Sometimes you head to an area to scout out a possible site for sunrise or sunset photos and you strike out all together. Like yesterday, driving the impossibly narrow streets near Green Key Beach, looking for a vantage point overlooking the water. I didn’t find one, sorry to say, but as long as I was there I walked to the beach to see if anything was going on. There wasn’t. Just some folks in beach chairs sitting in the sun, and, of all things, a turtle walking along the sidewalk munching on grass. He walked towards me when I sat on a picnic bench to watch him, but then he continued on his way. Just another day at the beach…
I had heard that the sunset can be especially nice after a storm has rolled through, which is what happened yesterday. It was nearly 6:30 when I glanced up and noticed that the clouds had broken up, which left a half hour until sunset. I hadn’t been to Hudson Beach for a while, and at 3 miles from my house I can be there in 10 minutes, I should probably go there more often. The sky was already streaked with reds, but the houses across the inlet looked so perfect in the light that the feature photo is the first picture I took when I got there. That lovely light doesn’t last long. It was a beautiful night.
There has been lots of fall foliage in my Facebook feed lately, but mostly from New England and Michigan. And just today my Facebook memories reminded me of the trees I used to see on my way home from work that I used to claim as fall color, Florida style. So today I rode up to Spring Hill to find the trees, and then headed to the botanical garden to see what was blooming.
I think the color of the trees disappointed me a little, it’s more brown than red. I think that the glimpse of those trees that you see behind houses, or hidden among other trees, always seems to be brighter fall colors. But when I haven’t been up north for a while it feels like fall to me.
The botanical garden was a surprise today. It was early and the flowers were plentiful and loaded with water droplets, and butterflies.
That orange butterfly must have been hungry because he let me get a lot of photos of him. And one photo was straight down on his back, and when I viewed it blown up in the computer all I could do was say, “Boo!” Halloween will be here soon…
And while I was zooming and cropping I loved these droplets too!
That was the name of the class that my friend and I attended today, It was a wonderful class and we stopped on the way home to take pictures. I’d like to say that I tried to apply some of what I learned in the class to the photos I was taking, because you are supposed to visualize the photo you want ahead of time and then make it happen. Beginners ‘spray and pray’, which means you take a zillion pictures and hope you get a good one. I confess, I’m guilty of that. But we had fun today, and practice makes perfect, or so I’m told. I tried to whip them into shape through cropping, at least to some extent.
We got rained on while we were taking pictures at Hammock Park, but we were luckier while we had lunch outdoors by the water. What a nice day…
I was looking at the maps in my phone the other morning, looking for yet another good spot to go to go for sunrise photos. Another close to home spot preferably. And I found a possibility, but unfortunately I missed the turn in the dark so I opted for Green Key Beach instead. Well, not the beach because the gates aren’t open early enough to get all the way to the beach, but I pulled over on the road to the beach. And that was a good thing. Not because the noseeums weren’t out because they were. And from that road you don’t have an especially good view to the east either. But it was low tide and there was a rocky foreground which always helps make a nice shot. And as I stood there with my camera on the tripod waiting to see if the color was going to develop I heard footsteps. It was dark enough that I couldn’t see anyone, but I heard her say hello. Lynn was her name, and we chatted as we watched. She comes there often and says that she sometimes sits and waits across the street and often lots of birds show up in the inlet there right around sunrise. Lots of different birds she said. Including, much to my surprise, spoonbills. And right on cue she noticed that the wading birds we were seeing down the way included a spoonbill or two. I’m quite sure I wouldn’t have noticed them myself since they were in the shadows. But even though the pictures aren’t the best I can at least prove that yes, they were there. As it got lighter they flew off. This will be another frequent stop for me, I hope I see them again.
This black crowned heron was also in the mix, as was a pretty full moon.
Sunrise at the mountains? No, but I do love the clouds that could convince me that there’s a mountain range in the distance. And that’s as much color as there was this morning. These are the sunrises that remind me to stick close to home when it comes to sunrise and sunset photo ops. I’m glad I didn’t drive an hour this morning, or maybe it was a prettier sunrise further south. And when I do choose to drive then make a plan to meet friends there so it’ll be fun one way or another.
But that wasn’t my only trip out this morning. A visit to the Chrysler dealer for an oil change put me close enough to the eagle nest that I couldn’t resist looking for them again. And again the eagles were nowhere to be seen. But I was luckier when I headed to the fishing pier to see what I could see.
I was on the way to my car when I stopped to take the picture of the gull in the sun. But a fisherman came past and asked if I’d gotten a picture of the manatee that was hanging around the fishing pier. The answer to that was no, I had missed that completely. It was a gorgeous day, cool but windy, which made the water choppy and I had to wonder how anyone had noticed the manatee. She had a calf with her too, or so he said. I went back and barely caught her snout as she came up for air for just a second or two. But hey, I saw her, and managed to catch that snout in one of the 20 or so pictures that I took. Sometimes that’s all it takes to make a good day.