Category Archives: Nature

I’m pretty sure I’m not buying

Picture of the Moment

Recently—last night!—I discovered the publish-in-the-future function of WordPress, so if a post pops up on my blog at, say, midnight plus one minute, that’s not me!

I’m still sorting through the billions and billions and billions of pictures from my 476-mile journey through Southern California on August 12. Here is one of my favorites:

I'm not buying

I don’t know what they are farming out there, but I’m pretty sure that whatever it is, I ain’t buying….

I’m still exploring special Photographic Art effects for that picture because the vastness of the landscape, the beauty of the sky, and the barren “farm” is just begging for some very special effects.

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At least you can tell which way the wind is blowing

Picture of the Moment

Having lived in several large cities—Houston, Detroit, Philadelphia, San Francisco, San Diego—throughout my life, I am accustomed to large airports with planes landing and taking off every thirty seconds from 6:00 a.m. to midnight.

I find that many smaller airports don’t have quite the amenities of their big brothers, such as the Ocotillo Wells Airport about ninety miles due east of San Diego. Looks like this:

IMG_7869 ocotillo wells airport faa framed

No vending machines…. no outlets to charge one’s phone or laptop computer…. no water fountains…. no restaurants…. no restrooms…. no lounge to catch up on news, weather, and sports…. no hard surface runways…. no baggage claim…. no ticket counters…. no strip search to get into the airport….

….heck, no airplanes!

But at least you can tell which way the wind is blowing.

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Fire on the horizon (also called “sunrise”)

Picture of the Moment

When I started composing my post this morning about the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, I realized that I, uh, didn’t have any pictures of the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center. Or at least, none that I could find.

That was at 5:00 a.m., so I jumped in the car and headed to Balboa Park. The sun was due to come up around 6:00 a.m., and the park would not yet be crowded, so I should be able to get back home by 7:30 a.m.

And I did, even though I waited around for 15 minutes to get these two pictures:

Fire on the horizon

Sunrise in San Diego's Balboa Park on Sunday, 9-14-14

There are exactly fifteen minutes between the two pictures.

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Monochrome photography with a touch of natural color

Picture of the Moment

When I was growing up, color movies and television were not quite mainstream yet. I watched initial episodes of “I Dream of Jeannie” and “Bewitched” in black & white, but being was oh-so-happy when we got a color television and the shows also were in color. After all, the world is in color.

So while I’m not really into black & white photography, or “monochrome” as it seems to be called today, I do occasionally find the really interesting picture that is basically black & white but has a little color thrown in to make things interesting.

Such as this picture:

Rental sailboats

I loved the overcast sky creating dull gray sand and water, contrasted by a slight pinkish tinge in the low sky from the sunset, the green fronds of the palm trees, and those beautiful rental sail boats.

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Christmas is just around the corner

I livew in my own little world

I have a propensity to repeat certain things frequently, so much so that Julian asked me about my “sayings.” I seriously doubt that any of my sayings are original. Rather, I think I picked them up from other people or from TV shows and movies, and through the years they have simply become a part of me.

One of my favorites that I will use when someone is sad or depressed is, “Christmas is just around the corner.” That gets a laugh, or at least a chuckle, in June and July. Time does go by so fast, though, that “Christmas will be here before you know it.”

As I was cataloging pictures this morning, I came across two Christmas trees, albeit not the type of Christmas trees which you probably just visualized. Here are my two Christmas trees:

Plantus unknownii

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Friday Flower Fiesta

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Friday Flower Fiesta (9-12-14)—Bearded and wild

Friday Flower Fiesta

Part of my youth was spent living in northern Utah, places like Hyrum, Wellsville, Logan, and Brigham City. There is a significant difference between the climate of northern Utah and that of San Diego.

One of my favorite flowers that grew very well in Utah was the iris. We have a wild iris that grows here in San Diego, and while it is pretty, it’s just not as awesome as the irises from Utah. About the only time I see something like a bearded iris is near the coast where it’s cooler all the time, and on the campus of San Diego State University which has become a pretty good arboretum over the last four or five years.

Here are some of my favorite iris pictures in my collection:

#1 Wild Iris stamp

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#2Wild Iris

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#3
Purple iris

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#4
Purple iris

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#5
Iris at the San Diego Zoo

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#6Iris from Weidner's Gardens

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#7

Peach Iris

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#8

Regal Iris

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#9Bearded iris

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#10Wild Iris stampPictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Would you like a date?

Picture of the Moment

My wise old grandmother used to make a wide variety of pies, three of which I disliked intensely: pecan, mince meat, and date. Nuts and meat simply don’t belong in pies. Dates I simply didn’t like.

When I was over in Palm Springs a few weeks ago, I saw many date palms, all of them with their little dates hanging in plastic bags. Looked like this:

Date palms

I thought it interesting that dates apparently are harvested by letting them fall into the plastic bags. Unless the plastic bags help them all ripen at the same time, or something like that. Anyway, what a unique picture of date palm trees, something we don’t see here in San Diego.

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