Jez is a guest host this week for Lens-Artist Photo Challenge. Thank you, Jez, for this favorite theme of mine. He said, seeing double is all about reflections.
When I travel, I enjoy taking photos of reflections. There are reflections in the ocean, the lake, the pond, the fountain, the puddle, or the glass window. It’s delightful to take photos with the already perfect mirror images when the water in the pond or fountain is still. It’s equally intriguing to see the wavy reflections in the lake, the river, or the ocean.
I have a collection of reflection images from Spain, China, Hong Kong, Santa Barbara in California, Huntington Library in California, and Portland in Oregon.
This week, Ann-Christine invites us to look at artificial lighting in our photography.
Artificial Light is any light source that is not naturally occurring. Artificial Light includes things like flash light, streetlights, indoor lighting, or other man-made light sources. Technically, the only sources of light that are totally not “artificial” are sunlight, moonlight, and starlight. Ann-Christine learned something new, that candles do not count as artificial light.
The major advantage of artificial light sources over natural light is that we have them under our control. There are many tools for changing their characteristics. Artificial light lets us photograph topics that would be impossible to handle under natural light.
We went to Beijing, Xi’an, and Guilin in China on a family vacation. The tour guide took us to Guilin Crown Cave, which is a magnificent karst cave in Caoping Hui Nationality village about 29 km from Guilin. It is a part of Crown Mountain. The overall length of Crown Cave is 12 km (7.5 miles). The 3 km (nearly 1.9 miles) near Li River has been opened to the public. Stalagmites and stalactites are illuminated by an interior lighting system. Tourist could do sightseeing by boat or bamboo raft, but we went to a walking tour section.
At Key West, Florida, the fog moved in before the sun went down. The colored lights only increased the intensity of the mist in the air. You can only buy Cuban cigars from certain places and some online sites, but we found them in Key West. Hubby bought one and made a few puffs just for the fun of it. The light on his face is from the flash of the camera.
We often drive to Las Vegas for a short getaway and stay at Luxor ever since it was open. I took the following tw0 photos at Luxor. The light source came from the bottom of the statues creating outlining the contour, muscles, shades and shadows of the status.
Christmas is the best time to see artificial lights at night. We enjoyed driving around the neighborhood to see the Christmas decoration and the lighting at night. We also had a fun time taking the Holiday Light cruise at Huntington Beach to see the Christmas lights and the boat parade in the harbor.
The final image is my shot on the TV screen of the New Year’s Eve. Countries around the world incorporated the laser lights with the fireworks in their celebration of the coming of the New Year.
This week for Lens-Artist Challenge #139, Tina invited us to visit our special moments. While there are so many, I would included three events.
Mount St. Helens in Washington state was erupted on May 18, 1980. I was a student at Seattle Pacific University. The 5.1 magnitude earthquake caused a lateral eruption that reduced St. Helens’ height by about 1,300 feet (400 m) and left a crater 1 mile (1.6 km) to 2 miles (3.2 km) wide and 0.5 miles (800 m) deep. It was a major eruption among the 48 states since 1915. The ash drifted over many states and could be seen as far as Chicago. The evacuation was announced before the eruption. Mr. Harry Truman, a caretaker of a resort lodge, refused to leave. He said he belonged to the mountain and would die with the mountain. He, along with fifty-six people were killed.
My family and I went back to visit on September 10, 2016. The mud and debris still filled the river, and the crater was still very much alive. It seemed like nothing or few things would survive. I was in awe to see miles of century-old forests destroyed by the eruption have come back, richer and different from before. There were many beautiful wildflowers. Life overcomes!
I came to the US as a student in 1977. In all the years I was in Hong Kong, I had never visited the Great Wall. In 2012, some family member expressed the interest to take a family vacation in China. I got some tour information from the Chinese Newspaper and made contacts. One tour company offered a private tour with a van and a driver for ten people. After I got the commitment of eight members, I started planning. By the time we set the itinerary, made reservations for air and hotel, three members couldn’t make it. I was a little disappointed. The tour company contacted the tour in China they agreed to accommodate the seven of us. It was a special vacation because I have other countries on my visiting list and may not return to see the Great Wall.
We rarely get to celebrate the birthdays or anniversaries on the day of the event. In 2016, I could plan a trip to Spain in August during our anniversary. When we visited the Mosque of Córdoba, the architecture fascinated me, and I was busy taking photos. The tour moved on without me. It panicked me. Fortunately, my husband is tall, and I spotted him, and quickly merged back to the tour saying nothing.
We were in Barcelona to celebrate our anniversary. I wish to tour inside of Basilica de la Sagrada Familia but the tour didn’t not schedule it. We only had time to take photos. I literally was lying flat on the ground to get the view from the bottom to the top. Of course, my husband was on guard so people wouldn’t step on me and kill me.
The Magic Fountain of Montjuïc (Font màgica de Montjuïc) in Barcelona.
This week, as we are approaching the end of 2020, Amy invited us to share some of the precious moments we have had, before or during the pandemic.
I love travel. I know I won’t return to many places I had been and always treasure the experiences of being there and seeing those places. Yet if I must choose between travel and spend time with family and friends, I choose the latter. It is the relationship that makes the moments precious.
Our family photo which was taken in 2006. One young girl on the left got married a few years ago and now has a baby daughter. The other one on the left just got married last month. The three little ones are in college. Lynton’s dad, second from the right, died 12 years ago.
Eight years ago, we took our family trip to China and stopped by Hong Kong to see my family. Seven of us were in the middle of this photo, with my siblings and their families on the left and right sides. Will’s mom (behind Will, in green) died three years after the trip. My sister, third from right, died last year when we were in Hong Kong for my nephew’s wedding.
This is a group of my lovely lady friends celebrating Christmas in 2019. We missed each other tremendously.
“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.” — Elisabeth Foley
Many of my friends and I were in this chorale last year singing in the annual performance of Messiah. The past weekend would have been the usual schedule for the performance. It didn’t happen this year.
“A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.” – George Moore
This precious photo was taken with my daughter Mercy and granddaughter Autumn last year. We cancelled our trip this year because the Covid cases were worse than when it started.