DP Challenge – Shadow

This week’s photo challenge from the Daily Post is Shadow. Shadows made for interesting photos, giving them depth and detail or making them more mysterious. Black and white emphasizes shadow particularly well. Here are a few from the travel archives:

Wells Cathedral cloiser corridor

Wells Cathedral cloisters

Place des Arts Sculpture

Place des Arts, Montreal

Winter shadows

Winter shadows, Halifax

Daily Post Challenge – Framed

This week the Daily Post challenge is to post photos that use the framing technique. Framing helps draw your eye into a photo and can add interesting detail and perspective to the scene. You can use anything that’s available, trees, arches, doorways, look around and be creative. Here’s a few from my travel archives using that technique.

Hidden corner of Old Montreal off Rue St. Paul

Hidden corner of Old Montreal off Rue St. Paul

Fortnum and Mason, down the staircase

Fortnum and Mason, London

Green Gables Barn

Green Gables, Prince Edward Island

St Mary's from altar

Church of St. Mary’s, Lindisfarne

Lindisfarne Castle framed

Lindisfarne Castle

A Lingering Look at Windows – February

Here’s a new one, from the folks at The Day After. Once a month they invite people to share photos of windows and as you all may remember, I love taking photos of doors and windows, from the inside or out. Here are some of my shots, mostly looking out through the windows. See more at this month’s A Lingering Look at Windows, here.

Window detail in the Musical Instrument Museum, Brussels

Through a window in the ruins of Riveaulx Abbey, Yorkshire

Looking through my friend Katherine’s window in her 150+ year old manse, old Quebec City

Ordsall Hall, some parts of the house dating to Tudor times, Salford UK

In a building in the Open Air Museum, Arnhem, The Netherlands

New York City Criminal Court building, with lovely Art Deco style windows.

Travel Theme: Faces

This week at Where’s My Backpack, the travel theme is Faces. I’m not one to take too many portraits of strangers when I travel but sometimes manage from afar or don’t feel as self conscious if the person is performing in some way.  Faces are everywhere, and not just on your fellow humans. Art based on portraits is standard issue. Pretty much all animals, insects, birds and sealife has a face of some sort.

This first photo was taken through a shop window on Ile St. Louis in Paris. There is the shop worker, and little statues of angels, and look closely and you can see all sorts of items in the display with faces.  There are eyes, eyes everywhere!!!!

Shop in Paris

In the Tower of London there was a display of carved wooden heads of kings and queens.

Henry VIII and (I think) Charles I, Tower of London

Next, back to Paris again in the Dali museum in Montmartre. “Him indoors” loves Dali’s art!

Graham and Salvador, Paris

We discovered an exhibit in the Musee des Beaux Arts in Montreal about Napoleon, from a private collection, a few years ago.

Bust of Napoleon, Montreal

And finally, from a local celebration (“Mawio’mi”) held by the Mi’kmaq First Nations, a very fierce looking warrior

Elaborate and traditional dress, Mi’kmaq Mawio’mi

Travel Theme – Off-centre

Ailsa’s travel theme this week is “Off-Centre” where the focus of your photo is not dead centre.  A general rule of  thumb for composing photos is to avoid dead centre when framing a subject. The “Rule of Thirds” is one of the general photography rules that will give you a fairly well composed photo most of the time. A lot of digital cameras even have the guidelines on the screen as an option you can turn on. Sometimes, of course, dead centre works very well. Rules are made to be broken. But in this post, here are some of my “off centre” photos from my travels.

The Maid of the Mist, Niagara Falls

Viking ship replicas in Roskilde Harbour, near the Viking Ship Museum

Mawgan Porth beach, Cornwall, England

On the job in New York City

WordPress Challenge – Blur

I don’t usually keep out of focus or blurry pictures but there are circumstances where it actually adds to the photo. On WordPress’s photo challenge here, you can see an instance where it does work. For me, I like to set up a shallow depth of field focus where something close to the camera is sharp and what’s in the distance is blurred. If it’s very blurred and abstract, it’s a method called “bokeh”. I also sometimes capture motion, for instance, vehicle lights passing by at night, a train passing by or a bird’s wings. Here’s a few motion and depth of field photos:

My favourite ever was an attempt at taking a photo of people walking across an intersection (taken from an overhead walkway).

De feet.

Another favourite. London Zoo. You can see the zebras in the back.

In the London Underground. I pressed the shutter an instant before the train pulled in so caught the people on the other platform.

And finally, taken while waiting for a bus in London

A Word A Week – Raindrop

Sue at A Word in Your Ear pics out a random word each week for a photo challenge. This week’s is Raindrop.

November rain in Manchester

May rain in New York City

WPC: Shadowed

WordPress challenge this week is “Shadowed”. Shadows aren’t always easy to photograph. The bright parts sometimes fool the camera so much that you can’t see anything in the shadows and if you bring out the shadows, then the bright parts are “blown out”. With the wonders of Photoshop and other software you can fix some of that but it’s more challenging to try to get the shot right, out of the camera.  Other shadow shots come from patterns the sun makes on other surfaces through trees, people, windows etc. Here’s some of my favourite shadow shots:

Crowninshield Bently house, Salem, MA

Two from Port Royale, Annapolis in Nova Scotia, a recreation of the original settlement by Samuel de Champlain, 1605


Shadows of the past

And probably my favourite shadow photo, taken against a wall in Bruges, Belgium

In Bruges

Black and White Monday

One of my top 5 things that I did this year was fly to Montreal to see my Bucket List band, Queen (+ Adam Lambert). It was a speed-trip, in on Sunday and out on Tuesday but Montreal in July didn’t disappoint and the concert was the best thing ever!

Brian May of Queen. Singing Love of my Life