Thursday Thoughts – Foggy Days Forever?

Can you feel it?

The need for crisp air and eyelifting skies? Totti enjoying a frosty morning some years ago – so fresh in the air…so easy to walk.

Right now I don’t need any more grey days – and Emma is not here to brighten them up…

Today was announced on the news, that November and December were the darkest ever in Sweden since they started measuring hundreds of years ago. So little sun and so little light. Stockholm didn’t have a single sunny hour in these last 7 weeks.

Grey can be beautiful – but not every day for two months – and there are three more to go before early Spring.

But in less than two weeks The Winter Solstice will be here. I can’t tell you how much we need it!

Thursday Thoughts – Younger Days II

I was born and raised in a tiny village, consisting of about 15 houses situated on a ridge above the school house. Here I spent every day of my first 12 years, climbing and running, strolling and roaming the farm land, meadows and forests. I had a happy childhood.

This is the gate I climbed every day – or, this might be a newer one, but it still looks the same to me… There are huge stones in the meadow above, and we used to bring buns and milk to feast on when we had finished climbing and settled on top of the highest one. To us they were mountains – but in reality, boulders from the ice age, left here when the ice moved away.

In this house lived the grandmother of my best friend at school, and her grandson (my friend’s elder brother). A small farm I loved to walk up to every day. My own grandmother’s house was just 5 minutes down the road.
Maybe you remember I posted before on this barn, the cats and a duck behind the yellow door. My childhood friend’s brother still lives here, but the farm animals are not that many anymore. He always keeps his ”Grålle” tractor (Ferguson) in excellent shape.
They used to have sheep, pigs, geese, hens, rabbits, cats and dogs. There’s only two sheep left, a duck and … loads of cats. Being a farmer is a tough life, so it has got to be a ”living your dream” scenario. It takes All of you to manage and make it thrive.
But the two sheep seemed happy in their golden meadow, and the farmer – well, he was just like I remembered him from younger days. I will return a sunny day in spring so we can climb some stones again. That would be just great.

Lens-Artists Challenge #121 – Focus on the Subject

In this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #121 Patti says : ”  Focus on the Subject, we invite you show us an image that uses leading lines, patterns, color, contrast, selective focus, freezing the action, doorways or arches, or the eyes of humans or animals to draw our attention to the subject. ”

In Sweden we are at the end of the grand Autumn colours, and I just had to send you inviting lines into one of my beautiful forests.

Patti talks about colour defining/deciding focus – and below is a typical example – in fact many ingredients are demonstrated in this one: colour, light and lines co-operate to make me take out my camera here. The motif is not a spectacular one, but the silo stands out!

Doorways or arches are constant attention drawers. Last week’s countryside tour made me capture some very different subjects.

The first shot from the spectacular library building in the middle of a vast beech forest. The owner, Michael Ehrenborg, lived at Hovdala Castle in the 18th century, and wanted a library in the forest to study science in solitude. Sadly enough he died before the octagonal building was finished – and it was left to rest and return to nature.

The castle itself is still standing and very much alive. Here framed by chestnut glory.

On my way home again, I decided to visit an old friend of mine. Kaj-Arne, a farmer who has stayed true to his farm and animals all his life. Evening light is not the best photo light these grey days, but through the barn door I managed to catch a glimpse of his pretty goose in the company of one of his friendly cats.

This last image fascinates me, because it was the light and colours that caught my attention – but what is the subject? So many frames … but I end up looking at the lonely, ugly chair. I could have concentrated on the beauty of the window, but the chair interested me. I was just walking down the stairs, seeing the left side, ordinary, rather drab…and then this fantastic window. What is Your focus in this image? I believe this is one of the many magical things with photography – we can all look at things differently…

Next week, we’re thrilled to announce a new guest host – the talented and creative Ana of Anvica’s Gallery is going to lead LAPC #122, so be sure to visit her site on Saturday, November 7th.

Looking forward to seeing your creative answers! Please include a link to Patti’s original post and use the Lens-Artists tag so that everyone can find your post in the WP Reader. Once again, special thanks to all of you in our creative community for your continued participation. Be sure to stay safe and well.

Lens Artists Photo Challenge #118 – Communication

Thank you, Amy, for last week’s Photo Walk – a fun challenge with walks all over the world, that I unfortunately couldn’t follow as much as I wanted. But I will be back – soon.

Hosting this week is clever Biasini and Ma Leueen – so, I will take the opportunity to show you something of my world – a dog’s world. My name is Milo, and I live with Totti, Ann-Christine and her family in southern Sweden.

During the summers my Emma is home and goes playing and swimming with me – I love her SO much that I will do everything she asks me to do… Can you see how we even take the same pose before jumping in?
When in doubt…I search her eyes for advice – or maybe sometimes it is the other way around…
…but, I often let her go in first. In case it is a trap…
When we are back home again, with friends visiting – Totti and I have to check out if the guest (or intruder) is a good guy or not.

In my family we don’t do competitions anymore, but my pal, Totti, used to win many prizes in his youth. He is a Swedish and Danish Champion. In the header, he is the winner of such a competition. I can tell you that, in order to reach a top position, you have to communicate well with your handler (as they call the human running with you in the ring).

A great companion he is anyway, Totti. We both know exactly what the other one wants or wants not. Mostly we want the same thing though…and that could have meant big trouble, if we hadn’t been able to communicate wisely and read the signs. I can only urge all of you to work hard on it – Communication. If you don’t manage that well enough, your life will be much more complicated – sometimes hardly manageable.

Finally, our sincere thanks to Biasini and Ma Leueen, for guest hosting this week’s very interesting challenge. We all look forward to seeing your creative responses. Please remember to link them to their original post here, and to use the Lens-Artists tag to help us find you. We hope you’ll stay tuned next week as I, Ann-Christine/Leya will be the host for our next challenge.

Please be safe and well until next time!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #116 – Symmetry

Patti is our host this week, and we are asked to think about symmetry. As she explains in her instructive and beautiful post, symmetry is, and have always been, pleasing to the human eye.

The header, as well as most of these images, are from Spain. Art and architecture here has its origin from many cultures including the Moorish. A fantastic blend.

A warm Barcelona night – we stumbled upon a motorcycle gathering
More Spain – Gaudí of course! A small church or chapel, not that well known.
Nature then? I cannot have a post without being natural in some way… Bilateral symmetry, (in biology) – ”a basic body plan in which the left and right sides of the organism can be divided into approximate mirror images of each other along the midline.”
Back in Spain again – A silent monastery walk
Cervantes looking down at his heroes, Don Quixote och Sancho Panza
Finishing off with one of my favorite floors – a wooden floor found in Copenhagen – man-made. Diagonal symmetry? Or I just made that up maybe… but, symmetry can also exist in many ways in the same object, work of art or image. I like the combinatory possibilities.

Thanks to all of you in our creative community for your support, enthusiasm, and creativity.  Let’s keep inspiring each other !  Next challenge, LAPC #117 will be hosted by Amy instead of me, October 3, 2020, so don’t forget to stop by her site and join the fun.

Until then, I wish you all a wonderful, creative week – and stay safe.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #115 – Inspiration

This week, Tina’s challenge is all about inspiration. What inspires you in life? Go to Tina’s fabulous post for more inspiration – and I am sure you will be lingering there for a while…

I am a nature person and an animal person. I prefer walking in nature and being together with animals instead of people. Nature is all inspiring and the foundation of my thoughts and choices in life. Nature is real, animals are honest and straight forward. Humans can seldom measure up to that.

When I was a child there were always cats in my home. As an adult, always dogs. They listen, they do not judge you, and they are faithfully loving till the end. I believe it is essential for a child to grow up with animals around, to watch them and to learn from them how life and death works. They teach you how you should treat everything living. Furthermore – it is a scientific truth that people feel more calm and stable with animals around. In Sweden we have specially trained dogs to go visit elderly people regularly. Some homes for the elderly have a ”house cat”.

I have met some fabulous dogs and cats over the years – here are two of my favorites.
Nature is my greatest inspiration. From glorious landscapes to its tiniest and most intricate elements.
My Swedish summer landscape, and then something from my windows – size, 7-10 mm.
Abstract trees and flowers in Sagrada Família. Remember that Gaudí found Nature inspiration through walks and talks with his mother.
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis

To me, reading and books always mean inspiration, film and photography as well. There are so many things to be inspired of…what is inspiring for you?

Thank you as always for your support of, and commitment to, our challenge. We hope you’ll join us next week when Patti brings us challenge #116 on her Pilotfish blog.