Gardening friends

People who don’t garden think it is tiresome, a never-ending job. A little like exterior housework I suppose.

However, I find it therapeutic and I am never alone.

davdav

20180525_153945742212402.jpg

We have a new visitor but he is a pretty young and scrawny looking Robin, we will have to feed him up.

Guest Post. Lieve Snellings, Photographer and Childrens Writer.

I was delighted when Children’s author Lieve Snellings offered to share some tips on photographing nature.

Nothing gives more peace than photographing nature.

 

About 10 years ago I was introduced to the heavenly pleasure of nature photography. I was so charmed seeing all these pretty animals and birds in our Quebec garden. I had seen cats washing, but here I also saw birds, squirrels, groundhogs… doing the same. Observing them was so much fun.

hello fellow nature lovers

I don’t know if these lovely creatures have emotions like humans have, though I could hear them talk. And Margot the woodchuck (above)  started to tell me I had to publish their story, to show small and big kids that all creatures in nature are living beings and that they love to live too.  Of course, Margot wanted to play the first violin in the orchestra, but that was OK. She loved to share the attention with her family and friends.

It was Margot, who told me about Eufrazie the hairdresser and how she created a special hairstyle for every critter, also birds, when some festivity is coming up. It was exciting to see all those birds with this special haircut. I had to photograph them and share this with you all.

coiffeuse

Maybe you are interested in how to photograph birds too. I’m glad to offer you  here 14 easy tips:

  1. If you want to start photographing birds, you do not have to go far. It is best to start in your garden or street or a park or field in your area.
  2. It is important to get to know the behaviour of the birds you want to photograph. Around what time of the day do they show up? On which branch do they usually sit? Do they show up alone or in the company of others?
  3. Use a tripod.
  4. Hide, make use of a shelter, something you’ll not too visible. An old paravan, with an opening to pierce the lens of your camera through can also be a handy thing to hide.
  5. Don’t make sudden movements.
  6. Birds adhere to the same habits, they regularly return to the same place. Choose a spot, prepare your camera and wait until the bird returns to that spot.
  7. Set your camera to a fast shutter speed (S in high number) and the aperture or diaphragm as large as possible (F in small number) – this is to allow as much light as possible to come in and to make the shutter speed as short as possible.
  8. Take your photos in the larger format (highest megapixels) because otherwise, you lose a lot of quality when you make a cut-out afterwards.
  9. Make sure you are dressed warm enough because you may have to sit still for a while.
  10. Pay attention to the foreground and background.
  11. Birds like to fly against the wind direction to keep more control. So when you choose to photograph birds in flight, draw with your camera in the flight direction.
  12. Experiment with different points of view.
  13. Photographing birds is in fact, like top sport. Patience, exercise and perseverance are important.
  14. It is pleasant to have a bird encyclopedia or a bird app on your smartphone or tablet so you can look up which birds you just saw and learn more about them.

I wish you can enjoy as much as I did and do.

If you want to learn more about my work here is the link.   

Or you can follow me on WordPress : https://lievesnellings.wordpress.com/

Social Media links are: https://www.amazon.com/author/snellings-english

http://www.facebook.com/FotoBoekLieveSnellings

 

 

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Bob’s Diary: The reason why…

The reason why I want to be a bird is simple:

Look at these images and draw your own conclusion, please.

bird in bath male

 

 

 

 

 

 

washing bob

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I'm wet, humiliated, broke,  how did this happen?

I’m wet, humiliated, broke,
how did this happen?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baths make me feel like a hedgehog on stilts.

 

Children’s Story: Millie Plants Ideas

 

Millie loves to help in the garden.  “Squish, squash,” Millie sang as she jumped up and down on the seeds she planted.  She wore her favorite bright green boots.

Granddad said, “be kind to them Millie.”

“I am. See, first I dig a hole, then I cover them up with a blanket of soil. Then I make sure they are tucked in good and safe.”

Granddad said, “Jumping on them and shouting isn’t being gentle. If you are gentle surprising things can happen,” Granddad said. “Try it and see.”

Millie loves surprises. She decided to try being gentle to the animals around her. She sat on the grass whispering to Bob, (her dog) , Brandy (Granddad’s lazy cat) and a fat blackbird who sat on the fence.

Millie said, “Brandy I know you would love to catch the biggest mouse in the whole world.” He looked at her then went back to washing his paws.

“Mr. Blackbird, I know you will sing the best song ever.” The blackbird flew away.

“Bob you will learn to smile.” Millie said. “And I will plant my ideas in the garden to grow.”

Granddad looked at his garden. It was very neat, “but perhaps not in the vegetable beds.”

Millie went into the house to find ideas to plant.

She found a cupcake recipe. She folded it over and sprinkled it with sugar.

Outside in the garden she picked the sunniest spot in the flower bed. She dug a large hole. Millie pressed the folded recipe into the earth. On top of it she placed a red cherry. “I love cherries.”

In the house she found an old hat. “I love hats but you need a scarf,” she murmured carrying it outside. With a soft ‘plonk’ it went into the ground.

After their lunch of tomato soup and fruitcake Millie went to help Granddad with his digging.

By five o clock that evening she was tired. She sat on an old bucket and asked the blackbird. “Did you learn a sweet song?”

His answer was a sweet musical song. Millie smiled.

Granddad said, “I told you, being kind and gentle works.”

Millie went in search of Brandy. She discovered he had found and eaten her two chocolate mice. “Don’t be sick,” she warned him.

She went in search of Bob. She searched the whole house for him but could not find him.

“Millie, come and look at this.” Granddad shouted.

Down in Millie’s special flower bed she discovered a smiling Bob wearing a straw hat with a red scarf tied dangling from the brim. Bob was eating a large cherry cupcake. Granddad was sitting beside him on the grass minding four cherry cupcakes.

“Great work Millie. Try the hat on.”

She did. “You were right Granddad. Surprising things happen when you are gentle and kind.”

They sat wearing big smiles as they ate cherry cupcakes in the evening sun.