More macro/closeup photography from my tiny photo project. Don’t forget to follow me on instagram to see more of this project, as well as pictures of my cat wearing a bandanna, if you are so inclined. He’s really cute. @constantholidayfilms
This weekend I was able to get up to North Georgia and hike the approach trail to Brasstown Bald, the highest mountain in Georgia. The summit is only 4600 feet above sea level, so it’s no Everest, but the heat and the steepness of the half-mile trail made me appreciate all the wildflowers – and the opportunity to stop and catch my breath while I photographed them.
As you can see the woods are full of pollinators, always a happy sight these days. The whole area is part of the Chattahoochee National Forest, and there’s both an excellent visitor’s center and a shuttle from the parking area to the summit if you have someone who’s differently abeled or it’s just too darn hot for the hike. I highly reccomend it though – you struggle up the switchbacks (I struggled, at least; you may be less lazy than I am) and as you reach the last turn the fire tower at the summit leaps into to view, and the valley views spread out all around you.
The Appalachian Trail runs nearby, as well as some other good hiking trails. I’m looking forward to getting back to the area and exploring more.
I had some family-related time in Florida and shot these on the beach near where I grew up. During the day it was all hustle-a-bustle, but at sunset everyone but the Ospreys go home and suddenly it’s the empty beach of my teen years, suffused with memories.
More botanical close-ups, from my tiny photo series. It’s a little softer than I’d like, but it’s probably an improvement over yesterday’s spider 😉
Don’t say I didn’t warn you….
This not-so-little guy showed up on Saturday, taking a stroll across the carpet. He probably wandered in the open back door to the patio. I wanted to see how close my phone camera would focus, and I think we can all agreed it’s pretty damn close. He’s about the size of an American 50-cent coin, if you know what those are.
After some google-fu I think I’ve established that this little guy or gal is a fishing spider, which makes sense since we have a pond next to the patio. After he posed for photos I got him into a mason jar and escorted him to safety out in the flower patch. Everyone involved seemed relieved at the solution, not least of all the spider, who will live to catch more tadpoles another day.
Some new additions to my tiny photo project – nature photography in close-up.
From a creamy white rose…
To a scarlet lily. I love that you can actually see the texture of the black spots on the waxy red petals.
and the austere whiteness of a half-opened magnolia blossom. The interior looks like an exotic sea creature to me. Maybe I need to go to the beach?
I’ve been in love with the Planet Earth and Blue Planet series for what seems like forever, and I’m not kidding when I say I’ve watched all the episodes about a hundred and eleventy times. The stunning images combined with David Attenborough’s sly narration – “He’s had an enjoyable lunch, but now it’s time to find a MATE!” will rivet me to the couch for hours. Really, David Attenborough could do the narration for someone breaking down the transmission on a 1997 Honda Element, and I would sit through the whole thing, completely enrapt.
So in celebration of Blue Planet II being finally released in the U.S. – you lucky Brits got it months ago – I thought I’d revisit some of my favorite photos that I’ve taken of our watery world.
One of my goals this year is to improve my underwater photography, so hopefully by Blue Planet III I’ll have some images taken from beneath the surface.
Until then, I’ll just continue to peer into ocean from the surface.
New images from a photo project I’m currently working on. I’m not traveling at the moment and it’s hard not to feel a pang when you look on the internets and see all the lush, panoramic landscape shots that people are taking. There are some amazing artists out there doing beautiful work.
Cleaned my office and rewarded myself with some flowers…
I’m sure everyone has heard this by now, but I am still shell-shocked to see the damage that is ongoing in Puerto Rico. I’ve been to the island many times – I was fortunate enough to go every year for a good stretch of time – and often considered making a second home there, or retiring in that region.
As of now, those plans are on indefinite hold. I have no idea if Puerto Rico, and the towns of Isabella and Playa Jobos where I spent most of my time there, will ever be the places I knew again. Right now all I can see and hear are the terrible stories of suffering and uncertainty from good people who shared their island home with me.
Is the Los Morillos Lighthouse still there? Are the Rangers who maintained the surrounding park safe? Did the nameless family that helped me when I got lost down a dead-end street in Isabella lose their home? Is Junior’s Pizza, always our first stop in Playa Jobos, even standing? People are telling stories of the long, winding route down 66, which used to wend through a dense tunnel of jungle foliage, now looking like a moonscape, with all the vegetation stripped away. Of El Yunque, the only rainforest that is part of the United States, scrubbed to bare rock.
I know everyone has compassion fatigue. There are so many horrible things right now. Houston. Miami. The Island of Barbuda completely uninhabitable. Earthquakes in Mexico. Volcanos in Indonesia. It feels like the earth is trying to shake humanity off, like a dog with a bad case of fleas. You feel – I feel – utterly helpless.
But please. If you have any ability, consider donating to one of these organizations to help the people of Puerto Rico, who so desperately need it.
OneAmericaAppeal.org – led by five former presidents of the US
Unidos – run by the Hispanic Federation
GoFundMe – crowdsourced donations from individual groups. There is no good way to say this – the US government has fumbled this situation terribly and is causing active delays in aid. Small groups of concerned citizens – many with personal links on the island – are stepping into that space to try to make up for it.
I’ve written before about the sickening feeling of watching a loved place descend into chaos, the gut wrenching knowledge that things will never be the same again. I also wrote about my immense relief when it turned out that I was wrong, and that people and places are more resilient than I had ever dared hope. I want so badly to be proven wrong again.
Be safe, and hold on to what you can.