Nancy Merrill Photography’s blog has a weekly challenge and this week’s theme is Props. It’s often easier to take portraits of people if they have familiar items with them, especially for children to try to keep them focused. People like to show off their things, creations, anything that gives you an idea of who they are. In my post, I’ve decided to show some photos from a historical fort, Louisbourg, in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia where the staff dress in 18th century period costume and portray what life was like in the French fortress in that era. To see more of my visit to Louisbourg, check out my Flickr album.
Ailsa’s travel theme this week is Dark. It’s not always easy to take a night shot without a tripod though at times, a handheld shot that shows blur or camera shake can still work. Here are a few shots from my travels, hand held and with tripod.
Ailsa at Where’s My Backpack has a weekly travel photo theme. This week it’s Hills. While I don’t go hiking or hill walking, we do encounter hills on our drives, train rides, etc. and traversing through cities which almost always have hills. Some more than others. The steepest city I’ve ever been in was St. John’s, Newfoundland, the easternmost province in Canada. The streets soar up from the harbour, some so steep they actually have little staircases in parts of them. Here are a few photos featuring hills.
First, from one of my favourite parts of England, the Peak District National Park
Next up is a view from another of my favourite regions, the Lake District.
Here in Canada, you can’t beat the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia for dramatic scenery.
Then there are the rolling hills of the tiny province of Prince Edward Island.
And last, Sacre Coeur, high on the hill overlooking Paris
Nancy Merrill Photography asks us this week to show a photo with a single subject.. Here are a few I like from the archives.
Where’s My Backpack’s weekly challenge is Playing. Here are some photos from the town of Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia where they have a scarecrow festival every year in the autumn. These critters are scattered all over the town centre. Good fun walking around with hundreds of people in a good mood, cheerfully hunting down the scarecrows. These scarecrows mostly take up the theme of playing, games or music for the most part, or just because I liked them!
The Daily Post Challenge this week is Home, asking people to show photos of where they live, home being where the heart is and all that. Halifax, Nova Scotia is my home, on the east coast of Canada. Halifax has one of the largest ice-free harbours in the world and is home to Canada’s East Coast Navy. There are two large container shipping ports, and oceanographic institute, and a ship building yard. Needless to say, a lot of Halifax’s life is structured around the sea. There are also 5 universities and colleges and it’s the seat of the provincial government. Lots of lakes and beaches, culture, shopping, food and a gorgeous waterfront where there’s always something going on.
The Daily Post weekly challenge is H2O, or water. Water features strongly in my travel photos since many places we travel feature lakes, oceans, canals, fountains etc. because bodies of water attracted settlements. Water provides a living, it provides sustenance, it provides life to the creatures that live in it. It provides transportation and is a source for conversion to power supplies. You can cook in and with it, create beverages, keep yourself clean, travel on it in various types of vessels, you can make a living on or in it in many ways. Water is also reflective which makes a lovely photo, and feeds through fountains which are not only nice to look at but in former days, provided the means for people to obtain water for drinking and cooking.
I mentioned that many settlements are on or near water. Canals are fascinating. In cases like Amsterdam and many other cities and towns in the Low Countries, the sea was forced back and cities were built on canals and islands. There are more cities with canals than the one you think of first, Venice. Amsterdam actually has more canals than Venice. Other cities on the list include Copenhagen, Stockholm, Bruges, Annecy (France), Bangkok, and St. Petersburg. Britian’s city of Manchester has a number of canals which were built in the industrial revolution to transport goods from local factories to the coastline for shipping.
Where’s My Backpack’s weekly challenge is Enlightenment. The idea is to shine a light on what is “noble, brave, generous, gentle and wise about the human spirit”
Libraries – bringing knowledge to anyone. Local libraries are free. There are libraries that contain massive collections of rare documents, accessible to peruse, or for research.
Universities and schools, important sources for enlightenment. Universities and colleges brought philosophy, arts, science and new concepts and new ways of thinking to students. Trinity College in Ireland was founded by Elizabeth I. The colleges at Oxford University date back to the twelfth century. The University in Paris goes back even further. Learning is timeless.
Art has long been considered enlightening. From religious art to art representing ancient legends to the impressionists to modern abstracts and performance art. It’s all very subjective. You cannot write off talent and imagination just because it’s not something you understand or appreciate. Something I’m sure everyone who sees it can be amazed is the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel painted by Michaelangelo.
The invention of the printing press by a German, Johannes Gutenberg in 1440. All publication was done by hand previously, making books expensive and all but inaccessible to anyone but the rich or religious since much of what was published or created was religious in origin. The printing press allowed much easier access though perhaps, at least at first, made the resulting product less aesthetic. If you’ve ever seen any illuminated copies of medieval manuscripts, you’ll know what I mean. this is a page or two of a hand illuminated copy of the Oxford version of The Canterbury Tales and an early Caxton printed copy below it.
Nancy Merrill Photography offers a weekly photo challenge, this week’s is Horizon. From the travel archive:
This first photo was taken on the whale watching cruise we recently took, at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia.
This is another view of the Bay of Fundy, this time near the end of it by Cape Blomidon. Interestingly enough, I just started reading The Birth House by Ami McKay which takes place in Scots Bay around the time of WWI.
An ubiquitous horizon. New York City looking northeast to Queens.
And a view over Bassenthwaite, in the norther part of the Lake District, England.
Ailsa’s travel theme this week is Fierce. This photo came immediately to mind. I took it a couple of summers ago at a Mawi’omi (gathering of tribes) of the Mi’kmaq Indigenous people here in Nova Scotia. I think it was a Canada Day event, actually. The costumes, dancing and music were mesmerizing and it was a great day out. This man looked rather fierce, I thought.
I’ve just got back from some vacation and a road trip or two. I’ll get my notes sorted and start posting some of our adventures soon!