Category Archives: CB&W

That Tree, always in Black and White…

Part of Cee’s B&W photo challenge  – Open Topic

I have photographed this tree at the Giant’s Ring Belfast a number of times, of course at different times of year and in differing lights, however, I have always turned it into varying B&W effects. Perhaps my first attempt was “the original and best” but I am posting a selection of them as it seems to me that this tree naturally tells me that it needs to be in B&W to do it justice and create the atmosphere. For that reason it seems to me to be the obvious choice for Cee’s B&W Challenge Open Topic this week.

tree 2
needless to say the little boy and his pup make the photo for me
SONY DSC
same tree, different angle
tree 1
don’t know just decided to take this with the tree and the stones as background rather – was enjoying the meadow that they have allowed to grow up in recent years
SONY DSC
the original
tree
a different day, different light, like the sky

 

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Big Boots, Little Feet and something in-between

Part of Cee’s B&W photo challenge: Shoes or Feet (human or animals)

‘Big Boots’ – I was just about to return to the car after walking the dogs along the tow path of the River Lagan, Belfast when something caught my eye which didn’t quite make sense. Compelled to check it out, this is what I saw – it was so unexpected that it took me a moment to catch on that they of course were not floating as the appeared to be but were sitting on a jetty at the rivers edge and the water had lapped up around them.SONY DSCWhat made it so cool was that the water was completely still providing almost perfect reflection, that is until the kayaker who had left them there returned – only at that point did the whole scene make sense for me. Thankfully I had my camera with me and managed to snap a few.

SONY DSC

‘Something in between’ – A quick foot inspection whilst the baby sleeps in her arms, love this picture.

boots (7)‘Little Feet’ – these are the feet of baby Tequila, one of the day old pups we rescued with their mum from the roadside in Spain. The hand is that of the very caring vet giving her the once over and treating them for fleas. This was a fantastic, emotional, stressful and rewarding event in which to be involved. The five pups and their mum were given the best of care and I’m delighted to say that each of them has the most wonderful home in the UK. A huge team pulled together to ensure their safety and care but to be part of the rescue, care and homing of this family from start to finish is something of which I’m very proud.

boots (5)A photo the like of which I have many. These feet are those of a larger puppy and represent many hundreds who have passed through the wonderful dog shelter where I help in Spain. These are the lucky ones…

Head shots and facial features…

part of Cee’s black and white foto chalenge: head shots and facial features (humans or animals)

As always, Cee tells us to have fun with the challenges. Of course any challenge that gives me the chance to show off some of the wonderful dogs I have had the privilege of working with and photographing at the shelter is a fun challenge. However, I have included a few humans and other animals as well – just for fun x

Above: This is just a small selection of the faces of dogs I have fallen in love with at the shelter in Spain where I try to help as much as I can. Each of them I have worked with, walked, comforted and some of them I have helped to find homes for. Each of them has their own special story, usually involving cruelty or neglect. To me each one is beautiful.

Yes, I do know I have included a cat in that selection! Well that cat, who has been named Sabrina, turned up at the dog shelter – clearly either very brave or very silly – where there are over 100 dogs and has taken up home just at the gates. She is looked after by the shelter volunteers and greets every visitor affectionately. The nip out of her left ear indicates that she has been neutered, something so necessary for street cats to prevent endless numbers of unwanted litters.

3 head shots for the price of 2 😉 Meet the shelter donkey! As if by magic one day Verena just appeared at the shelter gates, injured, with an infection, multiple wounds over her emaciated body. We tended her wounds, got her veterinary attention, a lovely bath, good food and found her a good home. The first picture (with me) was taken during her ‘spa morning’, the second is a few months later when we visited her in her new home. How wonderful her coat was looking and how well she had filled out.

A wee random selection of animal head shots, the chimp was about 40 years old and at that ripe old age she gave birth. It was quite an event. Although I have very mixed views about zoos I went there just to take photos of mum and baby. The Spanish cow was a bit of a rascal. Again, because I had a big lens on I had lost a bit of perspective and didn’t realise how close I was. He decide to make a run at me just after this photo. I can tell you that I moved faster than I have done in a while. This blue 4 month old pit bull pup is one of the most beautiful I have ever seen with a personality to match.

headshotsza (3)headshotsyheadshotsza (1)

So, these are my three boys, left to right youngest to oldest. The youngest hates to have his photo taken so I take any chance to grab a candid one, usually when he is playing hockey as he is in this shot. My middle boy is much more willing, in this photo he has just got out of the swimming pool. My oldest boy, when he was young, used to make me delete every photo I took of him. Now he is different and I have actually had the pleasure of photographing him for his website at his work.

headshotsqheadshotszThese are two random Spanish men I sneaked shots of with my big lens. The first was one of the organisers of a protest I attended against bullfighting in a local town. The second, is a wee Spanish vendor who kindly helped us in our search for a dog. It was one of those bazar experiences as I stood in the searing heat with Spanish men speaking so quickly in colloquial language one to the other, smoking, drinking expresso coffees and discussing how best they  can help us. I speak a little Spanish – at this stage a very little Spanish -but this wee man kept looking at me in the eye during the various conversations and he seemed to think I was following it all. The best I could do was try to make sense of the few single words I picked up and add them to the many facial expressions and gesticulations which led me to understand that the dog we were looking for had disappeared – but he was going to help us to find it. What a star he was. However, that conversation taught me that no matter how well I ever learned to speak Spanish I would never get to the stage of understanding Andalusian country folk. That day with all it brought – including the rescue of the dog was one I will never forget – and I shall never forget this wee man’s face.

Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Hiding or Camouflaged

Our little friend here chose an almost perfect place to take up residence, almost indistinguishable from the stone finish on our water(less) feature by our front door – this being the only flaw in his plan 😉 I thought he would make a good entry for the ‘camouflaged or hiding‘ theme this week.

I had wondered why our two dogs reacted a little strangely a couple of times when venturing out the door but I had seen nothing to explain their behaviour. It was only when he peeped out to traumatise a friend of ours that we realised this (we think) Southern Smooth Snake was living literally under our doorstep.

camouflage1

Perhaps half a metre long, maybe more, my son and I decided he needed to be ‘re-homed’. So, not knowing whether this little fella posed any risk to us, we bravely (not) got a net on a rather long pole and gathered him up. The photographer in me, however, felt the need to try to get a decent picture, so before releasing him we set him in open ground and I lay down and started shooting. Looking through the lens we often do not realise how close we actually are to the subject and in this case it had ‘snaked’ and hissed its way to only inches from my lens. Slightly unnerving but I got a few decent shots and no photographer was harmed in the process!

We gently scooped him up again in the net and re-homed him just far away from our house so as not to scare anyone calling at our front door.

Those last three photos are not part of the camouflage challenge but I thought I would add a couple of photos that fall more into the ‘hiding’ category … or perhaps incognito would be a better word…just for fun

The first is a chimp at the zoo – as much as I have very  mixed feelings about zoos I had gone to try to photo a new baby just born to the oldest female. While all the fuss was centred on her, this male just seemed to want to hide away under his blanket. I had to wonder what he thought of his life on display. The second is my wee dog Polo who insisted on sunbathing in extreme temperatures, so we covered him in a white towel and lent him some sunglasses 😉 . The third if you look closely is a frog who has successfully crept up on a fly who is no doubt about to become a snack.

Thank you to Cee for hosting this B&W photo challenge. It really has the knack of getting me to look at photos in a different way. Jennifer

 

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Roads of any kind

Random Roads from home and abroad…

I am enjoying these challenges as I find myself perusing my archives and reminding myself of photos I kept simply because I liked them, but never had reason to show them to anyone. So, for this challenge I have a little selection – the first three from my archives and three that I took this morning specially for the challenge. I hope you enjoy.

B&W Roads (1)
‘The Road Below’ – through the glass floor about 6ooft up in the Calgary Tower, Downtown Calgary, Alberta, Canada. 
B&W Roads (6)
‘The Road to Rhonda’ province of Malaga, Spain
B&W Roads (4)
‘Old Access Road to Spelga Dam’, Mourne Mountains, County Down, Northern Ireland               Cold and exposed, as we say here in NI… “It would’ve blown the head of ye”
B&W Roads 2
‘From across the Road’ – looking straight down my favourite residential road from across the road and though the traffic. Taken 22/04/16
B&W Roads 1
‘Crossing the Road’ – Malone Road, one of the main arteries into Belfast city centre. My settings were set before crossing the road so I did not need to stop, therefore, no photographer was injured in the taking of this photo 😉                 Taken 22/04/16
B&W Roads Stormont
‘Road to Parliament’, Stormont Estate, Belfast, Northern Ireland                                                        Taken 22/04/16

Normally the Parliament Buildings (home of the Northern Ireland Assembly) at the top of the hill would be my focus for the photo, however, taking up this challenge to make the road the main subject of a photo I revisited these beautiful grounds this morning and returned with this image.

 

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Fences and Gates

Fences and Gates

gate - b&w

Fences and Gates

I took this photo at night time December 2015, with a 25 second shutter it produced some pretty dramatic colour especially in the sky – pinks and deep blues mainly. As someone who has only returned to blogging after 2 years away (and I originally only posted 4 blogs!) I have been looking for some inspiration. So, I saw this challenge and for some reason I revisited this picture and wondered how it would do in B&W. I rather like it.

Excited that this post was selected as ‘featured’ by the host blogger Cee!