Thursday, August 29, 2013

Late Summer at Trailway Campground

Although the rules of thumb dictate that outdoor photography should be performed late in the afternoon, early evening or early in the morning before ten o'clock, mid-day light inspired me to get out with the camera this afternoon in a desperation move to record the campground as it nears the end of the summer season. Many residents are already getting ready to head south for the winter.

Lilies blossom in a "wild garden" back by the fire pit and common area.
All summer long folks in the creek-view sites have worked to clean the stream banks, manicure lawns and prepare colorful, relaxing outdoor spaces.

I gave the horseshoe pit an old-time, antique look with a new plug-in for Photoshop. I don't often use these effects, but they do generate an atmosphere I couldn't otherwise create.
The fire ring provided a centerpiece for many cocktail parties and potlucks for the most sociable season I can remember at Trailway.
Travel flags indicate the winter destinations for many of the parks residents. Another "cute" effect from Perfect Effects 4. Some of these effects would have been embarrassing accidents back in the days of film photography and color slides.
Flowers and bird feeders attract finches and hummingbirds. The pink chairs frequently attract neighbors bearing cocktails.
Colorful blossoms at swamp's edge bring hummingbirds. We have to be careful about what we plant because the deer and rabbits eat all the blossoms of some plants in a single night. Tomatoes are entirely out of the question. This is the scene from our backyard, overlooking a marsh on the White River.

These blossoms will last only a few more weeks, the planters will be retired until next spring.

Contrived photo enhancements can't relieve the depression of seeing summer come to an end so soon. It seems we've only just settled in from our spring trip to Michigan from the Rio Grande Valley.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Nora's Keyboard

The light on the keyboard, the open window, the orange door – it was a photo waiting to be taken.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Green Heron

This Green Heron was hunting insects from the downed log in the marsh behind our park yesterday. The bird seemed to know that I couldn't get any closer – there was gooey mud and open water between us. My zoom lens was extended to its maximum 200 mm, which didn't get me as close as I would have liked, but then wildlife photography really isn't my forte.

I have photographed the Least Bittern in Texas,which, as it turns out is very similar in size and shape to the American Bittern, which is so closely matched to the size, shape and coloration of the Green Heron that I incorrectly identified it.

Thanks to my good friend Sharon for the correction.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Afternoon Scenics

A short walk down to the river this afternoon reminded me that we really do live in a beautiful part of the country.

Gorgeous summer days like today generally bring people out to the Fishing Bridge, even if the fish aren't biting.

Upriver the expansive clouds were even more dramatic. The thunderheads on the horizon are 50 to 60 miles away; probably floating over Grand Rapids.

Immediately behind the park a field of wildflowers stretches to fill in what was an overgrown woodlot last season.

Toward the back of this field, down in the cattails, a family of Sandhill Cranes hatched a pair of babies this summer. Within the past week, there have been sightings of adults teaching the young birds to fly from the wildflower field.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Incongruous Poppy

Such a delicate flower, sitting on an impossibly long, thin stem. Nevertheless, it stands tall in the aftermath of powerful winds and heavy rain to display its magnificence.