It was a bright, sunny day in the mid-west. So, I took full advantage of it and spent most of the day outside. This morning I drove to Fulton, IL to see if I could spot some migrating waterfowl. I wasn’t very successful since it is hunting season, and I could even hear the hunters firing their guns. However, there were a few mallards that outsmarted the hunters:)
Male and Female Mallard
Juvenile Bald Eagle
This afternoon I went for a hike at Prairie Park with the focus being to gather things I could use to create a fall arrangement. There were no blooming plants, so I worried that there wouldn’t be any color for the arrangement. Instead of adding flowers to my arrangement, I decided to use bittersweet for color.
Ever since I was a small child I have been totally creeped out by these big yellow spiders! The thought of having it touch me sends chills down my spine! However, I have learned to appreciate the true beauty of this eight-legged creature:)
Ahhh….I love three day weekends! There is a day for the “must-dos”, one for the “need-to-dos”, and one more for the “want-to-dos”! Today was my want-to-do day, so I headed north to see if I could see any migrating waterfowl. These blue-winged teals were really far away, so the sharpness of the photo is not the best, but I thought it was so beautiful with the fall back-drop that I had to share it.
As I was driving along the Mississippi River I spotted this gathering of cormorants. Something about the spacing of the birds along this log really fascinated me. It is almost as if they have a line for their own personal space. My brothers, sister, and I did the same thing in the backseat of the car when we were kids:)
Great Blue Heron
The egrets and herons were out and about today. There is something about these beautiful birds that really draws me in. I always have to stop and take a few photos!
This three-day weekend had perfect weather – sunny and in the 70s and 80s. What more could you ask for in October when you live in the mid-west!
As fall begins to settle into our area I find myself struggling to find interesting things to photograph. My hikes have become focused on finding the ever dwindling supply of insects, hoping that one will be something that I have never photographed before. In the back of my mind I am always thinking about what I am going to do when the insects are gone. Last year I became interested photographing birds, which I know will happen this year too, but for right now I am kind of between interests. Today I became inspired to embark on a new project. Eliza Waters has a wonderful blog that I visit often. She takes amazing photographs, has inspiring words, and is wonderful blogger. One of the things she has been sharing are some flower arrangements that she creates with a variety of materials that she finds. They are amazing! Today as I was reading her blog I saw her latest arrangement and realized that I had access to all of the plant material she used in the arrangement. Suddenly I was inspired to attempt to create an arrangement similar to Eliza’s just to see if I could do it. So tonight on my hike I decided to gather some of the things that I would need for an arrangement. When I started on my hike I was naturally drawn to the insects that I have been photographing (I brought my camera). I found that it was hard to focus on both photography and looking for plant materials. But after awhile I started really focusing on what plants were in the prairie. I spent 90 minutes on my hike, and the last hour I didn’t take a single photograph! The plants were suddenly at the forefront. Although my arrangement doesn’t come close to the fantastic arrangements that Eliza creates, I am very proud of how it turned out. Thank you Eliza for the inspiration! Please check out Eliza’s blog,where I am sure you will be inspired too!
I love my macro lens! Who knew that the insects that surround us every day are stunning creatures! It wasn’t until I began photographing these small creatures that I realized how truly beautiful they are (even the spiders that send chills down my spine).
The weather is getting cooler, and the vivid green color of Prairie Park has turned to muted browns and tans. As I went for a hike after work today I struggled to find insects to photograph; even the bees were not around. I was very aware that the days of enjoying the tiny creatures of the prairie are numbered; winter is just around the corner.
This beautiful ruby-throated hummingbird has been a regular visitor at my feeder. In fact, she will not let any other humming birds near the feeder. I have enjoyed watching her as she comes and goes, and especially when she oversees “her” feeder. She has not been around the past couple of days. The weather in my area has been much cooler; I am wondering if she has already headed south!