Sequim Balloon Festival

Photo Busy Bees in Sequim Balloon Festival
Busy Bees Balloon Ballet

One of my friends in the Port Townsend Photo Club posted a photo of the Sequim Balloon Festival on our club site. Sorry, no link as it’s a members only site. However, his picture inspired me to run over to the Sequim airport, about 30 miles west of Port Townsend. I must have really felt inspired because the participants began inflating their balloons a bit after 6 am.

I’ve never seen large hot air balloons that were shaped like stuffed animals, but this trio of bumble bee balloons lifted together in a wonderfully choreographed launch. This is the festival’s first year. I didn’t count carefully, but it seemed like there were 15 balloons launched Sunday morning, give or take. Not bad for the initial run.

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Port Townsend Secret Garden Tour Photo

photo of Sarah Young Garden on Port Townsend's Secret Garden Tour
Sarah Young Garden

The annual Jefferson County Master Gardener sponsored Secret Garden Tour rolled around again this Saturday. This garden was particularly interesting, as we knew the people who started it.  I think we first saw this garden even before our garden was on the tour in 1998. Maybe not. Dates get hazy after a while. A different owner has made the garden a different experience. It’s fascinating how the same place can look so different.

The “sculpture” appears to be the sheet of steel that was left after a number of parts had been cut out of it. It works well here.

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Port Towsend’s Flower – a Photo

Photo of Rhododendron macrophyllum - Pacific Rhododendron
Light on the Rhody

This is our native rhododendron, Rhododendron macrophyllum. The photo was taken in Fort Townsend State Park. As the actual name of the plant is a mouthful, most of us just call them rhodys. The week marks the 77th annual Rhododendron Festival, Port Townsend’s biggest Spring event.

The Pacific Rhododendron grows native on the west coast from B.C. to California. It’s the Washington state flower and the flower after which the festival was named.

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Close to Home

photo of young red maple tree
Photographing my backyard

I just enrolled in a photo workshop titled Close to Home, which is based on the popular Craft & Vision ebookClose to Home: Finding Great Photographs in Your Own Back Yard, this workshop is designed to help us look more closely into your local surrounding and find great photographs no matter where we live.

Ray Ketchum, who is assisting the presenter, Stuart Sipahigil first told me about the workshop. As good as Ray made it sound, I wasn’t that interested. I had Stuart’s ebook and enjoyed it. That’s not surprising as the ebook is quite good and covers a subject that I haven’t seen addressed elsewhere. However, I’ve been photographing “close to home” for a couple of years and am nowhere close to running out of ideas. Fortunately, I thought the idea through again. There’s always something to learn, and hanging out with other enthusiastic photographers is a great experience, one that can be energizing and inspiring. Looking at the workshop that way, why shouldn’t I do it?

Ray also assures me that Stuart Sipahigil is a good teacher. The venue is my hometown, so I have no travel expenses. The workshop is reasonably priced, as these things go, and most of all, I will get new ideas and ways of looking at things that have become too familiar. For example, this picture is an opportunity that I walk by many times a day. It’s right out my door for goodness sake. Yet, I’ve never stopped and appreciated the simple beauty of the tree and the flower boxes in the background. Just thinking about the workshop has inspired me.

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