Sunday, 27 July 2014

American Lighthouses - Sunday Stamps

This week I just happened to find and old envelope which carried four stamps, each one a different lighthouse.

USA - Lighthouses
Tybee Island lighthouse in Georgia was ordered by General James Oglethorpe, Governor of the 13th colony, in 1732. It guides mariners into the Savannah River and is one of America's most intact lighthouses.

Morris Island Lighthouse, South Carolina
The Morris Island light stands on the southern side of the entrance to Charleston Harbour. Decommissioned in 1962 it was replaced by the new Charleston Light on Sullivan's Island at the north end of the harbour.

Cape Lookout Lighthouse, North Carolina
The Cape Lookout light, 163 feet tall, stands on the Southern Outer Banks of North Carolina, Fully automated in 1950, it was first lit in 1859.

Old Cape Henry Lighthouse, Virginia
Old Cape Henry was the first lighthouse authorised by the US Government. Dating from 1792 it guided shipping heading for Chesapeake Bay.

It is an octangular truncated pyramid of eight sides rising 90 feet to the light. 26 feet in diameter at the base and 16 feet at the top it is built of Aquia Creek Sandstone from the same source as the White House.

To see what others have chosen for this free theme week check out the links at Viridian's Sunday-Stamps-181.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Temporary - Thematic Photography

Wherever you go there are temporary things around you. It doesn't take Carmi's 'temporary' theme to distract you.

Diversion sign at a 'T' junction
Further along the road there's another temporary sign telling you (politely) where to go.

Diversion sign approaching roundabout
All the way to the garage at the roundabout and all the way back, four miles in all, I was wondering why.

The problem with being distracted you often don't see what's around you. Did I get 'sandbagged.' do you think?

Temporary sign on the ground (at that 'T' junction)
I moaned last week, under the 'dirty' theme, about mud left on the road from building work next door to us. Further up the village a house is having major work done on its drive.

Work-in-progress (Count the temporary bits)
Wheelie bin, portaloo, advertisement, pallet and materials
I wonder if there is a charge if I had to make a stop, temporarily, to spend a penny?

If you wish to study more temporary items you should go to our permanent inspiration Carmi's Thematic-photographic-302.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Artists - Sunday Stamps

It was a set of stamps depicting dogs that caught my eye some weeks ago. It was only later that I realised that they were paintings.

George Stubbs (1724-1806) was probably better known for his paintings of horses but on 8 January 1991 the Royal Mail issued these:
Great Britain

The Two Hounds in a Landscape (A Couple of Foxhounds) painted in 1792 may be found at the Tate Gallery.

If the King Charles Spaniel once had Royal connections then the dogs on the next two stamps do too. Both paintings are in the Royal Collection.

A Rough Dog was painted in 1790. Fino and Tiny (1791) belonged to the Prince of Wales who later became King George IV, so it's possible that Stubbs painted them for him.

To see the work of other artists or illustrators in Viridian's theme please visit Sunday-Stamps-180.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Dirty - Thematic Photography

I've shown all my dirty dog photos before so I have gone for something different this time.

A lot of animals come to a tragic end especially those that get killed by traffic. (Some of you may wish to skip what comes next.)

Fox - Roadkill victim
As you can see the bluebottles have set to work. Two weeks later nature has cleared up the mess.

Fox remains - just bones and a little fur
The bones have been scattered, but not far. Most have remained aligned where the fox lay.

Closer to home there is mud, not so glorious mud.

Dirty road
This is the road outside our garden. There is building work going on next door. This released flood waters from a field, their drive became a river emptying onto the road. The brown stain down the centre is mud (clay) deposited as the water rushed down to the drain halfway along the hedge. As you can see it was overwhelmed and water depositing mud still ran in the gutter. The hedge in the foreground is entrance to our drive.

This is what we had to pass through.

Drive entrance
As you may imagine we had dirt everywhere, although dirt was not the word we used. When it dried the residue left behind from the pull-in filled half a refuse bag and weighed over 10lbs!

Some creatures leave residues behind as well. You can tell where they have been.

A slug's trail of slime
The small black slug is hidden by the leaf pointing towards the bottom of the picture.

However the thing that annoys me most is the litter left behind by dirty humans too tired to take it home with them.

World Cup pizza box tossed into a wood
Accompanied by drink cans a little further on.

Empty beer cans
It's not surprising that the local farmer blocks access to his land to prevent fly-tipping in the woods.

Tree barrier (and black mud)
Now you've read my little rant you may wish to see more dirty photos at Carmi's Thematic-Photographic-301.

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Iceland Landscapes - Sunday Stamps

I'm off to Iceland for this week's landscapes theme. My stamps have forced me to look into their background.

Iceland - Landscapes

Myvatn is a shallow eutropic lake in an active volcanic area of northern Iceland. The lake and its surrounding are exceptionally rich in fauna, especially waterfowl. It was created by a large basaltic lava eruption 2300 years ago. The surrounding landscape is dominated by volcanic landforms including lava pillars.

Bulandstindur, a mountain in eastern Iceland is a pyramid-shaped stack of basaltic strata and stands 1069 metres high. 

Dyrholaey is a 120m high promontory. It gets its name from the massive arch the sea has eroded from the headland. Its name means, literally, 'door-hole.'
The stamp is one of a series showing Iceland's lighthouses. If you look closely you may be able to make it out on the skyline of the promontory.

For other landscapes please visit the links at Viridian's Sunday-Stamps-179.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Favourite Photos - Thematic Photography

Congratulations and grateful thanks to Carmi for his Thematic Photographic themes. This week is the 300th time he has set a theme for us to follow and in which he has given us free rein to show our favourite photos.

Here are just five of mine, most of which will have appeared on my blog before, at one time or another.

This is the most recent,

Bullfinch 2014
recovering in comfort from a head on clash with a doubled-glazed window.

I wasn't very good with a camera before digital came along. Good photos were a bit 'hit' of 'miss.' This is a successful miss!

Miss - Hutton-le-Hole, North Yorkshire, 1981

The blur just under her hand is a bridge across a stream.

The Infinity Bridge at Stockton-on-Tees provides a lot of opportunities for camera buffs. One of my favourite shots is this one taken looking up from the footbridge - 

Infinity Bridge
Dogs have featured in many of my posts and it's almost impossible to choose a favourite from amongst them. So I'm going to include two - of the same dog.

Cody 'fishing'
and relaxing after a game of tennis, or is he waiting for the game to start?

Cody - Michigan 2012
Celebrate Carmi's third century with other people's favourites at Thematic-Photographic-300.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Commonwealth Games - Sunday Stamps

The XX Commonwealth Games will be held in Glasgow from 23rd July to 3rd August. This will be the third time the Games have been held in Scotland. Edinburgh hosted the previous two.

The name of the Games has changed since the first event in 1930 when it was the British Empire Games. In 1954 it became the British Empire & Commonwealth Games. At Edinburgh in 1970 it changed again.

Great Britain - Ninth British Commonwealth Games
The final name change came in 1978 to the Commonwealth Games.

The Games are said to be the third largest multi-sport event in the world behind the Olympics and the Asian Games.

In 1970 42 countries took part in 121 events covering 9 sports. One of the countries involved was Malawi.

The sports on the 1970 stamps were:
  • 5d - Running
  • 1/6d - Swimming
  • 1/9d - Cycling
For more sporting exercise I suggest you visit the links at Viridian's Sunday-Stamps-178.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Put that in your pipe! - Sepia Saturday

I only ever remember one person in our family, an uncle of mine, who smoked a pipe. We have no photos of him, nor of me with a child's pipe for blowing bubbles.

Our prompt picture shows a former Prime Minister (Harold Wilson) well known for his pipe. In 1965 he was British Pipe Smokers Council's Pipe Smoker of the Year.

In 2013 the BBC ran a tribute to mark the 50th anniversary of him becoming the leader of the Labour Party. It was strange to hear that producers of the programme told guests to play down Wilson's pipe smoking habit.

Perhaps they should have listened to Albert Einstein.

Einstein - with his pipe

Einstein once said, "I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgement in human affairs."

The list of famous pipe smokers is endless and includes artists and literary figures. Van Gogh painted a self-portrait of course.

Van Gogh - Self-portrait with pipe (Sept-Nov 1886)
Renoir's painting of Claude Monet reading showed him enjoying a pipe.

Claude Monet Reading - 1873
Perhaps you do not know that there is even an illustration of the Mona Lisa smoking a pipe.

La Joconde fumant la pipe (Arthur Sappeckikus 1883)
"The Man with the Twisted Lip" appeared in The Strand Magazine in December 1891. I'm sure you will recognise the figure involved. It's elementary after all.

Sherlock Holmes (By Albert Sidney Paget)
The original caption was "The pipe was still between his lips."

But one of my favourite characters has always been Popeye The Sailor Man 

To see pipe smokers that have inspired others check out the links at Sepia-Saturday-235.

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Critters - Thematic Photography

I showed two local critters last week under the 'Summer' theme. Before I started today I had to check just what a critter was - a living creature I found out, a creature being an animal other than a human.That restricted me as I could not, I thought, consider birds and reptiles.

Giraffe in a Yorkshire wildlife park (c1970)
Foal - Norway (1980s)
He or she will be quite an age by now.

I wouldn't happy to be in the water with a beast like this.

Hippo (Detroit Zoo 2006)

I would however have been quite content to have a ride on these - 

Donkeys preparing for a days work (Whitby 2008)
But they said I was too old!

Lambs (Egglescliffe,  March 2006)
From the rear end of a donkey and that uncooperative lamb I'm left with a ewe that must be on Facebook.

Ewe and its lamb (June 2014)
But don't you just hate it when they show off they have been tagged.

Tagged and shorn (not Shaun)
For other contrary critters follow the links at Carmi's thematic-photographic-299.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

The Cricket Match - Kirkfest Scarecrows

The annual scarecrow competition was held on the first Saturday of Kirkfest in the village of Kirklevington.

I will be showing the majority of the scarecrows that entered starting with the one I liked best.

The Cricket Match
This was not an easy scene to photograph even when viewed from different angles but from left to right you have:

A down-in-the-mouth Umpire
From a different angle you can see he has his hand raised to signal 'Out' to the 'Owzat!' appeal.

The batsman however is pleased to make sure you know he is representing his home county.

The number of spectators is not large.

Just the Vicar and his wife
They obviously took up the invitation given by the lady in the pink dress; I wonder where he got the biscuit from.

And of course there is only one tea she will serve,

However on a pitch as green as this the bowler must have the advantage.

Until you see how short the boundaries are.