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March, Going Out Like A Lamb. March 30, 2012

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, Love and Death.
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I know, that’s not exactly  how they say it, but that’s how it is.

I stopped by Wheel-View Farm in Shelburne this Thursday AM to see their Spring lambs and perhaps take some photos.  The weather was, as predicted, grey and drizzly, but I’d previously spoken to the owner and arranged to be there, so  I went.

The sheep were in a dark barn, the weather being inhospitable to the young’uns, and the photos weren’t really what I’d hoped for, but the little lambs were so cute, I found myself speaking motherese and snapping away happily at celestial ISOs, resolving to deal with the quality issues later.

Here’s a newly shorn Mom decrying the attention I was lavishing on her twins:

“Go bother Junior, he’s over there playing “Hop On Pop.'”

And so he was:

Owner Carolyn grabbed one of the little ones to hold in the light so I could catch his sweet face, but when he saw my camera, he looked a little suspicious:

When he finally relaxed, he was just as cute as you’d imagine:

Soft, too.  🙂

The calves are due soon, so I’ll be back there in the next weeks to try to share that with you.

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A Mighty Oak. March 27, 2012

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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Along side a country road in Shelburne, a great oak stands sentinel over a pasture:

Its position up against a piney hillside made it hard to photograph with any clarity of form, so I did a bit of a walk-about to get it silhouetted against the afternoon sun:

It’s a magnificent specimen, fully six feet through in its trunk, with an eighty foot crown:

I bet it’s old.

These are courtesy of my 16-35mm L-series lens, one of my favorites for getting close to really big things.  I don’t use it enough, and this shoot reminded me of how much I like it!

Winter Views! January 15, 2012

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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Mid-January is a heck of a time to start  posting seasonally appropriate views of winter…  but hey, it’s better late than never, as they say!

Snow coats everything in the high valleys, which are sheltered from most of the wind:

That’s along route 8A between Charlemont and Plainfield.

If you’re driving around in these conditions and need to find a rest-room, the bushes might be your only option.

Or, perhaps not:

Look for this on the right as you detour up West Hill Road.  🙂

And of course, some color combinations are just plain striking beneath the heavenly blue dome of a winter sky:

A working farm in the rolling hills of Shelburne.

These are all from Ollie, whose 24-105mm zoom range allowed me to compose from the driver’s seat, or at most from a very short walk away.

More to follow, as I make them presentable.

Barn By Starlight. December 12, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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Up in Shelburne, a tumbledown barn hunkers beneath a starry sky:

I took this while waiting for a tardy moonrise which I’ll post next.  But in the interim, I looked steeply up to the heavens and thought I saw a B&W image.  It’s not quite what I hoped for, but I guess it’s worth sharing none-the-less.

 

Roy Likes His Fords. November 27, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, Politics and Society.
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Roy has a farm up in Shelburne.

Well, it used  to be a farm.  Now it’s turned a corner to become something else.  Maybe it’s a dream which didn’t last; maybe it’s a damned lot of work come grinding to a halt.

At any rate, it’s a piece of the world with a story to tell.

I’m sorry that I don’t really know that story, but grateful that I can therefore insert my own happy details.  Like those bountiful harvests, and Roy teaching his children how it’s done, and old fashioned holidays spent together around an old fashioned hearth.

And how Roy always bought Fords, ’cause their trucks were good for the money, never let him down.

So OK, the family “story” is a wild-ass guess.

But the Ford part is real, and I have pictures to prove it.

One of many Ford torsos come to rest in a steep pasture:

… and on the ridge above it, a still-proud F-600:

I bet she still runs (plates on her, and tires better than mine) and did a buttload of work in her day.  She’s a dumper don’tcha know, though her dump body is long gone:

This place straddles a ridge of meadow and is slowly tumbling toward the valleys on either side; the barn at right lost its southerly extension this past winter, and the rest of it has seen better years.

One wonders how long it will be until farms like this are no longer a part of our local world, given that the only constants are change and a hope that it will be in the right direction.

I guess we’ll have to wait and see about that.

Thanks to Elliot for his honest (if not always factual) rendering of what I saw up at Roy’s place.

 

On The Farm. October 20, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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Sheep dig dinner at a farm in upper Shelburne:

Lambs, too:

The adults were wonderfully protective of this little one, and boxed her in when she seemed inclined to come investigate me:

She disappeared from view just after I snapped this photo.

Very aware, these farm animals are.

Another Rainy Day… October 13, 2011

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…except this one was here on home turf.  It rained all day up in Florida along the Cold river:

Taken out of my car window at lunchtime.

After work I headed to Greenfield by the back roads – the drizzle was too nice to miss.  I didn’t find the right place to shoot until the atmospherics had mostly dissipated, but the “wet paint” effect was still on along this gravel road:

I was playing with Elliot, laying his plane of sharp focus vertically instead of horizontally.  Does it show in that road shot?

This was in upper Shelburne in a maple grove without much understory:

I actually pulled over to photograph this grove before I noticed the light on the road.  And in parking, I navigated around this oyster mushroom bloom on a stump:

It was a short but sweet stop along the road in classic New England weather.

I dug it.

Pond In Rain. September 25, 2011

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In Shelburne, along side a graveyard:

… in the rain.

Not much to post, but I’ll be back with more before you know it.

Summer Time. July 4, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, Politics and Society.
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It’s the Fourth of July, a great American holiday.  I missed the fireworks, chasing The Light with my tools of choice, and instead of Chinese pyrotechnics,  I got a few more shots of My America.

These are actually an assemblage from the week past, but hey, in the grander scheme they’re cotemporal.  (I made that word up because it works.)

For me, the absolute apex of Summer occurs when the wildflowers are at their best.  For the most part, we’re there now, though there will be other shows later.  Right now, the high meadows are filled with Rugosa rose, Ox-eye daisies, Northern bedstraw, clovers and vetches, and grasses unfurling their pollinated flags:

Thistles beckon bees to flit between them:

The fields are ripe, the grasses are high, and the clouds are full of promise:

…and the rivers and streams flow with the rains, which recently have been generous:

Two black and whites, from Rowe and Conway respectively.

And to end this American birthday, a sunset on the Deerfield river:

Proof that humid nights have their greater purpose.

Happy Birthday, America, and good night.

Late April Snow. April 24, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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Woke up Saturday morning to something of a surprise – two inches of new snow!

Now some  folks weren’t amused; it’s been a long winter, and they’re understandably ready to be done with it.

Still, if you’re open to a little joke from Mother Nature, it was kinda pretty:

I just smiled and loved it; what else is there to do?  😆

Taken in the high pastures of Shelburne in a light rain.

Sunday was considerably more Spring-like, and I gardened comfortably in a tee-shirt.

Thank you, Mother Earth.  Thank you, Father Sky.

And Happy Easter!