Painting is just another way of keeping a diary ~Pablo Picasso

Sunday, August 31, 2014


There's a birthday at our house today, 
so Anna and I 
headed down the road with a bucket 
and picked some blackberries...

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Kite Festival Reflection

Another one of my more abstract takes on the Long Beach Kite Festival last weekend.  I love how the tide water sits on the sand and creates such a strong reflection at beaches in Washington (and Oregon), and I was hoping to recreate a kite-flying scene by including the reflection of a person.  Not many people were walking by, unfortunately, but I got several of this guy.  Actually, having a fixed idea of a particular shot I want is always a bad thing for me. The actual conditions are always different than what I imagined, and I always spend too long looking for the shot anyway.  In this case, I gave up early and moved on; working at a 180 degree angle to the shoreline produced a blurrier reflection than I was hoping for.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Chasing the Tide

This little boy was so cute playing along the shoreline in Long Beach last weekend.  He was scared of the tide line, but kept approaching and then racing away as each little wave moved up the shore.  I really wish I didn't compose this shot with him leaving the frame like that, but I just don't have a photojournalist sensibility; so I had framed him in exactly the right spot to not move, but I wasn't prepared for him to run back up the beach.  Why?  Lack of experience photographing people, I suppose.  Anyway, such a terrific reflection in the Washington sand as the tide recedes!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Mouth of the Columbia

From the Washington side, and just before we crossed the bridge into Oregon.  Bill was driving when I took this shot.  I wish I'd asked him to stop because it's a little blurry, but at the time I was just playing around.  I liked the old pier silhouette, and the fishing boats in the distance. I'm not sure what bridge is behind the boats, but it doesn't look like the Astoria Bridge to me at all.  That is Astoria, Oregon on the far shore, so it must be a smaller bridge there, which I'll have to take note of next time I visit.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Kite Tails

For all my complaining about the foggy conditions at the Long Beach Kite Festival on Saturday, thick fog does make for some interesting photographic opportunities.  Especially when there are bright colors involved.  I'm always amazed by how vibrant color appears when they are closer to the camera and out of the fog.  And I just loved watching the wave patterns made by these kite tails!  Plus I love going to the beach no matter what the weather, so I kite festival is a fun opportunity to explore the shoreline. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Marine Layer

What is it about us and kite festivals that causes a marine layer of fog to roll in just as we arrive?  We made a quick trip out to Long Beach, Washington over the weekend to enjoy the kite festival there, but it turned foggy just as we arrived.  And as we were heading out of town I saw the sky beginning to clear.  Oh well, just how it goes.  And I've spent the last few days getting a child settled at college, so it's been a busy week here!  Definitely taking it easy today, and spending some time organizing photos (now that I don't have to share the computer!) 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Summertime on Trillium Lake

I couldn't help but photograph the reed reflections during our hike around Trillium Lake. All the kayakers and paddle boarders made an interesting wake for the reflection!
Linking to Weekend Reflections

Thursday, August 21, 2014

River's Edge

Ok, this is my final photo post from the Little Zigzag Falls hike. Tomorrow I'm moving on...

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Heading Upstream

Here's a slightly broader view of Zigzag River leading up to the falls. It was such a small and gentle river (our dog Clover hopped around in the river along the hike; it's much too shallow for swimming), and yet it moves with enough force to have patches of whitewater throughout. In yesterday's post I had a question about photographing moving water that I figured would be good to answer in today's post. To capture the blurry motion of the water, you needs two things: 1. A tripod or method of keeping your camera perfectly still, such as propping it on a log, and 2. The ability to adjust your shutter speed.  If your camera has the letter "S" on the dial, you can set shutter priority. With the dial set to "S", adjust the shutter speed to somewhere between 1-3 seconds. It might look like 1" or 2.5" etc. you can play around with this setting and see what you like, but I think somewhere in this range gives a nice sense of motion.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


Another great hike near Mt. Hood is the Little Zigzag Falls hike.  It's just a half mile to the falls, no elevation change, and the entire walk on a carpet of soft pine needles next to the rushing Zigzag River.  These snags are thick throughout the hike, and often form a bridge across the river and back.  This scene happened to be my favorite, but I might post another shot from this hike (since I took so many photos here!)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Mt. Hood at Trillium Lake

We had a nice getaway weekend, camping near Mt. Hood. This is the mountain most easily visible from where we live, but I didn't realize how close it actually is to us. Definitely an easy day trip, although the camping was fun, and the weather was perfect. I also didn't realize how much there is to do up here! We initially planned to hike Mirror Lake, but the ranger advised against it, saying that on summer weekend we'd be hiking with half of Portland. I have to say though, that the other half of Portland might have been here at Trillium Lake. It was an easy two mile hike around the lake, handicap accessible the whole way (although portions do the boardwalk could use a little repair!), and the lake was full of kayakers, rafters, and paddle-boarders. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Water Irony

I was so surprised to see this truck full of bottled water during our visit to Logan Pass in Glacier National Park last month.  The irony of providing bottled water in the midst of some of the purest water on the planet was not lost on me.  I asked the rangers about this, and it turns out that we happened to visit during a two week interval when the park's water tank was receiving maintenance.  So...we missed out on the mountain fresh water while we were there.
Linking to Weekend Reflection

Thursday, August 14, 2014


A tiny little house with a very big view in Flathead Valley, Montana.
If you start to feel cooped up inside, looks like lots of room to roam outdoors.
Linking to Thursday's Good Fences at Run*A*Round Ranch.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


I thought this photo from the Clark County Fair came out sort of interesting.  The ride is a combination of swing chairs and tower. Riders sit in a chair swing which rotates in a circle while ascending and descending the tower structure.  I don't know the name of it, but it's clearly written on the sides of the tower in yellow and red letters, which blurred to a lantern-like quality because this long shutter release shot was hand held.  The wobbly handheld quality is what makes this photo interesting to me.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Red, White, and Blue

This Ferris Wheel at the Clark County Fair had such a big light show pattern, and I photographed it for so long, that I really think I could post a different Ferris Wheel abstract every day for the next month! I won't, I promise. This is my last Ferris Wheel shot (from this fair, at least!), because I really liked the red, white, and blue flag theme. I do need to update my website though, so I'm considering doing a Ferris Wheel gallery, because I have so many of these shots now.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Light Show

Of course I had fun photographing the lights at the Clark County Fair last week.  This particular Ferris Wheel had a very dynamic light display going on.  Like a kaleidoscope, each photo I took was different. (I spent way too long photographing this Ferris Wheel!)

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Clark County Fair

View of the far end of the midway just after sunset.  I have to say that there are several things I miss about the Yolo County Fair, including the free gate!  But the Clark County Fair had a very large and photographically interesting midway.  I probably could have gotten a dozen interesting compositions throughout, if I could only have frozen time for this great twilight light.  (Or if they had a free gate...then I'd go back again.  At 10 days, it's certainly the longest county fair I've seen!)

Friday, August 8, 2014

Fun House Portrait

A rare self-portrait from the fun house at our county fair.  (OK yes, I do have big feet, and long toes.)  When I was teaching in Belgium a student once told me, "Mrs. Leady, you have foot fingers!"  Still, this is a bit much.  Maybe a little like Minnie Mouse, or maybe Olive Oyl.

Olive: "I'll take a three, but sixes feel soooo goooood!"

Popeye *measures her feet with his forearm*: "Grrrr...she'll take a 12."

Linking to
Weekend Reflections.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

At the Ranch (Entrance)

This seemed to be the most common style for ranch entrances throughout Flathead Valley, Montana. I'm not sure how far back this road goes before you finally get to Chief Cliff Estates, but it looks like a pretty drive getting there!  Linking to Thursday's Good Fences.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Leaky Roof

Probably my favorite barn on our drive out of Flathead Valley in Montana.  Looks like that roof needs fixin', but on the other hand it doesn't seem all that necessary on this particular day.  It would be fun to watch the clouds pass by from inside the barn.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Car Wash

I guess this is sort of an odd photo to post, but it's the companion photo to yesterday's post about the Weeping Wall in Glacier National Park.  This is my photo of the wall on our descent, when we stopped for a brief  "car wash"; view from the passenger side window.  Also, I had a comment yesterday about this road getting icy, which reminded me to mention that this road is only open in the summer and early fall.  This year I was told it opened after the 4th of July, which is later than usual, but it depends on when the snow and ice melt up here. 

Monday, August 4, 2014

Weeping Wall

Plenty of waterfalls in Glacier National Park. As you near Logan Pass on the Going to the Sun Road, one interesting waterfall is called the Weeping Wall.  The water leaks out from the rocky wall on one of the narrower sections of the road over about a 50 foot span.  And in fact, the bottom edge of the picture is the outside edge of the road for the downhill traffic.  There were so many places along this road where scenic turnouts have been built, but for some reason, not in front of the weeping wall, so we stopped just long enough to take a quick photo before heading up to the pass. 

Friday, August 1, 2014

McDonald Creek

All the creeks and rivers we saw in Glacier National Park were this beautiful shade of turquoise that seems to accompany high altitude snow melt in summertime. I really liked the combination of the turquoise with the red rocks.  Too bad I couldn't see this river, which paralleled our drive, on the way into the park when it would have been shaded.  I only realized it was there on our drive out, and by then most of the river was in bright sunlight and really hard to photograph.  I found this one shady spot, which I've photographed here because it was kind of interesting, but I have to say there were so many other places to photograph that I'll just have to save for another trip.