March … Something Mauve

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Sunset, Anna Maria, FL

One would think that with all this ‘shelter-in-place’ time due to the corona virus, I would be out and about capturing images.  But the truth is, I haven’t really felt in the mood to venture out with the big camera.  I’ve been quite happy with late morning coffees with hubby, dogs walks, biking, hanging out around the pool and watching our resident crow couple build a nest in our neighboring pine tree.  A couple of Great Blue Herons had been building a nest in the same tree when we arrived here two weeks ago, but they decided to abandon their efforts due to our dogs objecting to their flight path.  Naughty dogs!!!

The above iPhone image was captured this past Thanksgiving as we spent a week with family on the island.  I had no idea that we would be spending March and probably April sheltering on Anna Maria.  During those months, we avoid the area all together due to the traffic and spring breaker families.  Now, it is quiet and peaceful.  And for now …  safe.

M is for …. Madness!

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Anna Maria, Florida, North End … March 22.

In all this crazy COVID-19 ‘madness’, I thought a peaceful beach scene would be refreshing instead of images of empty grocery shelves.  We are sheltering-in-place on Anna Maria in our vacation rental home after finishing up four months of its renovation.  There are punch list items yet to complete along with new landscaping, which is keeping us quite busy.  The beaches are closed except for residents and rental guests, so it is quite pleasant to be here now versus what March is usually like with lots of traffic and spring break families, (which is much better than this virus! ).  It’s a mad mad world out there and it’s my hope that we as a nation can recover soon from this invisible enemy.  Stay well and safe, my friends.  #flattenthecurve

March — Baby or Babies!

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Venice Area Audubon Rookery, Venice, Florida

“Hey Bro’ …. papa looks a bit grumpy!!”

Babies are popping up everywhere this time of year and the Venice Rookery is no exception with various chick species like the baby Great Blue Herons above.  I love watching the devoted parents’ relentless care of their offspring.  It always amazes me how overcrowded it is of the various bird species on the small island, some nests and chicks within a foot or two of each other.  I guess there is safety in numbers!!

Nikon d850, Tamron 150-600

February — Something Red

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One place that is serene and beautiful for a stroll is Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota.  The bountiful variety of flowers and plants make it a photographer’s paradise.  On a recent visit, I only had my iPhone 11 Pro Max to capture some of its beauty.  But next visit … I’m taking the big camera along!  By the way, if you are wondering what is that eyeball doing in that flower, it is part of Selby’s current exhibit of Salvador Dali’s “Gardens of the Mind” collaboration with The Dali Museum in St. Petersburg.  Selby has put together cool designs inspired by Dali’s fascination with art, math, science and nature.  Dali’s interest in “divine geometry” is based on the idea that natural forms such as the nautilus shell, daisies and beehives grow at a constant proportion without changing shape. Many of these numerical ratios are found in Dali’s works and throughout the Gardens.

February … Low Angle

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Marshall Point Lighthouse, Port Clyde, Maine.

Come every June, we pack up the car and dogs and drive for three days to our summer home in Maine, leaving the Florida sultry heat behind.  We are filled with excitement to see friends again and enjoy morning coffees on our deck watching boats bob about in the harbor and listening to the cries of the osprey’s new chicks.  Four months later, we do the same drive back, filled with the same excitement to catch up with friends and enjoy Florida’s warmer temps as frosty nights begin embracing Maine.  I can never get enough of photographing Maine’s landscape, returning to familiar scenes to capture different angles, like the Marshall Point Lighthouse.  This scene was captured the summer of 2017 as I experimented with ‘low angle’ shots of this iconic structure.  I then edited with a Topaz texture to give a painterly look.  Hope you enjoy!

Week 14 — In a Row

_NIK1681-EditCa’ d’Zan Bayfront Terrace, The Ringling, Sarasota.

I never tire visiting the Ringling property.  The grounds, the museum, and the house provide plenty of opportunity to photograph the beauty of the buildings and its location.  The Ca’ d’Zan was the winter home of the American circus owner, developer and art collector John Ringling and his wife Mable.  They built the Venetian Gothic residence in 1926 on the Sarasota Bay.  This image of the bayfront terrace was made from domestic and imported marble.  Stunning design!  And then there’s the 36,000 square foot house with its embellished glazed tiles, medallions and other ornaments.  A great place to sit and take in the view!  And to use as this week’s assignment of ‘In a Row’ with the windows, chairs and umbrellas!

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Week 13 — Macro in Mono

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Beetle in Flower at Selby Gardens, Sarasota.

I don’t do a lot of macro photography but really enjoy seeing other photographers’ macro shots.  On a visit to Selby Gardens, I practiced using my macro lens but with limited  success.  Definitely needed a tripod!  But I found this image was interesting as the beetle appeared to be floating above the flower when actually he was crawling around among the pollen filled petals.