Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Published! ...photo used for official AATF poster...fruit of a French-speaking summer

A few summers ago, I took my wife on her first visit to Québec and Montréal. One of our favorite places was the Marché Jean-Talon, North America's largest farmer's market, located in Montréal's vibrant 'Petite Italie' neighborhood. The market's colorful displays of fresh produce just cry out to be photographed.
Ah, the berries of a northern summer:

...des fraises (strawberries), des groseilles (gooseberries), des mûres (blackberries)
des framboises (raspberries), et des bleuets (blueberries)...
et de petites tomates, aussi (and small tomatoes, too)
A while back, I submitted a few photos from that trip to the AATF (The American Association of French Teachers), which is one of the world's largest professional organizations of French language teachers. I was recently notified that one of my photos was chosen for their "National French Week" posters which will be mailed out to about 10,000 members later this year!

Below, you'll see the above photo in the lower right corner--the image got 'flipped' in the design. The director of the AATF wrote me: "The vivid red gave our student designer the inspiration for the rest of the poster, and red was a color we had not featured yet for National French Week."

Vive le français!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

...along the San Pedro on the way to Bisbee

A spring morning down in Cochise county--
a pond near the San Pedro River a few miles east of Sierra Vista:

Bullfrogs, birds...a nice break from the lower desert on a day off...

Along sections of the riparian forest, there were so many caterpillars that you could hear them all around--chewing on leaves, crawling over dry grasses, raining down, even...

...a bit of fun with the color accent feature on my camera,
a cottonwood skeleton just a few yards away from the river:

The vaguely Italian-feeling old mining town of Bisbee, a mile-high in the Mule mountains:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Palo verde in bloom, primary colors of spring

...spring in the Sonoran desert--Tucson lit up with palo verdes in bloom...

I took this a couple of years ago up in the foothills of the Santa Catalina Mountains--I was just trying to get some shots of the vibrant yellow blooms against the sky after work; the ladybug was completely serendipitous and totally made my afternoon.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring in the Sonoran desert...one year ago: blooms and birds

A year ago exactly, I was out and about in Catalina State Park, just to the north of Tucson--hiking  amidst a once-in-a-generation (perhaps) display of lupine and poppies that had popped up after perfectly timed winter rain.

I took the above views in the late afternoon, after work...

...and then a couple of mornings later, after a frosty sunrise, a couple of miles away,
as the poppies were finally warm enough to unfurl:

By mid-morning the sunlight was getting harsh,
 but the complementary pairing of blue-violet and yellow-orange
continued to be irresistile, mile after mile:
...and a bit of cholla cactus as a contrast:

The next day, I took some family visiting from out-of-town
to the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum.
The hummingbird aviary there was a particular highlight that day,
with this Costa's hummingbird feeding her 10-day-old hatchlings:

(No vast fields of wildflowers this year--it's been a drier-than-normal winter here in Tucson.)

...and I can't help but think back to a spring image from our 'former life' in Seattle--
the cherry trees on the main quad of the University of Washington:
...a far cry from the desert.