happy chickens

black_chicken

on our recent visit to our daughter’s family on the Island
we were introduced to their chickens, incubated, hatched and now almost fully grown

ChickenHouse

daughter designed and built the chicken coop
with much advice on construction design and predator proofing from her father

colourful_chickens

they are different varieties, each has a name and responds to calls and hugs like any pets
always on the move, they are colourful, inquisitive, smart and friendly

free_range_chickens

they love their free ranging time under supervision by the granddaughters
watch out for hovering hawks, sneaky minks and hungry raccoons!

Guarding_chickens

soon there will be eggs….

if interested, you might like to visit our daughter’s blog to learn more about their adventures in raising these delightful feathered creatures

late summer ferry

Tswawassen

over ten days ago we took a ferry trip over to Vancouver Island to visit family
the weather was glorious with brilliant sunshine
here we are just ready to leave Tswawassen on mainland BC

Sundeck_Ferry

we were lucky to get front row seats on the enclosed sundeck
staying there for the whole journey across the Salish Sea
feeling like we were on a cruise

ActivePass

approaching the narrow windy Active Passage between many islands
no oncoming ferry passing us this time

leaving_ActivePass

leaving the Passage as we get ever closer to Swartz Bay
mesmerized by billions of sparkling diamonds and blue sky

sailboat_SalishSea

many smaller boats on the waters delighting in the last days of summer
sealife jumping about… orcas? dolphins?…too far for photos

Now that fall is here along with much-needed rains (er, maybe too much the next few days!) keeping me indoors, I am finally sorting through the trip photos. I hope to post more of them soon.

Happy fall days ahead (or spring down-under), dear readers.

water iris

Water_Iris

We’ve been away for a few days again recently, this time in the Victoria area visiting middle daughter’s family. I have some interesting things to share but am quite busy with much work in home and garden. However I just had to scan and visually preserve this stalk of beautiful going-to-seed water iris picked from their lake front.

Our weather continues to be glorious with very warm days and cool nights.

nest building

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Some closer looks at the robin’s nest which was shown here a little while ago. Birds are such amazing builders, wouldn’t you agree?

garden of lichens

the strange and beautiful lichen on walls and rocks in our daughter’s garden:

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lichen4735

lichen4729

another of the wondrous seeds featured in the last post:

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seed heads

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Last weekend I had a chance to brush up my rusted skills in macro photography with interesting subjects in our daughter’s garden up in the North Thompson River valley. A touch of a breeze seemed to often come at just ‘that’ moment so only a few photos worked out well. I should have packed along the tripod.

Labour Day weekend

mlRathje_RobinsNest

RobinsNest

grasshopper

We have been away for several days in the interior of BC, enjoying long scenic drives to the Kamloops area, twice to Vernon, then down to Skaha Lake in the Okanagan before heading back home. We spent time with daughter and son-in-law. We twice visited a friend from long ago school days who is very ill and now being taken care of by his daughter. We were hosted by good friends whom we’ve not seen in 12 years. A weekend of much laughter, great food, and sadness too – isn’t that life?

The photos above are of a fallen robin’s nest my daughter found in her garden as she showed me around. I was excited to have the opportunity to take some photos of it, some in very bright sunshine, some in shade. There are numerous grasshoppers (pests really!) in her garden this year, and this little guy jumped in for a portrait, not moving even when I came very near with the camera. More photos to come…

late summer

strawberry_flower

clematis

NZhibiscusSeedpod

the changing light and lengthening shadows beckoned for a backyard garden tour
a slight breeze meant only three images out of ten worked reasonably
a strawberry blossom, clematis seedhead, and seedpod of an unknown flower
named as New Zealand hibiscus after the friend who gifted the seeds

a fly?

winged-insect_72

on the studio windowsill, another tiny perished insect
pale delicate wings, long long thin legs
so plain to the eye, beauty revealed via scanner
is it a type of fly?

Abakanowicz: Walking Figures

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Abakanowicz_2WalkingFigures

_Abakanowicz_Figure_Foot

The second installation of sculptures installed by the Vancouver Biennale in the City of North Vancouver (in addition to Wang Shugang’s sculptures) are the Walking Figures, a group of headless cast iron figures by one of my favourite artists, Magdalena Abakanowicz. These are installed individually on the sidewalk over several blocks of Lonsdale Avenue.

I still remember well Abakanowicz’ similar stunning figures called Vancouver Ancestors, set together as a powerful group on a grassy slope in Queen Elizabeth Park in 2006, also part of that year’s Vancouver Biennale.

Though I did not have the time to visit all the Walking Figures, I was excited to see several of these. Yet I did not feel these had the power of the Ancestors because they stood alone and apart next to a very busy street. I can understand the reasoning for this kind of installation – to expose art to people in their daily movements on the street, so much more prevalent in many European cities. In my short time there as I took photographs, I also observed the human traffic and it seemed not one person paused to look at them, though maybe some had already viewed them earlier if they regularly passed by them.

There are a couple of interesting links (as pdfs) at the Biennale site if you desire more information:
about the installation
about the artist