Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #234: Messages

Happy Sunday! Donna from Wind Kisses is the lovely hostess for this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge and she has chosen a difficult topic for this week’s challenge – Messages.

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CMMC: January Alphabet – Begins with the Letter A

Left: Apple, Apples, Antelope

Right: Ancient City Wall

Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #232: Looking Back

Happy Sunday! Sofia from Photographias is leading this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge and the topic of “Looking Back” was chosen.

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#SundayStills: Taking the #Plunge in Overcoming Fear

Over the weekend, I took a big leap in the first step to overcome my newly-developed fear of claustrophobia.

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Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #231: Favorite Images of 2022

Happy 2023! John from Journey with Johnbo is leading off 2023’s first Lens-Artist Photo Challenge, reflecting on our favorite photos from 2022.

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Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #230: Last Chance

For the final Lens-Artists Photo Challenge of 2022, Tina from Travels and Trifles is asking us to share the photos from 2022 that did not make it onto any of the Lens-Artists Challenges, an honorable-mention-sort-of-thing.

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color Challenge: #Cobalt Blue

I woke up yesterday morning to a strange sky. The front of my house was bathed in sunshine while the back of my house was this very dark blue sky.

Correction: it wasn’t the sky that was this dark blue, it was the clouds.

We had a storm warning, you see. We’re supposed to get around 5-6 inches of snow between Sunday night and Tuesday morning. We shall see about that.

I ran back up to my room, grabbed the camera, changed to the 18-400 mm lens and rushed back down. It was less than a minute, tops but the sky was no longer this dark intense purplish blue. Instead, it was a lighter, still darker shade of blue. Still, I panned the camera around looking for a composition and found one with my neighbor’s aspen trees. The sun was shining on the white branches at that moment.

I actually had to look it up how dark is the color cobalt blue. The color reminded me of the times when I would use a CPL (Circular Polarizer Lens) filter on my camera and all the skies in the picture would be an unnatural shade of blue. Cobalt blue was that color.

I no longer use any filter on my camera, except maybe a ND (neutral-density) filter when I shoot long-exposures. The screwing on and off the filter is quite bothersome in my opinion as it not only takes time but each time when I tried to take the lens filter off, my anxious mind would begin playing out the worst scenarios.

So I’d say, “screw it,” I don’t need filters.

This was one of my favorite photos taken in Niagara Falls, by the way. I have been practicing my sun-star photography when I can. I read somewhere about sun-star photography can tell how many (blades?) is in a lens.

I remember that morning, just walking along the path, checking every few seconds to minutes, hoping the sun would just rise above the clouds, even just for a few seconds because I wanted to photograph the full sun, not just half of the sun with a cloud beneath.

At last, the sun had risen above the clouds. I set the camera to the lowest f-stop and clicked. I wanted to click another one but by the time I checked the photo and tried to focus again, a cloud has once again covered the bottom half of the sun. I was glad I got one though.


Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #229: “Perfect” Pattern

Anne Christine from Leya is hosting this week’s Lens-Artists Challenge and she is challenging us to to search for somewhat (a relative term) perfect patterns whether in nature or in everyday objects.

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Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #227: Home Sweet Home

Tina from Travels and Trifles is hosting this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge and the prompt is “Home Sweet Home” and here’s the specifics for this prompt:

If a foreigner were to spend a week or a month traveling your home country with you, where would you take them? What sights would you tell them to be sure to see?

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CMMC: November Alphabet: T in the Middle or the End

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CFFC: Weathered Wood #WordlessWednesday

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CFFC: Bicycles and Motorcycles #WordlessWednesday

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#SundayStills: Nature is Sure #Mysterious

I agree with Terri, nature is mysterious. It can turn such thing as a tree into a fossil if it lived long enough.

Looking at the topic this week, which is mysterious, I thought about my visit to the Petrified Forest State Park in 2021. Note that this is the state park in Utah, not the national park in Arizona. Petrified Forest State Park is much smaller but it’s still an awesome place to visit.

We paid our entrance fee, parked the car, and spent a few hours exploring the park on foot, which is kind of mandatory given the petrified forest is located along a single trail.

It’s sure a mystery how these trees managed to survive this long as all around them, civilization thrived. I’d bet these trees have seen things, encountered plenty of natural events, and probably once lived with dinosaurs. It’s just amazing to think of all the things that have happened to these trees to have it survive to today. Nature is sure a wonderful mystery.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #223: Flights of Fancy

This week, John from Journey with Johnbo is hosting Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #223 and he threw out a topic with three words I don’t think I’ve heard in quite a while – Flights of Fancy.

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CFFC: Catching People Unaware

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#SundayStills: Photographing through Window #Glass

I do not like photographing anything – especially landscapes – through any kind of window or glass. It not only distorts the color temperature – makes the scene look cold when it’s supposed to be warm, add green when there shouldn’t be green, and don’t get me started about cloud colors – it’s a nightmare when it comes to editing these photos in Lightroom.

Sometimes though, I can’t say I have a choice like unless I suddenly sprout a pair of wings, there’s no way I could photograph in the open air more than a hundred stories above ground. I took these with my phone, by the way, in RAW before uploading them to Lightroom and stitching them to make a large panorama. If I remember, each of these images are made up of 9 to 11 images stitched together. The smaller focal lengths of the phone’s camera really helps sometimes.

I thought these came out great except for the bit of reflection, which as hard as I tried, I couldn’t get rid of them.

As much as I don’t like it, sometimes, it is the way to go and I got a few favorites that were taken through the window while the car was moving or through a plain old window.


Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #222: Mountains are Calling

Amy from the blog – The World is a Book… – is hosting this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #222 and she has chosen a topic I am all too familiar with – Mountains are calling and boy, are they calling!

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CFFC: Clouds

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Wordless Wednesday: Autumn 2022 Finale

CMMC: October Autumn Colors

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#SundayStills: Monthly Color – #Lava

This week, Terri at Second Wind Leisure Perspectives is challenging everyone with the color of Lava or a mix of orange, dark brown, and black. What an unusual mix of colors…

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Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #220: One Subject Three Ways

This week, Patti – hostess of Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #220 – challenges us to look at one subject three ways.

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#WeekendCoffeeShare – The Longest Day of the Week

Good morning! Come on in and grab a coffee or a tea, I have lots to tell you.

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