Replied to Tuesday Photo Challenge – Sky by Under a Blood Red Sky %nameFrank Jansen (Dutch goes the Photo!)
I ask you to put your creative focus skyward to capture what strikes your interest! Whether it’s a skyline, amazing sky, a raptor circling in the sky, or any other idea you have, this week the sky’s the limit for your entries! Have some fun with this and share some amazing shots with each other in this week’s challenge!!
 Aperture ƒ/5.6  Camera NIKON D40  Captured 2 April, 2010  Focal length 55mm  ISO 200  Shutter speed 1/2500s 

Despite really good weather on Saturday (it rained torrentially all day on Sunday), I didn’t get up early on Saturday morning to capture the morning sky over Carnegie Lake as I had planned. My son decided to visit from college and I spent most of the day with him.

This is one from the archives.

It was taken in the early evening in Washington, D.C. several years ago during a family spring vacation. I had an entry-level DSLR, a Nikon D40 and AF-S Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR kit lens, and was still learning composition and how to use the camera. I don’t think I had a tripod. If I am recalling correctly, this was shot, hand-held while out tour trolley truck was stopped.

I chose this one because of the intensity of the red in the sky. I think I did some minor editing in Adobe Lightroom.

The title of the post is taken from the lyrics of the song “New Year’s Day”, originally released on U2’s War album. U2 has been my favourite band since I first heard “With or Without You” (from the Joshua Tree album) on the radio in 1986.

NOTE: The WordPress theme I am using does not support captions in the featured image. I am looking for a similar theme but one which supports captions. If you have any suggestions, drop me a note in the comments section.

Created by photographer Frank Jansen, the Tuesday Photo Challenge is a weekly theme-based challenge for photographers of all kinds to share both new and old photography.

 Aperture ƒ/10  Camera NIKON D5100  Copyright © Khürt L. Williams  Focal length 11mm  ISO 100  Shutter speed 1/125s 

Our family have been members of the honey brook organic farm CSA for several years. I think it may be over a decade. When the kids were younger, we thought it was a good way to teach them where food really comes from. That it wasn’t something that comes wrapped in a cellophane or a cardboard box. We wanted them to learn that farming was difficult hard work. They learned that by being out in the heat and humidity of summer picking berries and tomatoes. And they disliked being buzzed by bees and other insects.

I have photographed the farm for almost as long as we have been members. I have photographed everything including the fields, flowers, the kids picking in the fields, the farm stands, etc. At least so I thought.

I captured this image of the water pump this Sunday. I have seen this water pump many times before but I think this is the first time I have focused on capturing it in some form. There was water dripping from a hose attached to a pump in the back. I took three exposure bracketed images which I combined into and HDR image in Photomatix Pro. I then applied a preset which I created earlier this summer.

The priest is the following.

  • Contrast to 100
  • Highlights to 100
  • Shadows to 100
  • Whites to -39
  • Blacks to 24
  • and Vibrance to 33

I just like what it does to images. I created the preset while people king around in Adobe Lightroom. It really pushes the colours. What do you think?

Monkey Hill, LaPompe, Bequia

My mother took this photo during one of her recent trips to the LaPompe section of the island of Bequia where her parents lived. The house is located at the top middle level of one of the highest hills on the island. The locals have nicknamed the area Monkey Hill. There are no monkeys on the island. I am uncertain as to the origin of the name.

The house has no sewage, no running water, and no electricity. But it has lots of memories. Memories of a carefree childhood spent under the doting and watchful eye of my grandparents, Louis and Celina Ollivierre. Some of the memories are not pleasant. I remember the horror of needing to complete a bowel movement while sitting in an outhouse in the high heat of summer. Ugh! However, I enjoyed taking outdoor showers after helping my grandfather fill the tank atop the outdoor shower.

My grandparents kept a few chickens, goats and sheep on the property behind the house. I often helped my grandmother move the sheep and goats which were staked to a feeding spot with a long rope and a metal spike. Sometimes I would help her milk a goat or sheep. Have you ever drank fresh goat milk straight from the animal? It’s so rich and creamy.

Monkey Hill, LaPompe, Bequia View From Monkey Hill Doxie Go 20100501 0001
View from atop Monkey Hill, Bequia. I scanned this from an old damaged print my mom gave me.

The house looks a bit worse for wear in this photo. The wood has probably rotted and critters have most likely taken up residence. The upstairs area has three bedrooms and a living room. I remember lazy evenings with my grandfather sitting on the steps looking out and over at the Caribbean Sea. The bottom of the house is where my grandparents kept their ground provisions and other foodstuff including cured whale meat, fish, farine etc.

I spent a lot of time with my grandparents during the summer days of my youth. My father once held a position as branch manager at Barclays Bank in the Port Elizabeth area on Bequia. We lived on the top floor of the building for a few years when I was about five years old. Every weekend was an opportunity to hang out with my grandparents.

Monkey Hill, LaPompe, Bequia 407470 10151396926581800 1066836927 n
Another, but much older, image of the house, scanned from a print.

The house looks a lot smaller than I remember but it has three bedrooms and a living room. The house is cooled by the constant but gentle Windward Caribbean breezes that blow salty sweet air over the hills.

The building to the left in the photo is the original kitchen. It had no gas and no electricity. It had a coal-fired stove and oven. Yes, coal-fired. My grandmother cooked fish and fungi for breakfast and sometimes “bakes”. Sometimes she would bake bread. This was my treat. Freshly baked bread with generous amounts of salted butter. And to wash it all down, a large white enamel mug filled with coffee and mostly milk or maybe a mug of bush tea. I guess my grandmother impressed me early in childhood with the delicious flavours of a homemade cafe-au-lait.

My grandparent passed away decades ago. I miss them.