Readers’ wildlife photos

December 8, 2020 • 8:00 am

Today’s contribution comprises more “street photos” by Joe Routon (remember, these kind of photos count as wildlife). I’ve indented Joe’s captions. Click on the photos to enlarge them.

I’m Always on the search for beautiful things to photograph, and am including a few that I’ve taken.

This is one of my photos of Urbino, Italy, the hometown of the artist Raphael. The beauty of the surrounding countryside inspired him and was included in many of his paintings. The ubiquitous splendor of Italy makes it one of my favorite destinations.

Lake Como is filled with lush gardens and beautiful surroundings.

I have a new camera that has a multiple exposure function that allows me to combine photos. In this one, I merged my photo of a ballerina’s profile with leaves from my front yard. My title for this is “Life is beautiful! Wear a Mask!!”

Even dying leaves can grace us with simple and elegant beauty.

Beauty, dignity, and majesty are plentiful at the magnificent St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague.

A must-see in India is the beautifully constructed Chand Baori stepwell in the Abhaneri village of Rajasthan. Built in the 9th century, it’s almost 100 feet deep and has 3,500 narrow steps. My photo is in the DK Smithsonian book “Man-Made Wonders of the World.”

32 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. Joseph, your “Life is beautiful! Wear a Mask!!” photo deserves to be spread far and wide across the world, for many reasons. It’s amazing.

    All the others are beautiful as well.

    1. Thank you, Robert! Art can express many things, so why not public health? If you would like to use it, please feel free. I appreciate your comment!

    1. Thank you Rick! Stimulating me to search for beauty is one of the reasons I enjoy photographing so many different subjects.

  2. Really lovely photos. Thanks. Makes me realize how much I am missing travel. The last one with pigeons over the ruins really caught my fancy.

    1. Thank you, Bruce! I too miss traveling. The stepwell in India is one of the most amazing things I’ve seen on my trips. India is one of my favorite countries for photography.

  3. If I had to advise someone that could spend, say, 2 months in only one country in the world, Italy would be my advice. It has everything: History , architecture, arts , but also food, wines, wild nature, great climate, friendly and often interesting people and (as a male) charming women (yes I know, the charming Italian men are legendary). And much more.
    Oh yes, great photos 🙂

    1. Nicolaas, Italy would be my first choice for a country, too. I read somewhere that it contains about 75% of the world’s great art, and there’s so much history. The country is filled with beauty. And the food. . .”

    1. Thank you! I enjoy photographing a wide variety of subjects. There’s so much out there waiting the camera. I appreciate this and your other comments on my photos!

      1. As I always say, the key to improving one’s photography is to work on one’s ability to see. Really see the world. There’s something photo-worthy in every view, if you look for it.

        And then: Editing: Using lens/focal length choice, aperture, shutter speed, to cut out what’s not important and emphasize what is important.

        And, of course: Being out there, so you have opportunities. This is my worst weakness: Laziness. (The actually pretty good camera in my phone has helped.)

        1. And the real challenge is when you’re stuck at home because of the raging pandemic. There are only so many different angles of knives and forks, coat-hangers, and shoes that can hold my camera’s attention.

          However, photographing mundane things around the house is helping me to learn to use my new camera’s features, functions, and settings.

          And searching can always reveal common, everyday things that are beautiful, that I might not otherwise have noticed.

          The cameras in today’s smartphones are truly amazing. It gives me a feeling of security knowing that if I have a problem with my camera, I have my iPhone for a backup.

    1. Thank you, Scruffy! The world is stunning, if we only take the time to look for its beauty. I appreciate your comment!

    1. Thank you, Mark! I always appreciate your comments. Coming from a first-rate photographer, as you are, really makes them special. My new camera is a Nikon Z5, and I’m spending some of my spare time, while staying indoors, learning about its many features, including the multiple exposures, which I’d never tried with camera or computer. It’s all new to me, and I’m thoroughly enjoying it.

    1. Thank you, Mark! When I first saw the stepwell it literally took my breath away. It’s an amazing feat of engineering and architecture that has to be seen to be fully appreciated. I really appreciate your comments.

    1. Thank you, Robert! Needless to say, I was excited when they contacted me about using my photo. The stepwell is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. I appreciate your comment.

  4. Nice try Joe, but Urbino is too perfect. Obviously you painted it. <– That's my awkward way of saying "wow!"

    Dying Leaves is another impressive find, or should I say notice. And Mask is just brilliant.

    1. Thank you, Paul! it’s easy to make a perfect photo in Italy. With your eyes closed, twirl around, snap the camera’s shutter, and you’ll get a great photo. There’s a lot of beauty in this world that we miss because we don’t take the time to look for it. I appreciate your kind comments!

  5. Joe, I love the pictures but for me the ballerina is especially poignant: it reminds me of the poem by Frenchman Paul Verlaine, Autumn Song. (Chanson d’automne). Verlaine seems prescient in it ( writing about his reaction to the horrors of the Great War, but foreshadowing the despondency that most of the country feels with victims “breathless and pale.” It loses a little in translation but seeing the leaves masking and protecting the dancing spirit gives a little hope that the long sobs of our autumnal fiddling and our monotonous weariness will soon be over.

    1. Thank you, Art! Your words beautifully and effectively express hope, and for me they give new meaning to the photo!

  6. Your work is stunningly beautiful, Joe. As someone who has hardly travelled and is like a hermit during the pandemic, I especially appreciate the one of Urbino, I felt transported away. Thank you! And many thanks to Jerry for taking the time to share readers’ photos and his own many literary compositions.

    1. Thank you! Like you, I’ve lived the life of a hermit during the pandemic. Hopefully we’ll be able to resume traveling soon. I’m grateful to you for your kind comment!

  7. Have never even seen a photograph of the Chand Baori stepwell, your photo has has a surreal quality about it. Sort of reminds me of MC Escher Stairs. And I also didn’t know it was used as the place Batman escapes from in The Dark Knight Rises, it seemed other-worldly in that movie, too.

    And I really like the dying leaves, too. Marvelous!

    1. Thank you, Su! The Chand Baori literally took my breath away when I first saw it! I remember thinking at the time that it reminded me of Escher. As you say, it’s almost surreal.

    1. David, thank you! Hopefully, with the vaccine, we’ll soon be able to resume traveling. I appreciate your comments!

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