This is my contribution to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Nature Animals prompt.
This is my contribution to Amy’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: My Photography Journey prompt.
I had quite a few ideas for the challenge, none of which I could build a theme around. In the end I decided to simply pick one favourite nature or landscape image from each decade I have been taking photos. Because landscapes and nature have been constant subjects during my photographic journey.
As a result it’s also partly a journey around some of the places I have lived over the years.
1970s. Trees in snow covered farmland in Hatherton, Cheshire, England. I was still in secondary (high) school when this shot was taken. Taken a mile down the side road from my parents house at the time. It was part of the portfolio that got me a place at art school. Despite having been online for nearly a quarter of a century this is the first time I have posted the full frame, uncropped version. I have always cropped to a panoramic format in the past.
1980s. Storm clouds and light beams over Loch Arkaig, Scotland. Memorable because I had spent three days shooting landscapes in almost constant rain. The rain stopped early evening of the third day and the sun started breaking through the storm clouds. This shot was published worldwide by Olympus Japan and won a national photo contest in the U.K.
1990s. An American White Pelican on Last Mountain Lake. Probably the hardest decade to pick a favourite. I moved from the U.K. to Canada and was doing a lot of nature and landscape photography. One of the most memorable moments was sitting in the water at Last Mountain Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada while a flock of American White Pelicans swam and fished around me.
2000s. Osprey with a White Sucker over Lake Huron. This decade saw me living in Ontario, Canada. For the first 8 years I lived in Southampton on the Lake Huron shoreline. I would frequently head down to the lake shore for sunrise and sunset. If I was down there for the sunrise I would often hang around looking for birds. One morning I watched this Osprey catch the fish and immediately start getting harassed by a couple of Herring Gulls. The Osprey is looking at one of them while the water still drips off the bird and the fish. This was my second year shooting digital.
2010s. A juvenile Ruby-throated Hummingbird in late summer. I was now living on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario and in 2018 did a 52 week photo project which is how this blog started. This shot didn’t make it as a weekly pick for the project but it was published in a bird calendar the following year.
2020s. A portrait of a Coneflower. One year into the 2020s and a surprisingly difficult pick. I had a few nice sunrises from the local bay and a nearby lake last summer and autumn. Which meant that I couldn’t pick a favourite because they were all too fresh in my mind. However, I spent part of the first Covid-19 lockdown photographing flowers and plants with various unusual lenses. For this Coneflower I used a fast portrait lens wide open. It’s been a favourite since I took it.
This is my contribution to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Sense of Seeing.
I started thinking about some of the species that use their sense of sight to eat. That got me thinking about some of the bird species that can see and catch fish. Here are two very different birds carrying very different fish they had caught in Lake Huron.
A Caspian Tern with a small fish in its bill flies along the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada. I’m guessing the fish is for the birds mate or young as it hadn’t swallowed it.
An Osprey carries a recently caught White Sucker towards the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada. It’s under attack from two Herring Gulls and will have to drop the fish in a few seconds.
This is my day 14 contribution to Becky’s January Squares: Light photo challenge and day two of my Flight sequence.
An Osprey with a White Sucker in flight along the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario. I was considering going with White in Flight or Sucker in Flight as the fish is a White Sucker but neither really make sense. I should also explain that sucker is the Canadian name for a lollipop.
This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: Showcase Yourself.
Having been taking photos for over 40 years I had a few ideas for the challenge and changed my plans for the post several times. Eventually I decided to pick one image from each decade.
Storm clouds and light beams over Loch Arkaig, Scotland in 1985. After 3 days of rain it stopped for a while.
Male and female American Avocets on a slough near Punnichy, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1995. I spent an hour with the birds, the only sighting of the species I have had.
An Osprey with a White Sucker on the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada in 2008. I went down to the shoreline for the sunrise and stayed for a while checking out what birds were around.
Rainbow over a barn on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada in 2017. The rain was too heavy to stop for a shot of the rainbow over some trees in their autumn colour. A quarter mile later the rain had eased off enough to stop.
This is my contribution to the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Magical.
I was thinking about the challenge and had this post mostly written in my head on Sunday evening. On Monday I started considering a completely different selection of photos before deciding to combine my ideas.
My original ideas was to detail some of the magical experiences photographing nature subjects. Then I started thinking about some of the magical landscapes and skies I have photographed.
In the end I went with a mix of nature encounters and landscapes.
Storm clouds and light beams over Loch Arkaig, Scotland.
Pond Skaters, not only can they walk on water, they also mate on the water. Taken on a garden pond in Hatherton, Cheshire, England.
An Osprey with a White Sucker on the Lake Huron shoreline, Ontario, Canada. Not only can the bird spot and catch a fish in rough water but it can then carry the fish in the most aerodynamic position.
Snow Geese on autumn migration. Taking off from a section of the Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area, Saskatchewan, Canada. This is a small part of one of the flocks in the area.
A young male Rose-breasted Grosbeak in the rain on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada last year and September in a 2019 birds calender.
Trees and their shadows, Bickerton Hill, Cheshire, England.
My last contribution to Becky’s July Squares: Blue photo challenge. Thank you Becky for a fun month of blue squares.
Day 31 and the last day of the challenge so I thought something flying off into the sunset was appropriate. So here’s a bird flying towards me shortly after sunrise and the blue is water rather than sky.
An Osprey carries a recently caught White Sucker over Lake Huron. Taken from Dominion Lookout on the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada.