This blog includes photography mostly done around Vancouver Island and Victoria BC, with Olympus cameras and lenses. While images deemed printable make it to the galleries, the blog updates may also show just curious every day's shots.

Autumn Blues

November 08, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

It's rather autumn reds and yellows, as you can imagine, but let's pretend that we are sad about summer end - even though the fall season is a true photographer's paradise. With that in mind, let's try and prove the case.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butchart Gardens - no fall-themed post can be done without it

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beacon Hill is close second. This is newest addition, Moss Lady

 

 

Pumpkin Patch in Central Saaninch

 

 

Craigdarroch Castle

 

Back to Beacon Hill Park

 

 

 

 

 

Japanese Garden

 

 

Elk Lake

 

 

Japanese Garden, last of fall colors

 

 

 

 

 

That's it for now, but the next month post will probably have some more of the fall colors.


September mix

September 28, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Let's start with flamingo, for no other reason that they are cute

 

 

 Little E, ready for take-off

 

Awww

 

 

Sidney shore

 

 

 

My favorite backyard guest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They are plotting something, don't they?

 

 

 Life is a beach

 

 

Breakfast

 

Aesthetics above all 

 

 

 

 

Sidney gathered to watch Blood Moon eclipse

 

It appeared but haze made the show quite weak.

 

Well, rainbows go with island rains like cigar with whisky

 

 

 

Our daily view

 

 

Some night photography for the end of the post

 


Summer draws to an end

August 27, 2015  •  3 Comments

Let's start with a cat, for no other reason than I like them

 

 

Sombrio Beach

 

 

 

Oak Bay

 

 

Elk Lake sunset

 

 

Perseids Meteor shower. 

 

 

 

Sidney sunsets

 

 

 

Breakwater. Brother and sister paddle-boarding by the cruise ships 

 

 

Butchart Gardens fireworks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chinese Dragon Fountain

 

Sidney Car Extravanganza

 

 

 

 

... and some spectators.

 

 

 

 

We started with a cat, let's finish with one too


Summer strolls

July 27, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

July turned out very productive. A lot of images, difficult to chose. So, without further ado and with as few words as possible.

 

Downtown:

 

 

 

 

Average-sized canoes

 

 

My favorite breakwater

 

 

 

And of course Sidney

 

 

 See the Bald Eagle enjoying sunset view?

 

 

 

 

Now, that was an adventure - went up above the Town of Sidney in a bucket truck, to photograph the view from high vantage point for the promotional brochure:

 

Yup, that's my truck far down. I also had to learn how to control it since the panel is right up there in this same bucket, fitting just one person.

 

Back on Earth and to the breakwater

 

 

Centennial park

 

 

 

Street scene in Sidney. Pretty girl and bikes - all the components for a good photo, right?

 

Beach without music? Not in Victoria.

 

Two ships. Look closer to find second one

 

Paint job

 

Epic sky over Sidney

 

 

Waiting for fireworks...

 

...and fireworks themselves

 

 

 

 


World through the fish eyes

June 25, 2015  •  2 Comments

Not only is this going to be our usual monthly crop of the photos, it's also a whole different view of the world - through the eye of fish. Or, to put it better, using new toy, a fisheye lens, Samyang 7.5 mm (as if you care about such details). 

 

It presented a dazzling array of new opportunities in my most favorite town of all, Sidney by the Sea:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

opened new eyes on the Butchart Gardens:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

worked fine to showcase Marigold Nursery, our go-to place for everything that grows:

 

 

 

 

showed itself as a great forest/lake lens during Elk Lake walk:

 

 

 

 

 

gave a few splendid views in Beacon Hill Park:

 

 

 

 

 

and finally demonstrated its formidable abilities as an architecture lens around Royal British Columbia Museum:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now that you had your fill of fisheye images, probably more than you ever wanted in a single blog post, I promise to mix it up in the following posts with more conventional views. Consider this one an outburst of excitement about a new toy


May flowers

May 25, 2015  •  1 Comment

As April showers promised, May flowers arrived right on cue

 

 

Oak Bay marine

 

 

Willows Beach. Heavy construction

 

Sidney never ceases to amaze. You sit on the beach enjoying quiet evening, and then this happens.  Two killer whales swimming by, so close to the shore that if any beach goers took a swim they would be right in their way

 

 

As orca swam right under the pier, even cormorant and seagull looked on in awe.

 

Butchart Gardens. Laburnum exlosion

 

 

Stairway to heaven

 

 

Bench that beckons

 

Blue poppies arrived

 

 

 

 

Pansies - smile-inducing flowers

 

Last rhodos

 

 

A few images from my photoshoot with Centrepointe Ballet School:

 

Let's finish with serene sunset at the Sidney shore


April showers

May 08, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

April means... you guessed it, tulips first of all. Tulips in Sidney,

 

 

 

tulips in The Butchart Gardens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and cherry blooms downtown.

 

Meanwhile, inhabitants of the jungle a.k.a. Victoria Butterfly Garden live their own life

 

 

 

 

and live it to its fullest:

 

Thought those were all tulips you were going to see? Think again

 

 

 

 

 

Hummingbirds got really active this year for some reason. Sugar we buy for them starts making a dent in the budget. They pay me back by being good models

 

 

 

 

Finnerty garden as always has rhododendrons in droves

 

 

as well as some other flowers

 

 

 

 

and some creatures loving their life:

 

Our Sidney friend. Must be the kindest large dog I've ever seen.

 

Cattle point moved right to the summer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let's finish with hummingbirds again. This little guy helped me to grill some meat

 

and these came for a night cup.

 

 


Beware the March flurries

March 25, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Well, this being Victoria our flurries consist of petals mostly. Let's begin with some crocuses 

 

 

...and make sharp turn to birdies (the name's Shadow)

 

 

...only to switch to insects 

 

 

...but get back to birdies quickly.

 

Looks like someone's getting a lecture

 

Elk Lake, doggies heaven

 

 

Petals, as I promised. Soon to be a flurry 

 

Sidney shore, charming as always

 

with fine dining options. This seagull got an octopus for dinner

 

 

while this Heron is still studying the menu, while enjoying seat with a view.

 

One carefree duck

 

 

Wow, that's a lot of birds in this post... Downy woodpecker

 

Been a while since last crocuses, hasn't it

 

or cherry blooms

 

not even speaking of magnolias

 

and flowers

 

or moss explosion

 

 

Boar-scarer, always reminds me a fight scene from Kill Bill, Folks from Butchart gardens said this on my Facebook page: "This is called shishi-odoshi (鹿威し) which literally translates as "deer-scarer..." but indeed it is used to scarе wild boar and other animals in Japan. We've never heard it called a deer-scarer in English - always boar-scarer.

 

Petals! One of the less visited corners of The Butchart Gardens. Red petals fall off at the top of the stream which carries them through the entire Japanese garden. Design of a genius

 

 

 Let's finish with these two cute messy eaters having a dinner right behind my patio door. Taken with vintage manual lens, through the glass.

 


Cruelty of February

February 24, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

My East Coast and prairies friends will have to forgive me for the humorist title. Yes, February in Victoria IS cruel - to the RoC (Rest of Canada). Judge for yourself.

 

Let's start with forest, shall we? Centennial Park in Central Saanich

 

 

Tod Inlet. Blooming moss

 

Crocus time in Victoria. Started at least couple weeks earlier than usual this year

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sidney shore. Mt. Baker framed by posts...   

 

...with birds.

 

This Great Blue Heron enjoyed sunset view along the Dallas Rd., not far from the breakwater.

 

 

 

 

By now, that Heron was ready to sue me for harassment, so I switched to humans. They enjoyed sunset too.

 

 

 

 Yeah, this blooms too. Micro-iris of some kind?

 

Butchart Gardens, Japanese section 

 

 

 

Fisgard Lighthouse. Somewhat different view from traditional

 

And, of course some of my favorite inhabitants of the Butterfly Gardens. Little E,

 

Ms Jiggs,

 

and Rose.

 


January blah

February 09, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Well, no so blah - January in Victoria is not exactly your typical "dead of the winter" view. Let's start with downtown, to illustrate the point.

 

  

 

 

 

This is part of the collection of hand-themed sculptures scattered through the downtown. This one is right on the causeway. Locals will recognize with ease the reflection of Coho ferry in the mirror

 

Causeway in the night

 

 

Nice January day on the breakwater...

 

...and the spectacle of a seal dining on his fresh catch - Giant Pacific Octopus

 

 

 

 

Beacon Hill Park never disappoints - peacock supervising ducks.

 

 

Amazing sunset at the Dallas Rd.

 

 

 

Then there was a storm. And after the storm, sun peaked out

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile, in the Butchart Gardens... 

 

 

 

Time for some birds photos, especially since there is no lack of those here. This seagull is dining as well - got a crab for a snack today.

 

That's no seagull:

 

Downy Woodpecker, came to dinner to our feeder:

 

Not sure whether it's the same guy, but he was posing diligently, right at the Sidney Pier entrance.

 

 

 

 

Since we are in Sidney, this sunset happened right there. 

 

 

And so did this moon

 

and this duck, put together from driftwood by some creative soul:

 

My favorite pier after the rain:

 

Still Sidney

 

Grilling is inalienable part of winter living in Victoria 

 

Aquarium (Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre)

 

 

One more Sidney sunset, and we are done with January. Not that February promises to be any easier, mind you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Christmas lights

January 05, 2015  •  1 Comment

December, as always, provides a lot of opportunities to shoot holiday lights, so large part of this collection will be about those. There are a few more themes to this month though, so you won't get tired of the festive illumination alone.

 

Let's start with some birds: 

 

 

 

Empress Hotel built a skating rink this year. Here is daylight shot of it, night time ones will follow 

 

 

Now, some illumination in Sidney

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Star trail over Christmas tree

 

 

 

Downtown lights. Promised skating rink in the night:

 

 

 

 

 

 

December post can't omit Butchart Gardens and their stunning display. There are no iconic shots of Sunken gardens etc, but they are pretty much the same from year to year, so I tried to get some other views and angles. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are a few shots from the Lochside drive, just south of Sidney, our usual walking route

 

 

 

 

 Even inhabitants of the Butterfly Gardens enjoy festive lights:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now somewhat different views, so your eyes get some rest from all the lights. Fort Rodd Hill:

 

 

 

 

Swans at the Esquimalt Lagoon:

 

 

 

Got some rest? Back to festivities. Holiday store windows in Sidney:

 

 

 

 

Enough of winter views. Spring is coming. In Sidney...

 

...and downtown. Yes, first cherry blooms!

 

That was rather large post but it was rather eventful month!


November highlights

November 20, 2014  •  1 Comment

Magical autumn light is always generous to photographers. A few cold clear nights offered some new opportunities, but we will get to it at the end of this post. For now, more traditional fall images.

 

 

These guys enjoy the fall too

 

...and cross the road in a very disciplined fashion:

 

That's a whole lot of leaves to clean!

 

 

 

 

Walk along the Ross Bay during nice sunset yielded this series, ending at the Clover Point: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beacon Hill Park as always offers a lot of opportunities. Let's start with these willing models, as they climb the branches of a giant sequoia:

 

 

 

 

Magic of last sun rays:

 

My favorite bridge

 

... and a peacock from the previous post, reaching the end of his runway and walking around me as I rudely block his path with my intrusive camera. I swear he murmured something like "darn paparazzi..."

 

 

Finally, about those clear cold nights. They bring bright stars, and I got to do what I always wanted to try: star trails. My first three shots at it (pardon the pun), two from Sidney and one from downtown, with majestic Empress Hotel: 

 

 

 

Fall in bloom

October 31, 2014  •  1 Comment

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” ― Albert Camus.

 

October brought in abundance of the fall colors, as it well should. Both sunny and rainy days provided enough of photo opportunities. So, without further ado...

 

Some flowers (but of course)

 

   

   

 

Buddha with Angel's Trumpets 

  

To have flowers and not the butterflies? What kind of disorder would that be!

 

 

My favorite bird, posing as always. The name's Little E.

 

In case you haven't guessed the season - PUMPKINS!

 

Forest. Trail. Stump. Black and white.

 

Goldstream

 

 

 

 

Full Moon rising

 

Elk Lake, 10 K loop - my favorite treadmill  

 

 

 

 Fall colors at The Butchart Gardens, always amazing spectacle 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 This kid gives seal of approval.

 

Oak Bay Marina

 

 

Back to Butchart in 10 days

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steller's Jay.

 

 

 

 

 

Beacon Hill Park - another gem of the season

 

 

 

 

 

And to conclude, my favorite of the month - model on the Fall Fashion Show catwalk! 

 

September Roundup-2

October 03, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Let go over the rest of September catch, to be done with it and move to real fall colors. Sample will be shown here as well though :)

 

Butchart Gardens at night, magical spectacle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mount Doug. Meditation:

 

On the edge:

 

Recording the view:

 

Cattle Point.

 

 

 Well, can't do a blog post without my favorite town, Sidney!

 

 

 

Butterfly Gardens, never a dull moment

 

 

 

Back to Butchart

 

 

 

Now, this was hilarious. Looked closer into the rose (actually a friend I was with did), and found rose guardian:

 

 

 

 

 

Elk Lake, fall colors start making appearance:

 

 

 

Breakwater yielded a few shots of Fried Egg Jellyfish - totally looks like floating, well, fried egg: 

 

 

Inner Harbor with first fall colors:

 

 

Sidney again, this time in black and white: 

 

 

And to finish the post, real fall colors, preview of what next month is likely to be about:


September Roundup

September 11, 2014  •  2 Comments

It's just 10 days of a new month but images start accumulating so I better post some, to keep the size manageable, right? Let's start with flowers, shall we?

 

 

 

 

Torch!

 

 

Night view of this dancing fountain, always enchanting

 

 

 

Ogden Point (as if you haven't guessed)

 

 

 

New guy in the jungles!

 

This red-footed tortoise went for a jailbreak. Climbed onto rocky border,

 

crossed it,

 

came out on another side,

 

climbed down (all with blistering speed as you can imagine),

 

and went for FREEDOM! 

 

Flamingos tend to create symmetry:

 

Butterflies is not a traditional subject for B&W, but this one seemed fitting:

 

... as did this forest trail:

 

Meditation in Beacon Hill Park

 

 

 

Last Supermoon of 2014 yielded a few nice moonscapes and sunset shots 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We will see if September brings another crop of images or we make next one in October.