Tuesday Photo Challenge – Round Up 9

The spirit lifts us!

This week’s entries were very impressive, which is even more impressive, as this week’s challenge was difficult, as I asked people to express an abstract concept, the Human Spirit.

I was inspired by recent events to select the human spirit, as it is what will pull us through and, most importantly, pull together, as humanity should and will prevail.

A warm thanks to all who participated, as the response was heartwarming!

 

The following were this week’s participants in the challenge with links to their posts:

  • Steve, who writes Meandering Maverick, showed us a great memorial for local Police, Fire and EMS, who often put their lives on the line to help others.
  • Miriam of the Out an’ About blog, documented the incredible drive and determination of the people of Marysville, a village that was wiped out by bushfiers only to make a strong comeback!
  • Nadia, who writes blog Becoming Roots, shows us that many things, even little ones, help us maintain and sometimes rebuild our human spirit.
  • Debbie, whose blog is Forgiving Journal, provided a truly uplifting report of a wonderful person giving hugs against LGBTQ violence!
  • Nikki, who writes A Kinder Way, provided a report on her Life is Good shirt that was released to support victims recovering from the Boston Marathon bombing.
  • Kim may have been late, but his entry on Do You See What I See?, serves as a great reminder that we should not take our planet for granted and that it takes human spirit to stand up for the environment!
  • A late entry by Bikurgurl, whose Just a gurl in the world tagline belies the depth of her blog (great writing!), touched on the little details of the human spirit!

Thanks to each and every one of you, as I appreciate your taking the trouble and putting a great effort forth with these images.

Now to start preparing for Tuesday’s new topic…I’m trying to make up my mind on which one to pick:-)

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Human Spirit

Celebrate humanity!

This is already the ninth installment of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!  Participation in last week’s challenge with the them of Lines was rock solid with some amazing photography and even haikus to join in with the fun!

While I was thinking about what to select for this week’s theme, I decided to go in yet another different direction, partially to offset the horrific event of this past weekend in Orlando.  I want to go for something that is positive in humanity in that I am challenging you to capture the Human Spirit.

The Human Spirit is around us everywhere in lots of positive expressions, so go out there and capture some of that positivity and share it with the world!

My image for this week comes from an event that I have been lucky enough to photograph over the past couple of years; the Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress‘s Buddy Walk is a hugely successful fund raiser for them, but it’s something even bigger.  This event is a true celebration of the human spirit, as it is a combination of acceptance, inclusion, perseverance and pure joy that leaves me uplifted every year that I am lucky enough to photograph the walk.

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Pure Joy!

For those who’d like to participate in this weekly challenge, the rules are the following:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please tag your post with fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week
  • Have fun creating something new (or sharing something old)!!

I fully expect to see some great examples of the human spirit in this week’s photography, and hope that all of you celebrate this challenge!

Technical Details

This image was captured using a Canon EOS 5D Mk III using an EF 24-105mm f/4L lens.  Exposure settings were 1/500 second at f/8 at 640 ISO.

This image is also a nod to the Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge – Pure, as nothing is more pure than the joy of a child.

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Round-Up 8

Great line work by all!

This week’s entries were very impressive, which I fully expected to happen, as amazing photographers are a global phenomenon!  As a reminder, the theme for the week was Lines, with a challenge to use lines in interesting ways to draw the eye into your image(s).

Of course, this allowed for many ways to interpret the challenge and I was certainly not disappointed by any of your approaches to the theme!

There were numerous wingback issues across all of WordPress this week, so if I missed someone’s entry please put a comment in and I will update this round-up.

Here’s another image from my collection that leads the eye down a merry path…

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The Road Not Taken

 

The following were this week’s participants in the challenge with links to their posts:

  • Kim, who writes Do You See What I See??, provided a rather cool variety of images that made use of lines in various ways.
  • Sonya of Middleton Road, posted an image that used lines in multiple directions to give the eye plenty to examine.
  • Miriam of the Out an’ About blog, showed numerous studies of lines in images that were stunning as always!
  • Nikki, who writes A Kinder Way, showed a communications tower in various seasons, which drew a significant line in her images.
  • Steve, who writes Meandering Maverick, managed to make barbed wire look interesting in a set of images he captured.
  • Debbie, whose blog is Forgiving Journal, combined an interesting study of lines in her image with a set of Haikus related to the theme!
  • Nadia, whose blog Becoming Roots should entice a visit from you, showed a number of different approaches to using lines in her images; I particularly love the photo of the flower box under the window, which has lines going in multiple directions.

Thanks to each and every one of you, as I appreciate your taking the trouble and putting a great effort forth with these images.

Now to start preparing for Tuesday’s new topic…I’m trying to make up my mind on which one to pick:-)

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Lines

A line in the sand

Hard to believe that this is already the eighth installment of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!  Last week’s theme of Flowers certainly found a lot of fans, which means that it was a bit more of a brain twister for me to come up with something that I think might pique just as much interest.  This led me to depart from Nature’s beauty and head into the direction of geometry for this week’s theme: Lines.

Lines are all around us, to such an extent that our brains have learned to interpret them as visual cues that can both be useful and misleading.  In photography, we often use lines to lead the eye in a certain direction, as the image is not entered all at once, but rather specific clues are picked up, from which we assemble the overall image. [If there’s interest, I’ll be happy to do a post or two on how the brain processes images and its impact on effective photography].

So, this week, bring some lines to bear in your photography, and I’d love to read how you saw them come together in your image.  I think that this can provide some interesting imagery!

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The Line.

For those who’d like to participate in this weekly challenge, the rules are the following:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please tag your post with fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week
  • Have fun creating something new (or sharing something old)!!

This topic might be a bit of a brain/visual stretch, but I have every confidence in all of you!!

Technical Details

This image was captured using an iPhone 5S using the standard Camera app; Instagram was used for a bit of sharpening.  The dichotomy between the right and left sides of the image is due to the angle of the sunlight playing with the iPhone lens.

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Round-Up 7

Flowers were impressive!

WOW!!  we’re in the 7th week of the Tuesday Photo Challenge already, and the response to this week’s theme of Flowers has been outstanding!!

The interpretations of the theme showed some rather cool diversity in approach!!

 

The following were this week’s participants in the challenge with links to their posts:

  • iballrtw of the Eyeball Around the World blog, showed the impact of gravity on cherry blossoms, as they lay weeping on the path.
  • Kim, who writes Do You See What I See??, gave us a beautiful view of flowers in Australia.
  • Sonya of Middleton Road, posted a stunning capture of a rose that you must go and see.
  • Miriam of the Out an’ About blog, brought out a cornucopia of flowers, including some rather unusual ones that you have to see.
  • The mysterious Vaayadi Pennu, who writes Pins & Ashes, shows us a lovely Konnapoo in full bloom.
  • Nikki, who writes A Kinder Way brought forth a wonderful set of images depicting the life of some of the members of a bouquet of white roses.
  • Steve, who writes Meandering Maverick, had no shortage of stunning images of irises near the sidewalk at his house.
  • Monica, whose blog Look Around! Love what you do! Do it Well! is very interesting, linked back to us this week in her exploration of dandelions.  I hope we see her again in the future!
  • Debbie, of ForgivingJournal provided multiple perspectives on some lovely flowers!

Thanks to each and every one of you, as I appreciate your taking the trouble and putting a great effort forth with these images.

Now to start preparing for Tuesday’s new topic…I’m trying to make up my mind on which one to pick 🙂

Flower on Friday

My kingdom for a tulip!

As this week’s Tuesday Photo Challenge has the them of flowers, I thought it might be nice to share another flower image on this lovely Friday.

This particular image is a rather straightforward one that looks to simply highlight the main subject in an uncluttered manner; sometimes that is all it takes to get  a pleasing image of a single flower, such as this tulip.

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Simple Beauty

Of course, tulips are an interesting subject to anyone who grew up in the Netherlands.  All of us are likely to connect the tulip to the Netherlands and the Tulip Mania of the 17th century when speculation drove the price of single tulip bulbs up to the equivalent of a herd of cattle and beyond.  But did you know…

History

Islamic World

Cultivation of the tulip began in Persia, probably in the 10th century.  Early cultivars must have emerged from hybridization in gardens from wild collected plants, which were then favored, possibly due to flower size or growth vigor. The tulip is not mentioned by any writer from antiquity, therefore it seems probable that tulips were introduced into Anatolia only with the advance of the Seljuks.  In the Ottoman Empire, numerous types of tulips were cultivated and bred, and today, 14 species can still be found in Turkey.  Tulips are mentioned by Omar Kayam and Celaleddin Rûmi.

In 1574, Sultan Selim II. ordered the Kadi of A‘azāz in Syria to send him 50,000 tulip bulbs. However, Harvey points out several problems with this source, and there is also the possibility that tulips and hyacinth (sümbüll, originally Indian spikenard (Nardostachys jatamansi) have been confused.  Sultan Selim also imported 300,000 bulbs of Kefe Lale (also known as Cafe-Lale, from the medieval name Kaffa, probably Tulipa schrenkii) from Kefe for his gardens in the Topkapı Sarayı in Istanbul.  Sultan Ahmet III maintained famous tulip gardens in the summer highland pastures (Yayla) at Spil Dağı above the town of Manisa.  They seem to have consisted of wild tulips. However, from the 14 tulip species known from Turkey, only four are considered to be of local origin, so wild tulips from Iran and Central Asia may have been brought into Turkey during the Seljuk and especially Ottoman periods. Sultan Ahmet also imported domestic tulip bulbs from the Netherlands.

The gardening book Revnak’ı Bostan (Beauty of the Garden) by Sahibül Reis ülhaç Ibrahim Ibn ülhaç Mehmet, written in 1660 does not mention the tulip at all, but contains advice on growing hyacinths and lilies.  However, there is considerable confusion of terminology, and tulips may have been subsumed under hyacinth, a mistake several European botanists were to perpetuate. In 1515, the scholar Qasim from Herat in contrast had identified both wild and garden tulips (lale) as anemones (shaqayq al-nu’man), but described the crown imperial as laleh kakli.

In a Turkic text written before 1495, the Chagatay Husayn Bayqarah mentions tulips (lale).  Babur, the founder of the Mughal Empire, also names tulips in the Baburnama.  He may actually have introduced them from Afghanistan to the plains of India, as he did with other plants like melons and grapes.

In Moorish Andalus, a “Makedonian bulb” (basal al-maqdunis) or “bucket-Narcissus” (naryis qadusi) was cultivated as an ornamental plant in gardens. It was supposed to have come from Alexandria and may have been Tulipa sylvestris, but the identification is not wholly secure.

Introduction to Western Europe

Although it is unknown who first brought the tulip to Northwestern Europe, the most widely accepted story is that it was Oghier Ghislain de Busbecq, an ambassador forEmperor Ferdinand I to Suleyman the Magnificent. According to a letter, he saw “an abundance of flowers everywhere; Narcissus, hyacinths and those in Turkish called Lale, much to our astonishment because it was almost midwinter, a season unfriendly to flowers.”

However, in 1559, an account by Conrad Gessner describes tulips flowering in Augsburg, Swabia in the garden of Councillor Heinrich Herwart. In Central and Northern Europe, tulip bulbs are generally removed from the ground in June and must be replanted by September for the winter. It is doubtful that Busbecq could have had the tulip bulbs harvested, shipped to Germany and replanted between March 1558 and Gessner’s description the following year. Pietro Andrea Mattioli illustrated a tulip in 1565 but identified it as a narcissus, however.

Carolus Clusius planted tulips at the Vienna Imperial Botanical Gardens in 1573. After he was appointed director of the Leiden University’s newly established Hortus Botanicus, he planted some of his tulip bulbs here in late 1593. Thus, 1594 is considered the date of the tulip’s first flowering in the Netherlands, despite reports of the cultivation of tulips in private gardens in Antwerp and Amsterdam two or three decades earlier. These tulips at Leiden would eventually lead to both the Tulip mania and the tulip industry in the Netherlands.

Carolus Clusius is largely responsible for the spread of tulip bulbs in the final years of the sixteenth century. He finished the first major work on tulips in 1592, and made note of the variations in colour. While a faculty member in the school of medicine at the University of Leiden, Clusius planted both a teaching garden and his private garden with tulips. In 1596 and 1598, over a hundred bulbs were stolen from his garden in a single raid.

Between 1634 and 1637, the enthusiasm for the new flowers triggered a speculative frenzy now known as the tulip mania. Tulip bulbs became so expensive that they were treated as a form of currency, or rather, as futures. Around this time, the ceramic tulipiere was devised for the display of cut flowers stem by stem. Vases and bouquets, usually including tulips, often appeared in Dutch still-life painting. To this day, tulips are associated with the Netherlands, and the cultivated forms of the tulip are often called “Dutch tulips.” The Netherlands have the world’s largest permanent display of tulips at the Keukenhof.

Technical Details

This image was captured using a Canon EOS 5D MkII using an EF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens.  Exposure settings were at 1/125 second at f/6.3 and 400 ISO.

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Flowers

A dandelion is a dandelion

Welcome to the seventh installment of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!  As Spring is everywhere in the northern hemisphere, I felt inspired to doing a theme that comes with the season: Flowers!

Of course, the beauty of flowers in their many forms should make it easy to create a stunning photograph of them…  Then again, what makes for a great floral image, as opposed to a rather pedestrian one?

I my opinion, the first thing with any flower photo is that it should be exposed properly, ensuring that there is good sharpness and contrast to the image (there are exceptions to this, when creating more abstract floral images).  Composition should not be forgotten, as poor composition will detract from the power of the image.  And a bit of creativity does help 🙂

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Dandelions

For those who’d like to participate in this weekly challenge, the rules are the following:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please use the tag #fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week
  • Have fun creating something new!!

With this topic, I’m confident that there will be many great images!

Technical Details

This image was captured using a Canon EOS 5D MkII using an EF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens.  Exposure settings were at 1/125 second at f/7.1 and 400 ISO.