Monday, February 28, 2011

Day 55, Doberman Art

I saw this piece at a summer art festival in St. Joseph and I just had to buy it. The vibrant colors drew my eye and the subject touched my heart. This Dobie reminds me of my beloved Caesar. How I miss him!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Day 53, Snow? What Snow?

The dogs were having a great time at the dog park this afternoon. I don't think they even noticed the snow falling. I sure did though... brrr!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 52, A Knight in Shining Armour

Just one of the many Polish figures on display in the Panorama Room on the Orchard Lake Schools campus.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Day 51, The American Spirit

The DPS theme this week is "spirit". I thought about this idea for some time before deciding how to interpret it. I finally decided to go with the spirit of America and set off to photograph some U.S. flags. This is the pic I like best of the bunch. It's the U.S. flag, State of Michigan flag, and a third flag... perhaps Wayne County or the City of Livonia's flag. The building behind the flags is the Livonia City Hall.

And then, on the drive home, I passed by this neighbor's house and decided it too deserved to be on my blog for it's spirit... the spirit of peace. Also an America spirit.

DPS image: Spirit

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Day 50, Chocolate Reward

I got the federal and state income tax returns done today and this was my reward... a "Chocolate Stampede" and a steak dinner at the Longhorn Steakhouse. Yum!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Day 49, Wilcox House

Here we have the lovely Wilcox House in downtown Plymouth, overlooking Kellogg Park. It wasn't always lovely though. You can see how badly deteriorated it was before restoration here. It's for sale if you're interested, $4.2 million with the land (2.5 acres), $1.4 million for just the 3,800 sq ft house alone (or if you'd like to try it out while you think it over, you can rent the house for $4,000/month).

Monday, February 21, 2011

Day 48, Results of the Thunder Snow

It was supposed to be a couple inches of snow, followed by some freezing rain, rain, and a couple more inches of snow. Instead it became an all-snow event with thunder snow and a 10" snowfall. How many days till spring?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Day 47, Thunder Snow!

I can't provide you with sound effects but I can share some visuals of what the snowfall rate looks like when a  storm is strong enough to produce thunder snow.

This picture with a slow shutter shows the snowflakes in motion.
Here's basically the same shot using my flash and a fast shutter speed, stopping the snowflakes in mid air.

Here's another view with the snowflakes in motion...
And this one stops some snowflakes and shows motion on others.

My son came over for dinner and here's a shot of his car as he was getting ready to leave.
Here he is brushing the snow off his rear windshield...
And here he is cleaning off a side window. Trying to get a closeup in this heavy snow was really comical!
He's backing down the driveway and into the street. Once he got into the street and was driving away I could barely see the car through the snow.

Thunder snow isn't exactly rare but it isn't frequent either. We hear cracks of thunder from snow storms maybe once every couple, or three years. However, this is the second thunder snow event this winter in our neighborhood. People have an odd reaction when they hear it because it's so unexpected... they clap and whoop and holler, especially people who are outside in the storm!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Day 46, Icy Lake Michigan

The big lake was pounding the ice shelves on shore this morning. Here and there were pockets of ice on the lake but for the most part it was deep blue as far as the eye could see. Storm coming in tonight. The lake will continue to be choppy tomorrow.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Day 44, Spring Fever

Today wasn't the prettiest of days. The sun wasn't shining but it sure was warm. Any time you top 50F in Michigan in February you're bound to find people outside enjoying the warm weather. I parked for just a few minutes along Hines Drive and sure enough, there were people out and about in spring mode. First I saw this gentleman on his bike...

Then along came these gals with their babies in strollers. Notice the lightweight sweatshirts and lack of hats and gloves. Totally not necessary!

And there were many cars driving by with their windows down and stereos cranked. Bring on spring already! We're ready and waiting!!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Day 43, Lake Michigan Dreamin'

I'm dreaming of the Lake Michigan shoreline, and the lighthouses at St. Joseph, and wishing I was there...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Day 42, Whole Mess O' Color

After a whole week of monochrome shots and yesterday's luscious but less than colorful dessert, I figure we're ready for a good bit of color. This mess of color is brought to you from my family room wall.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Day 41, A Chocolate Dream

Happiness is sharing a "Chocolate Dream" with someone you love on Valentine's Day. :-) Brownie, Kahlua, chocolate mousse, whipped cream, and chocolate sauce. Heaven!

DPS image: Romance

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Day 40, Some Fungus Among Us

Shape, texture, repetition. I found this fungus on a fallen tree surrounded by a blanket of snow at the Holliday Nature Preserve. It's even prettier in color, but this is still black and white week (till tomorrow).

OK, tomorrow's here. Here's the fungus in color. The amber hues really pop against the tree bark and snow.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Day 39, And So Begins Winter's Thaw

The sun is shining and it's finally above freezing. We just went through the coldest weather week of this winter and the forecast is for temps in the upper 30s and 40s all next week. The icicles on the house are melting. It's a good thing. Hurry spring!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Day 38, Smacznego!

Homemade (by Chef Kamila) pierogi filled with wild mushrooms from Poland. Yum! I had a lovely time at the Polish party this evening. Pierogi, gołąbki, kielbasa and kapusta, with chocolate babka for dessert. Mmm... In the company of some amazing Polish women!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Day 37, Focused on the Light

If I've heard it said once, I've heard it said a hundred times, "Photography is all about the light."

But truly, it isn't just about the light...

It's also about focus...

And lack of focus.

And getting it just right. :-)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Day 36, View From the Kitchen Window

"God must love calories... he created so many of them!" This little window art was a Christmas gift from my sister-in-law who like me enjoys the finer calories in life. ;-)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Day 35, The Stark Contrasts of Winter

In order to get this picture (^), I had to get in to snow up to my knees.

Which gave me this picture (^) as my DPS theme of the week: Body Parts. Notice the snow clinging to my jeans? Brrr!

But I couldn't stop there because there's all this wonderful winter drama to be captured on a sunny day... blacks and whites and lots of angles.

And still waters reflecting the sky, the clouds, and the river banks.

And so I found myself following the stream in search of the best photo of this day. This one looked so promising with contrasts and symmetry, angles and patterns. But for all it's beauty it lacks story.

So this then becomes the picture of the day. It too has the contrasts, angles, and patterns but it also has the snow covered picnic table. It has a story to tell of a river in a park waiting for summer and people to stop for a visit and frolic along its shores. Sometimes one small element can make all the difference.

DPS image: Body Parts

Monday, February 7, 2011

Day 34, And Then There Were Two

My new computer is up and running! :-) Of course there are hours of setup yet to do but for now I'm just happy to have the new machine out of the box and functional. The two machines will live side by side for a time while the new one gets all it's software and drivers installed and the data migrated.  I've decided to make this week "black and white week" for photos. So you can expect to see more monochrome in the days to come.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Day 33, The Dog Park in Winter

It's cold and snowy but that doesn't diminish the fun of going to the dog park... at least not from Kaj's point of view. He had a great time running and playing with his friends and is now curled up asleep at my feet.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Day 32, And Then Came the Snow

It's snowing harder now than it did during the "blizzard" we had a few days ago. We're forecast to get 3-5" this afternoon. Looks like we'll get it and then some!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Day 31, Sleeping Beauty

Here's my sleeping beauty, aka the Brown Sugar Booger. He's too big to fit all of himself in the sun spot so he sleeps with just his head in it. I couldn't resist the chance to get one more "sleep" picture in this week!

DPS image: Sleep

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Day 30, After the Blizzard

I've got cabin fever! So, I grabbed my camera and set off on a photo shoot of after-the-blizzard photos. The sun came out this morning which made picture-taking all the nicer. :-) Here's my series of Michigan's winter wonderland...

The duck pond is all but frozen over.

Beautiful ice crystals on the branches.

Morning sun shining through the trees. 

It's a little too cold for swimming today. I know, what a bummer!

The sledding hill is open but the kids are all back in school.

Most of the Rouge River is frozen over but here and there you can still find a few pockets of water flowing.

Up close and frosty.

Nooks and crannies of ice and snow.

Good morning Mr. Squirrel!

Holy Mackrel! It's a squirrel convention!

One-room schoolhouse. Reflecting on the old days when kids would have had to walk to school in this frigid weather.

Still cleaning up!

It was a lovely morning to be out and about, cold, but lovely. For the most part, the roads are clear now and the kids are back in school. Officially, Mother Nature dropped 9" of snow on Metro Detroit in the "Ground Hog's Day Blizzard". I doubt if she's done with us either. There's still a lot of winter left even if that ole ground hog did forecast an early spring yesterday!