Thursday, July 31, 2008

Greensburg, Kansas a Year Later

I know this photo won't win any contest or be a favorite of anyone but there is a story here that needs to be told.

On May 4th of 2007 the small Kansas town of Greensburg was hit by an F-5 tornado. This is a view of today's downtown Greensburg. The buildings on the left by my trusty CRV are new construction. The building on the right is empty and is the only downtown building to remain standing after the storm. I guess I expected more to be accomplished as I had seen in our own Stockton, Missouri whose downtown square was devastated by an F-3 tornado.

What I did see this time were homes being reconstructed which is good for Greensburg. At least people are coming home and rebuilding. The downtown may take longer but it will return. As Greensburg is rebuilding it is rebuilding green and we will see more of that tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Leaving the Fort - Old Bent's Fort Part 5

Southwest architecture has always fascinated me. I took this same picture last year at the fort but submitted it in color. This time I am trying black and white to keep with my theme lately.

Tomorrow we move on or perhaps back. We also stopped at Greensburg, Kansas to see what recovery has been made since last years tornado. I have a few pictures to share from there.

Hope you all have a terrific day.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Feathers in the Sky - Old Bent's Fort Part 4

I bet you couldn't tell I love cirrus is another shot at Bent's Fort. The sun was getting higher and higher by this time and the temperature was climbing into the mid ninties.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Sunshine! - Old Bent's Fort Part 3

Another black and white taken at Bent's Fort. Midmorning sunny shot.

Friday, July 25, 2008

American Classic - Old Bent's Fort Part 2

Native Americans were nomadic and designed the unique tee pee. Mountain men ended up copying the design for their own use. This replica was up at Old Bent's Fort. I liked the look of it against the cirrus clouds over the plains.

Endless Love...Return to Bent's Fort Part 1

I love Bent's Fort and always try to stop there and see it. Caught this couple entering the fort, isn't it great they are still holding hands at their age? Simple things like this keep a marriage strong.

Old Bent's Fort is located between Las Animas and La Junta Colorado on State Highway 194. It is a recreation of a famous stopping point on the Santa Fe Trail.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


It used to be when I started this blogging adventure I would never put people in my shots. I even avoided people waiting until there was no one close to take the shot. Now I include people whenever I can. Teresa and I were talking on our way home from Colorado and she said something that stuck with me. "I have not seen many people who earn from the types of shots we are taking on this trip, but there are a lot who earn from weddings, seniors and portraits." I thought a lot about what she said as I drove home and realized while I may never make any money at this there is a connection we make with a picture where there are people in the shot. I am not sure why this is; perhaps because we can substitute ourselves to where they are. Food for thought, perhaps you can share your thoughts?

This shot is in the Comanche National Grasslands, and Teresa and Amy are walking away from me on the Prairie Trail. Probably not what you would consider a Colorado shot, huh?

We are home from Colorado, many days too early. Amy became very ill very early Tuesday morning so we decided to head for home. I was afraid it was appendicitis, but we now believe it to be an acute case of altitude sickness. Either way when we returned to the plains of Kansas, her severe pain and nausea disappeared and life was back to normal. We were all disappointed to end our Colorado adventure early; especially Amy who had many things she wanted to do and see.

Thanks to my big brother Larry and his wife Carol we did see and do many things in our short stay. Among those things: camping life in a wonderful KOA campground, a mountain picnic, feeding chipmunks at St. Elmo, horseback riding, a real 4 wheel drive adventure to the Mary Murphy Mine, sitting back and enjoying a mountain thundershower under a camper awning, mountain sunrises and sunsets and most of all enjoying time with family.

Thanks Larry and Carol, I love you guys.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Project Black - OK One More

When I was at the Xeriscape Garden the other day there was a black bee that conveniently stumbled into my path. Hence, another post. It could even fit a movie...The Bee Movie. The flower is a Stokes Aster. I have never seen one of these before.

I will be sporadic in my posting for the next couple of weeks. It all depends on my access to Internet and time to convert raw shots of our travels.

I wish you all well as I embark on another great adventure!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Project Black - Take 5 - Shall We Dance?

My iTunes: Paint it Black - Vanessa Carlton

Being in a household with three women I get to see my share of romance movies. One of my favorites is "Shall We Dance" starring Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon and Jennifer Lopez. It got me interested in taking ballroom dancing lessons which we did for a summer. I never did quite get it down. It just isn't as easy as Richard makes it look!

This will be my final Project Black post as I will be getting ready to go to Colorado. I hope everyone has enjoyed the project!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Project Black - Take 4

Remember the movie Antz? Ok I have to admit there is very little black in this shot but when I saw the itty bitty black ants I knew I had my next "movie" shot. This was taken this morning at the Springfield Xeriscape Garden which is fast becoming my favorite place to take pictures.

The flower is known as a Red Hot Poker.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Project Black - Take 3

My iTunes: Soundtrack to the Hunt for Red October

It is fall in the North Atlantic. A renegade Soviet submarine named Red October is out there and the USS Lapon is being sent out to intercept.

Actually this picture was taken in the American Legion Park here in Springfield. The sail or conning tower of the USS Lapon, a nuclear attach submarine is on display. The sub was commissioned on December 19, 1962 and scrapped in August of 1995. Her sail was saved for display and was brought here in 2005.

Here is a shot of her in the park.

Hey skipper I think we took a wrong turn around Bermuda!

I hope you have a great Saturday! Keep finding black...hmmm what movie is next...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Project Black - Take 2

Men in Black 3? No, just a self portrait.

Taking a picture of yourself is not the easiest thing in the world to do! Between trying to get the exposure, focus and composure set and a few persistent raindrops this evening it was a trying time! I came up with the idea for this picture this morning when I was walking into work. I realized then that I had subconsciously worn black. Anna!!!!

I got to thinking about that and my movie theme from yesterday. Then there was the enormous (for me) response it generated along with a challenge to top that one. That's when the MIB theme hit me. So there you have it.

Now for those of you who read my blog just to keep up with what is going on in our lives you may be wandering what this project black thing is. Visit Anna's blog and see what is going on!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Project Black - Take 1

Need I say more?

White Hart Renaissance Faire - Part 2

My iTunes: The Eagle and the Hawk - John Denver

One of the performers at the Renaissance Faire was the Royal Gauntlet Birds of Prey. This group rescues injured birds of prey and rehabilitates them to the best of their ability. They are licensed professionals so they remind everyone that it takes special permits to do what they do.

They put on a good show and it was very interesting learning about the different birds they were showing. I wish I could remember the names of each one but I can't.

Look carefully at the post above the gate

I believe this is a Harris Hawk

This is a Perrigan Falcon.

This may actually be the Harris Hawk! :)

The big hawk was impressive and he and his trainer had negotiations for food!

We ran into a friend from our Camera Club tonight and he asked how I find out about things like this. Well I find out about most of them through our local TV station KY3 which is very good about promoting local events. Unfortunately sometimes if it is only a one day event it is too late but I sometimes make a note for next year. I am still waiting for the local Sci-Fi convention. There would be all kinds of great pictures there!

Tomorrow, one more set of photos from the Faire, if Anna's new project doesn't get me off track! Until later have a good Thursday.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Scenes from the White Hart Renaissance Faire

Sunday I drove down to the area around Hartville, Missouri where they were holding the White Hart Renaissance Faire. While the temperatures were high it appeared a good time was had by all. Here are some of the scenes and people at the Faire.

The Entrance

The May Pole

The Queen and one of her attendants

Another of the Queens attendants

A Happy Monk

Girls enjoying the Red Moon Tribe show

Tomorrow or Thursday we will look at a bird of prey show that was at the faire.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Wedding Bells

Well I am feeling old. We attended the first wedding of one of Katy's good friends this last Saturday. Of course I took my camera along set it at a high ISO so my flash wouldn't fire and shot away. I was limited in my mobility to about 2 feet one direction or another so I couldn't be too creative. It was my first Catholic wedding so it was an interesting experience. I wouldn't have liked to be the real photographer on this wedding because of the solid tan wall behind the altar. It had a tendency to make the color shots kind of bland. I didn't even like the black and white very well so I used a sepia to make it more interesting to me.

Congratulations Brittany and Greg. May you have many pleasant years together!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Thistles on Guard

My iTunes: Soundtrack to Gods and Generals

I believe these are thistles of some type. They were taken, like other pictures recently near the abandoned building in earlier posts. I am also attaching the color version of the black and white picture the other day. This will show the wildflowers a little better that were near the building.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.