Bosque in Autumn

bosque in autumn
Bosque in Autumn: Birthdays with Friends

Tim and I share a birthday. For years we have done something on that day. Yesterday was no exception. This year we opted for a quiet day in the bosque and along the banks of the Rio Grande. It was a spectacular, cloudless afternoon. We saw a lot of crows, some geese, and a couple of cranes. Over the next couple of weeks many more cranes will be arriving. Yesterday, above all, colors took center stage.

Bosque
Saturday afternoon in the bosque.
bosque
On the way to the Rio Grande.
dry river bed
The Rio Grande is quite low now, and the shoreline is parched and cracked.
bosque in autumn
Rio Grande, golden cottonwoods, Sandia Mountains
autumn
Tim studying the scene on a cloudless October afternoon.
desert autumn
Laurie along the Rio Grande
bosque cottonwood
Gloriously golden cottonwood branch.
bosque in autumn
Tim photographing a gloriously golden cottonwood branch.
bosque in autumn
“Is it time to eat yet?” Heading back to the house after an afternoon walk in the bosque.

Silver, one of the Price cats, seemed to be watching for his people’s return. As you can see, Tim had cameras with him.

cat
Silver was waiting for his people to return.

To see what happened next, check out Tim’s blog

Rio Grande
Layers of desert beauty.

Finally, thank you for visiting and sharing the beauty of the high desert in October. 🙂

Cosmos in Black and White

cosmos, black and white photography

I tend to prefer color in floral photography. However, every now and then an image seems to call for black and white conversion. I often use black and white when I want to show the structure of a particular flower.

Cosmos are vibrantly colorful flowers. I usually present them that way. But the petals of the variety ‘Seashells’ have fascinating structure. I wanted to show a ‘Seashells’ cosmos in black and white to share that structure.

Finally, black and white sometimes seems cooler on a hot summer day. 😎

Photography, Butterflies, Flowers, Friends

phtography, flowers

Photography, butterflies, and flowers have been favorite subjects over the years. Over the years I have photographed them at the Albuquerque Botanic Garden and at the Tucson Botanic Garden. But being with friends always adds to the pleasure. Several years ago Tim Price, my mom, and I went to the east side of the Sandias to watch a horse shoeing competition, which was fascinating. However, the standout part for me of that “photographic excursion” was finding bushes swarmed with all kinds of butterflies. Most of all, though, trips to the Price home provide many photographic opportunities.

Yesterday, July 13, was another fun day. As I drove in, Tim was already photographing flowers and butterflies. If you follow his blog, Off Center and Not Even, you will be able to see some of his images from yesterday.

photography, butterflies, flowers
Photographing Butterflies in Corrales

At this time of year, different flowers are a peak bloom compared to those that bloom in spring and fall. The Shasta Daisies appeared fresh and clean. They were delightful.

photography, flowers
Shasta Daisies at the Price Home in Corrales
A Little Butterfly

Although it was mid-afternoon, a few butterflies were active. Tim was making a video recording of a tiny butterfly I was not familiar with. Even under the best of circumstances, photographing black and white in a color setting can be difficult. Adding to the difficulty is harsh mid-day sun. I consider these to be from a learning situation. 🙂

photography, butterflies, flowers
Can You See the Butterfly?

Although I had taken my macro lens, my all-purpose 24-105mm lens is what was on the camera. I didn’t want to risk the butterfly being gone if I took time to change lenses. Therefore, this image is a crop of the one above to show a “close-up” of this little butterfly. I could not show one of the unique adaptations of this butterfly: a rear end that resembles a front end. However, you can see the beauty of this little guy (girl?)

photography, butterflies, flowers
Close-Up of Butterfly on Shasta Daisy
Survivor

This black swallowtail has seen some tough times. But, it was feeding voraciously on this butterfly bush, stocking up to live another day.

butterflies flowers
“Survivor” – Black Swallowtail on Butterfly Bush
On the Deck

The Prices are gourmet cooks. What they prepare is the best of its kind I have had anywhere. Certainly that was true for yesterday’s entree, Jamaican Jerk Pork.

Laurie Carving Jamaican Jerk Pork
Laurie Carving the Jamaican Jerk Pork
Laurie Cutting the Jamaican Jerk Pork into 2 Inch Chunks

Certainly, this was an incredible dinner!

Moreover, the weather added its special touch. The afternoon had been hot; this is July. As we sat down, a typical July thunderstorm blew in. We enjoyed the cool down. After that, a brilliant and long lasting piece of rainbow appeared. Perfect!

It was a great day. The kind of day I have come to expect when invited to Corrales.

Added Note

When I ask the Prices what I should bring, the response is usually Blueberry Pound Cake. But one of the parrots seems to know what it is and like it too. Tim shared this today:

(The parrot) saw I had a donut, and started screaming for a piece of it. So I thought. I gave him a piece of donut, red velvet at that. He turned his beak up at the donut and demanded your pound cake. Laurie gave him a piece pound cake and he his happily chomping it down.

In summary, yesterday with photography, butterflies, flowers, and friends was perfect!

More ‘May in Corrales’ Images

roses

May in Corrales is one of those times in the yearly cycle as significant to me as the smell of green chile roasting in early autumn and Balloon Fiesta in October. Corrales is enjoyable all year around, but May in Corrales as the Dr. Huey roses are in bloom has become a ritual. I posted one set of images a couple of weeks ago. These are more images from the Price home on May 18, 2019.

First, Special Cats

Spunk doesn’t mind being photographed – if the mood strikes him. Therefore, I have more photos of him than the other Price kitties. On this day one of the black cats let me take a photograph too.

cat
Spunk, The Professional Model Cat
cat
Spunk: Playing or Modeling?
cat
One of the Black Cats, Najar, Observing the Goings-On on the Deck

Second, Interesting Plants

Although in May in Corrales the emphasis is on roses, the Price Garden has many other plants. These are a few that attracted my attention.

May in Corrales allium
Allium
May in Corrales honeysuckle
Honeysuckle

Third, Roses

May in Corrales roses
Bud of the Rose, ‘Rio Samba’
May in Corrales roses
Climbing Rose ‘America,’ Cascading Over the Deck
May in Corrales roses
Gorgeous Roses! ‘Cherry Parfait’
This rose in full bloom greeted me when I got to the end of Price Lane and Tim and Laurie’s beautiful gardens.

Regular readers here know how much I enjoy not only Corrales, but also so many things New Mexico has to offer. I hope you are enjoying them, too.

2017 Reflections

This entry is part 1 of 3 in the series Family Genealogy

2017 Reflections

2017 Reflections: how could something that seemed at times to drag on end so quickly? Maybe it was like the brevity of the reflection of the Sandias in the Rio Grande near sunset, on a beautiful day spent with friends Tim and Laurie:

2017 reflections
Sunset Reflections on the Rio Grande

New Year’s Eve also brings my mother’s birthday. Today she turned 98 years old. In December I got a little into genealogy after buying a DNA test kit at a low price on Black Friday. Playing a bit with family trees, I found my mother has a third Great-grandmother who was born in 1782 and lived into 1887. My mother is very competitive, and is determined to outdo this relative in terms of longevity!

2017 reflections
My Mom on Her 98th Birthday

DNA is interesting. I’ll spend time in 2018 figuring out how I’m “49% Irish-Scotch-Welsh-British” when I thought for sure I was 75% German. At the moment I have 465 “matches”of fourth cousins or closer (I don’t know who all these people are!). Additionally, two of those are third cousins I feel like I should have known but even my mother had not heard of. DNA does not lie!

Reflections on Roses: In 2017 The ARS Board of Directors, approved Rules and Guidelines for Judging Rose Photography. I have posted a series of PowerPoint Presentations for this at Southwest Desert Gardening. The series is also posted at rose.org That was a nine-year commitment, much of it spent swimming upstream! Was it worth it? I’m still reflecting on that.

Photography in 2017: I exhibited locally this year, at ANMPAS in April, the Corrales Fine Arts Show in October 2017, and Shades of Gray in December 2017.

I did a couple of series as well. “Insects amongst the Flowers: A Microcosm of Life, Work, and Death” was a lot of fun! (Click on the link to see the series.)

As always, Light was a favorite subject. Crepuscular rays continue to fascinate me. Here is a slideshow of crepuscular rays in 2017:

If you would prefer to just look at the images, you may view the gallery here.

The last moon of 2017, not quite full, gives of hint of the beauty to come in 2018!

2017 reflections
Last Moon of 2017

Tomorrow, January 1, 2018 the moon will be a full super moon. Even more exciting is the Super Blood Red Blue Moon that will occur on January 31. Here in Albuquerque, totality will occur in very early morning and in a part of the sky for which I do not have a clear view. I’m going to spend some time figuring out how can get a good view and stay relatively warm. 🙂 )))))))))) (The Blood Red Moon of 2015 was at a convenient time, and I could sit on my back porch eating strawberries and drinking tea while photographing it. Not this next one…)

As 2017 fades away, 2018 promises much to enjoy.

Finally, I would like to thank Oli Robbins for a very kind biographical narrative in the Sandoval Signpost. It was a great end to 2017.

Wishing each of you an enjoyable, calm, peaceful New Year, full of joy. ~ Susan

Sunday Musings

Hover Fly

Sunday Musings

Sunday Musings: return to Standard Time, Marigold Parades past, the fascinating world of insects… First of all, today marks the return to Standard Time in the US. Although it is not quite so awful now that I am retired, I remember the long winter months of driving home in the dark at 5:00pm. Because daylight hours are already shorter, the long nights seem even longer. Regular readers here know I am a lover of light. So, the fall time change is not something I welcome. People ask why the Winter Solstice is not my least favorite day of the year. That is simple: the next day, the hours of daylight start to increase. But, enough of that…

The Marigold Parade

More Sunday musings: Albuquerque’s Marigold Parade tends to fall on the same day as the change to Standard Time. Now there is more than a bit of brightness. The South Valley has managed, so far, to keep it as its own. While some photographers focus on the wonderfully painted faces, I have always found the cultural statements especially fascinating. To me, the 2012 and 2013 parades were especially vibrant and creative. In contrast, the overall political mood just before the 2016 election dampened, in my opinion, the Marigold Parade. I have not publicly shown any of my images from last year. Here are a few “postcards” from previous Marigold Parades. To see large views, first click on the image. Then, on the new page, click on the dimensions shown, and you will see a detailed image.

Ofrenda (“altar”) at the West Side Community Center. I especially love the Sandia Casino bingo marker!

sunday musings marigold parade
Ofrenda

In the park before the start of the parade:

sunday usings marigold parade
Muertos y Marigolds

Painted Faces and Lowriders

sunday musings marigold parade
Painted Faces and Lowriders

Painted Faces, Low Riders, Ofrendas

sunday musings marigold parade
Marigold Parade Potpourri

I think every New Mexico parade has lowriders – “low and slow for show.” The Marigold Parade certainly features them.

Sunday Musings marigold parade
Ubiquitous Lowriders

Political Statements

Sunday Musings marigold parade
Marigold Parade and Politics

Kids and Families Are Active Participants

sunday musings and marigold parade
Marigold Parade and Families

I did a series of Kindle ebooks about Albuquerque’s Marigold Parade and Dia de los Muertos obsrvances. These are at Amazon:

The Joys of Macro Photography

Another Sunday musings macro photography is fun. This summer I worked a bit more with macro photography. I have a few images that surprised me. You have already seen the hover fly. Although I did not know what it was at the time, I was pleased with the image from the time I first saw it on the computer. In real life, I could not tell what was going on. For all intents and purposes, it appeared the insect was making love to the flower. I took around 20 images, and this is the only one that clearly shows what was going on. The hover fly was gathering nectar from a tubule of the Mexican Sunflower. It was stabilizing the tubule with its front appendages, and drinking the nectar through its specialized “suctorial proboscis.”

Hover Fly
Hover Fly on Mexican Sunflower. Note the specialized “suctorial proboscis.”

I was very happy late last week when CanonUSA on Twitter tweeted

Canon USA Imaging

@CanonUSAimaging

We’re happy also! We love the detail! This photo has been selected as #CanonFavPic

This image has definitely been added to my portfolio.

Enough musing, time to get to work. I hope you are enjoying your weekend, and that we all get through winter and standard time without too much major depression. 😐

Feeling Winter

Feeling Winter

Feeling winter? The weather in Albuquerque is still that beautiful autumn weather those of us who live here love so much. But, a change – hopefully brief – is coming. You know, the cold wind and significant drop in temperature. We know we are very lucky here. Even in the midst of true Winter, we will have sunny and often warm days. But I tend to turn inward in winter. I can feel winter coming.

feeling winter
New Mexico Autumn (Click to Enlarge)

Others’ Thoughts on Feeling Winter

“October extinguished itself in a rush of howling winds and driving rain and November arrived, cold as frozen iron, with hard frosts every morning and icy drafts that bit at exposed hands and faces.”
~ J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

“But if I was still alive, I’d have a damned fine day despite the rain, despite the depression, think of something you like doing and do it!…As for me, if I was still alive, I’d have a great cup of coffee, a nice breakfast, then I’d take a drive, walk around, smoke a cigar, eye the pretty ladies…hmmm, nice lunch, yes sir! Read a good book and listen to music, maybe hang out with friends, watch some baseball on TV, love good conversation…and maybe end the night with a little romance. You know what I mean? Live, live everyday, every night, then when you get over here on the ghosty side, you’ll say like me, hey, I did pretty damned good. I hardly moped around at all. I enjoyed my precious human life to the full! Yes sir, I sucked the marrow outta them ribs! ~ Jim Stallings, If I Was Still Alive

For me, I have stockpiled what seem like endless photographs I can edit, maybe composite, play with through the cold and dark days of winter. And before Winter truly sets in, I have more photography to get done.

Finally, make the most of your day!

29th Old Church Fine Arts Show

2015 fine arts show

The Corrales Visual Arts Council holds Fine Arts Show each year during Albuquerque’s International Balloon Fiesta. The show is held in the Old San Ysidro Church, particularly beautiful in autumn. The show opens after the morning’s balloon events, and closes in time for you to make it to the evening’s balloon events.

Autumn Cosmos

Autumn Cosmos

Autumn Cosmos

Autumn cosmos: cosmos here in Albuquerque really come into their own in the fall. They are beautiful in their own right. In addition, goldfinches, finches, and even humming birds like them. More than that, butterflies, bees, and other pollinators like them. Also, they come in a wide variety, and many reseed themselves. More than that, they grow in poor soil. Therefore, they make a great annual in the high desert for many reasons. Yesterday they seemed to sparkle.

Autumn Cosmos
Cosmos Against a Beautiful Sky, before the Storm
Autumn Cosmos
Autumn Cosmos
Autumn Cosmos
Autumn Cosmos

Every now and then I see a package of seeds for a variety new to me. This year I tried “Seashell Mix.” As a photographer, I love them! As a gardener, I must note the germination rate was rather low. Will they reseed themselves? Although I do not yet know, I do plan to plant them again next year.

I am continuing to have fun playing with a new program. I first tried it with Autumn Roses. Here is something with the seashell variety.

autumn cosmos
Old Friends

For friends here in New Mexico, enjoy this beautiful autumn weather and *rain,* and the flowers so abundant at present.