jaydogblog

my life in the land down under


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Autumn Glory

Recently, over a family dinner, we were talking about photography and what to do with the photos we’d taken. Digital photography (for me) over the last 10 years+ has led to many unsorted photos being stored on my computer and rarely shared with anyone, which defeats the purpose of photographing. I want to share what I see with other people!

During the discussion we mentioned photo books, AV’s (digital slideshows) and then the subject of this blog came up. Looking back, I see the last post I published was way back in September 2013. A lot has happened since then! As I’m on leave at the moment and family birthdays gave us a good excuse for a photography outing, here is the result.

Thanks for the encouragement Bryce & Kelly, hope you like the photos.

All of the following images were taken at McLaren Falls Park at the weekend, in the company of my husband, sister and mother. It had been raining earlier in the day and there was a cold wind during our visit but we managed to dodge the showers. Other than the lovely autumn colours, the highlight of the afternoon for me was a group of warmly-dressed young women seated on the ground under a tree, sharing a picnic and videoing themselves singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to an absent friend. When we told them it was also Mum’s birthday today, they needed no encouragement to sing to her.

Happy Birthday Mum!

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McLaren Falls – main waterfall area

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McLaren Falls

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Main entrance / exit to the park

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Tangled branches

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Gingko pathway – for Yvonne

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Fallen leaves

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Almost bare but still beautiful

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Late afternoon sunlight

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Summer Flowers

I love the colourful lushness of flowering trees and plants here at this time of year. It makes me appreciate again how things grow and flower, cycling through the seasons with little or no intervention from us (we are not gardeners!). Some of the following are growing in our garden, others seen while driving around town; all photographed on the last day of 2012.

hydrangea

Hydrangea

jacaranda-01

Jacaranda & church steeple

jacaranda-02

Jacaranda

pink-silk-tree

Pink silk tree (aka Mimosa, Albizia julibrissin)

pohutukawa-01

Pohutukawa

pohutukawa-02

Pohutukawa flowers

agapanthus

Agapanthus

australian-frangipani

Australian frangipani

new-years-eve-sky

New Years Eve sky

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Signs of Spring

There hasn’t been much time for updating the blog recently. In fact I was skiving off cooking dinner to write this! My workplace has been extra-busy and short-staffed over the past few weeks, so that has been taking a fair bit of my energy.

Things are looking up though – spring is on the way! We have recently had daffodils and strongly-scented earlicheer in the house, and now have freesias flowering so couldn’t resist picking a few for a vase. Some of the flowering cherries have also been in blossom (see photos below), though ours hasn’t passed the bud stage yet. A number of tuis were busy feeding as I was photographing the blossom but I didn’t have the time or the quick reflexes to capture them on camera – I did try.

The learning curve of photography, social media and life in general continues…

…I joined Pinterest and attempted to figure out how to use it (the reaction from the other member of the household was ‘oh no, not another time waster!!’). 😉
…visited the vintage camera section on TradeMe (our Ebay equivalent) for the first time in a while, and made two purchases – more on this at a later date.
…made a movie with my Nikon D7000 showing the faulty operation of one of the aforementioned cameras, edited it in iMovie, and uploaded it to You-tube for the seller to view. I have to acknowledge this was John’s suggestion and I couldn’t have done it without his help. He suggested I might make a You-tube star someday! 😀

This last week we have been busier than usual with social events.

…our camera club annual trophy competition – we didn’t have any entries in this year, but enjoyed the evening regardless; it was a good opportunity to catch up with friends and also get to know some newer club members.
…a work colleague’s farewell dinner – we ate at a Mexican restaurant for possibly the first time (yum). Watching food programmes like MasterChef has given me an interest in trying different cuisines. Now we just need the time and money to visit all the local restaurants! 🙂
…two family birthdays and a dinner out to celebrate – Happy Birthday to Levi for last week and Bryce for yesterday.
…we found out a few days ago that my eldest nephew has just got engaged – congrats to Josh & Mandy!

Flowering Cherries #1

Flowering Cherries #2


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Christmas in July

Last weekend the weather changed, and Christmas came at our local Historic Village.

Christmas Wreath

Christmas Tree Baubles

Complete with snow…

… a brass band…

… mulled wine (or should that be ‘cider’)…

… twinkling lights…

… and a choir singing Christmas carols. There were lots of children present, but I was asked by more than one parent/grandparent not to publish photos of their children online, so I haven’t.

Somehow I missed seeing Santa Claus, but was able to photograph the reindeer. 🙂

I also used the movie function on my Nikon D7000 for the first time. I want to learn how to incorporate a short movie into an audiovisual presentation with still photos; this (aka ‘Fusion’) being the current challenge in our camera club AV group.

Christmas Lights

Night Lights

Merry Mid-Winter Christmas, everyone!


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Next Time

We made a quick trip to ‘the big city’ last weekend.  We had various things on the agenda and achieved most of them, but there wasn’t as much time as I would have liked for photography, and unfortunately the best light seemed to be when we were on the move. When the warm morning light was picking out the trees in the urban environment, I would have loved to capture some of those last autumn leaves juxtaposed against the high rise buildings, but had to make do with looking, and thinking ‘next time…’. Its hard to see things you want to capture and know you don’t have time to stop this trip (and of course they won’t be there next time – the light will be different, or it will be a different season, or you won’t be back on the same street, or that person who caught your eye has moved on, or that interesting old building will have been demolished).

It reminded me of a quote I had on my old website:

Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished
there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

On our one evening in the city we went for a brief walk as it was getting dark, to try to capture some of the atmosphere of the environment. As it was a cold Sunday evening there were only a few people on the street.

While photographing we heard sirens, and several fire engines blared their way past us. We didn’t realise until a few minutes later that they were heading in the direction of our hotel, a block or so away. Thankfully they didn’t stay around for long, so it must have been a false alarm.

Baptist Tabernacle

Seat Shadows

Fire Engine