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Archive for February, 2010

A heavy mist rolled over the Ko’olau Mountains bordering the backside of the Valley of the Temples on Oahu.  Crossing the long wooden footbridge from the parking area takes you into an Asian world surrounding the Byodo- In Temple.

Hawaii's Byodo-In Temple

Byodo-In Temple on Oahu

The setting is exotic with a Zen styled garden, ponds and a replica of the 950-year old Byodoin Temple that is located in Japan near Kyoto. www.byodo-in.com

Visually striking this Temple was built almost 40 years ago to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Japanese immigrant workers who came to work in the sugar plantation fields of Hawaii.

They merged with other cultures notably the Chinese, Filipino, Portuguese, Korean, and native Hawaiians, all who toiled in the sugar plantations throughout the mid 1800’s. www.hawaiiweb.com

A three-ton “Peace Bell” was being rung and you could hear it echoing off the sharp jagged pali’s, (cliffs), that nestle the Temple grounds. Ringing the five-foot brass bell is said to purify your mind and release bad spirits bringing you happiness and long life.

Temple Bishop

Peace Bell and Temple Bishop

This seems a bit ironic since the Temple and gardens are part of a cemetery complex. However the location is a great place to seek privacy, meditate and search for inner peace.

We rang the bell and met the Temple Bishop who told us about the history and architecture of the site while he somehow called in sparrows from the surrounding hibiscus bushes and waddle trees and had them eat cookies from his hands.

He instructed us on how to have the birds come to us but they flew directly to him instead. The calming peace he exuded made you want to stay and study meditation from him. For a few moments it was like being in the presence of Zen Masters Thich Nhat Hanh, (Plum Village) www.plumvillage.org or John Daido Loori, www.johndaidoloori.org.

A Meditation Pavilion and koi pond lie at the foot of the Temple building. It is a good place to stop and take in the beautiful atmosphere of the Japanese gardens. Schools of colorful five pound koi patrol the shallow waters of the two acre pond. Their vibrant gold and red colors reflect Hawaii’s tropical light like shinny metal.

Koi Pond at Byodo-In Temple

Koi at Byodo-In Temple

Up at the Hoodo or Hall of the Chinese Phoenix is the nine-foot Amida or “Lotus” Buddha. It is named “lotus” because the Buddha statue sits upon a lotus flower. This nine foot sculpture is the largest wooden Buddha carved in over 900 years. It was stained in black lacquer paint and then hand decorated in gold leaf.

Respectfully moving your shoes before entering the sanctuary and lighting incense sticks you feel you are in a truly sacred place regardless of one’s religious preferences.

The best time for photography is in the morning because the towering cliffs cast deep dark shadows from the west onto the grounds mid to late afternoon. Much of the structure detail and color saturation is lost.

This out of the way side excursion is truly a fascinating experience and photographic opportunity that no one should miss while visiting Oahu.

Related Posts:
http://www.myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/06/14/waipo’o-falls-one-of-kauai’s-best-hikes
https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/05/31/lost-valleys-and-the-wettest-spot-on-earth
https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/02/14/napali-coast
https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/02/21/house-of-the-sun

Photographs used in this post are copyrighted by Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography, 2010, All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in any manner is prohibited without the written permission of Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography. My image catalog can be viewed at http://www.rangeofvisionphotos.com. You can contact me through this blog or through email at: wayne@rangeofvisionphotos.com

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Fire is what I associate with the color red. First thoughts that come to mind are the flames and lava flows connected with the Hawaiian goddess Pele whose fiery red spirit streams throughout the Islands.

The image illustrated in this post was an interpretive expression observed during a hula festival on Maui. A slow shutter speed combined with panning the camera gave me a portrait of implied motion and imaginary flames of red lava that merged into the female dancers’ facial expression. It became a meaningful image both of the ancient kuhiko hula and the passion of the islands.

Hawaiian goddess Pele

Hawaiian goddess Pele 12x12 Giclee Print

To capture such a fluid vibrant red in a photograph and present it as a fine art photographic collector print illustrates what this medium can do for décor in interior design.

Today photography has become an integral part of home and office décor.

Combined with other memorable artwork such as a painting or wall sculpture, photography shows off your specific tastes. Fine art photographic prints can be reproduced on canvas, digital or watercolor sub-strata and can make your living /work space comfortable and singular to you personally.

Besides heat and fire, red, used as an accent color, symbolizes other positive connotations such as courage, purity, sexuality and beauty. It catches a viewer’s attention and carries the strongest reaction of all the colors in the visible spectrum.

Having a piece of original photographic artwork on display has an equal visual value to oil and watercolor paintings. They are generally more affordable and easier for viewers to associate with.

Using the color red as an accent can radiate energy and strong emotions.

Obviously you do not need to have a depiction of a Hawaiian goddess on your wall to evoke a heated reaction from viewers. When you use red or its various shades as wall décor imagery draw on ideas that are meaningful to you.

Red Tulips

Shimmer - 11x17 Giclee Print

Try utilizing a beautiful red sunset from your travels or perhaps a close up image from a floral garden that is compatible to your personality. The subject matter is entirely up to you. That is what is enticing about fine art photography. There is an endless supply of themes to focus upon weather from nature or man-made topics.

It is all about what strikes your fancy and how you interpret your design and layout scheme. This is what is so great about high quality fine art photographic prints. You have an excellent choice in subjects as well as how you mount and matte your prints for display. You have a greater opportunity to show off your individuality with an endless supply of alternatives.

Related Posts:

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2010/1/12/what-can-orange-do-for-you?/

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/11/17/purple-an-element-of-fire/

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/09/11/can-color-photgraphs-enhance-positive-feelings-of-well-being?/

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/09/28/photography-and-feng-shui-for-interior-design/

Photographs used in this post are copyrighted by Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography, 2010, All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in any manner is prohibited without the written permission of Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography. My image catalog can be viewed at http://www.rangeofvisionphotos.com. You can contact me through this blog or through email at: wayne@rangeofvisionphotos.com

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Lions and cheetahs often hide their young cubs on the Serengeti in what are known as Kopjes, pronounced “copies”, they are ancient rock islands in the sea of savannah grasses that make up most of this National Park located in northern Tanzania.

While on a photo safari gathering images for a client my driver and I ventured out along the eastern border of the Park in search of the big cats. We had heard on the radio that a large male lion had been sighted near the Barafu kopje.

Kopjes pronounced copies rock islands

Kopjes on the Serengeti Savannah

Having secured an off road permit we headed toward a series of boulder outcrops that were formed by liquid granite bubbles in the Precambrian lava flows. Softer rock wore away over the years and left these special rocky habitats that rose from the plain of grasses.

As it turns out they are ideal locations to gather for many hunters of the vast savannah, especially cats. We traveled toward the horizon circling several outcrops, each distinctive in their own way with rounded boulders forming hidden caves and protective shelters.

These high points are lookouts where the big cats can survey the plains all around prior to a hunt. The rocks also provide sunny defensive platforms where they can just relax and sleep during the heat of the day.

Lion cubs Serengeti National Park Tanzania

Lion cubs play on kopjes in Serengeti

My driver pulled our Land Rover right up to some small boulders that cushioned one such rock castle. Instantly, a large male lion rose to his feet to check us out. A good three hundred plus pounds of fur and muscle glared down at us.

I felt small but there was no fear just a sense of awe realizing where in the world I was at this moment. After a series of exposures I stopped to change lenses as quickly as I could. By the time I raised my camera again he was gone, vanishing into the scrub brush that formed his sheltered backdrop.

Nuzzling lions on Serengeti savannah

Nuzzling lions on Serengeti savannah

On the backside of the kopje several lion cubs were playing in what looked like a nursery den. They were guarded by three females lounging in the shaded rocks. We moved in closer, just thirty feet away and I continued to photograph them.

Two young cubs in particular seemed to be playing for my camera. They nuzzled, bumped and licked each other like small domestic kittens but with huge paws. They growled, moaned and danced about the rocks before settling down for a portrait or two.

It only lasted a minute or two before one of the females called them over for a cleaning and the show was over. We drove further around the kopje.

Just at the parameter of granite in the tall dried grass was a pair of adult lions grooming. The female nestled and let out a guttural purring sound so loud we could hear it from the Rover. We were observers in moments of lion privacy it does not get better than that.

Related Posts:
https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/03/06/tree-climbing-lions 

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/02/02/tracking-lions 

https://myphotovisions.wordpress.com/2009/02/02/elephant-brothers 

Photographs used in this post are copyrighted by Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography, 2010, All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in any manner is prohibited without the written permission of Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography. My image catalog can be viewed at http://www.rangeofvisionphotos.com. You can contact me through this blog or through email at: wayne@rangeofvisionphotos.com

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Hawks and eagles have always mesmerized me. Their strength and regal demeanor are fascinating and living here in Montana with mountains and prairies close at hand there is plenty of opportunity to witness the excitement of soaring flight.

Even here in town hawks are plentiful throughout winter. A stand of tall white pine trees tower over my neighborhood. While shoveling snow I noticed two Goshawks perched at the top of one of the tallest pines.

These neighborhood hunters catch the wind and glide through the north side of town at or below treetop level. Sometimes hovering in place they search the ground for food, heads scanning back and forth, ever so alert.

Redtail hawk bird of prey

Bird of Prey

Their flight patterns formed large circles that always ended up on their pine perch. I knew they nested nearby but never noticed exactly where they made their home. It was this 60 foot stand of pines just a block away.

I saw fresh snow blanketing their stoic bodies. With a sudden flutter of feathers they flung the flakes off. Then they readjusted their footing settling in again, always watching for something live and edible.

While continuing my shoveling I looked up every thirty seconds. The two hawks seemed to be watching me as well. A light breeze rose and snow fell from the phone wires above. Silence found in winter weather is potent. It centers sounds in your head like wearing headphones.

Tiny wrens from the surrounding block buzzed around houses feeding on lilac bushes and bird feeders. Several flew just above my head chirping away, chasing each other at high speed rounding the corner of my home.

I noted the hawks were gone and went back to shoveling the few inches of today’s fresh powder. In a flash a single wren flew past my face grabbing my attention, flapping its wings in a panic. The birds’ voice was no longer in song. Now it had a high pitched screech.

It raced across my yard in a straight line away from the bush that held several other wrens. Wings were in chaotic motion. I stood straight wondering what was going on.

Down from the sky, motionless the goshawk drifted. Its’ wings taunt and talons extended it glided in silence gaining on the little wren. They met in my front yard.

The chirping stopped as one talon reached out stabbing the tiny wren from above in split second timing. Clasping tightly there was no struggle as the hawk closed his talons. The hawk tweaked his tail feathers forcing the air beneath to push him up back into the trees.

The little wren must have sacrificed himself for the benefit of the flock hidden in the compact branches of my lilac bush. The only sound I heard was the whoosh of air as the hawk increased speed overtaking the wren twenty feet from me.

It was sudden, swift and silent.

Snow continued to fall. In a minute or two wrens began to sing again. The goshawks were perched high in the pines.

Photographs used in this post are copyrighted by Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography, 2010, All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in any manner is prohibited without the written permission of Wayne Scherr, Range of Vision Photography. My image catalog can be viewed at http://www.rangeofvisionphotos.com. You can contact me through this blog or through email at: wayne@rangeofvisionphotos.com

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