Lens-Artists – Opposites

I am busy, busy, busy but I want to stay calm, calm, calm, so I have elected busy and calm as my sub-theme for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Opposites.

Inspired by lens artists across the world, I have joined a botanical photography group. How weird (for me) is that? In order to kill two birds with one stone, so to speak, I have chosen photos that I have taken for that group to share with you.

Here are some busy little birds – firstly, a busy photo of a silvereye getting a dusting of wattle pollen, and secondly, a speckled warbler in a more serene green. We also have a front and back view as an added contrast.

Sticking with the busy bird theme because it is spring in Australia, here is another busy photo, this time of a New Holland honeyeater. It was quick but I was quicker snapping its photo in this native mistletoe (probably Amyema miquelii, but I am no expert). Mr Magpie is always good for a photo. “Hope you’ve got my best side,” he says. It is a harmonious contrast, don’t you think?

Moving on to all things botanical, a beautiful sheoak (possibly Allocasuarina verticillata) caught and held my attention. The coppery flowers stood out in the fading light. Bucolic, eh? Contrast the woodland veiled in copper with a single stem of this nodding blue lily (Stypandra glauca) set in silver. Pure harmony in opposites.

That’s my lot for this week, ladies and gentlemen.

I’ll leave you with this quote by yours truly, “Stay calm, stay strong and negotiate.” That’s pretty good. Someone must have said that before.

Kind Regards.
Tracy.

PS. They are all my photos. I have to be a grown-up and take my own photos, rather than my True Love’s photos, to the photography group.

Lens-Artists: Planes, No Trains & Automobiles

Just in case you were wondering, I am still here. It is quite some time since I’ve been anywhere. I certainly haven’t been everywhere, man.

I didn’t go to the Temora air show. Coincidentally, I was doing something else in Temora at the time of the air show. However, my lads jumped at the chance to attend so we made a weekend of it. The three of us camped at the airfield which was a novel experience. My True Love snapped a photo of this leering Spitfire. There is another air show coming up in October ’22 for fans of old war planes. Temora is a two hour drive from Canberra.

Too scary. Let’s look at some cars instead. The photo below of some stunt driving at Movie World is courtesy of my eldest son. The Movie World excursion was part of his band tour. We could never afford to take the kids and dogs on holidays. Probably because we were paying for music lessons, school fees, vet bills, etc.

Movie World

My True Love and I eventually went road tripping and left the kids at home with the dogs. We took his and her cars. Only joking about the his and her cars. Now our boys are busy with their own careers so we are once again stuck at home with the dogs. I was envious of this pair that I saw travelling down the highway. Now that epitomises the spirit of adventure.

In 2019, we accidentally found ourselves at the Yass Classic Car Show. I understand that was the last classic car show organised by the founders of this popular event. A new classic car show under new management kicked off again this year. Anyhoo, my favourite car of the 2019 show was this steampunk makeover.

I will finish with one last fighter jet photo. Very much a DIY jobbie.

May the force be with you, ladies and gentlemen.

Kind Regards.
Tracy.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Lens Artists – Picking Favourites

During July, the dedicated, hard-working hosts of the incredibly popular Lens-Artists Photo Challenge take a well earned break from their hosting duties and co-opt five guest hosts to take on this important responsibility. Wrapping up the final week of the month, is guest host, Sarah, from Travel With Me. Sarah has chosen the theme ‘Picking Favourites’. She has asked that respondents pick three of their best/favourite photos, one each from three different photographic genres. Sarah has also requested that respondents outline why they chose a particular photo. Tough assignment but I’ll give it a go. Here is my response.

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He – Red Capped Robin

Reprise from August 2019 – the start of the fires on the east coast of Australia that traumatised a nation.

I don’t know why my husband and I felt compelled to stop at the old cemetery on that blustery day.  We certainly didn’t go there to take photos.  So maybe it was intuition, a guiding hand.  The power of the robin.  He.  Red-capped robin. Read more

Lens-Artists Challenge #209 – Surreal

I was recently invited by the Lens-Artists team to be a guest host of the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, and now, finally, my turn has arrived! I am so excited. I’ve chosen the theme of surreal for this week’s challenge. I think of that word each time I exclaim: “Has the world gone mad?” It’s bizarre. Some might even say, “surreal“. It was therefore no surprise that a century ago, at another time of great societal upheaval, surrealism as an artistic and intellectual movement emerged. Photography too had its place in this avant-garde art form with notable photographers such as Man Ray, Dora Maar, Maurice Tabard, Raoul Ubac, Toshiko Okanoue, Florence Henri, Claude Cahun and Angus McBean, among others, arguably being among the very first lens-artists.

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Lens-Artists: Summer Vibes

It’s July so you know what that means. July is when the dedicated, hard-working hosts of the incredibly popular Lens-Artists Photo Challenge take a well earned break from their hosting duties and co-opt five guest hosts to take on this important responsibility. This week, Andre from My Blog – solaner is hosting the challenge and he has invited us to feel the summer vibe. It’s winter here in the Southern Hemisphere but I will try.

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Lens-Artists – Doubling Up

It’s July so you know what that means. July is when the dedicated, hard-working hosts of the incredibly popular Lens-Artists Photo Challenge take a well earned break from their hosting duties and co-opt five guest hosts to take on this important responsibility. This week, Jez from Photos with Jez, is hosting the challenge and he has invited us to share in his addiction for reflections and has dared us to see double.

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The Changing Seasons – June 2022

June in Canberra (the Australian Capital Territory) – Winter officially begins. It has been the coldest start to winter since 1964. Opening the house to the elements due to household Covid infections made June a particularly cold month. Life on the outside was better even if it was freezing. The sun came out occasionally and reminded us that winter days in Canberra can be glorious. Here are the highlights, largely courtesy of my True Love who took photos before and after his Covid infection. The poor man still seems very unwell to me but he takes beautiful photos nevertheless.

It snowed on the ranges in the period after my TL’s surgery and prior to his Covid infection. It was bleak but we were happy, happy, happy.*


The majesty.*


Then life got more complicated so I snatched a few moments in the garden.
My Eutaxia obovata (egg and bacon plant) that I planted last year clenched its leaves to conserve heat.


The galahs were contemplative.


The sun popped out and so did my TL and Pimelea physodes.* Lucky for us.


The Eastern spinebill chimed its arrival and stopped to freshen up.*


The prodigal Golden Whistler returned.*


The sun called me and I was off. T-shirt weather, baby!
The brittle gums (E. mannifera) up the hill were celebrating too.


The Eucalyptus cinerea were covered in galls. Something should eat those.


By this time (3 hours later), I wished I had packed my jumper.


Finally, one last photo for my neighbour, J, who is home with Covid. You had visitors today. They seemed to be gnawing on your tree rather than eating the seeds.


Anyway, back to the Covid situation. Canberra seems to have the highest rate per 100,000 people than any other Australian state or territory (NY Times tracks this stuff but maybe their data is wrong). Perhaps the number of infections is only now catching up with the rest of the country? On the other hand, there are now 122 people with Covid in our public hospital. That’s 122 people with Covid in a public hospital system that has somewhere between 600 to 670 public hospital beds and a huge number of hospital staff off sick. At the same time, elective surgeries in the public hospital system have been cancelled again. By my rough calculation, 15-20% of our public hospital beds are being occupied by people with Covid, as they should be if those people need hospital care. These stresses on the system do not seem to merit a “business as usual” approach. Furthermore, several patients and staff in the cancer ward have also caught Covid on the ward. I understand that staff, patients and visitors are required to have a RAT test to enter those highly sensitive areas. If our experience with the uselessness of the RATs is anything to go by, then that does seem like a Covid breach waiting to happen. That’s my opinion.

Anyway, anyway, I send my best wishes to my neighbour, J, for a speedy recovery. Ditto, my friend, Martha, in the States. My TL is none too well and he is in his third week post onset of his infection. Who knows what July will bring? Hopefully, cake. And a few sunny days. And good health. Especially good health.

This is my response to The Changing Seasons photo challenge, jointly hosted by Ju-Lyn (Touring My Backyard) and Brian (Bushboys World). Click on the links provided to check out Ju-Lyn and Brian’s challenge and create some memories by joining in.

But enough of me, how was your June? I hope you found a space for things that make you happy and keep you sane.

Take care, everyone. Stay safe, be kind and be you.
Kind Regards.
Tracy.

*Photos preceded by an asterix were taken by my True Love.

The Changing Seasons – May 2022

May in Canberra (Australia) – Moments in May, momentous May, May in triptychs. But first, a poem, a kind of triptych of course.

May Change

Filaments of May morph and coalesce
‘twixt pearlescent rain and golden light,
while rising power bills outstrip inflation.

Leaves and pamphlets flutter in the breeze.
People power in technicolour. Rejoice!
Winter is upon us and Australia is infectious.

Sadly, little bird flies the coop. Man in repose,
rises. Listen, do you hear that?
Tick-tick, tick-tick, as we turn the corner.

What does it all mean, I hear you ask? Autumn finished slowly. It rained on and off, but the sun broke through often enough to dally with our affections. Jack Frost flirted, adding impetus to deciduous trees still reluctant to toss aside their colourful costumes. The wildlife has begun jockeying for power and has cleared out the pantry in preparation for next Spring’s bounty. There was, nevertheless, time for bathing. Speaking of bathing, a national election was held. The government changed amid pledges of a new, kinder, more collaborative polity in the future. My True Love survived his surgery. Our canary, Pan of the Wild Music, died. I got hearing aids today. I wish I could have heard Pan sing one last time. Apparently, I still don’t listen to my husband.

Triptych – black and white theme for the magpie juveniles who still haven’t left home.

Triptych – Crimson theme for crimson rosellas bathing.

Triptych – multicoloured mixed feelings.

Winter is now upon us. As I returned from my hearing aid fitting, the Brindabella range was shrouded in snow clouds. Rain hammered loudly on the windscreen. We’ve definitely turned a corner. It sounds like tick-tick, tick-tick.

This is my response to The Changing Seasons photo challenge, jointly hosted by Ju-Lyn (Touring My Backyard) and Brian (Bushboys World). This post is also doubling as my contribution to the triptych themed Lens-Artists Photo Challenge.

Goodnight, everyone. Be well, be kind and try to listen.

Kind Regards.
Tracy.

About the Photos:
The last photo in the first two triptychs were taken by my True Love. I snapped the rest.

The Changing Seasons – April 2022

Canberra (Australia) – Autumn delivers and April visitors.

I haven’t contributed to The Changing Seasons since December 2021. A lot has happened over the past four months, including health issues, poetry, completion of a major mosaic project and the start of a new front garden. Apart from the health matters, the garden has taken priority because we have to get it in now ahead of the next, inevitable, drought. In the regular garden, we had to abandon the tomatoes and beans to the rodents this year. They have been very hungry (we caught three and Makea, our dog, caught one). Nevertheless, we still managed to harvest three pumpkins from vines we did not plant. The fig tree went bonkers and produced two huge bumper crops. The rodents got stuck into the first crop but we managed to score some figs from the second batch by securing Elizabethan collars around the trunk of the tree to prevent the rats from climbing up the tree. I also collected a small tub of feijoa today, our first ever crop in more than two decades that we have lived at our house in Canberra.

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