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.
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
Back to Beacon Hill Park
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.
Let's start with flamingo, for no other reason that they are cute
Little E, ready for take-off
My favorite backyard guest
They are plotting something, don't they?
Life is a beach
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
Let's start with a cat, for no other reason than I like them
Elk Lake sunset
Perseids Meteor shower.
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
July turned out very productive. A lot of images, difficult to chose. So, without further ado and with as few words as possible.
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
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
Epic sky over Sidney
Waiting for fireworks...
...and fireworks themselves
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.
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
A few images from my photoshoot with Centrepointe Ballet School:
Let's finish with serene sunset at the Sidney shore
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.
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
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.
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...
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,
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:
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.
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!
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:
“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.
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
Beacon Hill Park - another gem of the season
And to conclude, my favorite of the month - model on the Fall Fashion Show catwalk!
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:
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:
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?
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,
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.