I’m working on an online workshop on food photography. Half the fun has been shopping for props like the antique spoon and silver sugar bowl seen here. I was about to despair of finding affordable and tarnished silverware at the local antique mall when I stumbled upon a vendor with bins full of spoons and forks for $1.00 each. I made a haul of assorted patterns so have lots to choose from now. This was shot with the lensbaby Velvet 85 which is rapidly becoming my favorite lens, especially for macro work.

And for you haiku fans:

Food Photography
Two of my favorite things
Luscious pursuit.


Day 97 – Common Mergansers


Merganser Haiku

Common Merganser

You look so unlike your mate

Could God not decide?

-Jeanne Hoadley

Well, not many poems about merganser’s that’s for sure. I even had a Mary Oliver poem picked out but I could not find it online and I was not about to type the whole thing in. So, you get my Haiku instead. I decided since it is the last week of the project I should pull out all the stops and go to my favorite places to photograph. So, in spite of being a major snow wimp, I made the trek over the Greensprings to the Klamath Basin. There were patches of ice on the road but the Honda performed like a champ and I reminded myself this is why I insist on having all wheel drive. There were lots of hawks, lots of blue herons, a few ducks, and a flock of geese way out in the middle of the lake sitting on the ice. This may be the first time I have been to the refuges and not seen a bald eagle, and this is supposed to be their best time of year. I dithered between a hawk, a heron and this image but I love the expression on the male’s face, turns out he was thinking about flying away, which he did in the next frame.

Day 93 – Christmas Lights


Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

I could not find any good poems about Christmas lights or holiday lights, or the winter solstice or the darkening of the days and we lead up to the solstice but that is what I was thinking about and this quote from Martin Luther King seemed appropriate. It was only recently that it occurred to me that we put up lights around the solstice as much to drive away the darkness as to celebrate the holidays. One more week of increasing darkness and then we can begin to celebrate the coming of the light!

Day 60 – Hay Rake

Hay Rake

Harvest Celebration

Completion of the harvest, is a time to celebrate,
Leaves on trees are yellowing, around the whole estate,
Barns and bins are full to bursting, for winter now is here,
In olden days it was the same, to grow still takes a year.
A lot more hand work then, more men worked upon the land,
Ploughed with horses and acre a day, seed was sown by hand,
Good rotation of all the crops, kept most weeds at bay,
At harvest stood sheaves up in stocks, for two church bells they must stay.
Into bays or ricks were built, threshed out as needed through the year,
Wheat went to the mill to be ground, flour for bread we do revere,
Oats to feed the cattle and horses, and some for porridge bound,
To feed the men and families who, work on the land all year round.
Mechanised now and fewer men, but crops still grow the same,
Sunshine and warmth in the spring, showers to grow good crops the aim,
In nature nothing really changes, seasons come and go,
To keep us on the land we all love, its food for everyone we grow.
-Diego Flammini
I spent the day at an event on an old farm. During my free time I went around photographing all the beautiful things, including some flowers still blooming. But it was this old hay rake that really captured by imagination, evoking how things were done in days gone by.  Which is also the subject of the poem which probably won’t win any prizes but which captured the same spirit of nostalgia I was going for.

Day 54 – Rainbow


“Rainbows: The gift from heaven to us all.”
― Anthony T. Hincks

Well I did feel like I’d been given a gift when I looked out my office window on what promised to be a dreary gray day with not much to recommend it photographically. So, I grabbed the camera and ran outside getting just a couple of shots before it faded away. I can also tell you that there are many many bad poems about rainbows on the internet and no good ones that I could find.

Day 49 – Halloween Parade


Theme in Yellow

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o’-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling.
-Carl Sandberg
Well, I had something else planned for today but a friend asked me to go to the Halloween Parade and I could tell she really wanted to go but didn’t want to go alone so I agreed. And it was fun, and colorful. There were all kinds of costumes and all ages of participants. I especially liked the dogs in costume but didn’t get any good pictures. It was also hard to get good pictures of the parade as it was going by so fast and people were crowding in front. But I like this image for the spirit of fun and color and paradeness. And I like Sandbergs poem for my tribute to Halloween which is a part of autumn, just not my favorite part.

Day 27 – Still Life with Pumpkins


Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

-Robert Frost

Well, I sat down this morning to pick out some poems for my poetry group. When I went upstairs put them into the computer for printing I realized I had lost power. I wasn’t too worried about it until two hours later when I still had no power and it was about time to go and I realized that if I wanted to go anywhere I was going to have to override the garage door opener and wrestle with the garage door. That’s when I gave up and decided to go play in the tiny studio instead, it being too windy to photograph outside. Of course, the power came on 15 minutes after I should have left. Grrr. But anyway, here is one of the poems I had picked out for the theme of Letting Go.

Day 25 – Pink Striped Umbrella

Pink Umbrellaw


Not a remarkable wind. 
So when the bistro’s patio umbrella 
blew suddenly free and pitched 
into the middle of the road, 
it put a stop to the afternoon. 

Something white and amazing 
was blocking the way. 

A waiter in a clean apron 
appeared, not quite 
certain, shielding his eyes, wary 
of our rumbling engines. 

He knelt in the hot road, 
making two figures in white, one 
leaning over the sprawled, 
broken shape of the other, 
creaturely, great-winged, 
and now so carefully gathered in.

– Mike Whte

I took a walk over to the Talent Harvest Festival but didn’t find anything too earth shaking. On the way home I encountered this sidewalk umbrella dancing in the wind with the trees. Not white, not yet in the road but still in harmony with the poem. I am now 1/4 of the way into the 100 days project and starting to wonder what I have done to myself. I felt a little silly going out to photograph when I still have hundreds of images to sift through from New England. But then, if I hadn’t gone out, I would not have encountered the pink striped umbrella.

Day 23 Stone Wall


Mending Wall

Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it,
And spills the upper boulders in the sun;
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
The work of hunters is another thing:
I have come after them and made repair
Where they have left not one stone on a stone,
But they would have the rabbit out of hiding,
To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean,
No one has seen them made or heard them made,
But at spring mending-time we find them there.
I let my neighbour know beyond the hill;
And on a day we meet to walk the line
And set the wall between us once again.
We keep the wall between us as we go.
To each the boulders that have fallen to each.
And some are loaves and some so nearly balls
We have to use a spell to make them balance:
“Stay where you are until our backs are turned!”
We wear our fingers rough with handling them.
Oh, just another kind of out-door game,
One on a side. It comes to little more:
There where it is we do not need the wall:
He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.
He only says, “Good fences make good neighbours.”
Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder
If I could put a notion in his head:
“Why do they make good neighbours? Isn’t it
Where there are cows? But here there are no cows.
Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.
Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That wants it down.” I could say “Elves” to him,
But it’s not elves exactly, and I’d rather
He said it for himself. I see him there
Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top
In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.
He moves in darkness as it seems to me,
Not of woods only and the shade of trees.
He will not go behind his father’s saying,
And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, “Good fences make good neighbours.”

-Robert Frost

It is another travel day today so I decided to grab an image from yesterday mainly because I wanted to use this poem. We learned all about making stone walls at the Stone Trust yesterday so it seemed fitting. This image was taken in the beautiful village of Grafton where we have been staying.

Day 14 – Paul Revere


from The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere

Listen my children and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five;
Hardly a man is now alive
Who remembers that famous day and year.
He said to his friend, “If the British march
By land or sea from the town to-night,
Hang a lantern aloft in the belfry arch
Of the North Church tower as a signal light,–
One if by land, and two if by sea;
And I on the opposite shore will be,
Ready to ride and spread the alarm
Through every Middlesex village and farm,
For the country folk to be up and to arm.”

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

On my last day in Boston you can see that the leaves are only just starting to turn behind this statue of Paul Revere on his midnight ride. We visited the old North Church and really the take home message for the day was that it didn’t happen quite like that. I hate it when it turns out everything I learned in grade school was wrong. But Paul Revere did ride out to warn the patriots that the British were coming and they did (briefly) hang two lanterns in the old North Church when the Brits took off over the Charles River. What else really matters, I ask you? All these subtle nuances are… well, just subtle nuances. What’s sad is that Henry seems to have been actually writing propaganda to get men to enlist to fight in the Civil War.  “Don’t you want to be a hero like Paul Revere?” was apparently the point of the poem. Who learned that in grade school? The older I get the more I miss math where the answers were just right or wrong.