iPhoneography: Ginkgo canopy

5 11 2018

Ginkgo grove at the Blandy Experimental Farm and State Arboretum in Boyce, VA

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. (iPhone 8Plus, Snapseed app border)

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iPhoneography: Ginkgo leaves

5 11 2018

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. (iPhone 8Plus)

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Featured in “Snapshots” e-newsletter!

11 04 2018
Here’s Part 1 of my article for Snapshots, an e-newsletter published by Fairfax County Park Authority. I believe Part 2 will debut in the next issue. This article offers tips for photographing with a smart phone in the garden. Thanks to editor Carol Ochs for including me in the publication! If you’re local and want to subscribe, click the link below:
 

Snapshots HIREZ article





iPhoneography: Bradford pear blooms

3 04 2018

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. iPhone 7Plus / Snapseed app borders

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iPhoneography: Sunday sky in Texas

5 03 2018

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. iPhone 7plus / Snapseed app border

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iPhoneography: Splendid fall

9 12 2017

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. iPhone 6s / Snapseed app border

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Field of gold

6 06 2016

I shot this on recent road trip down to Texas. It was somewhere in Tennessee.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

YellowFieldBlueSky





On Assignment: Rooftop terrace #2

13 10 2014

This is the second rooftop terrace, photographed a few weeks ago for a client. This terrace has a view of both the Capitol building and the Washington Monument!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

APA Terrace 2





On location: Rooftop terrace

7 10 2014

A few weeks ago, I photographed two beautiful new terraces on the top of an association client’s building. If I worked at this place, I’d find it awfully hard to come back inside after a lunch on the rooftop! This is the smaller of the two terraces…photos of the larger one to come…

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

APA Terrace 1





Sunset from my front porch

20 04 2014

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

FrontDoorSunsetlorez





Snow falling on crabapples (view from my kitchen)

4 03 2014

(Doesn’t sound quiet as poetic as that book, Snow Falling on Cedars, does it?)

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Snow Branches lorez





Re-post: Christmas in Montana

4 12 2013

Originally posted 12.13.2009

I took this shot in Montana on the road between Gallatin Gateway (where Michael’s Aunt Jackie lives) and the entrance to Yellowstone National Park. We were spending Christmas at Jackie’s, along with two of Michael’s sisters and their families, in 1995. This trip included my first try at snowshoes (awkward, as expected), hiking up a mountain to find a Christmas tree Jackie had picked out (ask me about that adventure sometime), the snowmobile-on-frozen-lake-ice-fishing excursion (no luck for anyone), a fun (but very bumpy) snow coach ride with everyone through Yellowstone the day after Christmas (a gift from Aunt Jackie), me suddenly sinking waist deep in snow (along with Michael’s brother-in-law, Pete) while we were trying to get that perfect landscape shot (but we saved the cameras!), a sightseeing/shopping trip to Bozeman, and more cold and snow than you could possibly imagine. I probably shot this image with my N90s. I also brought along my Fuji G617 panoramic camera—I’ll have to find those really wide transparencies and get them scanned some day. 

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Fall comes to Kingstowne Lake

4 11 2013

Storm clouds on one side of the lake, sunlight from behind me illuminating the foliage…what a beautiful mix! I photographed this shot at Kingstowne Lake yesterday afternoon on a field photography trip with my friend Michael Powell.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Kingstowne Lake Foliage





Double date

3 11 2013

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Double Date





A cornucopia of colors

3 11 2013

Kingstowne Lake shoreline, Alexandria, Virginia

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Re-post: Fall in Virginia

25 10 2013

We’ll be heading out to Boyce, Virginia to the Blandy Experimental Farm to check out the Ginkgo grove this coming Saturday, so maybe I’ll have new fall photos to post!

Originally posted in October, 2010

Since I haven’t been able to get my bounty of fall photos this year, I’ve made a collage of my favorite images from the past three years. These were all shot in various parts of Virginia, including my own neighborhood. Enjoy!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.







Stained glass

9 10 2013

I photographed the same sunset through the large tree in our backyard garden.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Sunset Through Trees





Twilight

28 02 2013

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Twighlight lorez





A few more Ginkgo photos…

27 10 2012

Learn more about the beautiful Ginkgo grove at the Blandy Experimental Farm here.

The following narrative is excerpted from the brochure, “A Guide to the Ginkgo Grove,” published by the State Arboretum of Virginia at the University of Virginia’s Historic Blandy Experimental Farm.

The Story of the Blandy Ginkgo Grove
The Blandy ginkgo grove is one of the largest collections of ginkgos outside the tree’s native China. Given their autumnal glory, a visitor might assume that Blandy’s ginkgos were planted solely for their beauty. But this grove is the happy result of a scientific experiment.

Dr. Orland E. White, Blandy Experimental Farm’s first Director, began collecting ginkgo seeds in 1929 from a single “mother tree” on the University of Virginia grounds in Charlottesville. After these seeds germinated, Dr. White’s students planted over 600 ginkgo saplings to determine the sex ratio of this tree. Most plants are both male and female, but like holly, persimmon, and other species, ginkgo is dioecious, meaning a tree is male or female, but not both. Dr. White hypothesized the sex ratio would be 1:1. He did not live long enough to find out if he was right, but of the 301 trees that survived to maturity and for which gender could be determined, 157 were female and 144 were male. Statistically speaking, this does not deviate significantly from 1:1.

A Living Fossil
Ginkgo biloba is often described as a “living fossil.” It is one of the most primitive seed plants found today, and it’s the only surviving representative of its plant family (Ginkgoaceae) and order (Ginkgoales).

The earliest ginkgo leaf fossils date from 270 million years ago. During the Jurassic (200-145 million years ago), the era of dinosaurs, ginkgos were already widespread. And by the Cretaceous (145-65 million years ago), ginkgos grew in what is now Asia, Europe and North America.

Ginkgos disappear from the North American fossil record about 7 million years ago, and from the European record about 4.5 million years later.

Western scientists first learned of the ginkgo in the late 1600s, when living trees were found growing in cultivation near Buddhist temples in China. Thus, the sole remaining member of what was once a dominant plant group remains a link between the present and our geological past.

The Silver Apricot
The word “ginkgo” originates from a Chinese word meaning “silver apricot.” When mature the fleshy ginkgo seed—ginkgos don’t form fruits—has roughly the size and appearance of a small apricot. Historians trace the earliest documented use of ginkgo as a food and herbal medicine to 11th century China, and it is still widely used in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine. It’s important to remember that if eaten raw, gingko’s fleshy seeds are poisonous, and we ask visitors not to collect ginkgo leaves or seeds for this or any other use.

Research shows ginkgo extract has three important actions on the body: it improves blood flow to most tissues and organs; it is an antioxidant which protects against cell damage; and it blocks many of the effects of blood clotting that have been related to a number of disorders. Western medicine has recently focused on Ginkgo biloba to protect against memory loss, but clinical trials have not confirmed this.

Photos © Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Ginkgo trees

26 10 2012

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Ginkgo grove

26 10 2012

Ginkgo grove at the University of Virginia’s Blandy Experimental Farm and State Arboretum in Boyce, VA. Double click on the image to see a larger view!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Some of my favorite fall photos…

23 10 2012

These were taken at Lake Land’Or back in 2008. The shot of the dock with the cloud reflections is one of my all-time favorites of this place!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Reflections of fall

23 10 2012

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





The serenity of fall

23 10 2012

Fall comes to Lake Land’Or in Ladysmith, Virginia.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Revisited: Shine on, shine on, harvest moon…

30 09 2012

Originally posted September 23, 2008

En route to visit Barb and Dean in Spokane on Saturday, September 13, we drove past miles and miles of wheat fields and as the land became more golden in the late afternoon light, we noticed the makings of a harvest moon.

Whenever I hear the words, “harvest moon,” I always remember a very old Ruth Etting album (heaven only knows where I found it) that I eventually gave to a friend’s husband to add to his large music collection. I just did a search and I actually found the recording! The only words I could remember were “shine on, shine on harvest moon…for me and my guy.” (I sing it true to her old-fashioned vibrato, of course).

Etting revived the song in Ziegfield Follies in 1931. Click here to find it on youtube.com. And if you’re a Liza Minnelli fan, click here for her rendition of the song.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

_____________

ADDENDUM: Thanks to fellow blogger, Deborah Rose Reeves, for her recent posting of this poem by Ted Hughes.

The flame-red moon, the harvest moon,
Rolls along the hills, gently bouncing,
A vast balloon,
Till it takes off, and sinks upward
To lie on the bottom of the sky, like a gold doubloon.
The harvest moon has come,
Booming softly through heaven, like a bassoon.
And the earth replies all night, like a deep drum.

So people can’t sleep,
So they go out where elms and oak trees keep
A kneeling vigil, in a religious hush.
The harvest moon has come!

And all the moonlit cows and all the sheep
Stare up at her petrified, while she swells
Filling heaven, as if red hot, and sailing
Closer and closer like the end of the world.

Till the gold fields of stiff wheat
Cry `We are ripe, reap us!’ and the rivers
Sweat from the melting hills.

by Ted Hughes.





A most perfect Sunday

24 09 2012

Yesterday Michael and I left at 5:00 a.m. (yes, you read that correctly—I got up on a Sunday at 4:00 a.m., which is unheard of for me) to drive to Newtown Square, PA to photograph a Walk4Hearing event at Ridley Creek State Park for the Hearing Loss Association of America. The weather was perfect and we shot a ton of photos. En route home mid-afternoon, we came upon this bright yellow-green field of (unknown crop) against a cornflower blue sky. The field is adjacent to the train tracks in Pocopson Township in Chester County, PA, near the crossroads of Pocopson Road and Street Road. The Pocopson Station is now home to the Pocopson Veterinary Station

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Announcing Art, Photography and Cooking Workshops in Tuscany in April and May, 2013

16 09 2012

Earlier this year, my friend and fellow artist, Suzy Olsen, invited me to teach photography workshops at her villa in Tuscany. We had originally planned for workshops to happen later this month but the timing was too short for planning, so we moved the date to spring 2013.

Join us in Italy for a feast for the senses!

Spend seven days/eight nights in Tuscany for workshops in watercolor painting and photography, topped off with authentic Italian cooking lessons! Accommodations are in a lovely artist community at the top of a hill overlooking the Poppi. The little town of Poppi is located in the beautiful Ortignano Raggiolo region at the center of the Casentino Valley, not far from Florence.

Two dates to choose from: April 19–27 or May 2–10, 2013

Trip includes accommodations, all meals, and daily workshops—watercolor and pen and ink classes with Suzy Olsen each morning; a travel, nature and portrait photography class with me each afternoon, and three authentic Italian cooking classes in the evening with Chef Daniela Cursi.

WORKSHOP INSTRUCTORS

Artist Suzy Olsen will teach you a great way to use watercolor with pen and ink for travel sketches using just the supplies in your backpack. You will learn how to access views and single out what works best—sketching and using your pen, then you can later fill in with watercolor back at the studio where you will utilize photos for reference. Her demos will be done every day to assist you with how to use pen, papers, and watercolor to your best advantage. You can paint with both a notebook and a watercolor paper pad, and are encouraged to further your creativity in the studio at the villa. She will share her paintings and demonstrate watercolor and sketching techniques during the morning hours.

Graphic designer, avid blogger and award-winning photographer Cindy Dyer will show you how to capture the beauty of the Tuscan countryside with your camera including landscapes, nature, still life and portraits. You’ll learn about composition, depth of field and lighting and receive hands-on, personalized instruction in every session. Cindy will review your digital images throughout the week so you can improve your skills with each session. She will show you how to combine your watercolor paintings, sketches and photographs with narrative and captions to create an online blog or publish a travel journal with magcloud.com.

Chef Daniela Cursi has spent more than 20 years mastering traditional Tuscan cuisine and has worked as a chef since 1998. She will prepare our food and teach us how to make our favorite Tuscan meals such as homemade pasta and wood-fired pizza. She has mastered the local cuisine of the Casentino Valley near Poppi and Arezzo, which is famous for lasagna and ravioli. During late afternoons, Chef Daniela will host three cooking classes in which she will focus on these areas:

Homemade Pastas—You’ll learn how to roll it out using fresh country eggs to make the classic noodles: raviolis and lasagnas. Chef Daniela will also teach you how to create pestos and vegetable- and meat-based sauces.

Vegetables and Roasting Meat—You’ll learn to use fresh vegetables in side dishes and salads and how to grill meat over an open fire. Chef Daniela will share how the locals prepare wonderful appetizers—the traditional way to start a great meal!

Pizzas—You’ll learn how to make homemade pizzas using wood fire and desserts using pastries. You’ll see firsthand how beautiful simple food can be. We embellish with good wines from the area, and we’ll sample cheeses, local delicacies, sweets and more.

QUESTIONS? E-mail Cindy at dyerdesign@aol.com or call 703.971.9038. Contact Suzy directly via e-mail at suzy2art@gmail.com or text her cell phone at 210.556.8909 for more information.

For more details, download the preliminary brochure by clicking this link here: Tuscany Workshops





Sunday sky

4 08 2012

I shot this image with my iPhone last Sunday when I was out running errands. I don’t love the elements in the foreground, but I love the cloud formations and wanted to share this dramatic Sunday sky!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Vermont Road Trip Part 1: Ice cream, shoes, cheese, and a most memorable picnic in the rain

1 07 2012

The Lower Otter Creek Wildlife Management Area in Ferrisburgh, VT, near the entrance to Kingsland Bay State Park, encompasses 738 acres of wetland and floodplain forest habitat. Otter Creek reaches out to Lake Champlain and hosts a wide variety of wildlife: birds include state-endangered ospreys, bald eagles, ring-billed and great black-backed gulls, double-crested cormorants, great blue herons, mallards, hooded mergansers, and many types of ducks; mammals include mink, fox, white-tailed deer, cottontail rabbits and gray squirrels; reptiles include many species of salamanders, bullfrogs, spring peppers, tree frogs, turtles and snakes; fish include large and smallmouth bass, northern pike, walleye, chain pickerel and yellow perch.

After photographing the Hearing Loss Association of America’s Convention 2012 in Providence, R.I. (June 21-24), my sister Debbie and I hightailed it up to Vermont for a short road trip. We left Providence about noon on Sunday and officially kicked off the Vermont tour that evening with a visit to Ben & Jerry’s headquarters in Waterbury. I tried the Late Night Snack, which was inspired by Jimmy Fallon (vanilla ice cream, fudge covered potato chip clusters and a salty caramel swirl). I just read a few online reviews and although the reviewers rave about the flavor, I wouldn’t try it again. I should have stuck with my favorite standby: chocolate chip cookie dough. You can’t go wrong with that flavor, no matter which company makes it!

We stayed in Shelburne that night. On Monday morning we impulse shopped at the Vermont-based Danform Shoes (great bargain basement where I bought a pair of my craziest shoes to date—heretofore known as my Saturday-Day-Night-Fever-Don-Johnson-Miami-Vice-white-Mafia-don-Wendys-advertising-newsprint-tabletop mules; stay tuned for a shot of these wild things!), drove around part of Lake Champlain, visited Shelburne Farms (a beautiful 1400-acre working farm) where we bought picnic supplies (cheese, crackers and various spreads), stopped at the Vermont Wildflower Farm in Charlotte, then stopped at Dakin Farm in Ferrisburgh for more cheese, crackers and Vermont maple syrup. It rained off and on all day, so I wasn’t able to hunker down and get some macro shots at the wildflower farm, unfortunately. That was something I was really looking forward to. I did get some great deals on wildflowers seeds and perennial bulbs, though, so it was worth the trip. Plus, who cares about rain when you have cheese?

We then drove to Kingsland Bay State Park and had a wonderful late afternoon lunch picnic on the porch of the historic Hawley House, c. 1790. This property dates back to the first settlers in Ferrisburgh and was home to Ecole Champlain, an exclusive girls camp, until the late 1960s. I’ll have photos and history to share on a future post about this lovely stone house with a wraparound porch on all four sides. We started our picnic at a picnic table by the bay, but the intermittent rainfall drove us to the wraparound porch. It was the most memorable picnic ever! Debbie and I concocted our own strange Chopped dishes with the various cheeses, crackers, chocolates and sweets we picked up along the way (photos and descriptions to come!). Aside from the two employees at the park entrance, a few seagulls and one very attentive chipmunk, we had the entire park to ourselves that afternoon.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

I shot this image with my iPhone using the app “645 Pro” in 6×17 panoramic format. It is one amazing app! It gives you lossless developed RAW tiff files and high quality jpgs, low-light performance, and live preview and real-time LCD readout. It offers seven professional color and b&w “film” options inspired by classic print and transparency film, and five switchable “backs”—645, 6×6, 6×7, 6×9, 6×17. Amazing! (I own a FUJI 6×17 panoramic film camera, so I’m very familiar with this format. It’s so fun to use this app to mimic the panoramic film format—it’s much lighter and easier than the real deal!)

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/40177690″>645 PRO for iPhone</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/jaggr”>Jag.gr</a&gt; on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>




Great White Egret, Cape Fear River

7 06 2012

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Golden light

2 06 2012

Golden light, Cape Fear River © Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Cloudscape

2 06 2012

Cloudscape over Cape Fear River © Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Storm clouds over Cape Fear River

2 06 2012

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Re-post: Water like satin

11 03 2012

Originally posted May 26, 2009. Sunset begins at Lake Land’Or.

The Lake. To — by Edgar Allan Poe (1827)

In spring of youth it was my lot
To haunt of the wide world a spot
The which I could not love the less—
So lovely was the loneliness
Of a wild lake, with black rock bound,
And the tall pines that towered around.

But when the Night had thrown her pall
Upon that spot, as upon all,
And the mystic wind went by
Murmuring in melody—
Then, ah then I would awake
To the terror of the lone lake.

Yet that terror was not fright,
But a tremendous delight—
A feeling not the jewelled mine
Could teach or bribe me to define—
Nor Love—although the Love were thine.

Death was in that poisonous wave,
And in its gulf a fitting grave
For him who thence could solace bring
To his lone imagining—
Whose solitary soul could make
An Eden of that dim lake.

Photo © Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

CanoeLakeLandOr





Sue’s spectacular sunrise

27 01 2012

On our last night on the long road from San Antonio to Virginia, we spent the night with our friends, Sue and Steve, in Huntsville, AL. We arrived at Sue’s house at almost midnight and set the alarm to get up by 6:30. I really didn’t want to get out of that comfortable bed, but when I caught a glimpse of this gorgeous pink and yellow sunrise from the guest room window, I was propelled out of bed to get this shot. Who needs sleep when there are scenes to record like this?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Lake Lavon in Texas

27 01 2012

I shot this image of a part of Lake Lavon as we were leaving my younger sister’s home in Wylie, TX on Tuesday morning, en route from San Antonio back to Virginia. Despite recent rains, the lake is still 12 feet below normal. At its deepest, the lake is only 40-45 feet deep. The North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) receives raw water supplies from Lavon Lake, Jim Chapman Lake, Lake Texoma, Lake Tawakoni, and Lake Bonham for treatment and distribution to the region served. The North Texas Municipal Water District serves hundreds of thousands of North Texans. Learn more about the effects of drought on Lake Lavon here.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Austin sky

13 01 2012

I know I’ve said it, but I’ll say it again (and again): Texas (at least for this cloud-crazed photographer) remains undefeated for stellar sky displays, hands down. There’s an amazing show virtually every day!

Photographed overlooking downtown Austin, 1.04.2012

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Self-portrait, Texas sky

7 01 2012

Photograph taken near the town of Poth in Wilson County, Texas

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Bowtie sky

3 01 2012

Originally posted 3.31.2009. While preparing for my photography exhibit, I came across this photo in my archives and thought I’d share it again. This image was shot off of I-95, just a few miles from home. As my regular visitors may have noticed, I am quite fond of photographing skies. Images like this are the reason that I always carry a Nikon Coolpix with me. I can’t always carry my pro gear on my daily jaunts, but the quality I get from this point-n-shoot is great!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

bowtiesky






Saguaro National Park in Tucson, Arizona

18 12 2011

Saguaro cactus photographed in Saguaro National Park, Tucson, AZ

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





The sky is ablaze and all I have is Michael’s iPhone and we’re in an ugly strip mall parking lot.

16 12 2011

Such is life…but it was such a spectacular sky that I simply had to share this image I shot last weekend. And no, the color was not enhanced in Photoshop! We thought about driving back home (just a few miles away), but after I shot this image, the sky started changing quickly and the opportunities waned. Just picture mountains and saquaro cactus silhouetted against this awesome sky. Sometimes ya gotta work with what ya have and shoot where you are.





Happy Thanksgiving

24 11 2011

Today, we’re heading down to Lake Land’Or in central Virginia (just an hour away) to spend Thanksgiving with my friend Karen, her aunt and a friend who are visiting from Wilmington, N.C. Here are some photos of the view from Karen’s lakehouse; originally posted 11.12.2008.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

ladysmithcollage1





Saturday sky

22 11 2011

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Monday sky

25 10 2011

Beauty can even be found in a strip mall parking lot!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Re-post: Sunset in Victoria Harbour, B.C.

20 09 2011

Originally posted 9.21.2008

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Moss-covered trail (and mosquitos!)

2 09 2011

It certainly looks inviting, doesn’t it? Mary Ellen and I had just stepped onto this walking trail near Spooner when we were ambushed by a huge swarm of mosquitos. And I do mean ambushed. We ran through the woods back to the car, screaming like little girls the entire way. (I still got the shot, of course.)

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





A window of blue

31 08 2011

Beach on Lake Superior in Wisconsin

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Minong Flowage (Nancy Lake), Washburn County, Wisconsin

31 08 2011

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Wisconsin cloudscape

30 08 2011

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Wisconsin sunflower field

30 08 2011

I’ll prepare a panoramic photo to show you that this entire field was three times wider than this shot—just spectacular!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.