a walk in the park

About two years ago I switched from using Olympus cameras to Nikon, which sadly meant that all of my old lenses were useless on the new camera. I’ve slowly amassed a range of lenses but the one thing that was lacking from my Olympus days was a Lensbaby. I had the Lensbaby Muse for the Olympus and while I loved playing with it, the key is that I was “playing.” I can get some fun shots with it, but it’s not a lens that you use on a daily basis– at least not me, there are clearly some photogs that rock the Lensbaby all the time with GREAT results, but I’m not quite to that point. A couple weeks ago, I found a Lensbaby Composer for Nikon used and snatched it up! It’s barely been off my camera since, but yesterday was the first time that I really got to experiment with it. Here’s some of the results (but trust me, like 50x as many photos went straight to the trash!)

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a warm and sunny cemetery

A long time ago, a Flickr contact sent me directions to a couple old Jewish cemeteries that, while being less than 10 miles from my house, I would have never ever found on my own. It took forever for me to get around to them, but last weekend I finally made it and had a bit of fun. There were three cemeteries next to each other in fenced off sections, each a mix of old and new graves. Being Jewish cemeteries, it was a nice change from the crosses and angels that I typically find. I look forward to going back this autumn, there are so many trees I suspect the colors will be wonderful!

the land of the eight-legged monsters

I went hiking in the “wildflower reserve” at Raccoon Creek State Park this weekend… I think it’s the third time I’ve been there and there is an astonishing lack of anything floral, which is quite shocking since you can drive anywhere and seen zillions of wildflowers along the side of the road in Pennsylvania. Either way, it is quite a lovely area and the hiking is nice because unlike some regions of the state “moderate hiking” really means “moderate”! On this little trek through the woods, I spotted an abundance of eight legged critters… so I had to shoot them all! Here’s just a few of my favorites– the ones that were kind enough to sit still for a moment and smile for the camera.

backyard bird paradise

It seems that the lack of indoor pets has led to a bit of an obsession in attracting some outdoor ones. Today, I got four new specialty bird feeders– an oriole feeder (they apparently like oranges and grape jelly), two for nuthatches and woodpeckers (a peanut ball and a twig with holes for peanut butter), and a hummingbird feeder. After a very terrifying bit on the ladder, they are all hung up and ready for guests. So far, I haven’t noticed any action on the new ones but hopefully some more varieties will soon call my yard home! In the meantime, here’s some of my feathered friends amongst the spring bokeh. Much more colorful than the last time I posted shots of them.

(btw, for a closer view on black… just click the picture)

“It was a bright, defrosted, pussy-willow day at the onset of spring, and the newlyweds were driving cross-country in a large roast turkey.”

Ok, quite the random quote, I know. But it’s from Tom Robbins (Skinny Legs and All, to be exact) and I love his books, so when it came up when did a search for quotes about pussywillows, I just had to use it! Now… if someone could just clarify the bit about the turkey with some context, that’d be great (but not as great as if I also took a pic of the turkeys that sometimes visit my yard).