Tag: flowers

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A Rose by any Other Name…is Wet

Rains returned to San Diego but broken by sunshine long enough for my wife and I to take a morning walk. After going along Panorama Drive, we crossed Adams Avenue to where Alabama Street starts. Few houses along, Annie stopped and regarded a pink rose poking through the open slats of a fence.

I turned Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra to that one, and another, which is the Featured Image—but from when I returned about 30 minutes later for a more deliberate composition. Vitals: f/1.8, ISO 12, 1/250 sec, 23mm (film equivalent); 9:48 a.m. PST.

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Wee Bit of Urban Paradise

Keeping to my goal of posting something each day, I share an outtake and humbly ask your understanding. I haven’t felt well most of today—and that is quite unusual for me, being someone blessed with hearty constitution. I suppose that my problem could be SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19. But symptoms say otherwise. No fever or other markers manifest.

Please pardon my being brief on this fine Tuesday evening, therefore. The Featured Image comes from Leica Q2 on Aug. 5, 2022. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/60 sec, 28mm; 6:11 p.m. PDT.

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September Sunflower

Our Internet service is wonky and unreliable, which is why the unexpected break from the planned series about the New Vision Christian Fellowship building destruction (and replacement). I have several suspicions (e.g. hypotheses) about what may be the cause. When, or sadly if, resolved, a separate post will be warranted.

For this Tuesday, to stay simple while we have some IP/bandwidth functionality, I share something unexpected: September sunflower; I usually only see these puttering about our San Diego neighborhood in late Spring or early Summer.

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The Obstacle

File the Featured Image in the category of “look up”. Because, until this evening when conducting an online image search, I had no idea that this hanging thing—upon which I repeatedly bonked my head over several months—is a banana flower. If I understand rightly, and someone correct me if mistaken, bananas should have been seen growing above had I turned my eyes upward.

I don’t exactly recall over which sidewalk the bulbous object hung, but it would be somewhere on the East side of Park Blvd in San Diego neighborhood University Heights. My guess: Louisiana or Mississippi street.

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Which Bee Better?

Welcome to an unexpected compare-and-contrast session. Tonight, while preparing to share a bee and sunflower shot, I came across another that is surprisingly pleasing, particularly considering its vintage and source. We’ll start with that one, from Google Nexus 5 smartphone on May 30, 2014. Vitals for the Featured Image: f/2.4, ISO 100, 1/4200 sec, 3.97mm; 9:44 a.m. PDT.

I made the moment outside what was the wonderful wildlife sanctuary nicknamed the Butterfly House. The tenants maintaining the lush plants and trees moved to Hawaii in January 2019 and the sanctuary is no more.

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Where Have All The Flowers Gone?

Last week, my wife and I drove out to La Mesa, Calif. to reminiscently walk around Grossmont Center, hoping to beat planned changes that could close many of the stores. Eleven months ago, Federal Realty Investment Trust announced acquiring controlling interest in the outdoor shopping mall from San Diego’s Cushman family. But the new owner won’t become sole proprietor for another three years, which will present a “unique opportunity providing an unencumbered ‘blank canvas’ for redevelopment”.

To my relief, most of the long-time tenants remain, even Barnes and Noble—a marvel of retail survival in the era of Amazon electronic and print book online sales dominance. But missing is what I photographically looked for: Flower beds down the center way separating stores. I clearly remember them, if nowhere else, near the Walmart.

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Caution, Caterpillar Crossing

Outside the home where lived Grace (before she passed away) and nearby where once crouched Champagne, chalked caution and watch out warnings seek to raise caterpillar awareness. Both putty-tats appeared in my “Cats of University Heights” series—in April 2018 and February 2021, respectively.

The husband and wife who own the property tend flowers and flora that attract butterflies and caterpillars. I often see Monarchs fluttering about. Spring—or in San Diego three-season parlance, early Summer—is breeding and feeding time.  So, please, be mindful where you step.

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When Summer is Every Day

San Diego may be a costly place to live, but the year-round summer, where lush growth and tweeting birds are constant, is big benefit—or so say I, the Maine boy. The Featured Image, roses growing alongside a house in an alley, demonstrates. The nearly 100-percent crop contrasts the blurred hanging flower pot behind.

Vitals, aperture manually set: f/2, ISO 100, 1/5000 sec, 28mm; 1:51 p.m. PST. I used Leica Q2 to make the moment on Jan. 1, 2022.

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Red Flower Monochrome

For the third day in a row, the Featured Image comes from Leica Q2 Monochrom. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/4, ISO 200, 1/400 sec, 28mm; 1:01 p.m. PST, today. I used the camera’s dedicated Macro mode, which is activated by turning a ring around the Summilux lens.

I spotted the red flower—with, if I recall rightly, white stamen and yellow pistils—while walking along Arch Street in San Diego’s University Heights neighborhood. The water droplets drew my attention, and I figured Why not black and white?—being no other choice really.

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A Rose by Any Other Name is Gone

Following “The Tree Tragedy” that destroyed the provider of shade (for us) and food and refuge (for birds and squirrels), I was ready to give notice and move out of our apartment. One problem: In December 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom essentially closed down the state for the entire month in response to a reported surge in SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19 cases (e.g., positive tests for infection).

But Spring (e.g., Early Summer in San Diego parlance) brought more birds than any other year—many flocking to a hedge nearby our assigned parking space. Across the street, they, and other animals, used the mighty date palm as a majestic habitat. But South American Palm Weevils infested the tree, which the city destroyed in late July. The bugs are not indigenous and removal of infected palms seeks to slow their spread.

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A Macro Moment with Leica Q2

The days are plenty when I consider trading in Leica Q2. Being beholden to a fixed-focal-length lens—even as magnificent as the camera’s 28mm f/1.7 Summilux—is a tradeoff when I can’t get close enough to a subject. But versatility abounds, holding me to the all-in-one shooter—like precise manual focus or Macro mode, which I used to capture the Featured Image. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/4, ISO 100, 1/640 sec, 28mm; 1:16 p.m. PDT.

One of our car‘s windshield wipers broke, so today we drove to the auto-mechanic in San Diego’s Normal Heights neighborhood. The plan: Annie would drive home to University Heights, while I would walk for some extra exercise. I passed by the richly-pigmented orange and yellow flowers about a half block from the service station. The cropped photo is from a single shot taken. Anticipating the light breeze, I held my breath and waited for several seconds of stillness to click the shutter. During post-production, I throttled back the contrast and pulled out the highlights.

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Flowers for the Urban Landscape

Dentist day is an opportunity to walk home—8.5 kilometers (5.3 miles)—from College Area to University Heights. My wife dropped me and then drove into Mission Valley for some errands. With no cavities, and quick cleaning, I started pounding the pavement within 30 minutes after arriving at the office.

On El Cajon Blvd, approaching 58th Street, I spotted a crimson-colored flowery-plant standing alone along the sidewalk. So out of place in the urban sprawl of retail, traffic, and wayward homeless, the thing demanded being photographed. Before leaving our place, I strongly considered carrying my camera to the dentist but refrained. So iPhone XS produced the Featured Image and companion, instead.