52 weeks with Carolyn

A Theme Based Photo Blog


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Week 48 #21 It Happens Over Time

I have had several ideas and pictures saved for the “It Happens Over Time” theme but, a wonderful opportunity to shoot something unique appeared among the bushes and trees in my front yard a month ago. On Wednesday May 27th I arrived home after running some errands to our landscapers mowing and trimming the bushes. One of them informed me we had a duck nest in front of the house. I had no idea it was there so of course I went in and grabbed my camera to get a shot of the eggs. Momma had been frightened off her beloved nest while the men were working near her. The eggs were a beautiful shade of green and larger than a chicken egg and I counted 7.

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ISO 160 Focal length 225mm Aperture f/6.3 Shutter speed 1/320

I discovered through research the Momma was a Florida Mottled Duck, a member of the Mallard family. She had a little blue on her wings but, other than that a fairly plain looking brown duck. I was amazed how much she blended into the mulched beds under the bushes. Once the eggs have been lain they can take up to 28 days to hatch. I was lucky enough to see the nest through our dining room window, so was able to check the status of the nest several times a day and she was always there. I have no idea when she left to get food or drink. I never once saw any sign of Papa.

After watching and watching for the babies to hatch and praying I would get lucky enough to see them, on Monday June 15, I stepped outside to water some plants and heard little cheeping sounds. I went in the house and peaked at the nest and sure enough Momma stood up and all the babies poured out from underneath her. Well, I was more than thrilled to say the least! Grabbing my camera I went outside and waited patiently for her to bring them out of the bushes. Slowly she gained confidence realizing I wasn’t going to hurt her and out she came crossing the sidewalk into the grass with not 7 but 9 babies!

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ISO 100 Focal length 92mm Aperture f/8 Shutter speed 1/200

Obviously 2 of the eggs had been hiding underneath the others. What a beautiful site it was to watch her so proudly strut across my yard, into the street, across the neighbors yard until finally reaching water. And in they went swimming closely behind her. I came back to check on the nest to see if any eggs had not hatched and the only thing left were 2 halves of a shell. This really surprised me and I wondered what happened to the rest of the shells. I surmised that either the momma or babies ate them for nourishment.

Since they left the nest I haven’t had the opportunity to go searching for them. I hope they all survive and perhaps Momma will return next year to start this wondrous process all over again!

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Week 47 #51 When The Wind Blows

We had friends from Texas visit us in April and we took them to lunch at St. Armend’s Circle one day then headed down to show them our favorite beach, Lido Beach. It was an extremely windy day so I was able to capture some of the waves coming in. Despite the lifeguard stands displaying the red flags to warn swimmers of the dangers of rip currents there were a few crazy people in the water.

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ISO 100 Focal length 60 mm Aperture f/8 Shutter speed 1/1,250

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ISO 100 Focal length 52mm Aperture f/8 Shutter speed 1/500


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Week 46 #7 Car Lights

We made a trip with family to Universal Studios before Thanksgiving and I found several old cars on display in a couple parts of the park. The first one is a 1941 Chevy Master Deluxe. Interesting looking car with the Worlds Fair license plate. The second one I believe is an Edsel, the E hood ornament is located on the front corner of the car and not in the middle. The third one I have no idea what type of car it is, I forgot to take notice. However, it did have an American Graffiti card on the dashboard, so perhaps the car was in the hit movie starring Ron Howard. The last one is a 1955 Crown Victoria, it too had an American Graffiti card on the dashboard. Its my favorite. I can visualize a group of teenage girls driving around on a Saturday afternoon with their hair in pony tails wearing white blouses, pink poodle skirts, bobby socks and saddle shoes following a car full of boys. What fun they must have had!

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ISO 100 Focal length 24mm Aperture f/7.1 Shutter speed 1/125

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ISO 100 Focal length 16mm Aperture f/5.6 Shutter speed 1/100

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ISO 100 Focal length 28mm Aperture f/5 Shutter speed 1/60

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ISO 100 Focal length 24mm Aperture f/7.1 Shutter speed 1/125


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Week 45 #24 Long Exposure

I blew an opportunity to get some long exposure shots of a real roaring waterfall in Colorado Springs because I struggled with my settings. I got some great shots thinking I had my shutter speed set correctly until I downloaded everything to the computer and realized my mistakes. Practice makes perfect right? So, yesterday a fellow photographer and I headed to Selby Gardens here in Sarasota. After taking numerous shots of the flowers etc. we stopped to work on long exposure at their man made waterfall. It helps to have a friend along to discuss what settings to try, especially when that friend won a ribbon for one of her waterfall shots at a recent photo contest! I’ve included two shots, different angles and degree of closeness.

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ISO 100 Focal length 41mm Aperture f/29 Shutter speed 6 seconds

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ISO 100 Focal length 55mm Aperture f/32 Shutter speed 6 seconds