i took these photos from a bridge that spans a ravine that goes into the main part of the river valley, with the intent of getting photos of the Autumn colours. There were interesting challenges with light and shadow, so I took the photos using a polarizer filter and did some post photo work in Lightroom.
The eclipse started before the moon rose above the horizon and I worked late but got out to take this shot of the moon above the river valley.It was fascinating to see the moon rise and travel across the sky, changing in colour and texture.I took these shots from three locations in the city; a bridge in the west end that overlooks downtown, from further north and the last two were from the Telus Science Centre where there were telescopes that you could look through that made the moon really big but these shots are all from my Rebel XS.
I volunteered at the Edmonton Folk Music Festival recently and enjoyed seeing people from my crew again and enjoyed listening to new artists that were previously unfamiliar to me as well as seeing some familiar ones. I came away from the experience feeling creatively and spiritually inspired. Here are some shots from the weekend.
Here’s from behind the scenes in the kitchen where food is prepared and served up to over 2,000 people per meal at the peak of the festival.
the food is fresh and delicious.
And outside, facing the hill.The stages all face hills in the ski club in the middle of the city..
Some of the musicians Oysterband and Mike Farris
Final Act of theFirst Evening with the City in Background
There is something that captures my attention and sense of wonder as I see an American White Pelican soar into sight, gliding with its wide wings outspread and circling the area as it gets lower and lower. Then the feet stick out and foreward before it hits the water creating a large wake behind it. This one landed at the platform where other pelicans and a couple of cormorants were lounging and in one motion heaved itself out of the water onto the raft. (I missed that shot as well as the first one when I first caught sight of it to one side of me.) When they are gliding alone or as a group they are so graceful.This one stood out from the rest-it was huge.
A nod to the two cormorants who are holding their own.
Out of a lot of choices for Canada Day celebrations, I chose the activities at the Alberta legislature since I could ride my bicycle and meet my friends there.
My friend Nolan liked splashing in the pools, as did his mom and I, and got some wicked splashes in though because of the camera couldn’t indulge more fully.We listened to some music at two different stages.One stage was beside the legislative building where we could sit in the shade of some trees, and get up and dance, a beautiful spot for a concert.
Nolan checking out the waterfall that goes under the bridge.
Booming Tree Taiko
In the shade listening to The Royal Foundry
We filled our water bottles at my favourite fountain that had three heights, one for filling bottles, one for kids and adults and one a few inches off the ground for dogs. What a great idea!Whenever I saw people with thirsty dogs, I told them about it.
I felt very grateful for our freedom to gather in this space designed to be public-friendly, for the presence of the police who keep us safe, and the openess of the government that allows for the public to swim in the pools, walk the grounds and celebrate out country’s birthday.
We were hot and tired so all went home after some good fun, then after my nap (yes, I had a nap) I went down to the river valley above the golf course to watch the fireworks. I don’t have a phone so couldn’t listen to the music that accompanied the lighting of the bridge but will say it was a great display of pulsating and running lights of all colours.I enjoyed the fireworks too, happy with my photos but slightly disappointed in my focus. I put the camera in Manual setting,same with the focus, and set the shutter on bulb for longer exposures, f18-22 for larger depth of field and ISO was 800 and 400 respectively. A bonus that I wasn’t expecting was the full moon! Live and learn!
I went to Ezio Faraone park tonight.This park is named after a slain police officer who died 25 years ago this month.My purpose was to take photos of the statue dedicated in his memory and to see the High level bridge lit in blue lights to honour Edmonton Police Service and Constable Daniel Woodall who was killed in duty here in Edmonton this past Monday night, June 8th. Another officer, Sgt. Jason Harley, was wounded but is in recovery. I saw blue ribbns tied around lamp posts and flowers were left at the statue. This is my way of expressing support and condolences to the Edmonton Police Service and the Woodall family.
This is the first photo that I have taken of this species, a Boreal Chickadee, quite pleased to find it.Not the best photos but I am happy to have a record of the sighting. They are not too common here in the city.
I had been to the park shooting images of the hoarfrost -covered trees in the morning and returned in the late afternoon when the sun was quite low. I walked onto a pedestrian bridge that crosses the river, happened to look down and there was a massive beaver. I fired off these shots quickly as I am sure he sensed my presence and disappeared into the chilly waters. All photos were taken at 300mm 1/30 sec @ f/5.6 ISO 800
Rather than observe Remembrance Day ceremonies from the warmth of my home, I wanted to show my support and faith in democracy by being there in person, not giving into any fear of being attacked. I went to the Van Vliet Centre, a huge gym on the U of A campus, that was packed with a crowd of thousands. These are the worst photos I have taken in recent times but hope they pay a small portion of the respect that I feel for the people in uniform who serve: rangers, soldiers, city police, and Royal Canadian Mounted Police, aboriginal peoples amongst others.I went to pay my respects, to remember my father who was a Sargaent Major in the tank division of the Royal Ontario regiment in the first world war, my grandfather in the first world war who came from Montreal and fought in the trenches in Ypres.and to remember the veterans of the war in Afghanistan and the people who died in service here on home turf.It was touching to see soldiers in uniform with their small children and the two minutes of silence always touches me, as do the parades and ensuing applause. To my friends in the United States, I extend my greetings on this Veterans Day.
I had a visit with a friend the other evening to welcome her to Edmonton and we both got something we will not forget. As we came up out of the river valley, the sun was setting and rain was drizzling. There was a glorious double rainbow in front of us , in fact we could see the end of the rainbow right in the bushes below us. That prompted a lot of comments from passers by about finding “the pot of gold.”
My friend couldn’t get the entire rainbow in the lens of her point-and-shoot and my camera was at home a couple of blocks away so I ran as best as I could knowing that I might miss it all.The light had changed as had the position of the rainbow that had mostly faded out I still got some images of wonderful colour and light.
Back to the World Final Triathlon in Edmonton that took place last weekend. It is over but I have been editing my photos.They love to be cheered on and the energy is infectious. In the mixed relay, each athlete swims 300 metres, runs to the transition area while taking off their wetsuits which is a feat in itself, mounts their bicycle for a 6.6 km bike course then runs for 1.6 km before returning to the water where they tag the next team member.
At the beginning of the relay race all the athletes start at the water together.
Here they have left the water and are on their way to the bikes.
Now they are getting on their bikes in the transition area.
After riding 6.6 km they return the bikes and start their run.
Then they return to the water area where they will tag their team mate.
From a walk in nature the other day:
It is a pleasure to go to this city pond, one of many, and see the young ducklings.Some are Lesser Scaups, some American Widgeons, and the Mallards.
Mother Scaup with her two balls of fluff.
No, I am not talking about a large size of bird species, I am referring to the large chunks of bread that was thrown to the birds at the park. The people were happily feeding their feathered friends but I wonder if they would have shown some restraint if they saw this one struggling with its bounty.This young Ring-billed gull got the prize but I am curious what it was thinking as it seemed uncomfortable with the morsel it caught.Bread is not good for birds, but tell that to the birds, or to the people who feed them.
Now that the hullabaloo over the fireworks has passed as has the opening night of the show of lights of the High Level bridge, I returned to a park where I could take some photos of both the High Level and the Menzies bridge which serves as a way fare for both pedestrian traffic and Light Rail transit. Usually I like my lights sparkling but not the moon. Will have to work on that.
I used my tripod, put settings on “Bulb” and kept the shutter open for 5-10 seconds with the ISO at 100.
Bridges are playing a major theme in our city lately. Two are being torn down to make way for new ones.Another, the High Level Bridge, has been adorned with over 50,000 lights to entertain us in the dark of night.
Today’s post focuses on the 102 Avenue bridge that joins the west end to downtown and stands beside the Royal Alberta Museum. It is more of a functional bridge than “pretty” but that does not make it any less important.The 102 Avenue bridge is over a hundred years old and spans a deep ravine.It has flaws and weaknesses and needs to be torn down. The road under it is a major road as is the the one that runs over it. so that means temporary detours for Groat Road as well as the bridge road for the next 15 months.
It has some flaws but as you can see in these photos , the structure still has strength because it didn’t fall apart as easily as expected. The clean-up is going to take longer than first estimated.I felt it important to record some of this moment in time.
I am looking from the museum side to the High Street shopping area off of 124 Street.
I was so excited this year, I looked up articles for taking fireworks and scouted spots ahead of time. When the evening came, I arrived 1 hour ahead of time to find that my first couple of spots were already taken but found p”plan c” and planted myself in position, checking the lens, set to manual focus and battery. I held down the shutter release in some cases as long as 19 seconds, periodically covering the lens opening with the cap to get multiple images in one shot. Sometimes it was blown out but got a good effect in a few.
The nice thing about a shutter release cable is that I could watch the fireworks live. It was fun and I got a kick out of the line-up of photographers dotted around the hill at different levels. The people next to me were newcomers to Canada and we hugged each other and I welcomed them. meanwhile they were recording and sending texts or emails back to their relatives.
I discovered a new feature here in WordPress. I put the photos into a” gallery”. if you click on one, a slideshow opens AND you can see the exposure settings.
So here are a few from last night:
Happy Birthday Canada! It was a great Day.
While I have posted some photos of blooms in other posts, I will try to post here what I have not included yet. I love the effort and creativity that people put into their lawns and gardens and enjoy capturing the shapes and colours.Timing is so important because so many of these blooms do not last long. I appreciate the planning that goes into a garden that continually has colour so that when one flower fades, another rises to take it’s place.
I find it a challenge to capture an image of flowers and blossoms, especially lilacs, and come up with a pleasing composition.This is dedicated to all the gardeners and all the people who appreciate them and their work. Maybe I should give back by helping with the weeding once in a while…
There has been a campaign in the city of Edmonton to donate money to light the high-level bridge after the waterfall proved too costly and full of flaws. There are 50,00 lights due to the generosity of the citizens of Edmonton and I do not think that it cost the tax-payers anything. While out on an evening walk I thought that I would take my camera and tripod and practise some shots for the fireworks and bridge display on Canada Day next Tuesday.The lights seem to move in lines from one end to the other, changing colour and rhythm.
Last year I got pretty good fireworks but black sky and was envious of the blue skies of my fellow photographers.I did some research on exposures and decided to try putting my speed on “bulb”, pressed the remote shutter down for 5, 6 and 7 seconds. I used manual mode and manual focus, and kept my ISO at 100 and tried f/8 to f/11.I used my zoom lens at 70mm up to 300mm and prefer the wider shots, and probably move the viewfinder up,which will be good for the fireworks. The blue bridge in the foreground is the pedestrian and LRT pathway. Here are the results:
As I approached the pond , there were two photographers shooting away at something. Slowing down so I would not disturb them or their subject, I waited and watched for what they were focusing on. Oh yay, it was a Ruddy Duck! Aimed my lens and took a couple of shots-oh no, things in the way. Aim again. Better!
Checking the results later, the first couple were out of focus. My heart dropped. Then there were some more that were in focus. It sure gives me a lift to spot and capture the first images of this duck every year. Some of you may remember this was the duck that got me hooked on birding and I regularly went out with a friend, now passed, searching for our first look every spring.
He is a small duck but more than makes up for it with his machismo. When he got close to the Coot, his tail rose and he sputtered, which shook his whole body. At this pond there seems to be no mate but maybe she is nesting out of sight.
Shot in the late afternoon with a hand held camera.With so many patterns it is easy for the camera to go out of focus.
For all the hassles caused by the Canada Geese they seem to warm people’s hearts at this time of year. Twice this week. they have made the news as either police or firemen helped them across busy roads. The one that I heard about today stopped traffic on the Yellowhead Trail, a freeway that crosses the north part of the city. Police were called and the officer had a big smile on his face as he cleared the way for a mother goose and her goslings as they crossed the road. He told the reporter that no one cussed or honked their horns during rush hour but took it in stride.The news report said they “were taken into custody” and re-released in a safer area.
I am keeping my eye on this nesting mother in a natural area as her nest gets bigger as she adds reeds and feathers.
In a small lake in northern Edmonton there are a few pair of red-necked grebes and you know there is going to be trouble when one couple comes closer to another. One bird will attack the other male and they will have quite vicious fights while the apparent females watch. Very noisy and very spectacular. Interestingly, the couple will go right back to their mating displays which is quite beautiful, as their crests and their facial discs raise up but without the wing-raising or extreme biting.
First is a scenario of a fight as one couple gets into another couple’s territory, at least this is my interpretation. Please feel free to correct me.Here is a couple with another single separating from his mate to challenge the territory.
The boys go at it while the females are very vocal as well, watching from the sidelines.They don’t just raise their wings, but bite each other.
It was gripping action to say the least and I was happy that my camera was on fast shutter setting and I was on a hill just above them so got these great shots. There were times one would have hold of the other’s neck and drag it under the water and I was wondering if they were breeding, but no it was a fight.