Category Archives: Flora

SNIPPETS (10-21-14)

Snippets

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

snip-pet: a small piece of something

Snippets: mini blog posts

SNIPPET 1

For the past six months, I have been visiting up to 400 blogs a day and leaving likes and comments. That takes time.

With Julian gone (see Someone’s missing from Photographic Art), I need to use the four hours a day that he was working to find a substitute for home inspections (my main source of income) that will pay my bills. That means I’m going to have to cut down on blog visits.

Since I’m following 3,302 blogs, the result is that it’s going to be a longer time between my visits to your blog.

My records (yes, I really am that AR!) indicate that over the course of my WordPress blogging (since January 7, 2012), I leave one comment for every four LIKEs. I’m going to change that and try to make it one comment for every like.

For the near future, then, blog camping is on an extended vacation, but I hope to make up for it by leaving more comments when I do visit.

SNIPPET 2

Ever since Random Acts of Kindness came about (Wikipedia says it was 1982 or 1983), I have been a huge fan.

Well, last Thursday at 2:40 p.m. I had a tire blow out at a high rate of speed. Having never experienced that before but having visualized it hundreds of times, I had no problem slowing down and getting off the freeway.

I pulled onto a side street in front of a high school and proceeded to try to change the tire. My left shoulder is not capable of provide the torque necessary to operate the jack to raise a 4,400-pound car and untighten the five lug nuts.

I was hot and sweating by the time school started letting out at 3:00. A teenage girl stopped, said hello as she was looking in her backpack, and pulled out a bottle of water, giving it to me along with her kind words, “I know it’s hot out here and you look like you’re struggling.”

Well, I was struggling so I gave up and called AAA to change the tire for me.

I don’t know the girl’s name or even the name of the high school, but I wanted to give a shout-out to some fine parents raising that girl, not to mention to that fine girl herself.

SNIPPET 3

I moved to San Diego in April 1993 specifically so I could live my life as an openly gay man, something I didn’t see myself doing in my native Texas.

Never in my wildest dreams 21 years ago did I think I would ever be legally married, yet that happened when Jim and I got married, legally, in California on October 30, 2008. Prior to that, we had dated for 2 years, lived together for 9 years, and were domestic partnered (such an ugly term) for 5 years.

As of a few days ago, gay marriage is now legal in 31 states and the District of Columbia, covering about 61% of the American population.

gay marriage

It’s only a matter of time before gay marriage is legal across the land. I’m going to guess less than two years.

What amazes me is that gay marriage was legal in Iowa before California, and that Utah won’t be the last state carried screaming and kicking into the modern world. I’m predicting that the southeast will be last, all joining at the same time due to an Appeals Court decision covering those states, basically a repeat of history from June 12, 1967, when the United States Supreme Court declared anti-miscegenation laws unconstitutional:

Interracial marriage

SNIPPET 4

California allows permanent voting by mail:

California mail ballot

It doesn’t mean that I have to return my ballot by mail, but I can. I usually simply drop it off at a polling place on election day since there’s one just two blocks from me.

I was a registered Republican from 1976 to September 2013. I was trying to work within the system to change the Republican Party, but with the advent of the so-called Tea Party taking over control of the Republican Party, I finally gave up and registered as a Democrat last year.

Today I will be filling in those little dots on my ballot.

SNIPPET 5

I have finished my first Photographic Art calendar. This will be the one that I print and hang on my wall:

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I plan on creating several more calendars:

Birds
Butterflies
Little cats
Big cats
Dogs
All other wildlife
Sunrises & sunsets
Orchids
Roses
Hibiscus
All other flowers
Scenes from San Diego County
Railroads & Trains
Custom (you pick any 12 Photographic Art from my Fine Art America galleries)
Double Custom (you provide 12 of your own pictures)
Stamps (pictures will be framed like stamps)

Note that calendar weeks begin with Monday and end with Sunday, keeping the weekend together.

I will be offering two versions: one without designations such as New Year’s Day, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day…. Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. and one with such designations.

I have plans for one other version but it will be complicated to produce so I’ll not announce that yet, waiting until I’m sure I’m going to do it. I’ll do January this week and then decide.

I have looked at calendar-creating software online and am not happy with any of it. I have also looked at prices to buy calendars and can assure you that I will price my digital calendars for less. I am also considering having some printed for promotional purposes, maybe even for sale. I’ll keep everyone informed.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Friday Flower Fiesta (10-10-14)—Day lilies

Friday Flower Fiesta

My home inspection this morning was at a house with beautiful gardens.

Each plant had a name plate next to it.

The owners’ speciality was day lilies, so I thought I would feature day lilies in today’s Friday Flower Fiesta.

Until I visited the Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden a year ago, I had no idea that there were so many beautiful day lilies.

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Day lily

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Day Lily

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Daylily

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Daylily

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Daylily buds

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Daylily

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Daylily

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden
 Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Day lily

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Freeway day lily

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Day lily

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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More from the Southern California high desert

Out & About

My last set of scenes from the Southern California high desert:

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Southern California high desert

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Zoey the Cool Cat

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Cactus & succulents rule!

Out & About

Late last month I went to a Woody gathering at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas. I got there well before they opened, so I walked around nearby neighborhoods looking for good subject for Photographic Art. One of the houses that I found looked like this:

Encinitas home

image002.jpg

As you can see, it has nothing but cactus and succulents in its landscaping. Long-time readers know that I’m a big cactus and succulent fan. I spent a couple of hours taking pictures of his garden. Here are some of my favorites, made into Photographic Art:

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Cactus & succulents rule!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Do you have Bare Wall Syndrome? Need a unique gift?
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.

photograhic art taking pictures making art

Friday Flower Fiesta (10-3-14)—Size doesn’t matter

Friday Flower Fiesta

Up until last night, I have been giving my work away to people who asked for it so they could use it on book covers, as screen savers, to make quilts out of, as publicity photos, and more….

Since I’m now trying to eke out a living selling my work at Fine Art America, I’m no longer going to provide things for free. That doesn’t mean that I’m going to turn into a crass, mean individual. No, it just means that I need to recognize the value of my work and force others to recognize it, too.

Thus, I’m putting a value on all my Photographic Art of $49 each.

However, in the interest of good marketing relations, if YOU are reading this, now (October 3, 2014) or anytime in the future, and if YOU would like any individual Photographic Art, simply contact me at photographicart@russelrayphotos.com, tell me what Photographic Art you want and why. Once I have that information, the digital Photographic Art file is yours for just $20. Payment has to be made through PayPal unless you can stop by my place with check, cash, or money order.

If you buy any of my Photographic Art at Fine Art America, you’ll also pay $20 over there. Printing, matting, framing, etc., at Fine Art America is whatever they charge. I have no control over their costs, but my markup there is $20. My markup on size is nonexistent; after all, it’s a digital file. $20. That’s it.

Flowers tend to be the Photographic Art most requested, so for today’s Friday Flower Fiesta, let’s look at some of my flower Photographic Art that, except for any incidental framing here, is available Fine Art America:

Aloe flower buds

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

African tulip tree

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Azalea

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Iris at the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College in San Diego, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Beauty

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Flower & Bee

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

California tree poppy being visited by honey bees

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Cane-like Begonia

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Bearded iris

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Bird of Paradise

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Lily of the Nile

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

White Daffodil Flowers

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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La Quinta Resort & Club

Out & About

I have only played one game of golf in my life. That was in 1994 when some friends from Texas came to visit me here in San Diego. I took them to San Diego’s best course, Torrey Pines, which is where Tiger Woods won his last major championship, the 2008 U.S. Open. Greens fees at the time were $35.

I shot a 154 while my friends all shot in high 90s. As I pointed out to them, though, since par was 72, I got two rounds of golf for $35. They only got one. They didn’t think that was funny. Oh, well….

On my 476-mile journey through Southern California on August 12, one of my goals was to go to La Quinta to see Kathy Schowe. Kathy played golf for Texas Tech University. She’s a Realtor in La Quinta (Schowe Properties), which is arguably California’s most golf-centric community. Her realty office is located behind a high wall and a gated entry with security by a real person.

The high wall surrounds a beautiful golf course, La Quinta Resort & Club. Looks like this:

Golf in the high desert of La Quinta, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Golf in the high desert of La Quinta, California

Although I never played golf, I did hang out on golf courses in Texas with my golfing friends because they would let me caddy (great friends always let others do the work….).

Golf courses in Texas often have a diverse collection of flora, so much so that some of them could be considered arboretums or botanical gardens. The course on the campus of Texas A&M University comes immediately to mind. It was across from the Forestry Building where I had most of my classes, and we often would go to the golf course in our tree identification classes.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Friday Flower Fiesta (9-19-14)—Almost all white

Friday Flower Fiesta

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I have never been a huge fan of all-white flowers like my wise old grandmother was.

When I went to my first prom, which was in the ninth grade, she bought a corsage for the girl whom I was taking.

The part of the orchid that I could see through the little cellophane window made it look like an all-white orchid.

I was so disappointed.

I wanted something colorful.

However, when I opened the box, that orchid was not all-white.

It had splashes of color, like this:

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I have always remembered that orchid, much more so than the girl I took to the prom……..LOL

Here are some more nearly all-white orchids:

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Orchid

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Need a unique gift?
Visit Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.
photograhic art taking pictures making art