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Sunflowers 2017

This is the time of year that sunflowers are in bloom. A few weeks ago I found some sunflower fields to visit but the flowers had weeks to go before blooming. On Saturday, I made my first trip to this location, where the flowers had started to open. Here is the first image for 2017.

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Sunflower 2017, No 1

I then decided for another image of this plant. In this image, I took care to include the entire leaf at bottom left in the frame.

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Sunflower 2017, No 2

I found a sunflower that had not opened fully. One can see a hint of yellow in the center of the budding flower. Also, if you look carefully, you may be able to see a ladybug near the bottom of the flower head. Sunflowers have really attractive leaves. The white veins add lots of contrast and texture to the leaves. Something that I want to explore this summer.

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Sunflower Bud, With Ladybug

The back of the sunflower head, and the thick stems are covered with hairs that add texture the to plant.

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Sunflower Opening

Another image look at the side of the flower…

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Sunflowers, No 3

In this image, I included three sunflowers.

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Three Sunflowers

Enjoy. More to come later.

 

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Morning At Botanic Gardens

Sunday morning, Carey and I headed out to the Denver Botanic Gardens. The skies were overcast and the weather was threatening to drizzle. Perfect weather for outdoor flower photos. I found this ornamental kale plant — the leaves make an interesting circular image.

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Leaves, Botanic Gardens

The “El Pomar Waterway” is lined with aloe plants in the water channel. The walls of the waterway were painted in a deep yellow color. I chose to split the image with the yellow and white wall at the entrance of the waterway.

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Split, Botanic Gardens

There are several ponds with lily pads and lotus flowers. In this image, it appears that the lotus flower and pads are in flight!

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Lotus Flower Pads, In Flight

I found this open flower with two buds in the background. This just looked stunning against the huge green leaves.

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Flower And Buds, Botanic Gardens

We found some purple flowers. I titled this one “Purple Horn”. I think Carey captured a similar image on his website at http://inasphere.com.

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Purple Horn

One of the ponds had these huge lily pads. However, in the image below, it was the reflections of the plants in the water, at the lower left corner, that caught my eye. The red lotus flower draws the eye to this corner. Perhaps I should do some more work with this image!

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Lily Pads And Reflections

I made this candid image of Carey while talking photography!

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Carey, Botanic Gardens, 2017

In this final image, I managed to capture two bees in this flower. The bees are always on the move, so I had to take several images, to freeze the action a little.

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Bees Gathering Nectar, And Pollen, Botanic Gardens

Soon after this, we parted ways as Carey had another appointment for the day.

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Visit To England — part 3 — Whitstable

Angela, Susan and I spent two nights in Whitstable while visiting family in Herne Bay. We spent a day in Whitstable by heading to Forge Oyster Bar. Here the girls indulged in oysters. Not being an oyster lover, I had two donuts — they were tiny!!!

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Forge Oyster Bar, Whitstable

The bar had oysters for sale on a bed of ice.

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Whitstable Oysters

We visited the harbor. About this time the tide was going out.

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Whitstable Harbor

At the harbor wall, two ladies were sitting reading. One lady was reading a book, the other, reading a phone?

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Ladies Reading, Book And Phone

Along many beaches in Kent, may be found beach beach huts. These are typically used as change rooms and to shelter from the elements while visiting the beach.

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Colorful Beach Huts

Later that afternoon, we visited a beach close to Whistable, where we discovered that there were some birds.

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Beach Near Whitstable

Situated out to sea, off the north Kent coast, is a wind farm. The wind turbines are anchored to the sea bed.

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Wind Farm At Sea Near Thames Estuary

Here are Angela and Susan looking out for birds among the wetlands located away from the beach.

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Angela And Susan, Whitstable

After dinner, I headed to the harbor to catch the sun setting over the Thames estuary.

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Sunset At Whitstable

The next day we met with Angela’s sister before heading back to Surbiton that afternoon.

 

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The next family activity was a boat trip up the River Thames. We rented a boat at Surbiton for the day. We took turns piloting the boat upstream. Crew members may be found here! There are several locks along the Thames that have to be negotiated during the journey. At the Molesey Lock, we passed by this topiary.

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Topiary At Molesey Lock, Thames River Cruise

Much of the Thames River, above Kingston, is equipped with locks. So the river tends to be very calm, as seen in the image below.

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Boats Along River Thames

We passed a lot of water birds during the cruise, including Swans, Cormorants, Canada Geese and Common Terns. We were fortunate to pass by a Grey Heron, that I captured in this image.

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Grey Heron, River Thames

Some years ago, David Gilmour (guitarist for Pink Floyd), bought a barge/house boat that is moored on the Thames. He later converted this into a recording studio. Here it is. Albums that were recorded and mixed here include “Momentary Lapse of Reason”, “Division Bell” and “Rattle That Lock”.

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David Gilmour’s Recording Studio

We had a life ring installed above the cab. I made this image looking upstream through the ring.

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View Up The River Thames

We navigated through three locks on our cruise upstream. We moored above the third lock (Shepperton Lock) and stopped for lunch at the “Thames Court” pub. Several “Narrow Boats” were making their way up the river.

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Narrow Boats On Thames

After a leisurely lunch, we headed upstream to the Chertsey Lock where we turned around and started our return cruise. We made our way downstream, working our way through the locks. Here we are waiting for the lock to drain.

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Waiting For Lock To Drain

This is a view behind us showing the closed lock doors.

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Closed Locks Behind Us

Finally, the lower gates were opened and we could proceed.

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Leaving The Lock

Here is an image of Mike “driving” the boat near the end of our cruise.

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Mike, “Driving” The Boat

Finally, here are Susan and Warwick relaxing with beers while Mike was driving!

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Susan And Warwick, Thames River Cruise

A fabulous time was had by all.

 

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Visit To England — part 1

Recently, we made a trip to England to visit family. I have posted images of our family gatherings here. While there, we took the opportunity to visit the British Museum. I particularly wanted to see the “Rosetta Stone” and to visit the Assyrian and Mesopotamian gallery exhibits. At the main entrance of the Assyrian gallery is a pair of winged bulls.

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Assyrian Winged Bull, British Museum

Working our way down the gallery are several panels from the ancient Assyrian empire. This is one panel of an Assyrian king (Ashurnasipal), flanked by gods.

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Ashurnasipal Flanked By Gods, British Museum

The opposite wall of the gallery depicts the “Seige of Lashish”.

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Assyrian Seige Of Lashish, British Museum

One of the main attractions in the British Museum is the “Rosetta Stone”. This area of the museum was crowded, so I waited a couple of hours to return to this area to make the following image. The Rosetta Stone was key to deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphics. It is also one of the most visited objects in the museum.

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Rosetta Stone

The main courtyard has been covered with a roof and contains a store and cafeterias.

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Main Courtyard, British Museum

This museum contains a lot of really interesting ancient artifacts and is well worth visiting. Need to go back again in the future.

We spent most of our time with Susan, who lives in Surbiton. One another day, Angela and I made a visit to Hampton Court Palace, that is a couple of miles away from her apartment. This is the main entrance to the palace.

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Hampton Court Palace, Outer Court

However, the main visitor’s entrance is on the left hand side of the main entrance. This leads to the base court.

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Hampton Court Palace, Base Court

Hampton Court was the palace that was occupied by Henry VIII during the 1500’s. We listened to an audio tour that detailed his reign and his six wives. After completing the tour, we exited into the Clock Court.

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Hampton Court Palace, Clock Court

According to the clock, we arrived here at about 1pm.

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Hampton Court Palace Clock

We also visited the gardens at the palace (no pictures here). The Hampton Court Palace Flower Show is located in the palace grounds; preparation for the show was in progress while we visited the palace. However, the show was not yet open to public. On our way back to the exit, we walked through the quadrangle passages of the Fountain Court.

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Hampton Court Palace, Fountain Court

Having studied at university in London, Hampton Court was not on my list way back then. This visit was a first for me and was well worth visiting.

 

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Night Shoot On Colfax

Finally, I managed to process the images from our night shoot on Colfax that took place a couple of weeks ago. Our group met at on Broadway and then made our way to Colfax. Soon after arriving on Colfax, we encountered this lady who became the subject of many of our images.

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Photographers On Colfax

There are some amazing murals along Colfax. I liked this one that seems to have a 40’s feel.

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Argh, Mural On Colfax

This lady was busy on a phone call inside a fast food restaurant.

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Restaurant Caller

The sun made its way lower and lower below the horizon as we made our way along Colfax. By the time we got to this location, the sky had turned a dark indigo blue. The lights from Tom’s Diner were a perfect complement to the darkening night sky.

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Tom’s Diner, Colfax

The Greek Salad Drive Thru was open for business.

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Greek Salad Drive Thru… Is Open

The adjacent building was lit by lighting that cast colorful light on the walls. I made this image to include the building corner with light falling away to either side.

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Building Corner Colors

The Fillmore Theater was bathed with purple lights. This was the last image that I made for the night.

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Purple On The Fillmore

It had been a long day for me, having done yard work during the heat of the day, so I made my way home after this.

 

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Before Night Crawling, Denver

A couple of weeks ago, we had the night shoot meetup group. Here are some images that I made prior to joining the group for the night.

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Denver Downtown Building Reflections, No 1

These are some of the building reflections in Downtown Denver.

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Denver Downtown Building Reflections, No 2

This curved roof has some interesting reflections.

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Curved Roofline

Here is another different roof line.

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Building Corner

This final image has a reflection of the “Cash Register” building that is a well-known landmark in Denver.

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Reflection Of The Cash Register Building

 

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Chalk Arts Festival, 2017 — contd.

Sunday was a hot day. This artist had been working in the sun for most of the day. After completing his artwork, I made this candid shot of him relaxing.

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Relaxing, After A Hot Day

Of course, I had to make an image of his artwork. Here is some of the detail from his work.

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Chalk Art Detail

This lady in yellow, had spent most of the day’s working on a tiger’s image.

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Artist, Detailing The Tiger

I found this image really image really amusing. Have you seen a tiger playing with a ball of wool?

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Tiger Playing With Ball Of Wool

There were crowds of people in this image that I titled “Art Watchers”. I caught Angela, as one of the Watchers in this image.

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Chalk Art Watchers

And here is another pair of Watchers…

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Chalk Art Watchers, No 2

Of course, we also have a group of inevitable “Smart Phone Watchers” that I captured in the image.

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Smart Phone Watchers

I started this collection of images of the “Chalk Arts Festival” with an image of the “The Chalk Ratz”. Here is a closeup image of the “Chalk Rat” on the sidewalk. This is the closeup of the subject of the first image that I presented.

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Chalk Rat

Enjoy.

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