AirToob Lightning

Tags  →  photography

“All the Colours of the Rainbow - Solar Phlox” by Claudia Shifferova, whose other work is well worth checking out

The world is horrified by the coming to pass of everything that Trump and the GOP stand for.

I can do nothing but send you flowers, and a reminder that there IS a good world to be enjoyed, unlikely as it seems right now.

Click the picture if you would like to see my best-of-the-best retrospective going all the way back to StumbleUpon days (which you can also reach by clicking the old gramophone in my banner).

It may cheer you up.

Be well.

Fine photography © by the Ukrainian photographer Alexey Argentum, whose other work
is well worth checking out

I was introduced to this photographer on the very fine pages of Reflections, who has one of my favourite blogs on the Internet and is also a fine photographer. Thanks!

“Seven Mile Milky Way, Avalon N.J.”

“Big Sur Bioluminescence”

Fine photography © by Jack Fusco, whose other work is well worth checking out

I was introduced to this photographer here on the very fine pages of Through My Eyes, one of my favourite blogs on the Internet. Thanks!

If you like this...

[Many of us miss so much through light pollution - some nice examples of what we're missing here]

A lovely image © by Ekaterina Romakina, a beautiful photographer who takes beautiful pictures of beautiful women

“A Secret Cove (Australia)” by John Neil

Another grateful snaffle from the fine pages of Jerry.

Happy New Year!

“Sunset on the Rolling Hills” in Alberta, Canada, by Dan Jurak, whose other work is well worth checking out

One of many fine portraits of India and its people by Harry Silcock (my brother-in-law and a real photographer!)

“Good Morning Damian Shan”
“The overall winner, and open award winner, in the nature/landscape category, is a shot of the Li River in Guangxi province, China. All photographs courtesy the Epson International Panoramic Photography awards.
Photograph: Jesús M. García

(Go here for large wallpaper version)

“Fleya & Poppy (night version)


Nice images © by the Polish photographer Adam Wawrzyniak (my favourite of his is still Girls Waiting for a Train)

A very nice image of some of The 12 Apostles in the Port Campbell National Park, by the Australian nature photographer and book author Steve Parish - click the image for his interesting information about the place

“Moonlight Wonderland” by Urmo Parts, a National Geographic photographer who hails from Järlepa, Raplamaa, Estonia (map link), and whose other work is well worth exploring

“Portrait of a Tree” © by Nathaniel Merz, whose other work (from his home in South Korea) is well worth checking out

Another grateful snaffle from the fine pages of Jerry.

A beautiful image by the Austrian photographer Franz Pazdera

One of many beautiful things to be found on the fine pages of Jilli. Do visit her if you haven't already!

What I particularly appreciate about her blog is the information that accompanies each image, something which is much appreciated.

“Last 2016 sunrise”

“Moonrise over Mt Baker

Some great photography by Rakan Alduaij (worth seeing full size, as is his other work)

Self-portrait by Ekaterina Romakina, a beautiful photographer who takes beautiful pictures of beautiful women

Untitled portrait by Ekaterina Romakina (found, as so many other nice things, on the fine pages of Jerry)

“Exotic Shorthair Cat Breed”, photo by © by Bryant Wong

This image appeared in The Ultimate Cat Breeds List

“Cannon Beach Ecola Point” © by William Browning, whose other work is well worth checking out

Thanks yet again, Jerry!

“Moonlight Cruise”

“Moonlight Cruise 2”

“Sunset over the Atlantic”

Some great aviation photography © by JPC Van Heijst, a professional photographer and pilot who currently flies as a Senior First Officer on Boeing 747-8 and -400 freighters. His other work is well worth checking out.

Found on the very fine pages of blacksock - thanks!.

A very nice image by Vyacheslav Palacheva - it's a little like this in the UK, right now

Thanks mairem (and Jerry)!

“Waiting for the Train” (my title), very nice work © by the Polish photographer Adam Wawrzyniak

Thanks yet again for this one to Jerry, and for all these other treasures that I have gratefully snaffled from him over the years.

“Hortensia” © by the Romanian photographer Radu Carp, whose other work is well worth exploring

(another treasure found on Jerry's fine pages)

If you like this, you will probably love these portfolios from Radu, as well as several others:

[Leaves and Colour]

“Abstract | Autumn Watercolors” © by lighttrouve (Russell Tomlin)

One of many fine examples of his work, which include some wonderful landscapes and abstract photography.

“Out early” (free translation) © by Sergey Betz, whose other work is well worth checking out
(includes some very nice artistic nudes)

If you like this...

[Try clicking the urbanscape or mist tags... just a suggestion!]

“Upper” by Andrey Korotich, who produces some nice mood portraits, e.g. Reflection in a Mirror

I have seen this popular photo-art image used in several YouTube videos - nice to have finally found the author!

“Solar” © by Sergey Betz, whose other work is well worth checking out (includes some very nice artistic nudes)

Untitled photo © by Olesya Pominova - another find on the fine pages of Jerzee55sst (Jerry)

(Click his tag to see lots more of his good stuff that I have gratefully snaffled over the years)

“All the Colours of the Rainbow - Solar Phlox” by Claudia Shifferova, whose other work is well worth checking out

Found on the very nice pages of Raktazole (Danièla)

If you like this...

[The Still Life category on]
[... and my still-life tag]

“The Innermost House Foundation is a non-profit organization devoted to exploring the transcendental dimension of American life expressed by Thomas Jefferson in his writings, preached by Ralph Waldo Emerson, practiced by Henry David Thoreau at Walden Pond and lived by Diana Lorence at Innermost House.”

What started out for me as the discovery of a pretty picture led me to an unexpected wealth of information (and a whole lot of other beautiful images, e.g. these) that I had never come across before. If you follow the links (as I know most people won't have time to do) you can spend hours here...

Yet another great share by overthetrail - thanks, Sandy!

“Morning Stillness” © by lighttrouve (Russell Tomlin) - one of many fine examples of his work, which include some wonderful landscapes and abstract photography

Shadows in the mist - September 28th, 2015

High pressure finally building after a long gloomy summer, leading to chilly clear mornings which started misty. I took this while walking the dog - less than 800 yards away the sun was shining brightly on leaves turning brilliant fall colours, worthy of Vermont!

If you like this...

[Beautiful autumn - Havant and the South Downs, October 2012]

A very nice image by the Lithuanian photographer Olegas Kurasovas, whose other work is well worth exploring

Also available in high-res as desktop wallpaper (click the wallpaper tag for more of those)

First touch of autumn - August 17th, 2015

A chilly start to a beautiful day on our meadow. It was also the first time that I had to use manual focus on my camera, which couldn't “see” this one!

“Lost in Thought”

“Little Indians”

Wonderful photography by Ellen-OW (Eleonore Swierczyna), whose full portfolio is well worth checking out

I found this (as so many other good things, click her tag!) on the fine pages of Toetie.

Margarita Kareva from the Russian city of Ekaterinburg is a wedding photographer making magical photos of women. [Margarita] is all grown up, but fairytales still inspire her everyday job as a fantasy photographer...”

A photographer whose other work is well worth exploring, found on the beautiful and interesting pages of Ladygray.

Night view of one of the Dutch windmills at Kinderdijk (from Wikimedia Commons, click image for source)

If you like this...

[“Windmills of your Mind”]

“Sunset Tree” © by Vanda Ralevska, whose other work is well worth checking out

Mapungubwe Interpretation Centre at Mapungubwe National Park in Limpopo, South Africa. The plan for this visitor center, designed by Peter Rich Architects, began with a motif etched on stones uncovered at the former location of a South African trading civilization. Its free-form vaults were built with a 600-year-old construction technique that is both economically and environmentally responsible: Local laborers made the 200,000 pressed soil tiles as part of a poverty relief program. Though it’s inspired by the past, the center’s design is at home in the 21st century, with modern geometric forms that create a new topography in the ancient setting. Photo by Obie Oberholzer.”

“Marina”, a beautiful portrait © by Sergey Spoyalov - thanks, Lex!

“Under the Vaulted Sky” © by Vanda Ralevska, whose other work is well worth checking out

Untitled picture © Jean-Michel Priaux, a photographer who transforms landscapes into art with expert photomanipulation.
Click the image for many examples of his work (highly recommended).

Thanks once again to Chaotiqual for this one!

“Swan Lake”, a lovely image by Elena Shovkoplyas, whose other work is well worth exploring

27 Kids reading “Little Humans” by Brandon Stanton (warning: it may crack you up)

Thanks again to my friend overthetrail (Sandy) for this one! (She hasn't posted here much for a while, but click her overthetrail tag to see some really nice stuff that she has sent my way over the years.)

“Surrounded by the Italian Alps, Funes is blanketed by a layer of crystal white snow every winter.”    —photographer: ewitsoe (exceptionally recommended)

Shirakawa-go is a small, traditional village known for its incredibly steep roofs that were made to withstand some of the heaviest snowfall in the world.”    —photographer: Miyamoto Y

Vyborg lies on the border between Russia and Finland and is surrounded by the Saimaa Canal, which freezes over in winter. From the castle tower, the entire town is visible in its snow-capped beauty.”    —photographer: EGRA

This page is unusual in crediting, and linking to, the sources of all of its photos, including the three shown here - sources that are well worth following up!

Many thanks (again) to Renaissance2007 (Julian) for this find.

“Synevir” by the digital artist Danapra (Mykhailova Olesya)

The artist credits Dmitry Peretrutov for the photo, which was used in the film poster for the first Ukrainian 3D horror movie “Synevir” (you can watch the trailer, should you feel so inclined!). I am not sure how the work was split between Danapra and Dmitry - does anyone know?

I found this when revisiting Danapra's Veranda, an absolutely gorgeous picture to chase away those winter blues, which I posted here a long time ago. I see that “D. Peretrutov” is alo credited with the photo on that one, so maybe these two people are partners, or even alter egos?

Synevir (or Synevyr), BTW, I discovered is the largest lake in the Carpathian mountains of Ukraine.

“The other love of my life”, a beautiful portrait © by our very own 007Sue (Susan Brett)

Black raspberry vine in Oregon, beautifully photographed by my friend overthetrail (Sandy)

Sandy (a friend from Stumbler days) doesn't post here very much nowadays, but I have had so much good stuff from her over the years. Click her tag above for some treasures from the past.

“Facebook Update” © by the wildlife photographer Marsel van Oosten, whose other work (as that of other photographers featured on the page) is well worth checking out.

Another great share from Gatorindo (David) (I really recommend clicking his tag above, as well as visiting his pages).

“Love Song” © by Ivan Lee, whose other work is well worth checking out

Gratefully snaffled from Lexlu4's great pages - thanks, Lex!

This great photo of one of the Dutch windmills at Kinderdijk (from Wikimedia Commons, click image for source) reminded me of Noel Harrison's version of Michel Legrand's song "Windmills of Your Mind" (“Les Moulins de Mon Coeur”) that appeared in the original 1968 version of The Thomas Crown Affair.

It wasn't a great movie, I have to say, but it had much to enjoy, notably the sexual chemistry between Steve McQueen and Faye Dunaway (including their famously erotic chess game).

If you'd like a nostalgia trip to the 60's, you can watch the movie's glider sequence, which was accompanied by an abridged version of Noel Harrison's song, here (or click the image to the right).

Noel Harrison performs the complete version of his song here.

BTW: The girlfriend watching Thomas Crown gliding is played by the beautiful Dutch fashion model Astrid Heeren (a purely decorative role in this movie).

In searching for videos of Michel Legrand's original, I also came across this very nice video of the instrumental version.

In complete contrast...

Later on, the Muppets produced a gloriously funny interpretation of the same song, which anyone who has suffered from seriously jangled nerves (or is only “calm on the outside”) can relate to... you can watch that here (or click the image to the left).


If you like this...

[Night photo of the Dutch windmills at Kinderdijk]
[Great music and style from the 60's: Claude Lelouch's film Un Homme et une Femme, with music by Francis Lai]

“In Silence” by REgiNA (whose other work is well worth checking out)

“Imagine” by Nikki Harrison

Autumnal colours in a rather beautiful form - thanks, Lexlu4 (Lex)!

Hockley Valley

“Morning on the Farm”

“Jenne Farm”

Beautiful images of autumn (or fall) in Canada, © by Magda Bognar

From the page Fall or autumn: the Canadian dilemma:

If you like this...

[Autumn and winter images by Anka Zhuravleva]

Images © Stian Klo

Stian is a landscape photographer from Norway who grew up in Vesterålen and is now based in Harstad - two places that I would like to visit!

Stian's other work is well worth checking out.

Anothersusan writes:

The mysterious stone figures known as inuksuit can be found throughout the circumpolar world. Inukshuk, the singular of inuksuit, means "in the likeness of a human" in the Inuit language. They are monuments made of unworked stones that are used by the Inuit for communication and survival. The traditional meaning of the inukshuk is "Someone was here" or "You are on the right path."

This is an example of her own amazing photography, and is only part of what you will find if you click the image to visit her original post.

A visit to Susan's site is highly recommended!

"Spring Blossoms II" (2011) by Catherine Nelson

Click the image to see a complete slideshow (worth viewing full screen)

From the page:

If you like this...

[More images of Catherine's work]

It's always nice to wake up to Jim's North Carolina pics on Facebook, especially when the weather is not so good over here!

This spectacular HD video was filmed over the course of 7 days at El Teide (El Pico del Teide), Spain’s highest mountain, located in Tenerife in the Canary Islands, one of the best places in the world to photograph stars.

This video is by Terje Sørgjerd, whose other work (such as this collection of his time lapse photography) is well worth checking out.

If you like this...

[Try the time lapse photography tag!]

Waddesdon Manor

Waddesdon Manor (home of the Rothschilds, now a National Trust property open to the public) is a magical place at Christmas... I took this photo on November 13th, when the Christmas events had just started.

It's the inside of the house that is really worth visiting at Christmas, and this year they also had a series of outdoor light sculptures by Bruce Munro called Winter Light.

If you like this...

[Visit to Waddesdon Manor, December 2009]

This was 8th December outside my window... After the big storm a few days earlier which flooded homes on the east coast high pressure settled in, and we had some really nice sunsets. But today another storm is moving in from the south west (lowest pressure in 65 years in the depression, almost the lowest ever recorded). It's very windy outside!

A sample of the beautiful photography of Anna Ådén, a fine art and freelance portrait photographer living in Umeå, northern Sweden (click each image for the various sources)

I found this photographer here on the beautiful pages of Annie Hall, and I was introduced to Annie (as to so many beautiful things and people) by ensemble5. A visit to both of these Categorians is highly recommended.

If you like this...

[Try clicking the winter or sweden tags, among others...]

A lovely image © by the multi-talented Vietnamese photographer and artist Duong Quoc Dinh,
whose other work is well worth checking out

Gratefully snaffled from Jerzee55sst (Jerry), on whose fine pages you can find his own poetry and many other beautiful things.

A beautiful portrait © by the multi-talented Vietnamese photographer and artist Duong Quoc Dinh,
whose other work is well worth checking out

If you like this...

["A Family Album Portrait" by Nadya Kulagina]

Maligne Lake (I learn from Wikipedia) is a lake in Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada. It is famed for the colour of its water, the surrounding peaks, the three glaciers visible from the lake and Spirit Island, one of the most photographed locations in the world.

I've just added it to my bucket list!

Click the photo (donated to Wikimedia Commons by Christian Abend) for a desktop wallpaper sized image.

Sorrento Peninsula and Amalfi Coast, Italy, September 2013

My photo of the sailing cruise ship Club Med 2 lying off Sorrento, with Vesuvius in the background

Start of a beautiful day in late September, leaving Sorrento for Capri

Click either picture, or go here, if you would like to see my photoblog of our recent trip to the Sorrento Peninsula and Amalfi Coast (you can skip the photoblog if you click the >> below)

"Eagle's flight", a White-Tailed Eagle in the Czech-Moravian Highlands, © by the Czech photographer Zdenek Ondrasek

One of many treasures to be found on the fine pages of Toetie.

"Sunset on the gums" by Natalia Kolyadyuk (a wildlife and nature photographer whose other work is well worth checking out)

If you like this...

["Girlfriends", beautiful picture of dog and horse, by Natalia Kolyadyuk]

"Girlfriends" by Natalia Kolyadyuk (a wildlife and nature photographer whose other work is well worth checking out)

"Dog Heart" (probably not a good translation) by Elena Shovkoplyas, whose other work is well worth looking at

I have seen this wonderful picture before, but unfortunately only in posts that were linked to the original image (which doesn't identify the author), rather than being linked to the web page containing the image (which does identify the author). It took me several hours to track down the photographer, using every search technique I could think of.

Eventually, by going through page after page of Children's World, one of my favourite categories on, I came across a photo that seemed to have the same style as the one I was looking for. Unlike many previous such guesses, I was lucky this time!

The time wasn't wasted - I came across a lot of other good stuff in the search, not least all the other good work that Elena Shovkoplyas has done.

(BTW, if you didn't know already: the Chrome browser is great for viewing pages in foreign languages, since it has an automatic translation facility.)

“Monkeys in Pashupatinath - the largest Hindu temple complex, located on either side of the Bagmati river on the eastern outskirts of Kathmandu, capital of Nepal.

“Pashupatinath is considered the most important temple of Shiva in the world... Pashupati is an incarnation of the Hindu Lord Shiva as "Lord of animals", so the monkeys feel very comfortable with this complex of temples, and live their own lives paying virtually no attention to the pilgrims coming here.

“In the background you can make out the outlines of one of the 108 temples of Shiva Lingam, located in the temple complex...”

—adapted from an automatic translation of information provided by the photographer, Anton Yankovoy (whose other work is well worth checking out) and Wikipedia

Since 2010, the French photographer Thierry Cohen has been developing images that show us what major cities of the world would be like if there were no light pollution.

More images and details about his technique and philosophy will be found here.

A beautiful untitled portrait by Anna Gusarova

(BTW, if you didn't know already: the Chrome browser is great for viewing pages in foreign languages, since it has an automatic translation facility.)

If you like this...

[All portraits from this site, sorted by popularity]
[Ginger-Snap's fine collection of redheads]

"Marusya" by Bozhena Puchko, whose other work is well worth checking out

Thanks to Jerzee55sst (Jerry) for this one!

Devon and Somerset (Knightshayes Court and Cothay Manor) April 2013

A beautiful willow sculpture in the gardens of Knightshayes Court, near Tiverton, Devon

Click the picture if you would like to see some posts about our recent visit to Devon and Somerset

If you are interested, here are the direct links:

[Knightshayes Court, National Trust gardens, Devon]
[Cothay Manor, privately owned with beautiful gardens, Somerset]

An onlooker witnesses the annular solar eclipse as the sun sets in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on May 20, 2012.
Photographed by Colleen Pinski of Peyton, Colorado, for the the Natural World category. (©

Thanks to my friend Overthetrail for this one!

“We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle...

“I want to grow old without facelifts. I want to have the courage to be loyal to the face I have made...

“Success makes so many people hate you. I wish it wasn't that way. It would be wonderful to enjoy success without seeing envy in the eyes of those around you.”

The timelessly beautiful Marilyn Monroe, photographed by Carl Perutz

Thanks to my friend Sandy for this one!

Rain forest (author uncertain) - one of a nice set of rain photos

"Old Friends", 5th December 2012

A group of gravestones in the old cemetery in a nearby meadow. The inscriptions are almost faded - all I know from the dates is that they lived their whole lives during the reign of Queen Victoria

A beautiful fox picture (author unknown), one of a set shared by Elegantlady - thanks, Roberta!

It's been raining here for what seems like forever... I wish it would snow!

And if by any chance you haven't seen it already, don't miss...

[The funniest, coolest Christmas video ever]

"Aasleagh waterfall" (County Mayo, Ireland) by Ulrich Greger

An example of many fine photographs of places and people all around the world that can be found on - a great photographic travel site linked to Google maps, well worth exploring.

Thanks, Elegantlady (Roberta)!

[All images from (paged!)]

"Shorelines", one of many beautiful photographs © by our very own Fourteenth, whose art blog is well worth visiting

Havant and the South Downs, October 2012

A much-photographed scene that I took near the Royal Oak at Havant (near Portsmouth), a favourite pub of ours

Click the picture if you would like to see a post about our recent visit to Havant and the South Downs

"Sweet Dawn" by Diane Varner - from her Daily Walks along the Northern California coastline and mountain trails
(seascapes, landscapes, insects, animals, found objects and macro images)

One of many fine things to be found on the pages of batchbatcharak.

Autumn is here again... this happened suddenly to just a few trees near us, a few nights ago (it's been chilly)

[Autumn is one of my favourite seasons... and tags]

Dartmouth, South Devon, Sept/Oct 2012

View of Kingswear (left) and Dartmouth castle (right, in the distance) from near the Bayards Cove Inn, Dartmouth

Click the picture if you would like to see some posts about our recent visit to South Devon

If you are interested, here are the direct links:

[Dartmouth, boat trip to Totnes, local walks and steam railway trip to Paignton]
[Visit to Greenway, Agatha Christie's holiday home above the river Dart]

Majorca, September 2012

Click the picture if you would like to see a post about our recent visit to the south-west coast of Majorca

"Monet’s Water Garden in the Rain", photographed at Giverny by Robert Mack

"Desert Bloom", nice desktop wallpaper obtained from here

"Garden in the Rain - Paris" © by Ida Macondo

"Jurassic View - The Quiraing, Skye, Scotland" © by Ian Cameron

Thanks, johnshaven (Alison)!

[ If you like this, you might like some of the tags at the top of this post... ]

"Beinn a' Bheithir" by the superb landscape photographer John Parminter (needs to be seen full size)

Thanks to Lexlu4 (Lex) (who has some great landscapes on his pages) for this one.

"Evening Leaves in vilnius" © by Daumantas Kazdailis.

One of the photographic compositions featured on the web site of the Lithuanian company D&I Graphic Design and Photography.

If you delve into this site you will find some excellent photography (including annotated examples of HDR photography) in high resolution.

"Drive" by the Estonian photographer Pavel Reband

This comes from a nice collection of black & white photography, added to the Library by anitab (Ani) (whose pages are well worth visiting).

Some beautiful images © by the Ukrainian photographer Jaroslav Monchak, whom I was introduced to (as to so much other good stuff) by aldchronicle56 (Allan)

[For more good stuff that Allan has sent my way, click his tag at the top of this post...]

The author, Troy Lim, writes:

"This was taken in December 2010 during my first trip to Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. It took me four days, waiting in the cold weather an hour before sunrise. On the fourth day, everything fell together. The gorgeous sunrise, wind direction, and snow geese all took off right in front of my lens. "

"Rainy Days" by the Melbourne-based photographer Amy Weiss

Found on the always-beautiful pages of ensemble5.

The author, James Haskins, writes:

"This bear had been fishing in the river on this morning. It climbed onto the bank and laid down in the grass. This photo was taken about an hour after sunrise just as the sun was starting to clear the trees. The temperature was near the dew point and steam was rising off its body. It didn’t seem at all concerned by the fishermen in the river or the photographer on the bank."

If you like this...

["Bear Feet" by Bill Lockhart - Grizzlies snoozing in the sun]

A shot of one of the many thermal pools in Yellowstone National Park © by Danielle Goldstein (available as desktop wallpaper)

"White Pocket, Arizona" by Richard Barnes (worth seeing full size, and worth checking out Richard's other work)

One of many great landscapes to be found on the pages of lexlu4 - thanks, Lex!

[If you're looking for more desktop wallpaper, click the wallpaper tag above...]

"Camels In The desert Night" © by Amyyy (Waxflower), who for some reason describes herself as a "beginner photographer" - IMO there is considerable evidence to the contrary!

Fine photography (and great desktop wallpaper) by Kristin Repsher, a Texas gal living in Brisbane, Australia, whose other work is well worth checking out

"Beauty of November" by the Russian photographer Ksenia Sinyavina, whose other work is well worth checking out

[Ksenia's home page]

We have had very variable weather in England. This was our communal garden on January 14th, after a spell of very windy weather brought down large branches from many old trees in our area. These branches were weakened by the wind in the night but actually fell in the morning when the wind had all but died down - glad I wasn't walking underneath!

Anyway, this was a cold, misty, frosty morning some time after this happened, on of the last nice days for quite a while... since then snow has come and gone, with air from Russia and temperatures down to 10 below freezing, and we're now having the mild Atlantic airstream again.

(You can probably tell that I'm way behind in my blogging... personal things to take care of.)

If you like this...

[More winter pics from the previous year...]

"Autumn Frost", a very fine photograph (which needs to be seen full size) by Alex Ugalnikov, whose other work is well worth checking out

Found on the excellent pages of Jerzee55sst (Jerry).


"thROUgh tHe aRCh" (taken in Arezzo, Tuscany) by the Italian photographer David Butali, whose other work is well worth checking out

One of many treasures to be found on the wonderful pages of hhj.

Wonderful time-lapse photography of the San Francisco Bay Area by Simon Cristen

One of several time-lapse videos found here

Thanks to aldchronicle56 (Allan) for another of his many generous and excellent shares.

I am pleased to report that Allan is now here on Categorian, with a slightly different username! (I shall keep the old tag name to avoid confusion.)

"Myrtle Beach Sunrise"

Wishing everyone a happy, prosperous and peaceful New Year...

"Daybreak - The Sea" by our very own Fourteenth

This picture (taken outisde the gates of Valletta) is from my photoblog of a trip to Malta in April 2010, which was made extra interesting by a certain Icelandic volcano and the arrival of the Pope right on our doorstep!

Click the image or go here if you would like to see the pictures of that trip.

A figure from Antony Gormley's "Another Place" welcomes one of the Tall Ships to Merseyside as it sails past the Burbo Bank windfarm on the approach to the Port of Liverpool on July 18, 2008, Liverpool, England. (Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Volvo Ocean Race yacht Puma arrives off Cape Town, South Africa in second place during the first stage of the 2008-2009 Volvo Ocean Race November 2, 2008. (REUTERS/Mike Hutchings)

Two of many stunning photos on this page. Thanks to aldchronicle56 (Allan) for another of his great shares (the previous post below is from another one sent to me by Allan).

Dusk at the Bristol Central Library which celebrates its centenary in 2008. Photography by *Firefox

Library Parabola is the reading room of the British Library and is said to be the birthplace of the Communist Manifesto. Photography by Sifter

University of Delft, The Netherlands, designed by the Mecanoo architects, Delft. Photography by Rutger Spoelstra

Library of the Dutch Parliament, The Hague, conserving all of the words spoken and written there.
Photography by Menno Manheim

Many more on the page...

Sean Connery, photographed in 2003 by Albert Watson
(whose portrait of Steve Jobs replaced Apple's homepage when Jobs died)

Found on Cyrion's great pages.

"The Great Marquess" 61994 Heads South by Ian Charters

Ian is well worth visiting if you like the outdoors - don't miss his beautiful photos of the English Lake District, Scotland and the Canadian Rockies

"Count of Tuscany" © by the Italian photographer Mauro Tronto

(If you click the image above, and then click the image that you find when you get there, you will follow a trail of awesome landscape photos by different authors, and Mauro's own work is well worth checking out)

© by Lelik Francuz

The best way of curing insomnia that I know!

Thanks to (of course) johnshaven (Alison) for this one.

"The Mowers" by Duru, whose other work is well worth checking out

"Large Puddle on Sherer's Hill" © by Kathleen Connally - thanks to alice44 for this one

Wonderful photography © by the Russian photographer and artist Anka Zhuravleva

I found Anka here on the beautiful pages of SansMots.

Watkins Glen State Park, New York by Schmidt Family
(HDR image from a single RAW file)

There are a very large number of photos of this scene to be found on the Internet - this is the best that I have found so far.

It took a while to track it down (using Google Image Search's brilliant "Similar" facility combined with its advanced search option for "tall" orientation and a sharp-eyed spouse), because as so often happens it has been posted previously without credit to the author.

Anyway, I am glad to have found the original - and the other work of the author(s) is well worth checking out.

If you like this...

[More examples of HDR photographs from a single RAW file]

Huge number of examples of HDR from a single RAW file.

"The Autumn Forest" by Duru, whose other work is well worth checking out

Thanks to Jerzee55sst (Jerry) for this one.

"Winter morning", one of many fine works © by the Croatian photographer Boris Frkovic
(who also has his own web site here)

"Snow and Mist at Corfe Castle" by Andy Farrer, whose other work is well worth exploring

Corfe Castle is located on the Isle of Purbeck (actually a peninsula, not a true island) in Dorset, England.

[More from Dorset or England if you click the tags]


Péruwelz ("Stone-water") is a very ancient municipality in the Walloon (French-speaking) Region of Belgium. It is built on the river Verne Noire (from Celtic Vernos, "a brook lined with alders") - more on the location here.

This nice image is another winner of one of's frequent photography theme contests, many of which are open to photographers of all abilities.

A very nice blog from Dom, in which she gives her "random thoughts on beauty, dining, travel and living in the PRC". Thanks, Catcaley (click her tag above to see much other good stuff that she has sent my way).

Canadian artist Peter Lewis's "Splash" illuminates a waterfall over Kingsgate footbridge in Durham, northern England

A 'Les Voyageurs' sculpture, part of a series of illuminated sculptures by French artist Cédric Le Borgne (whose other work is well worth checking out), is displayed along the South Bailey in Durham

The Durham Lumière Festival, transforming a northern English city into a quite magical place - photos from articles here and here.

The BBC showed this recently on their News Channel - still pictures can't convey how wonderful this light festival really is.

One of most beautiful videos I have seen for a long time (my screenshots):

Midnight Sun: A natural phenomenon occurring in the summer months north of the Arctic Circle and south of the Antarctic Circle where the sun never fully sets and remains visible 24 hours a day.

This short time lapse film (by SCIENTIFANTASTIC) was shot during the Icelandic Midnight Sun in June of 2011.

Thanks again, aldchronicle56 (Allan)!

If you like this...

["Home", HD movie of the Earth taken from the air by Yann Arthus-Bertrand]

November 2nd - autumn colours on the meadow (it's grey and misty now)

Epping Forest in autumn, a photo I took many moons ago when it was our favourite walking spot.
I was somehow reminded of it when I came across these rather lovely walking sticks carved by the Kansas woodcarver Millard Harrell:

I think that the reason I linked the two must have been a mental picture of Ents, and the choice of Epping Forest as a filming location for Kate Madison's prequel to The Lord of the Rings, "Born of Hope", an astonishingly good amateur movie (released free on the Internet) produced on a budget that would have paid for one day's canteen bill for Peter Jackson's crew.

If you have never heard of it, don't make the mistake of thinking that "amateur" = "naff". See here.

"In a Dream"


Some beautiful macro photography by Katsumi Oyamada

"Web" by our Stumbler KeithInFrance (whose excellent photography can luckily can still be found here)

Keith has his own blog spot here

A wonderful bird portrait by the Thai photographer Navin Nowvapong, whose other work is well worth checking out

This lovely young Italian girl was photographed by my sister-in-law while on a boat trip on Lake Garda, Italy.
My sister-in-law and her husband were staying at Sirmione, for reasons that my Sirmione Photoblog should make clear!

England's West Country, October 2011

Dusk light at Kingsbridge, Devon - low tide

Click the picture to see some posts about our recent visit to England's West Country (with some side trips)

If you are interested, here are the direct links:

[Sherborne Castles, Dorset]
[Sherborne Town and Abbey]
[Tintinhull Gardens, Somerset]
[Kingsbridge, Devon (with visits to Salcombe, Buckfastleigh and Dartmouth)]

If you like the whiff of sea air...

[My Whitby photoblog]
[More seascapes...]

You might also like...

[Places to enjoy life... in England]

There is some very nice free desktop wallpaper on this site!

If you like this, you might also like...

["Feeling Blue", digital art wallpaper by Charles Worm]

I was looking for a picture like this (me feeling autumnal and all) and found it using a feature of Google Image Search that I hadn't noticed before. Using options that appear on the left after your initial selection comes up, you can select the predominant colour you are looking for (in this case brown) and image search will sort pictures with that predominant colour to the front. You can also select a minimum size picture you are looking for, and (if you go into advanced options) the aspect ratio also (in this case 'wide', meaning landscape instead of portrait).

(Bruno Dayan is noted for his sensual fashion photography, used to advertise brands like Louis Vuitton and Yves Saint Laurent.)

Beautiful photography by Pierre Moreau, a Frenchman now living in Belgium. Among other things, he is the press photographer of the European Commission.

Also, don't miss his beautiful colour work which you will find here.

Thanks to my great friend Louvain95 (Lou) for this one. Lou hails from Belgium and has beautiful pages that are well worth visiting.

(Original post: September 15th, 2011)

Autumn arrived early this year! Found on the nice pages of Ayrabella.

"Happy Kids", a picture to improve anyone's day, by the Russian travel photographer Dmitry Vashchenko

When the weather is like this... the only thing is to enjoy it!

A nice image by "alibi", a photographer from Budapest, Hungary who has only just started publishing his work (at least, as far as I can find).

If you like this...

["Summer Rain" by WWWest]

This creative use of natural and artificial light was the winner of one of's frequent photography theme contests.

This site, which also runs contests for Photoshop work and provides tutorials, seems like a good place for aspiring photographers (even beginners with modest equipment) to get together and to develop their skills.

An uncharacteristic (and artistically fine) image from the highly successful fashion photographer Bruno Dayan

"Somewhere Far Away", one of many fine works © by the Croatian photographer Boris Frkovic
(who also has his own web site here)

Light reflecting off railroad tracks at sunrise on the summer solstice from the bridge to Marina Park in Thunder Bay, Ontario (HDR image), by Jon Nelson

This nice image is another winner of one of's frequent photography theme contests, many of which are open to photographers of all abilities

"Fisher Man" by Navin Nowvapong, an excellent photographer from Thailand

"The maestro rests" by Bezruchko Oleg

I could use one of these right now... don't think my keyboard would make quite such a good resting place, though (or look as good)

"Nastasiya", a very fine portrait by Valeriy Kasmasov (needs to be seen full size)

"Still life with blue bowl" by Lena Friess

"Family", one of many fine works © by the Croatian photographer Boris Frkovic (who also has his own web site here)

"The Longshuba rice terraces at sunset at Yuanyang in Yunnan, China" by Dave Stamboulis, a photographer whose other work is well worth checking out

One of many beautiful images created by the Japanese photographer Katsumi Oyamada, whom I was introduced to by Nightsky4520 - thanks, Deb!

(More of this last model, whose name SU unfortunately scrambles, here)

Some of Ervin Sperla's fine portraits - thanks (again) to expressioniste (Aline) for introducing me to this fine photographer

(Check out Ervin's September 2010 archive also)

One of many fine photographs by Christophe Jacrot, from his portfolio Paris in the Rain (if there's a slow link to France, you may have to wait for all the photos to appear!)

Christophe writes:

In my opinion, there are two ways of capturing the world for a photographer; on the one hand grasping its horror, and on the other sublimating it. I have chosen the second. More specifically, I like the way rain, snow and "bad weather" awaken a feeling of romantic fiction within me (climatic excesses are another topic).

I see these elements as a fabulous ground for photography, an under-used visual universe with a strong evocative power, and with a richness of subtle lights. This universe escapes most of us, since we are too occupied getting undercover. Man becomes a ghostly silhouette wandering and obeying the hazards of rain or of snow.

My approach is deliberately pictorial and emotional.

Found on the always-beautiful pages of my friend expressioniste (Aline).

This guide started out as a set of structured notes and links to help me to learn Photoshop (and that's what it still is).

When I realised that it would be useful for other people, I decided that it was worth the effort to turn it into the much more comprehensive guide that it is now.

My aim is to help you through the "Boot Camp" stage of learning Photoshop, and a bit further. If you are new to Photoshop, or if (like me) you use some of Photoshop's features but would like to explore more of its power, then this guide is for you.

What is the "Boot Camp" stage? Well, for me it was the effort needed to learn about selections and masks, channels, levels, curves, layers, colour spaces, paint tools and blend modes, and how all these things relate to each other. It seemed that I needed to know a lot about each of them (except maybe blend modes) before I could "get" what Photoshop was about.

My experience is with Photoshop 7. Most of the information in this guide will also be useful with other versions of Photoshop, and may help with features of other programs such as Paint Shop Pro or the excellent freeware GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program).

Very nice romantic photography by Petrova Julia.N - one of many beautiful things to be found on the pages of NotAlone (Danie)

If you like this, you might also like...

[A beauty seated at a piano, by Rob Heffernan]

Another lovely redhead, beautifully photographed by Dmitry Ageev

(found on the nice pages of MsMiles)

If you like this...

[Titian beauty by Black Orchid]

"Brick Wall" by the Russian photographer BRoman (Brom)

This is one of nice sequence of portraits that (I think) starts here - and I also particularly like this one. Thanks, weepingbeauty!

(Original post: May 18th, 2011)

Views of the Scottish Highlands and the English Lake District by John Parminter

If you like this...

[My recent photoblog of a visit to the English Lake District]

From the page:

"On September 22, 2010, with the departure of the Expedition 23 crew, Colonel Douglas H. Wheelock assumed command of the International Space Station and the Expedition 25 crew. He is also known as @Astro_Wheels on twitter, where he has been tweeting space photos to his followers since he arrived at the space station."

One of many of his photos to be found here:

"Aurora Borealis"

In the distance on this beautiful night over Europe the Strait of Dover is pretty clear as is Paris, the City of Lights. A little fog over the western part of England and London. It is incredible to see the lights of the cities and small towns against the backdrop of deep space. I am going to miss this view of our wonderful world...

Thanks to dragonisrider for this one!

A picture of Audrey Hepburn, one of many taken of her and other celebrities by the American fashion and celebrity photographer Mark Shaw

Found on the always-delightful pages of ensemble5

February sunrise

Sunrise from outside our back door, 2nd February 2011... the start of the first nice day for a long time

"The Texture Of Mushrooms"

"Magic Barge"

From Neon Art by our own Samaryantha (click her name in the tags at the top of this post)

"3 Cats"

"Winter Skies"

Some very nice photography by Samaryantha, a very talented English lady whose photography site has moved (you can find it here but you won't find these images there, at least not yet).

"New Year's Frost" by Gary McParland, a photographer from Co Armagh in Northern Ireland, who writes:

"Taken at sunrise on New Years Day. A lovely frost and a very calm and misty Camlough Lake."

Gary's other work is well worth checking out.

Sunlight and stones create an undulating effect on a Canadian river bottom.

Very nice desktop wallpaper, photographed for National Geographic by Paul Nicklen, whose other work is well worth checking out.

"corrasonnezz..." by Zorik Istomin, an illustrator, photographer and designer based in Saint-Peterburg, Russia

I was introduced to Zorik on patriciapatty66's wonderful SU pages, where you could always find much other beautiful and funny stuff with a stylish "zing" that is all her own.

Beautiful portraits and abstract work by the Russian photographer Yana Bondareva, whom I discovered on the fine pages of Parkari

Winter in England 2010 - a White Christmas!

23rd December, early morning... still snow on the ground

24th December... wind picking up, temperature hovering around freezing...

...and today, 25th December, we have our first White Christmas for a very long time.

Wishing everyone a very happy Christmas (whatever the climate), and a peaceful and prosperous New Year!

[More of my winter pics...]

Winter (early) in England - December 15th, 2010

7th December... 5 degrees below freezing, misty...

... resulting in some interesting frost patterns!

It got less cold a few days later, but now (15th December) the arctic air is on its way down to us again...

[Cold front, November 16th]

"Rainbow eye", a remarkable photo of a dog's eye by the German artist Skia (she doesn't rate it highly herself, but I disagree!)

Cold Front - November 16th, 2010

Living on a small plateau, a few hundred feet above the surrounding countryside, we often find ourselves on the boundary between two kinds of weather.

On 13th November a weather front spent the day waving to and fro above our heads...

On the south side of the building it was grey and miserable. Even the birds seem hacked-off.

On the other side, it was a different story. This is a cold front (I think), producing some spectacular skies as it tried to decide which way it was going...

... and a couple of days later, we're having a period of beautiful cold, crisp weather, while 4 miles south of us our local town is still covered in grey clag...

Sometime all you can do with the weather is laugh.

They say in Ireland that if you don't like the weather, wait five minutes.

I sometimes tell our visitors (especially after a week of the depressing grey stuff) that the good news is that in England you are never more than 5 miles from bright sunny weather. The bad news is that it's 5 miles straight up...

Some more pictures of this place...

[Summer nights]
[Last winter in the snow]

"Yellow Candles"

"Glass and Leaves"

Some very nice still-lifes by NICK. I am very pleased to have tracked down the creator of this work!

"Juliana" by the Russian photographer Ludmila (plenAIR), whose other work is well worth checking out

"Painting in La Miroiterie (Paris 20e, 88 rue de Menilmontant) - Oct 2010" by Liliwenn, who writes:

"This alive and artistic place will be destroyed in March 2011. A big shame..."

Liliwenn produces some amazing street art, among other things. Her Flickr site is full of wonderful stuff.

I discovered her on the fabulous pages of DaysEye.

"Shoreham Lavender" copyright by Derek Hansen

Shoreham in Kent, England is noted for its lavender production - see here

"New Light", taken at Fira, Santorini by the Pembroke-based photographer Mark Robson, whose other work is well worth looking at

If you like this, you might also like...

[My photos of Mykonos]

"Margot 2", one of many beautiful and striking portraits by Tanya Gramatikova, one of my favourite photographers

"I'm Going Home", some very nice Photoshop work by Angi Baker

"Love Train #3"

"Love Train #2"


Some very nice fashion photography by Kenvin Pinardy - thanks to Chaotiqual for leading me to him!

"Sheewa IV", one of many beautiful wildlife pictures by the Russian photographer and nature enthusiast Lilia Tkachenko

"Frozen pearl beads" (as close a translation as I can get!) by the Finnish photographer Jerkku Hannula

This was a 2007 series winner in the annual Finnish Nature Photo of the Year competition

Found among Migrant-Picker's many nice selections.

"Me and Glasha", a self-portrait by the Russian photographer and nature enthusiast Lilia Tkachenko

"Owls Talking" by the great Russian photographer Lilia Tkachenko

One of many delights to be found on Cat's fine pages, which are full of humour, an obvious passion for nature, animals and the environment, beautiful art and images, French and English poetry, and much else besides.

A visit is highly recommended.

(When I find out where she has moved to, I'll update this!)

If you like this...

[Rein Hofman - one of the best owl photographers in the world]

A glimpse of the moon...

(Original post: September 8th, 2010)

August was a lousy month here, weather-wise. It rained a lot, and we didn't see much of the sun. One night, though, I was outside when the clouds started clearing, so I rushed inside for my camera and tripod and made yet another attempt to get a picture of the moon that resembled what it really looked like. Alas, this was another failure, but I still sort of like it. The real scene had an amazing tunnel-in-the-sky 3D quality to it, and the moon had detail.

I'll get there one day.

Malta, the Pope and the Volcano - April 2010

This picture is from my photoblog of a trip to Malta in April this year, which was made extra interesting by a certain Icelandic volcano and the arrival of the Pope right on our doorstep! Click the image or go here if you would like to see the pictures of that trip.


I might mention that I use a relatively cheap camera - not an SLR or anything. I try to improve the quality of the pictures using the "digital darkroom" that is Photoshop. I rarely use Photoshop to "falsify" a picture for creative or blemish-removal purposes - mostly I use it to improve colour, exposure and contrast (and sometimes to reduce depth of focus) where it makes the picture look more like what the eye saw at the time.

I started learning Photoshop in 2009, which eventually led to me writing a Beginner's Guide to Photoshop, as much for my own benefit as anyone else's (if I had known that it would take nearly 200 hours to create then I probably never would have started!).

If you can't afford Photoshop, my guide should also be of some help in using the excellent freeware GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) or other programs like Paint Shop Pro.

If you like this...

[Click the photoblogs tag at the top of this post for more of my own photoblogs]

An example of the beautiful work of Anke Merzbach, a female photoartist from Bremen, Germany

Check out more of this artist's work - it's stunningly good

I found this gem on the delightful pages of Terrec. It took a long time to find the name of the artist and one of its original locations, but it was worth it if only because the original image filename contained the text Amelie's Welt (Amelie's World), which turns out to be one of the nicest blogs (mostly a photoblog) that I have encountered in a long time.

(When I find out where Terrec has moved to, I'll update this!)

"Evening bends", beautiful photography by the Ukraine-based photographer lad_i_mir, whose other work is well worth looking at

"The sun" by `greenfeed, who also does some excellent fantasy art and photomanipulation work

An untitled picture (on this page, anyway) by the Russian photographer Mihail Kopychko

Thanks to Aline and Norseye for this one (I'm posting the non-Pixdaus version here)

"Three Whites" by Hans Kawitzki, whose other work is well worth looking at

I can almost hear my younger daughter muttering "Three Greys" in my ear, but I'm no horse expert and it's a beautiful picture!

"Detail of a foggy morning" by StefaniaC, whose other work is well worth looking at

An example from the great photoblog of KeithinFrance from Brittany, discovered (as with so many good things in life) via Aline

"Moon, Bird and Tree" by Carlos Gotay Martinez, an excellent photographer with many themes

I found it on this nice collection of unusual bird photos

"Dusk and the boy" by LensENVY (Jacqueline)

There's a little trail behind this one. It started when my good friend Nancy sent me Bluebird, a great song by the Manchester-based singer/songwriter Chas Rigby.

I searched for more songs by Chas Rigby and one that I really liked was Nightwind.

When I was looking for a "Night Wind" image to accompany this song, I found the beautiful image above.

Thanks, Nancy!

"Ivet" by Tanya Gramatikova, one of my favourite photographers

Tanya has taken many pictures of this beautiful young model, who reminds me strongly of the young Scarlett Johansson (see my next post above)

[If you like this photographer, click her tag at the top of this post for more in this blog.]

"After the Rain", taken somewhere in Asia by the Kazakhstani photographer Nadya Kulagina

Nadya is better known for her portraits, e.g. one of my favourites which I posted here

A beautiful image of (I am almost sure) the Sonoran Desert, California, by Jack Dykinga, which features on the front cover of his book
"Large Format Nature Photography"

Click the image to visit a site with many great photographs

(Original post: July 14th, 2010)

"Petrified sand dunes and reflection, Paria Canyon - Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona" by Jack Dykinga

"Twilight of the Giants - African elephants at twilight, Chobe National Park, Botswana" by Frans Lanting

From a collection that represents a wide range of styles and genres and spans over 100 years of the history of photography, nominated and chosen by members of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP), a fellowship of the world's top professional conservation photographers.

"Empty Cage" by the excellent and prolific Zen photographer/artist H. Kopp-Delaney

"I find all colors in the Snow
I find all sins up in the Sky
I am flying now and don't know

Another item gratefully snaffled from my friend whom I am glad to see is now here as Beauregard.

Summer nights... June 26th 2010

The summer nights aren't as short here as they are in (say) Scotland or Scandinavia, but it's still very pleasant to walk around here at this time of year after 10 pm

(HDR photo from two images)

If you like this:

[Last winter in the snow...]

A Walk in the New Forest - May, 2010

The New Forest (called that by William the Conqueror in 1079 when he cleared settlements to make it his new hunting forest - why change the name now?) is a great walking area. Many suggestions for walks in this area can be found here.

It's going to be a beautiful day... 15.1 hours of sun forecast, which duly arrived (we were lucky - the next weekend, the Bank Holiday weekend at the end of May, had its traditional dreadful weather)

The best walks start and finish at a pub... This one is The Oak Inn at Bank, near Lyndhurst

Some very nice properties around here...

Anyone for Poohsticks?

The circular walk (about 5km) followed this curving stream for much of its length

In the bright sun, this beautiful fungus was acting as a natural uplighter

And of course, we met the locals...

Back at The Oak Inn for the traditional end to a good walk!

If you liked this...

[Places to Enjoy Life... In England]

"Autumn Nocturne", by the multi-talented photographer and digital artist Ron Jones

"Summer Dreams"

"Flowered Corner"

Beautiful colours from photographer/artist Eva Mariza

Epping Forest - autumn and winter

Some of my photos of Epping Forest in autumn and winter, taken when we used to live near there.

Epping Forest was one of the main filming locations for the Internet-released prequel to The Lord of the Rings, "Born of Hope" (see my next post above).

Located to the north east of London, it's a relatively small remnant of a much larger ancient forest, which somehow makes it seem appropriate as a choice for this movie.

Mykonos, Greece - Summer 2006

Just a few hundred yards from here, ahead and slightly to the left, is where Jason Bourne meets Marie again at the end of the movie "The Bourne Identity".

I got so fed up with our miserable weather that I went back and dug out some of my old photographs of Mykonos, taken on a very windy day in the summer of 2006, and tried to improve them as a learning exercise with Photoshop.

They certainly bring back some sunny memories!

If you like this...

[Mykonos Windmills]
[My other posts about Greece]
[My shared photo albums page]
[My 'Beginner's Guide to Photoshop']

"Touch the Sky", very nice macro-photography by unlimitedmind, whose other work is well worth checking out

A personal triumph for the photographer, Jeff Kouri from Colorado Springs - captured with a macro lens.

This amazing photograph is also featured in my "Best of the Web" photography page.

Early morning with frost - February 2010

Early morning with frost still on the trees - the view from our apartment window

(If you are interested, this is an HDR image from two photos, separated by a sky mask/selection, with saturation increased in some selected areas... I was quite proud of this one!)

[Snow in the same place, December 2009]

Snow in England, December 2009

Early morning, December 18th... We woke up to a winter wonderland!

The joy of being retired... I don't have to break into my car, just walk the dog!

Milo is definitely a snow dog

Trying to get on the OTHER side of Milo so he doesn't have his back to the sun...
the trouble is, he thinks it's a game and he's a lot faster than I am!

... did you spot the chilly wood pigeon in the previous photo?

A new walk-friend of Milo's, a cross between a Pug and a Cavalier King Charles - this one had a lovely temperament

There's a slightly Narnia feeling about this...

My second-ever HDR photo. The upper and lower parts come from two different images at different exposures, and a lot more work after that! My little Lumix camera will take three photos in rapid succession at different exposures, and even without a tripod it wasn't hard to align two of the images in different Photoshop layers. I temporarily used the "multiply" blend with one image inverted so that I could see both images at once, and used the Move tool and arrow keys to nudge one layer a pixel at a time. There are fancier ways of doing HDR but this worked fine for me with Photoshop 7.

23rd December... we nearly had a White Christmas, but this was the last properly snowy day.
For those who didn't have to travel, the last 6 days have been great!

[My Photoshop page]

(Original post: December 21st, 2009)

Waddesdon Manor, near Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, is one of the most attractive National Trust properties in England. As it says here:

"Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild, creator of Waddesdon, loved France and French art. With his French architect Destailleur and his landscape gardener Laine, he built this Renaissance-style chateau in a dramatic setting. Waddesdon has one of the best collections of French 18th century decorative arts in the world, paintings, furniture, carpets and curiosities, lovingly assembled over 35 years by Ferdinand to please his weekend guests. Outside, his creation includes an aviary, flamboyant bedding, winding walks, colorful trees and panoramic views."

We visited it recently for their Christmas event. When you arrive it's already very dark, and you feel like you are on the set of "Brideshead Revisited" as you make the long unlit drive up to the Rothschild manor, where on this occasion you can park right in front, in a long row of giant illuminated Christmas trees. You get to tour a wing of the house, beautifully decorated for Christmas (no words will do it justice), followed by a dinner in the excellent restaurant. For £55 this is perhaps the best-value Christmas event one can imagine!

We stayed overnight at the Five Arrows Hotel in Waddesdon village, planning to go for a walk in the Waddesdon estate the next morning. From our hotel window we had a view of wonderful tiled roofs like this one.

This is part of the long drive up to the Manor. It was a cold, beautiful day. The sun at this time of year is very low, making for interesting photography, and we had the place almost to ourselves (very unusual).

All the statues on the estate were shrouded against the weather...

Frost still on the grass

Some fun with Photoshop. This wasn't taken with a telephoto lens, it's the result of a blurred layer on top of a sharp layer, with the lower part of the blurred layer masked out.

My first-ever HDR photo. The upper and lower parts come from two different images at different exposures, with some blending in the middle. My little Lumix camera will take three photos in rapid succession at different exposures, and even without a tripod it wasn't hard to align two of the images in different Photoshop layers. I temporarily used the "multiply" blend so that I could see both images at once, and used the Move tool and arrow keys to nudge one layer a pixel at a time. There are fancier ways of doing HDR but this worked fine for me with Photoshop 7.

As with the previous picture and several others, I am experimenting here with a Photoshop curves adjustment layer. Dragging the cursor in a shadow area (say) shows on part of the graph as a moving pointer. Adjusting the slope of that part of the graph improves the tonal range and contrast in that part of the picture, while sometimes messing up other parts. Then you mask out the other parts, leaving only the improved bits overlaying the original image.

On the way out I saw these rather beautiful Christmas tree ornaments in the National Trust shop, which reminded me slightly of Faberge eggs (but a lot cheaper!). They are about 20 times too large for the tiny tree we have at home, but I asked my wife if she could arrange them in a kind of nest, which she kindly did! (There's a blur layer being used here in Photoshop, too.)

[My Photoshop page]

An extraordinary photograph of a humpback whale calf by the underwater and architecture photographer Kate Westaway

Kate's special genius was to realise that the impact would be increased by turning the photograph upside down. The sky is below you in this photograph!

"Winter" by Oleg Zhizhiyan

The photographer obviously felt that this snowy landscape lacked a certain something!

"Summer Rain" by WWWest

It often rains here, but somehow it isn't as enjoyable as this!

Thanks again to my friend chaotiqual, whose pages are always a delight to visit.

Whitby, Yorkshire - November 17th, 2009

This was a day out in Whitby, Yorkshire, on the east coast of England (close to Robin Hood's Bay, the end of Wainwright's coast-to-coast walk). The rest of the week was fairly miserable, weather-wise, so we took full advantage of this sunny (if cold) day...

Hole of Horcum, on the North Yorkshire Moors on the approach to Whitby. The North Yorkshire Moors are the largest area of continuous moorland in England (in case you wanted to know that).

Whitby harbour entrance

St Mary's Church and Whitby Abbey, seen from other side of the harbour through the whalebone arch

Captain James Cook's memorial

Taken from Whitby pier

This was a "Goth Weekend", possibly associated with the full moon (for lots more Whitby Goth pictures, see here!)

One of the local yobbos, who sometimes eat fish (when they can't get fish and chips)

The best fish and chips place in Whitby, apparently! (There is fierce competition, but I can certainly recommend this place.)

The steps up to the church and abbey

Before this visit I had dabbled a bit with Photoshop, but I used these (non-expert!) photos to explore more of Photoshop's features. The main thing I learnt here was to use an additional curves layer in order to adjust the contrast and brightness of some parts of the picture that would otherwise be too bright or in deep shadow, and paint out the unwanted parts of the new layer with a black brush, letting the original show through. The Whitby Memorial Gate, for example, had no detail on the metalwork in the original, the Whitby Fudge window was dark, and the sunny area at the top of the stairs to the abbey was much too bright (it still is).

[My Photoshop page]

"Escape" by Zach Blume
(inspired by Jan von Holleben's "Dreams of Flying")

It feels like a sunny day!

Come fly with me, let's fly, let's fly away
If you can use some exotic booze
There's a bar in far Bombay
Come fly with me, let's fly, let's fly away

Come fly with me, let's float down to Peru
In llama land there's a one-man band
And he'll toot his flute for you
Come fly with me, let's take off in the blue

Once I get you up there,
Where the air is rarified
We'll just glide
Once I get you up there
I'll be holding you so near
You will hear angels cheer
Just because we're together

Weather-wise it's such a lovely day
You just say the words and we'll beat the birds
Down to Acapulco Bay
It's perfect for a flying honeymoon, they say
Come fly with me, let's fly, let's fly away...

Lyrics by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen.

Listen here.

[Another fun way to fly, Snoopy-style]
[More of the bright side of life...]

Stepping stones at Bolton Abbey

Stepping stones at Bolton Abbey, Yorkshire - taken by my daughter Rachel

Great composition!

[Some Places To Enjoy Life... In England]

Fourteenth, who hails from Greece, has a beautiful and interesting view of life, which she makes you feel very welcome to share.

Among many delights to be found on her pages are her own photographs of places that she clearly loves - the first of these lovely examples was taken on the shores of the North Aegean Sea.

On her pages you will also find beautiful and interesting art, music, and thoughtful comments on all kinds of things. This is one of those blogs that has a very nice feel to it. Don't miss it!

Cannero-Riviera on Lake Maggiore, Italy - July 23rd 2009

Cannero Riviera on Lake Maggiore is one of our very favourite places.

A photo-blog of our 2009 visit there will be found here.

One of many gorgeous photographs from Miguel Ángel de Arriba

Miguel's work includes nature, landscapes and portraits, and on his excellent site you can also enjoy good music to go along with the slide shows.

Thanks for this one, renaissance2007!

A stunning macro photograph of a Jumping Spider, one of many startling eye close-ups on this page.
I was struck by how closely these wonderful colours from nature had been used in Ludmila Curilova's painting below.

A beautiful picture of a child, by Dani Brubaker - found on the always-beautiful pages of expressioniste

A bridge in Osijek, Croatia, photographed by Vladimir Zivkovic (~oriontrail)

If you like this, try this search, which produces a very large number of great pictures...

[Bridges in fog (DeviantArt)]

This is the 3-kilometre bridge that connects the mainland of France to the Île d'Oléron, the second-largest island in France after Corsica - one of many great photographs by Aline Nédélec, who specializes in architecture and the River Charente.

One of many beautiful photographic studies of ice by David Hirmes, a very interesting guy!

This is only one of many artistic treasures to be found on the pages of my friend louvain95, who hails from Belgium.

Louvain95 writes: "Peace and harmony are my favourite words and I try to ensure them around me (between people, between things). We brought up our now adult children along a river and discovered it creates a sense of community between neighbours - chatting on towpaths you know :). The river is a little miracle of changing beauty every morning and I love it, despite its (rare) flooding alerts."

Geoff Barrenger

True beauty, beautifully captured by fashion photographer Geoff Barrenger

Sometimes I know where a picture is to be found on-line, but I don't know who the author is. This time, owing to a failure in my filing system, it's the other way around!

(Original post: February 17th, 2009)

Steve Carter's photography and music web site (and his photography) just seem to get better and better. Yes, there are great photographs, but there's a whole lot more to enjoy on this site.

This is his new 2009 photograph gallery. If your mouse has a thumb wheel, just roll it (or use the slider or arrow keys) and the carousel of thumbnails spins around so that you can choose one - really neat!

From the English Lake District...

"5 a.m. in Borrowdale"

From his Hebrides album...

The two pictures above (which really need to be seen full size in order to be fully appreciated) were taken on South Harris (see map and this article).

Steve tells me that "this is a stunning place in good weather - bloody awful in the rain (nothing to do)"!

And from the Western Highlands...

The Torridon hills early on a November morning (the Torridon link is to a collection of pages by Steve, well worth following) - also click the picture for many more beautiful pictures of this area

If you like this...

[Another example of Steve Carter's English Lake District photography]
[My photoblog of a trip to the English Lake District, September 2008]

Snow in England February 2009

This was a cold, very clear night just before the snow started. The picture above is of the Moon and Venus, the least bad of many failed attempts to capture something approaching what they actually looked like!

Although I didn't notice it at the time, I could swear that not only is there a crescent of sunlight on the Moon, but on Venus as well. Furthermore, the planet being so much further away and at a different angle to the Sun, the crescent of sunlight on Venus (reflecting off the planet's total cloud cover) is much further advanced. Perhaps any astronomy experts will tell me whether this is just an illusion from the photograph!

Early morning... the snow that is still covering most of the British Isles is just starting...

England doesn't often get real snow across the whole country for any length of time, because of the prevailing Atlantic weather and the warmth of the Gulf Stream. About once in 20 years or so we get a prolonged period of cold air from northern Europe and Scandinavia - and then this happens. I am sure that folks living in parts of the world that regularly get snow will be having a good laugh!

One meteorologist said that the nearest similar winter he can remember was 1962-63. What worried him was that with these very similar air conditions, it is actually much less cold across the country than it was then.

"Adoration", a view from the Valley of the Rocks, Exmoor, Devon, by Bob Garrigus

One of many great photos (and photographers) to be found on the excellent travel photography competition site designed by my friend photoburst (Pedro).

"Over the line", a wonderful picture taken before sunrise in one of the Oregon desert playas, by the hugely talented landscape photographer Marc Adamus

"Gentle Light III"

"Blue in the garden"

Two beautiful pictures by the excellent and prolific nature photographer Callu

"Daria II" by Callu

Luckily, Callu occasionally takes a break from nature photography to produce other great work like this!

This is one of my favourite photos!

I have seen it many times, but now I know who the author is: it's an untitled picture by Vladimir Kutchinsky

Beautiful picture of father and child by Vladimir Kutchinsky (doesn't the father look like Daniel Craig?)

A stunningly beautiful model, beautifully photographed for Enrique Muthan by Geoff Barrenger

Thanks so much to tutto for this one.

Wonderfully artistic photography by August Bradley

A small excerpt from the excellent biographical details for August Bradley provided on this site:

"I was increasingly drawn to crafting scenes out of my imagination," Bradley explains of his early transition from adventure and sports photography to a more fantastical subject matter. "I wanted to create stories, rather than capture events unfolding before me. I've always been a big reader, and I've found that there's every bit as much truth and insight in the best literary fiction as in nonfiction works. I try to bring a literary sensibility to my graphic images. My work has been influenced as much by authors such as Thomas Pynchon and David Foster Wallace as by any photographer."

If you're familiar with the works of Pynchon and Wallace, then you expect a densely nuanced twist on the typical photographic fare. Sure enough, Bradley's images are often surreal and conceptual--as much illustrations as photographs...

Thanks again to my friend Alison for introducing me to this great photographer.

"Rainy day", one of many beautiful pictures by Alexander Volkov

Another one gratefully swiped from the excellent pages of aquieterstorm. Thanks, Cheryl!

I Can See Forever - Two Medicine Lake, Glacier National Park, Montana

Shi Shi Beach Sunset - Olympic National Park, Washington

Delicate Shadows - The Palouse, Eastern Washington

Steptoe Butte State Park, The Palouse, Eastern Washington

Pathway To The Peaks - Mount Seymour Provincial Park, British Columbia

Just some of the wonderful landscapes of Kevin McNeal

Beautiful frost patterns by Marika, from - unfortunately she no longer seems to have a gallery there (I will keep looking)

Long Eared Owl © by Rein Hofman, probably one of the best bird photographers on the planet

Interesting textures and shadows... great work by mdmmikle

Sunflowers, a lovely still-life picture by Avrora

"Autumn naibrmort" by cheshenov - I love the colours!

A very nice autumnal photo by Ashka Latsan
Thanks to my friend expressioniste for this one!

"Submerged leaves" - one of Sandy's own pictures from her recent field trip. Click the picture to see the rest!
Thanks for sharing, Sandy!

Which just reminded me...

[River Man - a haunting autumnal song in 5/4 time by Nick Drake]

Many excellent photos by the multi-talented artist and photographer Katherine Dinger.

This is one of my own photos of the quiet Western Quarter of Venice.

It has appeared before (in my Venice post) but I just wanted to see it again...

[Venice, September 2001]

"Solitude" - a very nice still-life composition by Von McKnelly, an artistic photographer whose other work is well worth checking out.

[An introduction to RedBubble]

(Original post: August 27th, 2008)

One of many wonderful photos of the English Lake District (and other places) by Steve Carter

Steve (a very nice bloke) told me: "The photo was taken about 200 yards from the Kirkstile Inn by Loweswater in Cumbria, looking towards Crummock Water. Red Pike is the big(ish) hill in the backgound."

The hill in the right foreground is (I am almost certain) Haystacks.

I will soon be returning to the Lake District after an absence of many years, and am really looking forward to it. If the weather is like this then I will be delighted - but all that green beauty comes from the highest annual rainfall in the UK...

[Location of the Kirkstile Inn on my England Map]
[My full England Map]
[Walk Area: Buttermere Valley, Lake District]
[Lake District Walks (or see the previous post below)]
[Places to enjoy life... in England]

"Ivet", one of many beautiful and striking portraits by Tanya Gramatikova, one of my favourite photographers

It's the start of a new day (yawwwwn...)

"First stirrings in the big city"

"Message has arrived"

"Early exercise"

"It's going to be a beautiful day"

Some beautiful photography by Roswitha Schleicher-Schwarz, chosen for its early-morning theme!

(Apologies to German speakers for my loose translations - corrections gratefully received.)

A fashion shop in a sleepy little German town
A very nice HDR photo by Rudi Wenzel

Thanks to my friend renaissance2007 (Julian) for leading me to this one.

BTW: HDR Creme is a great photo site specialising in HDR photography. Authors are identified and can be contacted, and original size photos are provided as well as web size photos.

Waterfalls in Jiuzhaigou Valley, Sichuan, China

Yangshuo Sunrise, Guangxi

Shigu Town, Yunnan

Traditional clothing & modern communication, Zhongdian Horse Festival

Wonderful photos of China by Gil Azouri

"Rendezvous..2" by Sonia Avdeeva

"Lost illusions" by Yan McLine

I guess we have all had days when life pauses, and we are lost in our thoughts...

"Eighth day" by Dmitry Povshedny

"Red lampshade" (my guess at a translation) by SAV

If you liked those, you might also like these photographers:

[Jek Eidelzon]

This was Venice in early September, 2001. It was our first trip, and we loved it. We only had a week, so we saw all the "must see" places like the Ca' Rezzonico...

...and the Piazza San Marco (and many more that you have seen zillions of photos of before).

Only a few hundred yards west of the Rialto Bridge, the crowds magically disappeared...

...and we greatly enjoyed exploring the (much) quieter Western Quarter.

Such a beautiful place - and nobody here but ourselves!

The weather was hot and brassy that week, so we mostly had a siesta in the afternoon and went out for an evening stroll just before sunset. We caught the low sun reflecting on the gold leaf of the Basilica...

...and enjoyed window shopping (much cheaper than the real thing!)...

...while trying to choose a nice place to eat. At one of these places, we learnt the hard way that fish was priced by the 100g, not by the course!

Walking home one night after our meal, we encountered this spooky looking wall of masks in the window of a shop that had closed for the night.

And then we returned to England. It was September 11th, and we were greeted by our daughter running across the drive, telling us what she had just seen on television.

We knew, over the next hours and days, that the world would never be quite the same place again. There were acts of incredible tragedy and heroism. There was a feeling of solidarity across the Atlantic that was quite astonishing, as the e-mails, forums and phone calls went to and fro.

A few days later, in our small town of Epping, England, scenes like this were taking place, similar to those in many, many other places.

At the time, I remember thinking that there were going to be very bad times ahead - and there were - but also that really bad times seem to bring out the best in people - and they did, nowhere more so than in New York. Among the good things that came out of this tragedy, there was New York's "Pay It Forward" programme, described here on my web site.

Stealing from an Eye

May zephyrs ferry me so far,
To brush the tips of dusty stars;
To slip within a shadow's sigh;
And take the twinkle from an eye...

May final quietus interpose,
To shake the rhyming from the prose;
To face a door that will not pry;
And take the teardrops from an eye...

May faded cadence trill away,
To serenade a heart of clay;
To lead an army out to die;
And take the beauty from an eye...

May lonely letters slowly drown,
To turn a smile to a frown;
To cast a restless soul awry;
And take perception from an eye...

I have seen this great photo-montage on many blogs, but here is the original.

The photo-montage is by ~calico901, and if you click the picture you will see that she credits the sources that she used to put the picture together.

The wonderful words, which are the original ones that went with this picture, are by ~Felixavier. ~calico901 and ~Felixavier kind of did this together as a joint project. Thanks, guys!

Limited Edition Archival Prints by Ian Sanderson

Thanks to my friend expressioniste for introducing me to this great photographer.

"Tobermory Shipwreck", by Peter Zentjens from Beringen, Belgium

Peter writes: "Tobermory is a gorgeous little town on the northern tip of the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario. Its harbor is not only filled with luxury yachts but also with a lot of shipwrecks, which makes it a diver's paradise. It's part of the Fathom Five National Marine Park of Canada."

This is one of Peter's most popular wallpapers, see here for more.

If you're interested in marine conservation, check out the Marine Park link above!

(Originally posted: June 14th 2008)

This is the southern-most end of a (very) long and (slightly) winding road - the other end of U.S. Route 1 is more than 2,000 miles away at Fort Kent, Maine at the Canadian border!

This end of the road is in Key West. I was here with my extended family (12 of us) as part of a wonderful vacation in the Florida Keys. Several photos follow!

I love these banyan trees. Hemingway lived near here. Also near here is Kelly's Caribbean Bar Grill and Brewery, which I can highly recommend. We had an absolutely wonderful meal there, with great service and good wine, for $60 a head.

A relatively quiet evening (I'm told) in Mallory Square, where people gather nightly at the southern-most point of the mainland USA to watch the sunset.

This band was performing great Island versions of Neil Diamond hits.

I swiped this one from my brother-in-law!

There are sometimes better things to do than watch the ships go by...

I really like my wife's little Sony Cybershot! It's light, inexpensive and it lets me take hand-held pictures like these after dark, without a flash. It's the only camera that we used on this holiday.

[This trip continues in the post below. Also see where this place is on my Florida Map.]

"If I was an old building I would want to be by the ocean. Till' the end of times".

Photographed by Bernie (`foureyes) at the old fishing piers of the Texas Bolivar Peninsula.

Mathematical Bridge in the fog, Queen's College, Cambridge

Twilight fog under Trinity Bridge, Cambridge

Foggy path through Jesus Green, Cambridge

This site has some wonderful low-light and night photographs of Cambridge, England, taken by Sean McHugh, but that's not all. It also has some really excellent tutorials on taking and editing digital photographs, ranging from camera basics to advanced tips.

It is one of many sites that you will find linked to from my Photoshop page.

Many thanks to my friend amy99 (Amy) for this one.

P.S. It only takes about 40 minutes to drive to Cambridge from where I live - some compensation for a climate that produces sleet showers and freezing winds in April!

"Early Paperwork" - early morning in a public park, China

"Pastel Boats" - a grouping of boats on a lake in China

Some fine work by Martin Mullen.

"Sea Song", by Craig Esterhuizen

This photo captures that sense of wonder that we sometimes lose when we grow older...

The North American and Pelican Nebulae in Cygnus

This great site is the work of Davide De Martin. Since 2005 Davide has collaborated with the ESA/Hubble at ESO as a consultant working as an image processor. Davide writes:

"I produce color images of the most beautiful and uncommon celestial objects using the modern techniques of photographic digital enhancement. I mainly use the data and the black&white photographs captured by astronomers with the instruments installed at Mount Palomar or other Observatories.

"This work allowed me to discover the wonderful celestial objects hidden in exceptional images that lay unseen in archives, sometimes from decades.

"The night-sky is full of jewels that wait only to be admired. This website will show you some of these as you never have seen before."

This site was sent to me my friend ajihad (Vasav) - thanks, Vasav!

Another picture (author unknown) of Aishwarya Rai, one of the most beautiful women on the planet...

"Dreamed Brook"
Interstate 495, Littleton, Massachusetts

"Milkweed II"
Granby, Connecticut

"Song Of The Earth"
Littleton, Massachusetts

Some wonderful photography of New England by John Wawrzonek

"Red Shouldered Hawk", a truly wonderful photo by Cary Maures

Thanks to my friend skip2mylou for this one.

"Diaries of Past Years", a beautiful work by Andrey Kurdyukov

I could sit and look at this for hours!

A beautiful untitled still-life by Cheshenov

An untitled picture (which I might call "Enjoying Life") by the Russian photographer Yuri Bonder (who sadly died on 1st May 2008).

The upside of rainy, miserable days is that you really appreciate this when it happens...

"A Family Album Portrait" by Nadya Kulagina

I just love this! The more I look at it, the more I feel that this is how the world should be.

A very happy picture, author unfortunately unknown!

Thanks to my friend Bill for this one.

"Windowscape 2" and "Winter Flora", lovely abstract photos by Basil G, from his collection "Window Dwellers".

"Magic Hour" and "Mystical Night", beautiful photos by Nuno Milheiro.

"This particular chapel was built almost at the sea on the top of rocks as an homage
to the fishermen that died at this place. When the sea level rises it becomes isolated
as an island. It is place of religious cult and at the end of day becomes iluminated."

Thanks to picklejuice for introducing me to this photographer.

A nice seasonal winter photo by Andreea Teodorescu, who writes: "This a scene from Azuga, a picturesque ski resort of Prahova Valley, more precisely a view from a small bridge over Azuga River. In the BG, between the trees, we can see the Bucegi Mountains (the Caraiman Massif). In Azuga, there is the longest ski slope of Romania, Sorica ski-slope."

Trekearth (Learning About The World Through Photography) is a nice site, with many good photos.

Thanks to my friend csforest (Crista) for this one!

A very appealing photo by Yuliya Shevchenko

Thanks to Deanie for finally tracking down the author for me!

"Fog and Pennyroyal, Lagunitas Lake, MMWD"

One of many beautiful photographs of nature by Dan Baumbach.

I love the colours in this one.

The old sun sighs and slips away
And night creeps over the everyday
And sleepy children climb the stairs
Cuddling toys and teddy bears
The endless boxes grown-ups made
For packing people neat and tight
Melt into twinkling rivulets of light
And gulfs of soft, mysterious shade

Then small bold spirits rise and fly
In the evening air of a different sky

(One of the few poems that I ever wrote, a long, long, long time ago)

"The Shroud" by Brett Hochkins - from his album Kharu - A New Leaf

A beautiful subject and beautiful colours!


Untitled (from "Kids")

Two wonderful photos from Indonesia by Rarindra Prakarsa.

"Bear Feet" © by Bill Lockhart

I have a weakness for bears! If I were a bear, and a big bear too, I would like to add myself to this warm pile of fur and snooze the afternoon away...

Thanks to serendipity7 (Raine) for leading me to this great wildlife and landscape photographer.

A wonderful portrait of old age by Paul Dzik.

A life-time of experiences, some good, some bad, many of them fascinating... waiting for people who want to listen.




Just a few of many great photos of the Maldives by Ahmed Zahid.

Thanks to bilkb for this one!

A penny for your thoughts...

taken by Natalie Manuel.

P.S. It's hard not to believe that we are somehow related, especially if you compare this photo to "Childhood" below...

"Childhood" - another of my favourite pictures by Tanya Gramatikova.

There are stories here...

Awesome picture! You won't see just how awesome unless you click the picture and see the high resolution original - I suggest you download the 15 megapixel version and really have a good look at it, rather than just view it with the browser. It was taken by Noel Carboni from his home in south Florida - if you are interested in HOW it was taken, why not give Noel a visit?

A fabulous night shot of Shanghai.

Thanks to rchobert for this one.