Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thematic Photographic 121: Yellow

Sunshine Yellow - makes me think of summer, makes me smile.


All that glisters is not gold .... 
these are from a visit to New Zealand's only open-cast gold mine:


A big hole needs a big yellow truck-


My mother used to warn me about this :



 Back to flowers - a beautiful azalea from my spring garden (a bit orange, maybe)



Monday, October 25, 2010

More Savouring


So. I've been playing around in Photoshop with some of the things I like to savour:

Friday, October 22, 2010

Thematic Photographic 120: Savour

What a very intriguing theme this week.

If I were to post pictures of all or even a small percentage of the the things I savour, I'd be here till Christmas - and everyone would have lost interest and hitched a ride elsewhere.

So: pick one. What is better than music, or beautiful paintings, or the beach, or ciabatta, or a chilled glass of a good New Zealand white wine, or a warm apricot just picked ripe from the tree? What is more to be savoured than the smell of freesias, or the taste of espresso coffee? A good book, a perfect poem, an amazing movie? Can I choose anything which rates above my dog racing to greet me when I open the gate, a rib-crushing hug from my son, or the thrill I get from teaching clever, responsive young people?

Too hard.  But I have managed to finally decide that my post will be about something I really delight in, relish, enjoy to the full: travel. I really do savour the thrill of visiting other countries, finding out how people live, touching the past.

Turkey is one of the most interesting places I have ever been.

Shopping precinct, Bursa
Goreme: this woman was making a silk carpet in the traditional manner.

Cappadocia has some of the most amazing natural land formations you'll ever see:


This shot is of the Temple of Zeus at the ancient city of Corinth, in Greece.

 

At the Monastery of St Stephen, actually a convent, high high in the mountains of Meteora in Greece: this was such a beautiful, pleaceful place.
Thanks, Carmi and KBF, for giving me a chance to post some of my travel shots.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Why it's so good to visit other blogs...

Yesterday I was reminded of an old poem which I love but haven't thought about for years.  Someone had asked, in a comment about another poem, if the blogger knew the origin of a line of poetry, which she quoted.  The blogger didn't, but I did!
Off I went on a search to find the complete text, and here it is:

Twilight

I was driving the cows and the frogs were soothsaying,
‘Woe, land and water! All, all is lost!’
It was winter full grown and my bones were black in me.
The tussocks were brittling from dew into frost.

The earth looked at me, ears up in a stillness.
I was nine at the time and a coward by fate:
The willow-trees humped into cringing old swaggers,
And the cows lunged up unicorns, passing the gate.

A sudden wind clouted the nose of our chimney,
It rumbled and bellowsed its sparks in a spray;
I took to my heels in the terrible twilight,
For I thought that the sky was blowing away.

Eileen Duggan

Such clever, lovely phrases and word conjunctions; "tussocks were brittling from dew into frost" - isn't that fantastic?
So then I went looking for a photo which would transmit the coldness of those words. This is the best I could find, but the words are better:

What a verb talent! Clouted, bellowsed, lunged....  Masterful!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Trees: Branched, Part 2

I knew I wouldn't be able to resist posting some actual branches for this week's Thematic Photographic theme (see here to join in).

Palm trees in Kerikeri, in the winterless north of New Zealand:

More from my Aussie trip: an old house, still inhabited, almost hidden in the bush

 




This little guy is totally embranched - a koala, asleep in the top branches of a Eucalyptus tree :


Alexia

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Don't Judge a Book....

But we all do! I do anyway.
One genre of novel I would never read is the historical romance. So I only need to glance at a cover like this one, before moving on :).  I'm sure it's a perfectly lovely book, and that gazillions of people have read and enjoyed it, but the cover tells me straight away that it's not for me.



The cover has a huge role to play in marketing and advertising, and then in gaining readers. I have watched the students I teach when we are making a library visit; most often they briefly scan the cover and quickly return it to the shelf, without bothering to turn it over to read the blurb on the back.  That book has only a split second to grab and hold them.

This post was inspired by a post by Bookman Beattie (see here). The book appeals to me straight away, not just because of the interesting face, but also because of the intriguing 'twist' in the title.  I can't wait to find out!


'On Tender Hooks' by Isabel Samaras available here.

Some covers which have appealed to me recently:

Designed by Reuben Crossman

Designer John Coulthart

Cameron Gibb's design

Designed by Sarah Laing
Designer Tony Palmer

Of course the contents are what matter, but a good book cover is a work of art in itself - and just like any other work of art, liking or disliking it will be a matter of personal taste.

Cheers

Alexia

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Thematic Photographic 118: Branched



I am loving these weekly themes (see Thematic Photographic on Carmi Levy's blog here).
They make me look at the world around me differently, and also send me looking back through photos I've already taken to see if any fit in.
So... branched. Hmm - trees (family and wooden); metal structures; rivers and creeks;  cracks, in the ground, in the sky, in paths and buildings.  Lots of different ideas there.

Here are a few that I've found for this theme.

This guy climbs up my sunroom wall. I love the way his feet branch into gripping toes:

Gecko on the wall

These branching light holders decorate the main street of our small town:
Main street lamp posts

I saw this beautiful bronze shield in the fantastic museum of Olympia, Greece, in April of this year:
Bronze shield, c.500 B. C.

These beautiful catenary arches are in the cellar/museum in Gaudi's 'La Pedrera'.  I love everything Gaudi designed or built, so I really enjoyed my pilgrimage to Barcelona:
La Pedrera, Barcelona



Finally, this "Wind Wand" sculpture, by Len Lye, dances like a long slim twig on the foreshore at New Plymouth, here in New Zealand
Wind Wand by Len Lye


I've got quite a few tree photos I want to put up too, so maybe I'll be branching out and making another post later this week.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Thematic Photographic 117: Parallel

I've been on holiday! Some parallels from the last 10 days in Melbourne, Australia:

Inside the Old Melbourne Gaol

Victoria State Parliament


Flinders Street Station

Artists' names - National Gallery of Victoria

Inside The Block, one of Melbourne's beautiful old shopping arcades

Shrine of Remembrance

Shrine of Remembrance grounds

Tree-top walk, Otway National Park

Eucalyptus bark
 You can join in Thematic Photographic here


Alexia