The weather changes a lot all the time here in Alberta but in spring the changes from cold to warm, warm to cold ,make for interesting photo opportunities. This is what I saw on my walk the other day, mostly a larger view. Next post will feature more intimate views.
Just out of curiosity I went to Hawrelak Park to see if the geese have moved onto the pond. Well, they are there but they are on top of the ice – this is the first year that I have seen ice on the pond so late in the season.
At least the snow is leaving the grassy areas and there is still the large puddle for them to swim in.We are expecting more snow but it probably won’t be staying. Sigh, we have had 7 months of snow. That’s too much even for us Canucks.
Recently I have been to a showing at a friend’s of 12 photos each by 12 people who went on the trip to Abraham lake last month. It was great to see the variety of photos that we took . I had taken mine and taken some of the colour out of them so went back to my computer and , as I say,” jazzed them up”. The thinking behind this is to enhance the contrast between reflected light and darker areas to show off these features because this is why I was attracted to the subject to begin with. Some of it is just playing around. I will show the “before” and “after”, tell me what you think. i changed the exposure and sometimes the temperature.
This festival takes place during the long weekend in February. The Monday was named “Family Day” by a previous premier of Alberta, Don Getty, and it is a great time for festival when the winter seems like it has been around for a long time and it is good to get outdoors and enjoy the season.There are so many things to do in winter and with the family and I really like this festival. There is speed-skating and snow-showing,cross-country skiing, and all the supplies are here for free for people to try. I brought my own skies one day and went around the park-it was good to get the exercise and fresh air tinted by the smell of the smoke, horses and food.
There was a blacksmith demonstrating how he did his craft of forging, story telling by actors in costume, dog-sledding, drumming by first nations peoples in a tipi, hay rides, a marathon skate, a triathlon and bannock and hot chocolate and other goodies.The main feature was skating both by athletes and for all members of the family.
I watched the figure skating demonstrations by a local club. That was a challenge to get action shots without people walking or skating into the line of view.
Then I went to the Story Village and met Red Riding Hood.
Then I saw this crooked old house with chicken feet made out of snow.
I walked around the corner and met a woman who was telling a boy that he would make a good meatball. he looked at me with big round eyes and told me what she said.We joked a bit and he stayed close to his mother at least for a while. I didn’t think to ask but wondered if she was the witch from the Hansel and Gretel story.
Next is the forger. This is a dying art and good to see someone taking it on. I looked through his albums and he does some good work. I was attracted to the fire with all the pinchers and things needed for the trade.
And dogs and horses follow.
It was a popular event-about 43,000 people showed up for the fun. I will do another post tomorrow and feature a few of the snow sculptures. Have a good day!
Athabasca Falls is a 35 minute drive south of the town of Jasper on highway 93, otherwise known as the Icefields parkway in Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada. It was icy but I had cleats on and decided what I could and could not handle. I did avoid going up some icy snow-filled stairways that were short but steep, but used my zoom lens to get some close-up shots of the falls where the ice had melted and I could see water…
Isn’t it amazing how many changes the environment can go through in one week? I see the obvious with the change in the weather, from one snowfall to another thaw but how many changes go on beneath the surface, under the ground, what may be getting ready to grow, the changes in behaviour of the animals and birds? I wonder how many changes I have gone through in a week, both the obvious as well as the stirrings underneath the surface?
I was trying to find things , objects, shapes whatever, that caught my eye after last week’s snowfall when I saw these icicles hanging from the railing along a walk that overlooks the river valley. I like the repetition yet there is variety in the repetition of shapes and lines. interesting distortion in the railing lines, may be a project for another day to take photos at different distances to see how the perspective changes. Good news The tech people are sending my telephotolens back to me, maybe iwill have it back next week. It has been fun to work exclusively with this one but but have missed the other for the bird shots…
I was walking beside the river today and saw no eagle but I did hear a pileated woodpecker on the opposite shore. There were ducks and blue jays and magpies but what I chose for today’s blog was the water making eddies, those little whirlpools as the current came close to the ice. I liked that and watched it for a while and liked the patterns in the ice. I was high up on a cliff and shot this at 300mm.Tint was added during development to bring out the texture.
I was thinking of ways that I could show the effects of the cold and I thought of a take-off on the red-neck jokes by Jeff Foxworthy. You know when it’s cold when…So I haven’t been too active but got a couple of photos. you know it’s cold when the smoke coming out of the stacks go horizontal rather than vertical. You know it’s cold outside when your nose hairs freeze. You it’s cold outsde when the parking lot is strewn with cords to plug in the block heaters in all the vehicles. You know it’s cold outside when AMA is so busy you have to wait up to 9 hours to get a boost or tow.Ironicly the cold weather may have had something to do with my neck getting totally out of whack. I had done some exercises that involved turning my head to each side and I over-stretched.( I know better) That, and the cold weather probably had something to do with it getting stiffer and stiffer..til I went to the hospital today to get some relief – I could barely move, chew or turn my head in any direction and was in a lot of pain.Got some meds to help me relax enough to massage myself blah blah blah…physio next week. Feel free to add some quotes about the cold.The photos aren’t that great, but you get the idea.Have a good day and and remember to practice an attitude of gratitude. Click on photo to enlarge.
Winter’s Back with a bang, it feels like a Canadian winter again.It started snowing on Saturday and the temperature dropped to -26 celsius. It’s dropping down to -30 tonight. and staying til Wednsady . ironic, by the end of the week, hopefully when it goes up to -20 we will be saying we are having a heat wave. ha, all is relative!On the weekend I attended “Ice on Whyte” an exhibition of ice and snow sculptures with guest artists from China.Ice on Whyte is partnering with the Province of Alberta to present a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the twinning of the provinces of Alberta and Heilongjiang, China, so there are exhibits at the legislature grounds as well. There are tents with live music inside.So I enjoyed the artistry and I hope you enjoy the photos .Click on them to enlarge.
I went with my friend to the lake near where she lives to take some photos of the ice at the water’s edge and combined a shot of the river with the shot of the birds-want to experiment with multi exposures and see what I can do. I am using HDR merge in my Corel Paint Shop Pro program to get the effect. After I took the picture of the pigeons I noticed the heart shape- thought that that was really a neat thing! I also played with different modes starting with the “sport” setting then changed to live view and Time Value then “Manual”.
It was a good day with a good friend and a latte to take the chill away-doesn’t get any better than that!
I have been enjoying seeing the return of the ducks to this area-as you can see we still have a lot of ice on the ponds. This pair of Common Goldeneye ducks are showing breeding display with the male tipping his head back and giving a akkk sound-rather comical. I just bought a Sigma 70-300mm telephoto lens with a macro option on the last 100 mm. No image stabilizer but getting better at it and loving the results. So nice to zoom in on my fair feathered friends.
I went to the park this week to see if the geese had arrived and yes, they are here, brave souls. I thought, “My goodness here you have flown all these thousands of miles and this is the welcome you get!” Someone, perhaps the parks people, have put out straw and there are people who have brought grain to feed them with.It is wonderful to me, despite the poop, that we can observe the nesting and hatching of the young right here in the middle of the city.
For my birthday this year I met my friend in Edson then we travelled together to Jasper National Park to go on the Maligne Canyon Ice Walk with one of the local tour operators. We hit a snow storm going to Hinton then we saw grass and sun the first time in a long time due to a very long cloudy winter. It was a little rushed for photographers using manual mode and my exposures and focus suffered some as a result.It was a great day none the less.
I thought that it would be fun to insert a few photos then saw slideshow and thought, ‘”Sure!” That sounds like fun!” Let’s see how it works…I really enjoyed studying the intricacies of this giant icicle. Perhaps this will give a better idea of the process….
I went on a spiritual retreat this past weekend and a photo-savy sister alerted me to this wonderful huge icicle that had formed from the flow from the eavestrough so I went out for fresh air and to capture these images during a break. This monstrous icicle had detached itself by the time I saw it but it still made for a great subject and I took lots of snaps at two different times: once in the darker cloudy afternoon and the second day when it was bright and sunny with rich blue sky.
Amazing sculptures of ice and snow done by teams from around the world, especially Harbin, China, our twin province. Wish they filled in those holes in the ground. I tripped into one about a foot deep and went head first to the ground.I held my camera up to protect it but my muscles are sure sore.Definitely hard on the back and shoulders.But I enjoyed the entertainment and sculptures.
1/15 second, f4 ISO 800
I have been taking lots of photos of snow when I haven’t been shoveling the stuff-sort of a reward for my efforts. I see my neighbours in the back alleys and we are wondering where we are going to put it. It is very pretty.
I went to see this frost-ridden tree after my room mate alerted me to it. The spectacular image was caused by an air vent spewing moist air outside, causing the icicles and hoar frost to form.
I took the photo early in the evening using aperture priority of 5.6 at 1/20 of a second, 800 ISO
I made some edits to make the photo darker. It was cloudy and some snow so those conditions made the light even brighter. I took this using shutter priority 1/13 sec f3.5. I see now that I adjusted the Av up 2/3-maybe wasn’t necessary. A reminder to check my histogram and do a little more thinking and looking before I take the shot…..hmmm…..would also save time erasing all those unwanted shots….
Having some difficulty today inserting a picture into the post. I am cold today- just can’t get rid of the chill. So what am I going to put into my blog? Ice, of course! I love the colour blue and for some reason had the camera set to Tungsten.Looking forward to getting outside tomorrow and going on a shooting frenzy. I have missed taking photos while I was under the weather.