A Perfect Foggy Bottom Marsh

On Monday I decided that Wednesday morning I would go out photographing the fall color in the marshy areas along country roads close to where we live. I slept a little later (7:30) than I had wanted and almost decided not to go but decided I needed to go out even though the sun may be a little higher in the sky than desirable. I needed to go out because I hadn’t gone down early morning dirt roads since Julie, my photography partner, moved away two years ago. I’ve been afraid, I’ve procrastinated, I’ve slept in too late, I’ve decided to have a second cup of coffee, it was too hot, it was too cold. The bottom line, though, is I’ve been afraid to go out alone – and I’ve missed the times of solitude Julie and I shared. I’ve missed the joy of the hunt for the perfect subject with the perfect light, and hopefully the perfect settings on my camera.

It was a beautiful, cool (temp in low 50’s F), end-of-September morning with light fog and no breeze. There isn’t much color in the trees yet, just a few branches here and there, but the earth is definitely telling me that here, close to 45 degree latitude in the northern U.S., the vegetation is preparing for winter’s dormancy.

I was thinking this morning that I live in two residential locations during the year, southern Michigan and southern Florida, that were carved out of swampland. The first Europeans to walk this area of Michigan, mostly surveyors, described it as a mosquito-infested place that was uninhabitable. And the land I live on in Florida was raised up from the Everglades – a very wide (a hundred miles wide), shallow, slow-moving fresh-water river moving over grasslands, around pine, cypress, and Live Oak strands, and through mangroves along the ocean coasts. Southern Florida has so many mosquitos that they have a State Mosquito Commissioner and they have alligators. But these swamps are absolutely beautiful at all times of the year. I search them out and am working on capturing this beauty that I see.

As the sun got higher the fog dissipated, but I had plenty of time to fill my camera disc with the beauty that was feeding my soul. During the summer months photography becomes more difficult when the sun gets high in the sky but between now and early June the sun is riding lower in the southern sky and is soft and mellow.

I had a wonderful time on my first solo outing and plan on doing a couple more before we head south. My time photographing nature filled all my needs that I treasured with Julie, except I really missed her quiet, gentle presence and fun conversation. I also confirmed that I really love my mirrorless Nikon Z fc even though I don’t have a good zoom lens. I took my older Nikon along and used it to take photos at the spot that I took the photos for this post but realized I wasn’t as happy with using the camera and deleted most of the photos I took.

I continued down back country road for over an hour more, capturing color that I’ll be posting for the Lens-Artist Challenge. Stay tuned.

Amazing Lines – Origami


Happiness Shared

Last year the Naples Botanical Garden had a display of origami sculptures throughout the garden. These were big, and not really sculptures. They were created through the collaboration of Dr. Robert J. Lang, one of the world’s most renowned origami artists, and Kevin Box who used the paper origami objects to make cast aluminum replicas that were then painted.

I loved the birds, so took photos of them on several occasions, including a rare evening visit when they were lit from below but also were catching the last soft warm light of the setting sun.


Title is Migrating Peace, of the common crane.


Model folded from a single piece of paper by Dr. Robert J. Lang.


Gathering Peace

The most amazing part of this exhibit was the display of moldings created from the origami papers that were folded and unfolded.


Crane Unfolded – Phoenix Rising

Hidden within every folded origami object is a “crease pattern” – a document of history accounting for most of the choices or creases made in creating an origami object.

Each fold leaves a permanent crease in the paper that can only be revealed by deconstructing or unfolding the object.

Kevin Box, from his explanation of this exhibit in the Naples Botanical Garden, 2017

The Daily Post’s photography prompt for this week is lines. I spent a lot of time thinking about it and as I was trying to get my Lightroom data and hard drive images merged in my new computer I saw these photos from last year. Thanks, Cheri, as this gave me the perfect theme for using them in a post.

You can see more of Kevin Box’s work by clicking here or googling Kevin Box Origami.

Morning Glory


DSC_0175I’ve traveled around the block enough times to realize that my years seem to be marked by rounding cycles that are similar in many ways but also are different. Maybe like a spiral, moving around to familiar places but on a new plane, providing new joy but also new challenges. I plant morning glories every year, even though I never know if they will grow or bloom. Sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t, because of warmth at critical times, amount of fertilizer, and how often I water.

This year my morning glories were slow to bloom because of a month without rain while we were vacationing along the northern east coast. We returned home in mid-August to weak vines with hundred of buds, and then I watered and we received rain. By the time we were rounding the time to head south for a few weeks, the morning glories exploding with blooms.


DSC_0176I am in love with the way the long, narrow white buds unfurl to show the beautiful, clear blue that looks and feels like the finest silk. As late summer rounded the curve into the cool nights of fall, I marveled at the deep purple on the edges and along the curved veins.


The beautiful blue flowers filled my soul with glory every morning as I sat on my purple porch swing with a cup of hot, creamy coffee between my hands, the steam curving up around my face.

Most years JB and I “discuss” when to pull the morning glories, with me negotiating to leave them in the ground until the morning we leave. This year it was JB who suggested we leave them until we returned in November. I thanked him with a smile and a kiss.

This week Ben Huberman at WordPress’s The Daily Post moved outside his comfort zone of straight lines and angles to challenge us to share our interpretation of “rounded.” I love curves, roundness. I have been thinking about the curves and round-about course of my life. I looked through many photographs containing curves because my eye is drawn to the grace they portray. But today I chose to put forth the simple but beautiful roundness of the morning glory. I am needing simple pleasures these days.

Beauty thru My Lens: Hands

What wonderful hands. Hands that have worked, learned their skill, played, been around the block. What a mystery that they can wield a sledge hammer and string a tiny bead. They work without us thinking about how – they just do what we want them to do. Unless we are asking them to do something new, then they become awkward for a while.

I have always loved hands – I fell in love with my honey when I saw his hands work the keys of a piano. He hasn’t played since we married but I still love his hands. Hands need to have veins that show, spots and wrinkles, knuckles that have been deformed by years of use. If eyes are the window to the soul, hands are the door to a life story.

The photos and thoughts are in response to Ailsa’s travel theme, Hands.  All hands were taken while vising someplace else.