Just Outside

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JaggedEdges_RoseLeaves

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Cicada2This cicada stopped by for a little rest near the back door and it didn’t seem to mind posing for pictures. I have sort of posted photographs of a cicada before. If you follow this link you’ll see what I mean.

On an unrelated note I’m very honoured to have work featured on the arts and humanities website Creative Thresholds. You can see that article here but if you have a few minutes I suggest having a look around the Creative Thresholds website!

© Karen McRae, 2014

Foxtails & Sedges

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Grasses_River'sEdgeFoxtails, sedges, and other grasses in the saline wetlands along the St. Lawrence River

I have been somewhat enchanted with silky foxtail barley since I was a child but these ones seemed particularly luxurious rippling in the saltwater breezes at the end of the day.  The light had mostly slipped away over the horizon so I made these photographs using long exposures (with the camera mounted on a tripod) hoping to capture a bit of movement in some of the flora.

© Karen McRae, 2014

Oscillations of the Landscape

A September road trip, Part 2 ~ Coming & GoingColourField_Trees1

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ColourField_Flowers2There have been only subtle colour shifts in the trees and shrubs so far but the crisp autumn winds seem to be settling in and over the landscape. The autumn metamorphosis will be hastening now.

[Drive-by photographs made from a moving vehicle.  *People sometimes ask if I make these images while driving and the answer is 'no' - This technique requires both hands and my full attention!]

© Karen McRae, 2014

Singing Sands

A September road trip, Part 1 ~ PartoftheLandscape2

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TakingOff_Ring-billedGullIt’s hard to think of a more beguiling name for a place than Singing Sands. Who could resist going when you find those words on a map? It’s here where the great Lake Huron breathes its cool water in and out, over the sands and the expansive fen, pushing and pulling like a small tide. Taking and leaving. Creating a landscape of rich and diverse flora and great beauty and peacefulness.

[Multiple exposures - some with camera movement - and layers of the landscape. Images made at Singing Sands (Dorcas Bay) in Bruce Peninsula National Park]

© Karen McRae, 2014

Shadows

Gull-FlightIt was the flickering almost-shadows that drew me outside. I say almost because I wondered how there could be shadow with so much cloud. But there they were, tracing faint shapes; a collective streaming ellipse in the sky. Soundless.

And then another cloud, a low thrum, and I knew what brought the gulls. A swarm of insects, tiny and winged. Sticking to my damp skin, working their way into my hair, slipping under the thin gaps between clothing and flesh.
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One of These Birds is Not Like the Others

© Karen McRae, 2014

Purple Martin Stories

PurpleMartinsLandscapeThere are moments when it’s hard not to mourn the quick passing of the summer even though we are still in it. Cold rainy days that feel like they were borrowed from another month. A month like October.

And seeing that the Purple Martins have ‘left the building‘. Their summer nesting boxes empty – devoid of those beautiful summer sounds the swallows bring – the babies fully grown, independent. Eventually, hopefully, they will make it all the way to their winter home in Brazil, some of them banded and/or outfitted with tiny GPS trackers. Little winter ‘backpacks’ to tell stories of where they go. When they return in the spring the birds will be carefully caught and the tiny GPS devices removed. The number of Purple Martins is significantly dropping and it’s not really known why so, this data is hopefully a step in finding out what might be causing the decline in their population, and a step too, in finding ways to protect them. You can read more about the fascinating Purple Martin Project here and here on the Nature Canada website.

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[The first image is a layered photograph ~ purple martins, a rainy window and a summer landscape made with movement.]

© Karen McRae, 2014

In Progress

RiverStories1River Stories 1, oil, Conté & etching on Mylar

I don’t know where this might end up (messier, maybe – it seems too colourful, it bores me …) but it is what I’m wrestling with at the moment. Well, we’ve been wrestling for a while. Slippery fish.

© Karen McRae, 2014