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Mistle Thrush In Bushy Park

Mistle Thrush Guarding Mistletoe Patch

Mistle Thrush In Bushy Park

I have seen so many beautiful things this past week and I would love to share much more with you today but, I have to restrict myself! Mostly it’s because I’m involved in some ongoing creative projects that are a bit “hush hush” for now. It’s all very exciting! You will all get to see the outcomes of these but I have to keep you in suspense for a little while longer. Anyway, speaking of beautiful and exciting, here is a wonderful mistle thrush in Bushy Park. It was one of a pair, fiercely protecting it’s patch in the Woodland Gardens. It’s guarding a bounty of mistletoe in the treetops! When pairs of mistle thrush guard an area like this in the Winter, it usually means that they will nest in the area come February. So thrilled to see this behaviour! I really hope that I will be lucky enough to watch this pair on other visits to Bushy Park and see if they will nest successfully.

 

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On An Island

Claremont Island

On An Island

Such a beautiful scene, the last glorious tones of Autumn, really needed a stitched panorama to get in all the details! This is Claremont Landscape Gardens, managed by the National Trust, near Esher and Cobham. A wonderful place to explore, relax, have a cuppa and feed the birds (please bring proper bird seed or duck/swan pellets that are available at most garden centres).

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ShareMondays2018 – Autumn’s Angel

Autumn's Angel

ShareMondays2018 – Autumn’s Angel

This sight of this little egret at Bushy Park on Saturday morning lifted my heart! That glorious, bright white shining in the morning sunlight, set against the rusty browns of the remaining Autumn leaves. Has to be my ShareMondays and Fotospeed choice today!

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The Last Post

Bugler On The Tower Gate

The Last Post

The bugler stands in silent remembrance on the Tower Of London Gatehouse. We remember, we thank, we grieve, we wish it had been the War To End All Wars. We regret. We must change.

Bugler On The Tower Gate

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ShareMondays2018 – The Deep Shadows

Shadows On The Wall

ShareMondays2018 – The Deep Shadows

I went to the Tower Of London last Wednesday, to witness the commemorative sound and light display, Beyond The Deepening Shadows: The Tower Remembers by Designer Tom Piper and Sound Artist Mira Calix. Yeoman Warders, members of the armed forces and a team of volunteers proceeded to light the installation, gradually creating a circle of light, radiating out from the Tower as a symbol of remembrance.

Lighting The Torches It was so evocative, eerily beautiful and a thought provoking tribute to those who fought and died during the First World War. With an estimated 40,000 visitors watching on Wednesday evening, I felt lucky to have a view and was delighted to be able capture some images, so that I could portray the emotional impact that this event has had on me.

Deepening ShadowsAs the Yeoman Warders directed the many volunteers to their areas, I couldn’t help but think of prisoners of war, paraded in line, heads hung low, their steps measured and cautious. Under spotlight and the wavering flames of the torches, shadows appeared on the Tower wall. They could have been the shadows of lost soldiers. Wilfred Owen’s poem Dulce et Decorum est came straight to mind:

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.

Shadows of RemembranceI felt like I was looking down into those dreadful trenches, transported into the past and standing witness to the extraordinary sacrifice of so many. The music was hauntingly beautiful, an extra dimension to this evolving installation. You can download it free HERE to hear the words of war poet Mary Borden’s Sonnets to a Soldier in this specially commissioned piece of choral music.

The Deepening Shadows Of The TowerSet against the backdrop of the Tower with it’s own history as a palace, a fortress, a prison, a museum, with the walls covered in so much of the symbolism associated with wartime, this was a stark reminder of the tragedy of war. I want to say a personal thank you to the Historic Royal Palaces, the Tower Of London and all those involved in the production from it’s conception through to the final note, the extinguishing of the last flame. I was moved to tears.

Bugler

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Standing Sentinel

Heron at Bushy Park

Standing Sentinel

I’ve been enjoying watching the birds at Bushy Park recently. It’s quite amazing the number of different species I see in just a short period of time around Heron Pond, which is near the main car park. I’m working on a collection of images to share with you all but I start with the pond’s namesake, the grey heron, standing sentinel on the dead tree beside the car park. They’re such striking birds and a joy to watch.

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ShareMonday2018 – Light Up The Sky

Light Up The Sky

ShareMonday2018 – Light Up The Sky

I finally got round to photographing fireworks properly last night! This is from a local display held at Imber Court. I took a while to work out the location I felt best to view the display’s large fireworks at a bit of distance. A nearby recreation grounds proved to be perfect. I think I need a different lens for future shoots, something in between my two Fujinon lenses. I was pretty pleased with some of the results though! My lead image is a double exposure at ISO200 for 5 seconds. There’s movement with some crisp detail and nice black skies. My second image was very experimental so I would love to hear your thoughts. It was exposed for 20 seconds to get multiple bursts and maximum movement but the skies weren’t as black as I would have liked! Next time I may have to remember, remember a filter or two 😉

Sky Lights

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ShareMondays2018 – What Am I?

What Am I?

ShareMondays2018 – What Am I?

Need a clue or two?

1) I haven’t fully grown yet!
2) I am growing from the duff
3) I thrive in the damp
4) I live under a golden canopy
5) I will pop if hit by a raindrop!
6) My skin is very tough
7) Believe it or not I’m edible!!

Still not enough? Check the tags 😉

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Weald Way Woods

Chestnut Woods

Weald Way Woods

This beautiful woodland sits on land alongside the ancient Weald Way. In Spring the ground is carpeted with bluebells, now, in Autumn it’s crisp with leaf litter and bracken. The golden light in the late afternoon barely breaks through the canopy of leaves remaining on the trees. Even on a really chilly, late October weekend, I felt the warmth.