Tree People

To me, this looks like someone got trapped in a tree by a magicians spell. With Holloween coming I was looking for something scary, and this is the best I could come up with.

Daily Image
Tree People
A scary tree at the Ringling estate in Sarasota

This unusual tree is on the Ringling estate in Sarasota, otherwise known as Ca’ d’Zan. It’s where John and Mabel Ringling lived and, now is a museum with sprawling gardens on Sarasota Bay.

visit the gallery

This also reminds me of an Ent of LOTR fame. Of course, we have Peter Jackson’s idea what they looked like; but before that, when I read the books, I imagined something like this. Maybe trees do have awareness, and we can communicate somehow. That would be a lot of fun, not scary at all. I’ll look for something more frightening.

City Pier

This is the old city pier on Anna Maria Island. The “city” is Anna Maria, but if a few beach houses and seaside restaurants make a city, then I’m a monkey’s uncle.

Daily Image
City Pier

To further make my point, the speed limit is 25mph; I know, because I paid a nice fine for driving 35. But I digress. It’s been over a year since the restaurant on this pier was open. It got damaged in a hurricane, and now it and the dock are being reconstructed. But, as you already know, this is not a city where things move fast.

more from Anna Maria Island

In the city of Anna Maria, there isn’t much to else to do but go to the beach, fish and eat at the restaurants. But then, that’s the attraction. A kind of place where you go to get away from everything else. There isn’t a lot of serious stuff going on, just the odd bit of monkey business; I should know.

#venicefl

The problem with a place in Florida called Venice is that if you Google “Venice,” you’ll end up in Italy. Even if I search my website, I get Italy. Using the hashtag “#venicefl” helps sort that out.

Daily Image
#VeniceFL
Here is an old photo I took of Venice – the one in Florida (not Italy)

That’s the thing about living in the new world, a lot of places get named after the old world. If you’re someone like me that was born here, its confusing as heck. (I never said I was bright.) It’s like when someone in Ontario Canada mentions London; or the poor souls in Paris Texas.

Venice photos from Florida and Italy

Hashtags aside, I took this with the original Sony A7R. By this time I owned it for over a year and was thoroughly happy with it. Now I’m on the third generation A7, but am going back with newer software. The updated software breaths new light into these old shots. This is processed with Aurora HDR 2019, and after looking at what it can do with these old photos, I’m going to be going back to have a second look at a few more.

Venice Beach Stand

This shot is another in my continuing series of lifeguard stands. It also represents my interest in landscape minimalism. I took this at Venice Beach in Florida a couple of years ago.

Daily Image
Venice Beach Stand
A lifeguard stand at Venice Beach, Florida

The way I see it, the sky, sea, and shore create negative space for the subject. In this way, the item is more substantial. But those are my thoughts. For you, it could be different.

beach gallery

I use minimalism and negative space in artistic leaning photographs to show a connection to the environment. For whatever reason, I’m wired to wonder how and why things exist within a broader context. One way of perceiving a situation is by taking a step back. It seems that I do that a lot, so it’s only natural it would come out in my photography.

Urban Mangroves

In this picture, I’m looking south over the Manatee River towards Bradenton. These are the mangroves that line it from its source to the sea. Mangroves form an essential part of the ecosystem by protecting the shore from erosion.

Daily Image
Urban Mangroves
A little nature in an urban setting

Believe it or not, this is across the street from the Bradenton Area Convention center, so while it looks like a nature shot, it’s in the middle of a suburban setting. Mangroves are protected in Florida, so there’s little chance they’ll be affected by development. Despite the activity all around, they continue to protect rivers and coastlines.

more from my hometown of Palmetto

The reason I took this was for the reflections. Its a repeat of a shot I’ve done in the past and the results are similar. However, the clouds are never the same. And because it’s only a 2-minute drive from home, this is something I see often. No matter how many times I see this, I never get tired of nature inside an urban landscape.

Simple Scene

This is my favorite type of simple scene. In my opinion, it depicts a moment of solitude, maybe even inspiration that comes from nature. Rather than write something philosophical, any meaning or interpretation are best left to you, the viewer.

Daily Image
Simple Scene
This is the type of photography I love most

I get asked a lot about what kind of photography I do. The short answer is that I do different types of photography. But a better question is what type of photography I love the most. For that my answer is simple minimalism like this. Something uncomplicated that evokes thoughts, emotions or introspection.

more from the beach

However, I’m using a trick by placing a person in the image. If there was no person, you would simply be an observer of a nondescript scene. But when a person is placed in it, we involuntarily project ourselves into the scene. For whatever reason, it’s in our nature to do that and we do it all the time. Advertisers have used this knowledge for decades to manipulate us. I’d like to hope and think my motive is a little more benign.

After Glow

This is a typical scene at the beach just after the sun sets. People will leave and funnel back over the dunes through these rustic walkways. Sometimes I’ll position myself so that I can capture them walking to and from the beach in this manner. It’s a shame that people leave the beach so soon after the sun disappears, it’s when the best colors appear in the sky.

Daily Image
After Glow
The glow at Manatee Beach right after the sun sets

I took this image three years ago and just rediscovered it and processed it this week. That inspired me to go back there last night and shoot similar scenes. Of course, they came out different, but the main thing is that I went out, that can be half the battle sometimes.

images from Florida

It was nice to get out and Spring is a good time of year in Florida. It’s before the humidity sets in and it’s when we get some of the best sunsets. The days are getting longer and if you just linger a little after the crowds leave, you experience some of the best magic that others miss.

Roaring Brook Nature Center 2

I took this about three years ago at a little park called Roaring Brook Nature Center on Canton Connecticut. The pond empties down the mountain at a dike and indeed the brook does roar at that spot. Here is another image from nearly the same spot.

Daily Image
Roaring Brook Nature Center 2
I took this on a nature walk a few years back.

I was here in spring which of course is when all the streams and rivers are full of melting snow. Spring is also the season for pollen and they get it heavily in Connecticut. My rental car was covered with a yellow layer so thick it resembled volcanic ash.

I’ve also been here (not this spot exactly) in Autumn and of course, the scene is quite different. All of New England is ablaze in colors and it’s a great time for a road trip.

more landscape photos from the gallery

This particular visit was a difficult one. We had just lost one of our beloved dogs from an unexpected illness and I was feeling sad. That’s when I looked up this little park figuring it would do me some good to go for a nature walk. When I saw scenes like this it helped take my mind off the pain. Times like that are never easy.

Midday Walk

Like its name suggests, Bayfront Park in Sarasota has a good view. It’s small enough to walk around on your lunch break and still make your one o’clock.

Daily Image
Midday Walk
A midday walk in Sarasota’s in Bayfront Park

But if you’re like a lot of people here, the days of the one o’clock meetings are long gone. You are in retirement with time to go fishing, walk in the park, or whatever in heck it is that you do.

more from Sarasota

I took this two years ago and just now got around to processing it. I have a lot of little shots like this that sit on the hard drive waiting their turn. If I go out today and take some pictures, chances you’ll see it by 2020. But if some of them are really good, next Tuesday after my one o’clock.

Ethan Surprenant

Today I’m continuing with another photo I shot last weekend at an athletic event in my home town. This is Ethan Surprenant of St Petersburg Florida who made it to the final round of the UNAA Qualifiers and placed third overall. Ethan is an explosive athlete and put on an amazing show.

Daily Image
Ethan Surprenant
Ethan presses on with fellow athletes cheering him on

This shot was during the first round of the qualifiers. After maxing out his arms on a hanging traverse, there was no mercy waiting ahead. Next the salmon ladder, then rings and then an evil set of monkey bars that ascended up rather than across. Finally, the round ending in a warped wall with only four feet of runway. Ethan made it look easy as he seemingly defied the laws of both gravity and physics.

more from the UNAA Qualifiers in Palmetto FL

Camaraderie at the event was huge. As you can see here, all were watching with baited breath as judge Dan Lively (lower left) kept an eagle eye out for any disqualifying infractions. When someone managed to complete a round, the look of triumph on their face said it all. For the full video of Ethan’s epic run check out his FB link.