This week, Patti has selected Nature as the topic for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. Ever since I took up photography as a hobby many years ago, I have focused principally on nature, so when I saw the subject for this week I wasn’t really sure where to begin; literally thousands of pictures in the photo files relating to nature. I decided to whittle down the numbers by eliminating those animals or birds that we’ve come across in zoos and the like. We’ve already covered landscapes in a previous challenge so those were out. I could have featured some of the gorgeous blooms that we’ve seen in various gardens but instead I concentrated on wildflowers. Add to all that, I included some of the weird and wonderful things that I’ve found while out and about and there we have it. My take on nature.
This week, the subject for Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge is horns and, as I discovered when I went through the photo files, they come in all shapes and sizes.
The only longhorn that we saw in Texas was this one, stuffed and mounted, on display outside a restaurant in San Antonio.
Personally, I’m always happy to have a fence between me and any animal that has horns like either of these two critters.
One close encounter with a bison in South Dakota was more than enough for me. This one was safely lounging in an enclosure at Brookfield Zoo.
These are some of the prettiest horns I’ve seen, belonging to an addax antelope, also at Brookfield Zoo.
And last but not least, some impressive horns on an energetic goat waiting for food to be delivered on a pulley system at a farm in Lowell, Indiana. The grandkids had a great time sending up bucket after bucket.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to Horns.
This week’s topic for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge is Pairs and that reminds of the song that begins “The animals went in two by two, hurrah, hurrah.” So here are a few pairs that might have made it onto the ark, including a pair of seals that look like they are not exactly on speaking terms and a couple of lions that might just have slept through the whole thing.
For more on Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, go to Pairs. Images were captured at Brookfield Zoo, Como Park Zoo and Busse Woods in Elk Grove Village.
This week it’s All About Nature on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge. Due to family commitments, I haven’t been able to spend much time doing photography lately (although I’ve tried to keep up with all your wonderful posts and pictures) so here are a few shots that I took earlier this year at the Chicago Botanic Garden and Como Park Zoo in Minnesota.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to It’s All About Nature.
During our recent trip to Minnesota we were pleasantly surprised when we made a last-minute decision to visit Como Park Zoo & Conservatory in Saint Paul. The conservatory was our main focus but when we realized that the zoo was right next door, we thought, “why not.” The fact that there was no admission fee for either place made a visit there even more enticing.
Besides the splendid plant collections inside the conservatory, there was a beautiful Japanese Garden and a spectacular show of water lilies outside the Visitor Center.
Although the zoo may not be as large as some, it had an amazing collection of animals in natural enclosures that allowed for some nice close-up photography opportunities.
Both the zoo and conservatory are operated by the Saint Paul Parks and Recreation Department and are open year-round.
I can highly recommend a visit to the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory. It’s a great place for family fun as it also includes a small amusement park and carousel.
In response to Ann-Christine’s topic of #10: Fences, this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, let me take you on a quick trip to Volkening Heritage Farm at Spring Valley Nature Center in Schaumburg.
Here, fences are not so much an intrusion as a picturesque part of the overall scene. Many of them are weathered and some used only as a temporary measure but all of them seem to blend in with their surroundings.
Naturally, the animals on the farm play a large part in many of the fence images in my Spring Valley photo files.
And flowers play an important role in the pictures too, the fences sometimes appearing to be merely an adjunct to their cheerful color.
Whatever purpose the fences serve, they are nearly always a welcome addition to any image of Volkening Heritage Farm.