an appearance are these lovely catkins . The shrub is commonly known as Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick because of it’s twisted branches, which are seen at their best in winter and spring. Unfortunately, in the summer time, the leaves are also contorted, so it looks as though it has some terrible disease!!

These tulips are not growing in my garden – they are just a bunch I bought. I placed them in a vase in front of the brightly sun-lit patio window ….

Mackintosh Tulip

Same tulip, different setting. I really enjoy Still Life photography and trying to harmonise the subject within it’s setting. The tulip doesn’t strike me as a particularly ‘delicate’ flower, so I think it can take bold treatment …. not to everyone’s taste of course, but then not everyone is a ‘Still Life’ fan either. But for me it’s a life-saver when getting out and about is difficult.

Macintosh Rose

Part of the joy of Still Life are the beautiful ‘props’ that you accumulate. I’ve had three ‘Macintosh’ style mugs for years but never photographed them before. I added a soft glow effect in my PSP which I though suited it very well…..

See you again soon I hope, Eileen


Festive Fun

I’ve been cheering myself up with some festive photography lately – hope you like them …. just a bit of festive fun !

Of course, the true meaning of Christmas is that God sent his Son into the world to redeem mankind and offer eternal life to those who believe in Him, not because we deserve it , but He reconciles us to Himself through His grace.

If I’m not back here before Christmas, I wish you many blessings,   Eileen


Same Walk, Different Pics

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

This is the first lady angler that I’ve seen at the lake! Fortunately she very kindly said she didn’t mind me taking her photo.  The sun was streaming across the lake behind her – back-lighting and high-lighting herself and the trees either side of her.  Perfect!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

This single leaf also posed perfectly for me ….

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It was a really dazzling sun-shiney day with lots of high- lighty bits of nature to see … this could be titled a patchwork or an abstract I thought.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

There is this huge Weeping Willow tree along the path leading to the lake and it looked magnificent on this bright, sunny day ….although the figure and dogs are the focal point of the pic.

I did some searching on line yesterday to see what I could find out about the Ifield Mill Pond and Bewbush Water Gardens and boy – what an interesting history – much too much to tell here … so, just briefly :

A park was recorded here as early as 1295.   The manor of Bewbush seems to have passed down, linked with St Leonards Forest by inheritance to various Earls and Dukes, etc over the centuries, becoming known as the manor of Holmbush/ the Holmbush Estate from 1787 and being sold on to ‘humbler’ folk titled ‘Lord of Bewbush’ and eventually MPs and the like.

Lots of improvements had been  done by a Thomas Broadwood after 1824 and he planted and landscaped much of the estate. Whether it was him or later owners who planted my Bald Cypresses there I don’t know, but maybe there’s a way of finding out?  My source [A History of the County of Sussex] says he created a large Lake and several smaller ones – so I guess that must be more or less where we can walk now, since Crawley Borough Council bought the whole area , now known as the neighbourhood of Bewbush,  in order to expand the housing requirements for all us ordinary folk. And grateful I am too!!


More of the Same, but Different

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Bald Glory

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I don’t think I’ve ever come across such an interesting tree before!

As it appears to be native to swampy areas of N.America, I wonder how it came to be here in Sussex at the Ifield Mill Pond and Bewbush Water Gardens?  I wonder if, like the Tilgate Lake and Park, the place was originally part of a private estate? That would account for the trees being introduced here as a specimen no doubt…. I will have to do a spot of historical research I think.  It’s brilliant that I can look stuff up on the internet!!

I took pics of other things that caught my eye at the Pond too so I will make that my follow on post.  au revoir,  Eileen