LAPC #203 Local Vistas

What are your local vistas? Where do you photograph when you don’t have a lot of time or are not on vacation? This week, show us your local vistas – Anne Sandler of Slow Shutter Speed, is our host!

Well, nowadays I almost always post on my local vistas – and here I am on my way to the forest some weeks ago. As I was driving down the gravel road, I saw a moose – who of course already had spotted me from the rapeseed field…
When landing in the forest, I bet the Lily of the Valley and me both loved the silence and the last rays of evening sun.

I think you know that nature is the most popular vista in my vicinity, but we also have several castles in our neighbourhood, all within a 30 minutes’ drive. Wanås castle with its beautiful surroundings is often visited – sometimes with friends

– here is me and Viveka (My Guilty Pleasures) a couple of weeks ago. Wanås treats include both outdoor exhibitions and…
…tempting indoor exhibitions.

Bosjökloster castle in spring glory – also known for its exhibitions and tasty food.

Without a car, my dogwalks are often photographed as well… In any season, any weather, at any time of the day. With or without a dog…

Interesting studios in a nearby town can be visited for a fee, and you will be guided by one of the artists.

Back to the castles, maybe my favourite is Hovdala, every year used for jousting and medieval fun.

It is always a treat to go there, for beautiful nature, for exhibitions – and for very good food.

Last week, Sofia lead us into an exploration of minimalism and maximalism. What a treat! Many of us discovered our personal preferences for one or the other, but some people enjoyed using both. Next week, we have a special guest host–Sylvia Bacon, who will lead LAPC #204, so be sure to visit her site. Until then, stay safe and kind.

Remember to link to Anne’s post as you share your local vistas and use the Lens-Artists tag.

 If you would like to participate weekly in our Lens-Artists Challenge, just click this link and join us: https://photobyjohnbo.wordpress.com/about-lens-artists/

Thursday Thoughts – Västervik Street Art

Västervik town had three big street art festivals 2019-2021. We went there for a couple of days to enjoy the beautiful town and its art. The weather was not the best, but good enough. Some works from the festivals collected here. In the header we have an Ollio/Curtis Hylton.

Lula Goce – Spain
Mantra – France

Ketones 6000 – Australia

Curtis Hylton – England

Curtis Hylton – England

Telmomiel – Holland. This one was my favourite.

LACP#202 – Minimalism/Maximalism, Simplicity/Complexity…

Sofia has chosen a very interesting theme for this week – please visit her blog for more inspiration! Personally I might go for Simplicity/Complexity for the most part, but the labels are not easily set… So, let’s discuss them – and I will start with a quote of my liking:

Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.

– Antoine de Saint-Exupery

It is preoccupation with possession, more than anything else, that prevents men from living freely and nobly.

– Bertrand Russell

The first two images could go for simplicity/complexity as well as minimalism/maximalism – but, I feel there is a certain difference… do you feel that too? Sofia wondered if it had to do with the subject – and I think it might.

The first one shows an old boatsman’s cottage, sparsely furnished in light, Scandinavian colours. The second one is the abandoned cottage of Åke, the man who made Kyrkö Mosse famous for its car graveyard in the forest. Do you think his single room could be called complex/maximalistic? It is sparsely furnished… but abandoned and left in a mess of details and colours – which also could be a description of what maximalism is about.

To me, the first photo shows a scenery for my eyes to rest on, and in the second photo my eyes are immediately drawn to strange details instead.

You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need.

– Vernon Howard

The second couple of images might be minimalism/maximalism if you compare them, but the white dress is still detailed and elaboratedly made. Simplicity? Maybe, but the right one, a man’s dress, could easily be labelled both maximalism and complexity. Both outfits were made for great feasts but in different countries of Europe.

The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.

– Hans Hofmann

Last week we went for a couple of days to the small town of Västervik, where we wanted to see graffitti from three years of festivals. In an art museum, they also had some old Cirkus posters from one of the world’s greatest collections exhibited. Because of their fragility though, they were now being digitalised before going to the archives. (6000 of them were already there.) Some were as old as late 18th century. In the early history of cirkus some established artists, such as Tolouse Lautrec, were engaged to make the posters.

I would call the first poster minimalistic and the second one the epitome of maximalism. The Cyrk posters were made in Poland, and Trolle Rhodin held his famous cirkus shows in Sweden. Notice the US theme. I find the Polish poster very artistic, and still telling us the story perfectly well – what it is all about – without many details.

My last example is the beach – the first one the way I like it best, and the second one I would never visit. So, what does that tell you about me? I guess I am more minimalistic then, but I still like details… And how did I manage to take the second beach photo? Well, I went there just for a photo of the incredible crowd…

Finally, like Sofia, I will end with a scene that once blew me away – a poster for a fashion exhibition by our world famous designer Lars Wallin. I still find it so ”clean” and delicate.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

– Leonardo da Vinci

Thank you, Sofia, for making me question my thoughts on the essence of these words, and what I really like the most. An eye opener.

I would like to thank you all for the wonderful challenge responses last week. Magnificent, so many inspiring and innovative triptychs! As for this week, Sofia invites us to think of which fits our narrative best, simplicity or “more is more”, minimalism or maximalism, or does it depend on the subject? We’re looking forward to seeing your posts. As always, use the Lens-Artists tag and link to Sofia’s original post.

Next week the brilliant Anne at Slow Shutter Speed will host so make sure to have a look at her blog.

If you want more information about the Lens-Artists Challenge, please click here.

LAPC #201 – Three of a Kind

Maybe you too have experienced that one single image sometimes doesn’t convey what you wanted to say with it? This week, I thought we all would have the possibility to show more than one side of the coin. With Three of a Kind, I want you to think about things related to your main photo – maybe a book, a flower, a room, a piece of art… Almost anything will fit in here – you could make your three images tell a story too! Simply put: Your post should have three separate images that are somehow related. (Another option is splitting one photo into three parts.)

There is a special word for this art of three – triptych. The shape may be seen in Christian Iconography and became a common conventional style for altar artworks in the Middle Ages, from the Gothic era forward, both in Europe and overseas.

Ever since I visited Museo del Prado in Madrid and saw Hieronymus Bosch’s triptych The Garden of Earthly Delights, I was hooked. Even if this technique works best for painting, the triptych has provided a new layer to visual art. Let’s give it a try in photography! And let’s make it simple – the images can stand like always, below one another. The Wish Tree images below do, but you can also use, for example, the WP gallery tool.

Yoko Ono’s Wish Trees at Wanås were flowering beautifully last Sunday

Most wishes dancing in the wind these unruly days, were for peace in Ukraine
and for peace on Earth –

Plato once said that human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge. But, it is a quote from Leonardo da Vinci that comes to mind when I walk among these beautiful wish trees…
There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see.

I wish those who do not see, were given the ability to see.

One evening last week I went to the little pond where the fiddlehead ferns grow. For contemplation and some peace of mind. Soon I was lost in a magical walk, to the tunes of the nightingale. I hope you can hear him sing, despite the soundless images! Just like the ferns, he was playing hide and seek with me behind the trees. I never wanted this moment to end.

The Pond

I tried to stay with the shape of a real triptych, but found the mosaic gallery to be the best tool for my images. I kept my main image to the left in each set.

As I was cleaning these old vases, memories of grandmother made me think of using them too for this theme. All we have is our memories, and many times it is the little things that trigger us to remember…Thank you again, Amy.

Grandmother’s Chinese vases

Finally, a Wanås visit would not be complete without the indoor art gallery. The main artist, Peter Linde Busk, used a multitude of techniques and materials, (reuse is his driving force) which made for an interesting triptych story.

The Generous Gambler

Special thanks to Amy for her Little Things theme, that brought much joy and a treasure of posts reminding us that the little things are the most important in life. When everything is swaying around us, we can rest our mind and senses – in them.

We are so looking forward to seeing your Three of a Kind posts, how you chose to display your images, and their different stories! Remember to have fun with this theme, and please add the Lens-Artists tag and a link to my post.

Next week, Sofia will be hosting, and her theme is Minimalism/Maximalism–Single or Flamboyant, Plain or ”More Is More”? Please visit her inspirational site! Until then, stay calm and kind, making the world a better place.

LAPC #200 – Every Little Thing

Amy is hosting Every Little Thing this week, please visit her lovely site for more inspiration! We invite you to share every little thing that makes you smile. Amy says:

”Small things around us have interesting stories to tell if we only take the time to stop, look, and listen.” With this little mixed gallery, I hope to send you some smiles from me!

The important little ones around us, are both necessary for our survival – and beautiful. Not only spring flowers and Yoko Ono art, but animals, insects (even flies)…

…and tiny worlds to get lost in.

And how about a little sun of your own?

Many thanks to John, and for your special contributions to his Mechanical/Industrial theme. I have had a trying week without my PC, but now I am here! Hope you will participate in Amy’s beautiful theme, and don’t forget your Lens-Artists tag and link to Amy’s original post!

Next week it is my turn, Leya, to be your host. May the sun shine on you – and inside you, until then!

Thursday Thoughts – Local Art Exhibition

Every Easter, Swedish artists offer local exhibitions to reach their customers. This year we went to Hovdala Castle for an overview instead of driving around to the different artists and their ateliers. Environmental friendly and time saving.

How about a peep into some of our local artists’ work?

Finally, a painting I really recognize my spirit and soul in.

Hope you enjoyed the little tour!

Macro Monday – My Favourite Netsuke

My favourite from Gothenburg and The Röhsska Museum, a 20mm Netsuke.

Lens-Artists Challenge #190- Close and Closer

I wanted [photography] to be more than a document, to be something that is as close as you could possibly be to the subject. Chris Killip

A famous quote from Robert Capa goes: If your pictures aren’t good enough, you aren’t close enough. And
surely you win some things by getting closer – but at the same time you lose things too… For LAPC #190, Patti’s challenge is about moving closer to your subject. Post one photo or a series of photos showing what happened when you got closer to your subject!

So, get closer by moving your feet, by using a zoom or macro lens, or by cropping the photo. In my images I have zoomed in or cropped – no macro lens in these.

My inspiration was an interesting design museum in Gothenburg, which made our stay last weekend really worth while. The museum grew from a family with deep interest in oriental art into a versatile collection. We spent some hours enjoying and learning some really new things to us.

A netsuke is an artistically carved button-like toggle that was used to fasten cases for medicine and tobacco onto the belt of a kimono. From originally having been a simple piece of wood, the designs, motifs and materials changed and developed over the centuries. Ivory and wood, but also metal, horn and porcelain was used by the skilled artists.

Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you. – Frank Lloyd Wright

The motifs are from Japanese and Chinese mythology, and from the plant and animal worlds. Clearly it wasn’t enough with overall pictures – you had to get closer. An average sized netsuke is not bigger than 2-4 cm. The details are exquisite.

The word ”netsuke” means ”root to hang from”. Notice the opener with a snake in the pumpkin (?).

One of the rooms contained beautiful tapestries – this one from our famous Swedish artist, Märta Måås Fjetterström.

Her Swedish forest is a gem – and if you crop the image you will get either the canopy in cooler colours, or the forest floor in golden light. I find them all beautiful. Three artworks in one! Not all art will tolerate a good cropping, but this one does.

Finally, a hydrangea in winter costume – I had to have a flower too of course… The soft colours and the close-up make the skeleton petals a special treat.

Thank you, Patti, for helping us discover new things in our images! Do visit her site for more inspiration!

A special thanks to Tina for encouraging us to post our wonderful, odd, and eclectic photos. Next week, it’s my turn to inspire, so hopefully we will soon meet again!

Thursday Thoughts – A Favourite Artist

After years of trying to get there, (Corona restriktions and more…) we finally reached Sandgrund gallery in Karlstad. The owner of this museum/gallery is our Nordic watercolour master, Lars Lerin. When I was young, I tried my hand on this difficult task – watercolour painting. It is not easy. When the Corona restriktions started in 2020, I decided to give my painting efforts another try. I had more time on my hand, and I entered a couple of courses. I was happy. I cannot say I am any good at this, but I love it.

I want you to visit Sandgrund with me, to meet this skilled artist – I hope you enjoy!

A sensitive loner, traveller, artist, painter, writer – in fact he has written and illustrated more than 50 books. Many of them about his travels around the world. In later years he has written several children’s books as well. One of his books, with his thoughts and philosophy on life and the importance of our healing nature, won him the August Prize in 2014.

Lerin always had a dream of living in Lofoten, by the sea. And in his thirties he moved there to live with a Norwegian artist for 13 years. At times he was relying on drugs for his deep anxiety, but managed to leave the destructive life behind. Now he is a free man – married and a father of two.

I loved this study on ice and reed – where he explores his skills of light and shadows, textures and colours.

Elsa and her 28 cats is a children’s book – but it can be read by any age. The book cover shows the splendour of a Swedish summer in Värmland, where he was born. Lerin often writes about people who are different, and stand up to it – just like Elsa, whom he met as a young boy. Can you find some of Elsa’s cats? I bet they were all happy and much loved.

Thank you for letting me introduce you to Lars Lerin, I hope you enjoyed the variety of his skills.