Monthly Archives: July 2009

“Hanging Rock Falls”

Yesterday was such a wonderful, warm and sunny day …just kidding it rained again.  But my son and I did get out for a while and drove around in the nasty weather we were experiencing and decided to take a few shots of Hanging Rock Falls here in Madison Indiana.

Hanging Rock Falls is the name sake for Hanging Rock Hill which connects the Historic Downtown which lay on the banks of the Ohio River with the newer hilltop here in my hometown. It is about a 40 foot waterfalls that stays mostly dry all year because it only drains a very small area, but when we get heavy rain as we did yesterday it can turn into torrent as you can see in my images !!

The other cool thing about this falls is that you can actually drive behind it to get an interesting view you can’t always get from any other waterfall and you don’t even have to get out of your car !!  We also took a short hike at Clifty Falls State Park and the waterfalls up there were incredible as well, the only problem with that is you can’t see them because of the growth of the foliage around and in front of them,  sort of like going to a museum and having a drape pulled over a Monet  😉

I might try to get out this afternoon and get a few more images of the many falls that dot the countryside here in Madison, or maybe I will just cut the grass that is becoming quite high and get up on yard work, I already know the answer to that question..it’s time to get wet !!

Hanging Rock Falls 1 2009

Hanging Rock Falls 2 2009

And for your listening pleasure..  More Zeppelin  ..        

“A Walk Thru The Woods”

I just returned from a quick weekend trip to The Great Smoky Mountain National Park (GSMNP). We met up with family members and spent time hiking  a few of the many trails that wind their way up and over the many beautiful mountains and canyons that make this place so special. The weather was perfect for hiking but not photography,windy and bright, but I was able to capture a few images of this wonderful area.

I took a small hike along the road to Clingmans Dome, and came away with a few nice wildflower images to add to my portfolio. The scenery was beautiful as always but what impressed me the most was the magnificent odor of the vegetation and the lush environment that I was able to experience. The area has a mystical quality that looks like it came straight out of a  Lewis Carroll novel, the ground is soft from the moss and spruce needles that line the trails and the area was very quiet even with cars traveling the road below me.

I came across a wonderful  stand of Turk’s Cap Lilies that were swaying slowly with the wind, it may have made for a beautiful scene but it was terrible if your are trying to capture an image, but with persistence and a large diffuser I was finally ably to get a couple decent images from these wonderful wildflowers. The mountain roads and trails were also covered with an abundance of Bee-Balm and Green Headed – Coneflower that a made a stunning contrast to each other and a butterfly oasis, but the wind made any shots just about impossible for any butterfly images.

The hike was a wonderful experience and I was able to come away with a few nice wildflower images , I was also able to spend some time in the many streams that dissect the Park and I will post a few of them later. We also made a side trip to Burgess Falls and came away with a new appreciation of waterfalls, if you get a chance it is a place you have to hike sometime it is definitely worth the trip.

Turks Cap Lily 1 2009

Turk’s Cap Lily

Bee Balm and Green-Headed Coneflower 1 2009

Bee Balm and Green-Headed Coneflower

How about a little music to set the mood for this post …

“Summer Wildflowers”

Ever since I began my journey into photography I have welcomed each spring with eager anticipation of the beautiful wildflowers that spring forth from the forest floor each year.  And at the end of that time I usually put the camera and macro lens up and simply put photography off till the fall months roll around.  But this year I tried to put a little more effort into my work and explore the world of Summer Wildflowers and have come away with a new appreciation of these beautiful subjects.

I have spent the last week trudging thru the fields of southern Indiana trying to figure out what blooms and how it will look as a piece of art, this type of work is much easier than the spring photography because  the flowers all tend to be in open flat fields as opposed to the flowers in the spring that cling to the sides of the canyons and gorges that dot out countryside. There are many different varieties of wildflowers, far too many for me to identify or capture , but I thought might just concentrate on just a few that I have caught my attention.

The first image is of a Butterfly weed, this is a beautiful flower that as the name suggests attracts butterflies to it’s wonderful orange blooms,  I found it in small clusters in open fields and along old roadsides.

The second image is of a Wild Bergamot, this is a beautiful little flower that grows in large open spaces covering an entire open field, when I found this specimen it was covered in butterflies and Honey Bees and made for quite an interesting photo adventure. I also attempted to shoot butterflies in that setting but that so far has ended in a disaster until I can figure out how to capture them without driving myself nuts !!

The third image is of a Black-Eyed Susan, I am sure many people have seen this subject along roadsides and in open fields, the color and and long elegant stems make quite a lovely site swaying in a late summer wind, but it doesn’t help when you are trying to get a shot in that breeze though !

All of these subjects are a great example of the beauty that summer can offer you and you photography excursions. They are but a few of the beautiful subjects and over the next week or so I will try to share a few more that I discovered, hope you enjoy and thanks for taking a look !!

butterfly weed 2 2009

Butterfly Weed

Wild Bergamot 2 2009

Wild Bergamot

Black Eyed-Susan 1 2009

Black-Eyed Susan

Here is a little music for this one..                                 

“Purple Haze”

Okay so the title is a little lame and I am not feeling real creative today so here you go three images of coneflowers from my backyard. I guess I can so a little more than that, I actually shot all of these in my backyard, which is pretty good since my green thumb fell off years ago and anything that grows and is not a weed is amazing for me.

Echinacea or Coneflower are a beautiful and easily photographed perennial that are very hardy and self spreading flower that are wonderful to plant in just about any spot in your yard.  In my yard at least they grow well in shade or full sunlight don’t take much water and seem to be popping up everywhere. They are also beautiful as a cut flower to give to your wife when you are in trouble or just to decorate your home with.

Coneflower’s can cover all your bases, when you are in trouble, need a subject to shoot or just to make your yard a little more colorful so if you are looking for something to plant next year try Coneflowers   😉

coneflower 1 2009

coneflower 3 2009

coneflower 2 2009

Some music to enjoy while you read..          

“Madison Indiana Fireworks”

Well it was a cool wet weekend in Madison for the Regatta and Fireworks, but I still made a reasonable attempt at finally getting  a few fireworks shots. As the Fireworks began a very heavy rainstorm broke out dampening the festive activities for the evening, many people left for home and the fireworks were shortened to get them in.

The lowering clouds further obscured the display making it very dificult to view let alone photograph. But I used a an old feed mill for my shelter and shot these from a third story window, keeping me warm and dry, they weren’t the greatest images of fireworks ever attempted but I was happy with my first experience shooting them.

I am hoping this is the sumer I got my first fireworks and lightening images, so now maybe I can come across a big storm and get them both.

regatta fireworks 1 2009

regatta fireworks 2  2009

regatta fireworks 4 2009

regatta fireworks 5 2009

“Madison Regatta”

This is a huge weekend for Madison Indiana, the annual Madison Regatta is today thru Sunday. If you enjoy big crowds fast boats and a fun atmosphere this is the place to be.I would share some images with you if I had any but I am not much of sports photographer and I spend most of the time eating and indulging in adult beverages so I will just link you to the official site to get all the details.

If you are within a hour or two it is definitely worth the trip to be here, the hydroplanes can travel up to 200 mph and can put on quite a show, there will also be an fireworks display on Saturday night. There will also be plenty of live music for everyone and some great food as well, and it is always a great place to sit back and watch the diverse group of people that will walk the river this weekend.

Since I don’t have any shots of the boat race I will post one of the bridge they travel under, anyway have a great Fourth of July weekend and hopefully you can make it down to the race !!

Ohio River Bridge in Fog 2008 3