6 sentence story – Done Fishin’

It had been a hot day, all day long, and the kids had enjoyed playing on the floating dock and catching fish. Now they were tired and had been tucked up in bed with their dreams of the big ones that got away. Tomorrow would be a new adventure, as it always was for the youngsters.

As the old man looked at the forgotten net, lit by the fading sun, he recalled his own childhood adventures. They were a lifetime and a continent away. Yet reassuringly similar.

160804_DoneFishing
~Richard

Faltering on the 52-week challenge: Week 25

It all started out with good intentions back in January as I stumbled across the 52-week challenge for improving my photography. I knew it was going to be difficult, especially the portrait challenge, as that really is not my comfort area and, thus it was at week 19 (messy portrait) I faltered. In fact, I stumbled so badly as I struggled with this one that I ended up losing momentum and now I am six weeks behind! I can throw out excuses like work pressure, an extended business trip abroad and too much to do in the garden and the house but, to be honest, they’re hollow reasons. That portrait assignment simply knocked the enthusiasm out of me to complete the challenge.

Well, I’m back now! I have a lot of catching up to do and it will be a be a bit erratic but I am determined to set myself back on track. Weeks 19 to 25 may be out of sequence but I fully intend to get them completed.

So, I waited until sunset in Ocean City, New Jersey to get this one.

Week 25: Portrait: Silhouette – Expose for the background and let your subject fall into shadow. Shape is important this week.

160629_52WK25_Silhouette

~Richard

Catching Sunbeams

The old man worked his way methodically through the meadow, his long cloak brushing through the tall summer grasses. It was almost dusk and he still had a lot of work to do before the Solstice was over. On this, the longest day, he had been up before dawn setting out his traps along the ley line than from the ancient gnarled oak and down the hill towards the brook. It was a pattern he had repeated twice each year for longer than he could remember. It had been well over a hundred and fifty times by his reckoning. Although the summer had always been easier than the winter, these last few years were really taking their toll on him. His joints ached but he would soon be finished. He recalled how, all those years ago, as a young boy, he had bounded through the fields, full of enthusiasm as he had learned his trade from his predecessor. How he had been scolded and told to slow down and feel the rods to make sure they were placed perfectly and had done their deed.

He had thought the tradition would continue forever, and be passed down for generations to come, but he was wrong. First, the Great War had taken so many from the village and then the revolution that brought technology had relegated so many of the old ways to mere folklore. He was truly amazed at the speed of the change. He had no apprentice, and over the last few years he had resigned himself to being the last Collector.

As he reached the final rod he carefully unfastened the iron jar from his belt, traced his forefinger over the runes on the lid and removed it. With a clockwise twisting motion he extracted the iron rod from the ground and gently tilted the hoop over the mouth of the jar with practiced, steady hands. He muttered his short incantation and gently tapped the hoop, watching as the sunbeams slowly, almost reluctantly, drifted into the jar. Replacing the lid, he added the final rod to the quiver on his back and turned to watch the sunset.

This had been another good harvest.

160421_SunbeamCatcher

~ Richard

© 2016, Richard Reeve

 

52 week Challenge: week 9

Week 9: Artistic: Shadows – The opposite of light is dark, the absence of light is shadow. Interpret this into a masterpiece.

This was quite an interesting assignment and opened up a lot of possibilities. The one constraint I set myself was that I was only going to use natural light, so no flash or lamps to create shadows that weren’t natural.

I had a trip to Philadelphia, and  in the end settled with a fairly classic abstract taken on the steps of the terrace on Liacouras Walk in Temple University. I converted it to a black and white image as I think it works better for contrasting the zigzag lines onto the grey stone steps.

160301_ShadowTempleSteps

However, last night just as I had returned home from work I caught sight of the shadows cast from a couple of our German Erzgebirge ornaments being cast by the final rays of the setting sun through the window. These are delightful little wooden sun and moon characters and I thought their shadows were lovely, as well as relevant to the time of day.

160301_ShadowSunMoon

In this case I left the image as full color as I think the dark wooden background of the shelf makes the shadows seem warmer, as it partially reflects the sun into a blown out highlight.

~Richard

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