Saturday, June 30, 2018

If you're gonna do steak, DO STEAK!

Meat trigger warning!

First, to get past the teaser photo on Facebook that might set off some of my veggie readers, here's Curtis, giving me the eye as I'm working on the BBQ. Not quite the stink eye of yesterday, but still.

1.4 Kg of AAA Alberta beef in a Herbes de Provence marinade. Just for your reference, that pan is 13 inches long.

Oh my goodness, it was so good with a salad and buns, some wine, and a Yum bakery lemon tart with fresh raspberries on it. I think I need a nap now. I certainly don't need dinner. Wait, you don't think we ate THE WHOLE THING, do you? Sheesh. We ate maybe half of it.

Lots of other photos today as I was out and about a bit. Stay tuned.

Friday, June 29, 2018

I made it, and a special request

A long weekend, 4 days. Canada Day weekend. The first Canada Day I actually remember was 1967. Yeah, the one with the cheesy CA-NA-DA song. I won't put a link to it here. Even just thinking about it has it running through my brain. Gawd. To get it out, I'm going to get my favourite Canada song going, because I know you want to be Canadian please.

No, I don't have any idea what I'm going to do to celebrate. At this point I'm getting caught up on relaxation. My biggest priority today was to sleep in. Which I did. Which was fine. The only problem is that the traffic is much worse. I could list where all is under construction, but if you think all Anderson Road and Southland Drive west of Elbow, and 14th St from Anderson to Heritage, you've hit the highlights. Oh, and we can't escape going south. The ring road construction is right beside 37 st and starting to eat the intersection at 130th. Patience and extra time is required to escape, or to visit us.

As a photographer, I take photos mainly to please myself. Some of what I like in a photo would be difficult to explain to other people, and I don't feel any particular need to. These days I'm balancing between trying to get some specific shots I have in mind, trying to improve my skills, and just enjoying being out with the camera and actually LOOKING at the world.

It's nice to hear that other people like my photos, and there is a place to take photos that mainly please other people. Some of those happen for the local community association. The ones for races are a bit different, I think. I like to get photos of people interacting with each other, and I like to put the emphasis on just one or a small number of people. You can check out the photos from last weekend here and see what you think.

I got a special request from a special friend. So over the last several days I've been keeping an eye out, and an ear out for the buzz. Normally when I shoot bees I'm trying to get their faces. It's difficult. Normally they are up to their eyes in flowers, and they move extremely quickly. I try to get the focus right and let the camera fire several times. Most are throw aways, of course. That's to be expected.

But here we go. The only thing wrong with the first and last ones is that the flowers aren't purple. (Columbine and a rose.) I tried to fix that in the next series of shots. There were 45 taken on the purple mint in 1 minute and 20 seconds. I'm amazed this many were good enough to edit.

Thursday, June 28, 2018


Not the Wars of the Roses. There are no white ones here, even though that's where my historical tendencies lie. We do have lots and lots of red ones, in several varieties. Their leader is the dread Alberta Rose living beside the garage. They have been blooming for a few weeks now, and I've been shooting them in between white peony shots. Stay tuned, there are more white peonies coming.

In other news, it's the start of a 4 day weekend for me, and I need it. Tomorrow I'm going to sleep until I wake up, then go swimming at a civilized hour, whenever that might be. It can't be worse than the last swim, pathetic example it was. I'm just glad nobody I knew was watching, and the life guards didn't harpoon me for my oil, or haul me out for heating up the water because I was thrashing so much.

There is a to do list growing, but at the moment it's buried in the rubble of my desk. That's ok. I know I have to tidy it up, and I'll find the list with all the rest of the tasks on it.

I'd love to get out for a photo ramble at some point, but it remains to be seen if the weather cooperates with the gaps in my schedule.

That's enough writing. Here's the roses.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

OK, so today I regretted

What a lovely morning! I was outside briefly very first thing, pre-dawn even, and it nearly captured me. After getting some coffee and feeding the cats, I was outside a bit more, thinking it would be perfect to work on my novel(s) while sipping coffee, watching the day begin. Alas, work was calling. Just before leaving I was out with my camera to see what the flowers had been up to overnight. Wow!

The light was catching this geranium just right, and I nearly laid down on the dewy grass to get the camera angle just right. Then I remembered I was in work clothes. Still, this is why articulating back screens and live view were invented. Yes, 4 stars.

Some of you may have seen this on Instagram already. Life is so hard for you.

Another of these. Every now and then I catch the light. For some reason I thought this was the third one, but I can only find two.

And a couple more white peony just for you.

And to finish you off in style, the red peony complete with ants.

Sunday, June 24, 2018


It's been a busy weekend for photos. A family fun day event for the local community association. Trying to get some photos for a writer buddy of mine for inspiration. Yes, JB, this chunk of river is deep enough to hide a body in, if the current will let it sink to the bottom. Not a bet I'd want to make if I had a body to hide. Though there are lots of rocks nearby. Hmmm.

Plus the Wild Rose Triathlon today. That was most of the photos, and I'm pleased with how most of them turned out. I'm really pleased with some of them. You can see them via my photo blog, if you so desire. Look for the Wild Rose 2018 gallery.

It was a fun day! BRBE Michelle was part of a team with Erika and Tara, and they placed second. I ran into several buddies and chatted. One recognized me from a swim camp put on by Client Lien and Sara Gross oh so many years ago. It's the 'stache, I can never shave it unless I want to go into hiding. Of course the famous Rose and Richelle put on an amazing event! If you're a woman looking to get into triathlon, there is no better race than this one to get started. Well run, fabulous swag, amazing food, and they always have the best weather. You've got a year, start training!

It worked out to 1621 photos over two days. Not even close to a record, but it's still a lot of clicking, and appreciating the mass edit features in Lightroom.

Oh, and a buddy from Nova Scotia dropped in for coffee and scones on Saturday. Pity it was pour rain in a major way. We had been looking forward to chatting on the patio, and enjoying the garden.

Here's Michelle and her team crossing the finish line.

Meanwhile I'm nearly ready for bed. Oh, except for a few white peony shots, lest you get withdrawl symptoms or something.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Bee bokeh white

There, a title that tells you everything that you're going to get in today's blog.

This bee really liked the Columbine, working it over and over. Good thing, as it took about 60 shots to get one I liked.

Here's another where I saw the shot and it worked out the way I had hoped, though it took a bit of tweaking in Lightroom.

And your white peony of the day.

Oh, and in answer to a question my faithful reader SPD asked, I've had one go at focus stacking, and might come back to it, but there are other things I'd rather work on.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

If not now, when?

There are 44 photos from the last 30 days, edited and ready to show the world, that have not yet made it onto the blog. Why? Just lately I've been taking photos faster than I can display them, short of dumping them in a huge batch and overloading my faithful readers.

Here's some of the oldest that you haven't seen yet.

That gets me up to another white peony extravaganza. There are 17 shots of it ready to go and wow your socks off. Maybe I'll do a white peony of the day for the next 3 weeks or so, and see how far behind I am then. Or would you rather see one post overflowing with fluffy, gorgeous white peony shots, some with water drops, in a variety of light, from lots of angles?

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

What goes with peonies?

Ants! If you want macro shots of ants, setting up on any random peony bulb with good light is all you need to do.

I got this little guy by accident. This is the remnants of a clematis bloom about 7 feet off the ground. The idea was to capture the silky strands, but the ant stole the show.

I've got a bunch of white peony photos happening, since it's putting on a great show just now. I might be late for work tomorrow, getting some more sunrise shots. Here's one example just to whet your appetite. Yes, there's an ant in there.

The red one has some blossom action happening as well, but this is for the ant. You might need to look for it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Mindfulness. Or not.

My manager and I had this conversation this morning. No, not the one that leads to packing up your things. We were talking about making notes to ourselves, documenting what we're doing, and then leaving it behind. Both of us are learning how much context is needed before asking, "So how is task x coming along?" because there have been blank looks on both sides.

We are all focussed on our tasks, scurrying to meet deadlines. Concentrating hard. Everything else slides out of our minds. Like Sherlock Holmes and his brain attic full of useful facts, I like to think, though I'm likely to remember the earth goes around the sun. I'm not likely to remember what was in an email I sent 5 minutes ago. In fact, I've proved it any number of times.

This photo is an example. I know it was taken in our garden. I just can't find those plants again. I have no idea where I was standing. I look at the photo, and all I can think is that I should sell the image to a puzzle manufacturer.

Monday, June 18, 2018

They remind me of Moya

If you haven't seen Farscape you've missed the joke. Perhaps if I tell you they look a bit like a Bussard Ramscoop. No? Enjoy the pretty flowers, and don't think about what my imagination is up to. 

 Plus some more Iris for good measure.