Travel Photography – House Creek at Cherry Grove Beach, SC

House-Creek-View
This is a view of the House Creek marsh from our Balcony.

This is the first visit to Cherry Grove Beach for me and my family.  We are here for vacation and have enjoyed getting away and slowing down the pace of life for a few days.  Our hotel fronts on the Atlantic Ocean but has a wonderful view of a tidal marsh area behind the hotel.  This tidal waterway is named House Creek.  It plays host to water fowl and a variety of other wild life.  The creek is never the same twice since it’s water level is constantly changing with the flow of the tides.

Crane-low-tide
A crane stands on the exposed land at low tide.

I went to the marsh just after sunrise hoping to get some photos in the early morning light.  I did manage to find some wild life to photograph but I did not find the early morning landscape photo I was hoping for.  Still this was a successful outing simply because I was able to experience a new place and had photography opportunities that I do not have at home.

House-Creek-Water-Fowl
Water fowl taking flight at House Creek

That evening we had a few thunderstorms passing to our north.  The photograph below shows one of those storms building in the distance.

Distant-Thunderstorm
Thunderstorms build in the distance. Photo taken from our hotel balcony.

Nature Photography – Blue Ridge Parkway

Below are more images from my drive along a portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway.  These photos were taken in and around the Doughton Park area.  We also stopped and photographed a small pond just north of the park but I do not remember the name of the pond.

Open field Doughton Park
A photo of an open field at Doughton Park.
Doughton Park Rock Outcropping Landscape
Same field, just a different perspective with the rock outcropping in the foreground.
Landsacpe Photo Doughton Park
This photo was also taken at Doughton Park. You can see one of the balds in the distance.
Blue Ridge Parkway Mountain View
Layer of mountains fade into the distance. This photo was taken at Doughton Park at one of the many overlooks within the park and along the parkway.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Pond
Small pond just off the parkway.
Blue Ridge Parkway Pond
Same pond from a different vantage point. The water was really calm and still.
Blue Ridge Parkway Pond
Portrait view so I could include a bit of the sky. By this time is was getting later in the evening.

Nature Photography – Wild Flowers

Over the weekend me and a fellow photographer visited the Blue Ridge Parkway with camera’s in hand to capture anything of interest.  Our first stop was Doughton Park.  While there we photographed wild flowers growing on the natural balds within the park.  For those who may be unfamiliar with the term bald.  It is simply naturally occurring grass lands within the mountain terrain.  These are somewhat large areas, that for the most part, are devoid of trees.  Below are a few photos from our visit.  I plan to post more images in a day or two, so please check back.

Click on any of the images below to open a larger view.

Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-1
Yellow wild flowers growing in Doughton Park along the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-2
A closer view of a violet colored wild flower.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-3
There where lost of these delicate flowers growing in the grassy fields of Doughton Park.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-5
Another shot of these delicate little flowers. This time with a bit more of it’s surroundings.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-6
It was not my intention to photograph this little guy. I tried to encourage him to move along but he seemed to really like this flower so I just let him be.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-8
These where quite numerous as well.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-9
These guys where growing down into the grass & close to the ground.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-10
Another purple and white blossom.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-11
I had good sunlight for this photo. I do not know what type of flower this is. But, it was very delicate and it caught my eye. I only saw this one.
Blue-Ridge-Parkway-Wild-Flowers-12
Tight crop of a Dandelion.

Pen and Ink Drawing – Lower Bridal Falls

This is from my current sketchbook.  It is a pen and ink sketch that I created for the May pen and ink challenge at wetcanvas.com  I generally try to participate in these challenges each month.

Each month a group of photos from the wetcanvas reference library are selected to be used as photo references for the challenge.  Participant’s can select any or all of the photos that they would like to sketch. There isn’t any hint of competition the challenge is simply a way to motivate and encourage those who would like to participate.  It is open to anyone from absolute beginners to seasoned artist.

Pen and ink drawing of lower bridal falls
Pen and ink drawing of lower bridal falls that was created for the May pen and ink challenge hosted on http://www.wetcanvas.com

Downtown Photo Exploration

A few nights ago I met up with a good friend and fellow photographer to do a bit of urban exploration in our small downtown environment.  We are limited to just a few blocks of buildings and alleys.  I considered the night to be a successful outing.  I think we will only get better with time as we learn to recognize opportunities.   This was more of a test run than anything else.  In the past couple of weeks I have ventured out with my wife a time of two to shoot predetermined areas.  This was the first time to meet up with a fellow photographer to just wander around and see what we could find.  I came away with some decent shots and some that are less than impressive.  But, all in all, it was a good learning experience.  I look forward to more outings, more exploration, and hopefully more “post worthy” photos.

Ghost walker in a downtown alley
Can you see the ghost walker?
Fire-Escape-Full
Rear view of a downtown building with elevated iron walkway
Electrical Meters Cluster
A cluster of electrical meters in a downtown alley.
Graffiti Door
Graffiti next to the entrance to an abandoned downtown building
Dark and narrow downtown alley
Shot of a dark and narrow downtown alley.
Moon with alley walls
Shot of the moon framed with the walls of a downtown alley.

Night Photography – An Illuminating Presence

The photos below are of a custom “Hot Rod” shop in my hometown.  At one time this building was actually the local Dodge Dealership.  The Dodge dealer moved to a modern facility many years ago.  Now, this is the home of Miller Brothers Hot Rod Barn.  They are a custom automotive shop and always have something interesting sitting in the showroom.

I drove past their garage recently and couldn’t help but take notice of the building.  It was late at night and the interior of the building was completely illuminated.  This set it apart from the other buildings in this small downtown environment.  I didn’t have my camera with me so I drove home and then returned with camera gear in hand.

The brightly illuminated showroom and shop space were in sharp contrast with the building exterior which I thought would give the photos an interesting look.  The exposure on these could be better, but, I am still learning.  I was lucky enough to have a small amount of traffic to add interest to the photos by leaving light trails across the long exposure images.

Click on any of the images below for a larger version

Night Photography Light Trails Automotive Garage
A photo of the showroom at night with light trails in the foreground.
Night photography auto garage with light trails
I like the light trails in the foreground and the large illuminated windows of the garage in the background.  If you look closely you will notice the classic car to the right of the showroom.
Night photography auto garage
Black and white photo of a custom automotive shop

Pen and Ink Drawing – Old Shed

I created this drawing for the April pen and ink challenge hosted at wetcanvas.com.  They are a wonderful group of like minded people.  If you have an interest in any type of art you should check them out.

Pen and ink shed drawing
Pen and ink drawing of another shed. This was done for the April pen and ink challenge hosted at wetcanvas.com.