Sunday, 27 July 2008

Green Thumb Sunday - I grew these!

I often talk about Mum's garden but the truth is, Mum does a lot in my garden too so I sort of think of the plants as hers although the mess and weeds are mine! But I do have one or two plants that I have chosen, bought, nurtured (and killed) and this hosta is one of them. It has flowered faithfully every year since I bought it and has even survived a broken pot and being replanted. I thought I would pay homage to my hosta by immortalising one of the flowers here in my blog :)

It's been very hot here for the last few days but I had to do some watering even though I was melting! This little fella decided to sing me a song to keep me company so I very carefully came indoors, grabbed my camera and went back outside. With the camera in front of my face, he didn't get spooked so I kept quietly talking to him and clicking away until I was only about 2 feet away - this was the best shot as he looked at his reflection in the lens I think but I even managed to get the highlight in his eye.

Needless to say, I was chuffed to bits but I just backed away again, still with the camera in front of my face until I though I was far enough away not to spook him. I was wrong, as soon as I removed the camera, he flew off with an alarm call to wake the neighbourhood!

Friday, 25 July 2008

Day2Day - Bug Week!

It didn't start out as a bug week
but after snapping the butterfly on the now blooming buddleia and noticing the green bug was still hanging around the osteospermums, it sort of went that way of its' own accord.

The huge spider invaded my space on Wednesday which kind of sealed the theme for the week! Luckily I'm not scared of spiders - just as well really - this one was probably one of the largest British ones I've ever seen.
Mum bought me a Golden Hop to cover some boring fences last year. This year it has almost taken over one side of the garden but the white butterflies seem to like it. This pair were sitting like this for well over an hour - I'm not sure they would have noticed if I'd stuck a great big lens right in their faces but I gave them some space by using my zoom :)
This fella buzzed me whilst I was trying to shoot some bumble bees on the buddleia. So it made my afternoon and really topped off my Bug Week with a bang. We don't see many dragonflies round here and certainly not at rest within lens reach :)
Have a lovely weekend - I've already got a loose theme planned for next week but first I'm going to enjoy some of this sunshine they have forecasted and take a well deserved veg-out day:)

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Green Thumb Sunday - Darling Dahlias

Not much to talk about garden-wise this week, it's been another wet and grey week but with sunnny spells whilst I've been at work. The green bug is still sitting on the same flower, the new auriculas Mum potted up and left with me to look after, are still alive and the special Morning Glory (Convolvulus) is climbing its' frame very nicely thank you. I haven't killed anything yet but I'm guessing that's because of all the rain and me not having to water all those pots!

I begged a Dahlia from my neighbour yesterday (it was calling to me when I opened my bedroom curtains) and set up my little table top studio. I am so pleased I did! To say I am chuffed to bits is probably the understatement of the year! It follows along my abstract experiment (although it's not that abstract) - anyway here is my pride and joy from yesterday :-D

Hope you all have a good week, see you next time xx

Saturday, 19 July 2008

Day2Day - Week 4 Mix It Up!

Well this week was another hectic week at work so I wasn't really concentrating or even thinking about my Day2Day so it's a bit of a mix this week.

Day 1, Monday, dawned with blue skies and fluffy little clouds - just in time to go back to work after a wet weekend.
Day 2, Tuesday, was a lovely hot day but then some really heavy showers and a bit of thunder in the evening. The skies cleared around sunset just in time to colour the clouds around the moon rising.Day 3, Wednesday - can't really remember what sort of day it was, just a really, really busy one. The sun did break through around teatime, just long enough for me to water Mum's pots and get a shot of her new Clematis.
Day 4, Thursday - another grey day all day but no rain. Had to boost this one a little in photoshop but you get the idea :) Gigantic allium heads hanging up to dry and making themselves irrestible to my macro lens :)
And last but not least, Day 5, Friday (Yay!!) playing with abstracts again - this time one of Mum's alstromerias - also known as a Peruvian Lily or Lily of the Incas. I like the colours in this one but perhaps the markings should be more in focus? Hmmm not sure.

I hope you've had a good week. Schools are breaking up for the summer this weekend and that usually means less traffic for me. This year, that also means more evening sunlight to shoot in so I'm looking forward to it too.

Friday, 11 July 2008

Day2Day - Week 3 - Wet, Wet and more Wet!

I think my photos this week show what sort of week we've had here in the UK. Bearing in mind, I live in one of the driest parts of the country and it has been raining almost non-stop since last Sunday.
Monday - one of the argyranthemum(sp?) daisies - a pressie from Mum :)

Tuesday - that green bug is still on the same flower and no, he's not dead! LOL

Wednesday - more rain but better light so raindrops it is!

Thursday - bit of sunshine during the day (whilst I was at work) but rained liked billy-o on the way home. Dried up enough to take the camera out later.

Friday - my lovely purple and white callas are doing really well - I'm up to 10 flowers now :) More rain again today :(

Sunday, 6 July 2008

Green Thumb Sunday - Calla Lily

This week has been a calla lily week! Mum bought me a beautiful calla lily last year but until about 3 weeks ago, the pot appeared empty. Then the shoots started to pop through and now I have a full pot of leaves with 8 flowers so far. This has also coincided with Mum's pink callas blooming but she only has 2 flowers on her plant!
I'm not an expert but I haven't seen many callas like mine. The leaves have white spots on them and the flowers are a darkish purple with white edges. Luckily for me, my pot is also one of the last things in my garden to stay in the evening sun so it's featuring heavily in my Day2Day challenge too :)
Yesterday I was shooting some abstracts (following on from an earlier post) and Mum popped over for coffee bringing treats with her - a tub of fresh picked cherries and one of her 2 calla flowers. A cat (probably) had damaged the stem so she thought I might like to photograph it. How cool is my Mum? Well, I loved the idea and set to work and I've been really pleased with the results - abstract idea + calla = some really good shots! I think I may have to play with the colour on the 3rd one (right hand side) to try to make it tone in with the other two but then I will have a lovely calla triptych to frame and hang on my wall (if hubby will let me have pink on the wall of course!).

Saturday, 5 July 2008

Day2Day - week 2

This week has been hellish busy at work but I've been a good girl and still managed to pull something out of the camera for the Day2Day group daily challenge. If you haven't seen this group, the idea is to take a picture every day, Monday to Friday of something ordinary but beautiful, in order to improve your photography or just for a challenge.

Started off the week a bit late so had to find something that was still getting some sunlight in the evening - ta-dah a bud of the mysterious 5ft visitor - turns out it's a verbascum.
Tuesday - the sun was just dropping as I got the camera out so another quick dash to get this lovely pink Candytuft. Gave it quite a hard crop, not only to get rid of some of the background rubbish but also to experiment with a square format.
Wednesday - inspiration struck as this was quite dull in colour - pop the red leaf in photoshop. All I've done is convert the original to black and white using a channels mixer layer, then erased that layer over the red leaf.
Thursday - another race the evening sun shot - this time using the shadow as part of the picture.
And last but not least Friday - a beautiful Spirea Japonica 'Shirobana' flower. This shrub was a cheap find in the bargain bucket somewhere. It was just a stick with 2 buds but has been flowering every year for about 10 years now. The flowers are white, pink or a mixture of the two. This is a closeup (obviously!!) of a white flower head.