Category Archives: daily prompt

Beautiful Great Blue Herons – A Retrospective, Nbr 3

People who know me know my motto:

“Walk softly and carry a long lens™”

Babsje

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Yearling Number 2 – babsjeheron

I learned long ago to open myself, and my eyes and camera, to whatever experiences and sights the waters bring forth at any moment. My emotions have run the gamut from excitement, to apprehension, to alarm, to amazement, to curiosity, to anxiety, to happiness, and (thankfully very rarely) to sadness. Close readers of this blog are aware of the protectiveness I feel towards the Great Blue Herons. The stories in this retrospective post all have happy endings. I like happy endings.

Once again, many thanks to the creative team at WordPress who have made it possible to share the Great Blue Herons here over the past 5 years.

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fledgling

Close to the island, I found no crumpled birds littering the island floor, no sodden nestlings floating in the waters nearby.

Click here for Freshly Fledged
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© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Hot Time at the Boathouse

And what the taxi driver told me next made the hair stand up on the back of my neck… That day, he came across a great blue heron caught in fishing line on one of the pine logs. The line was caught in the heron’s wing and foot, and the heron was struggling but obviously very weakened by the time he got there.

Click here for The Taxi Driver’s Tale
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© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Fishing with A Feather

Doesn’t this Great Blue Heron holding a seagull feather bring to mind a friendly dog playfully carrying his favorite toy back to you? At the time, I wanted to say to her, “Who’s a good girl? You are! You are a good girl!” because the way she pranced the length of the submerged log seemed so playful – at first. And then I realized it was another case of tool use by Herons.

Click here for Who’s a good Great Blue Heron?
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© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Yearling

There was reason to be concerned for the newly-fledged herons. Would they survive the migration south, the winter, and the migration back? If so, would they remember this lake where they were born and make it their home once again?

Click here for Full Circle: Freshly Fledged
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© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Meditation

I heard them – boisterous and happy – before I felt their wake, and I felt their wake before I saw them, and when I saw them the first thing I saw was the captain’s over-size gang hat. And the second thing I saw was their telegraphed trajectory – heading straight for the small nesting island. There was no doubt about that, and no doubt that they would make landfall, and no doubt that the adult male would flee the nest and abandon the chicks.

Click here for Pequeño: Stranger in a Strange Land
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Thanks to Krista S and WordPress for last week’s final WPC: All Time Favorites. Many thanks to the creative team at WordPress who have made sharing the Great Blue Herons here over the past 5 years possible.

Thanks to Cee N and WordPress for her COB Photo Challenge: June 10 2018. Look closely at the set of five photos in this post. Do you see one that is not like the others? (And apologies to Cee for once again bending the rules.)

Thanks to Paula and WordPress for her Thursday’S Special: Pick A Word In June. The Fledgling Great Blue Heron is a ‘nascent’ GBH, freshly out of the nest.

Thanks again to Erica V and WordPress for the recent WPC: Place in the World. My favorite place in the world is on the water with the beloved Great Blue Herons.
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From May 1 through July 11, 2018, my Great Blue Heron photographs once again grace the walls of the lobby and theater in a free one-woman show at the Summer Street Gallery, of The Center for Arts in Natick. If you’re in the Boston or Metro West area, please stop by to see the Great Blue Herons. As always, many of the photos were taken on the waterways of the Charles River watershed. The gallery is open whenever the box office is open, so please check hours here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2018 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

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Beautiful Great Blue Herons – A Retrospective, Nbr 2

There are ways of seeing and there are ways of seeing. The way of the photographer need not be only the way of gadgetry and technology and calculations. The way of mindful seeing can open the lens as wide as one’s imagination.

Babsje

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron – babsjeheron

As a nature photographer, spending time on the water with the Great Blue Herons is a meditation in and of itself. Capturing a photo that conveys the experience in the moment is a pleasing bonus. And then being able to share my love for these magnificent birds with others via blog posts or at galleries where I show is the icing on the cake.

I think that is a universal for artists – there is the joy of creating , and then the act of releasing the art into the world, followed by watching as a fly on the wall as others respond to the art – whether music or painting or writings – whatever the medium.

Many thanks to the creative team at WordPress who have made sharing the Great Blue Herons here over the past 5 years possible.

How long she was under, I cannot say, I lost track of time, but when she resurfaced, her prize catch struggled mightily, the curve of its back straining left then right, scales and fins glistening. It was an epic fight. And when she struggled to shore under the weight of her prey, I’m not sure whose eyes held more surprise — mine, hers, or the one that didn’t get away.

Click here for The One that Didn’t Get Away
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The day of my artist reception at Mass Audubon, I spent some time sitting outside on a bench before going inside to meet & greet gallery visitors. I sat there under the trees, composing myself and enjoying the dappled sunlight when suddenly I felt it. Plop!

Click here for Pictures at an Exhibition.
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Time stood still that day in the secluded cove. The rumbling of a lumbering Diplodocus moving towards the tallest stand of trees echoed over the ridge. A school of Leedsichthys searched for plankton in the watery depths, swishing this way and that. Overhead, a flock of Archaeopteryx flapped and wheeled, warming their wings in the late day sunlight.

Click here for It’s a Pterodactyl!.
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She flew low and slow, the water’s surface mere inches below her wing tips. I watched wordlessly from the eastern shore, taking in her grace and economy of movement. An engineer friend once explained to me that birds fly so close to the water because it gives them maximum air resistance for those huge wings.

Click here for Wordlessly Watching .
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Are there any artists who don’t fall in love with their models, their muses?

Click here for Artists and Models.
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Thanks to Krista S and WordPress for this week’s final WPC: All Time Favorites. Joining the chorus of folks who will miss the weekly and daily prompts, and the creative team at WordPress who have made them possible for all those years. Thanks for your enthusiasm and encouragement everyone.

Thanks to Cee N and WordPress for her COB Photo Challenge: May 27 2018. Look closely at the photo of the Great Blue Heron winging her way across the water. Do you see anything odd about her left leg? That extra ‘bend’ shows a broken leg. (And apologies to Cee for once again bending the rules.)

Thanks to Paula and WordPress for her Black & White Sunday: Traces of the Past. The B&W photo of the Great Blue Heron with “It’s a Pterodactyl” would be much less evocative of the prehistoric era if presented color. (Linking to an earlier challenge from Paula, who runs the very good “Thursday’s Special.”)

Thanks again to Erica V and WordPress for the recent WPC: Place in the World. My favorite place in the world is on the water with the beloved Great Blue Herons.
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From May 1 through July 11, 2018, my Great Blue Heron photographs once again grace the walls of the lobby and theater in a free one-woman show at the Summer Street Gallery, of The Center for Arts in Natick. If you’re in the Boston or Metro West area, please stop by to see the Great Blue Herons. As always, many of the photos were taken on the waterways of the Charles River watershed. The gallery is open whenever the box office is open, so please check hours here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2018 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron’s Silhouette on Silent Sunday

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great blue heron underneath a bridge.

For he had come to quietness,
He had come to the place where sun and moon meet
And where the spaces of the heavens open their doors.
He was understanding and love and the silence.
He was the voice of these, as he fed the woodpecker.

The Sky-Goer [excerpt]
Zona Gale

The Le Gallienne Book of English and American Poetry, Richard Le Gallienne, ed.

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Thanks to Krista S and WordPress for the recent Daily Prompt: Silhouette.

Thanks also to Cheri and WordPress for the recent WPC: Silence.

Thanks to CosmicGirlie for hosting Silent Sunday. Yes, there are “words” in today’s post, which is against the “rules,” but I can’t credit the authors of the fine prompts mentioned above without using words. You know what they say about rules anyway… And I know the folks at WordPress put a lot of thought and effort into creating their daily and weekly prompts, so credit where credit is due.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater in a one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.
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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2018 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron Photos of the Year

And the winner selected by popular vote?
Great Blue Heron Fishing at Waterfall

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fishing at Waterfall – babsjeheron

Frequent readers here know that my photos are an eclectic mix: some have more merit as Art – capital A – than others, some are quirky captures just for fun. Some are personal anecdotes of encounters, and some the field notes of a naturalist. One thing they all have in common, though, is the birds are all wild creatures observed in nature along the waterways of Eastern Massachusetts.

As 2017 was winding to a close, Ben H and WordPress asked about our favorite photos posted in 2017. As an artist, I’m always curious about what you, the readers, appreciate, and so I posted a poll on New Year’s Eve for your feedback. You can click here to see the photos included or even vote. (It’s not too late to participate)

The photo at the top of today’s post had the greatest percentage of votes, and as you can see from the results below, second place had a three-way tie, and there was a five-way tie for third.

Thankfully there were no calls for a recount of any votes and voting wasn’t plagued by any hanging chads.

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron 2017 Poll Results – babsjeheron

A big THANK YOU to all who voted.

(And if you didn’t vote yet, now’s your chance.)

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Thanks to Ben H and WordPress for the recent WPC challenge: 2017 Favorites. Ben asked us to share our favorite photos posted in 2017. Please click here to see the photos I selected from this blog.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater for my third one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2017 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron Running on the Water

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Running on Water – babsjeheron

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Thanks once more to Stewart Moncton for the Wild Bird Wednesday prompt.

Thanks also to Wordless Wednesday for the Wordless Wednesday challenge.

Thanks to Krista and WordPress for the 2017 WPC: Pedestrian. Some pedestrians walk, some pedestrians run.
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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater in a one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2018 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron’s Fun in the Sun (Not Art Nbr 16)

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron on Float – babsjeheron

Come on in, the water’s fine!

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Thanks to Krista and WordPress for today’s Daily Prompt: Winsome. Is this guy winsome or what, commandeering that float before the humans are awake?

But maybe, instead, I should thank Michelle W and WordPress for the recent WPC: Cheeky. Maybe that guy is more cheeky than winsome, basking in the sun on that float before the humans are awake? (Whichever is more apt, thinking about fun in the sun with a Great Blue Heron is a warming notion on this sub-zero day.)

And thanks also to Debbie at Travel With Intent for Six Word Saturday.
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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater in a one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.
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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.

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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2018 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron to Warm your Eyes

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron in Warmer Days – babsjeheron

While the weather outside is frightful,
time travel back and escape to a warm summer day.

On days like this, I enjoy escaping into the photo archives with the Great Blue Herons, where it’s endless summer and not sub-zero.

It’s an eye-warming experience.

Not to mention heart-warming.

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Thanks to Ben H and WordPress for the recent WPC challenge: 2017 Favorites. Ben asked us to share our most meaningful photos from 2017. If you didn’t get a chance to see them, click here to vote early, vote often. Given the frigid, treacherous weather much of North America has been enduring, the photo of this Great Blue on a warm June day is a reminder of warmer times to come.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater for my third one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2017 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Herons – Your Favorite Photos Posted In 2017

When I Met My Muse

I glanced at her and took my glasses
off–they were still singing. They buzzed
like a locust on the coffee table and then
ceased. Her voice belled forth, and the
sunlight bent. I felt the ceiling arch, and
knew that nails up there took a new grip
on whatever they touched. “I am your own
way of looking at things,” she said. “When
you allow me to live with you, every
glance at the world around you will be
a sort of salvation.” And I took her hand.

When I Met My Muse
by William Stafford
Ask Me: 100 Essential Poems of William Stafford

Frequent visitors to this blog will have little doubt that the Great Blue Heron is my muse. Perhaps she is also yours?

This week’s WordPress challenge has asked about our favorite photos posted in 2017. As an artist, I’m more interested in YOUR favorites – enough about me!

Whether or not the Great Blue Heron is your own muse (or totem, or spirit animal, whatever) I would love to know which are your favorites.

After the photos below, there’s a poll where you can let me know which you like. It has been 4 years since I’ve included a poll and so I hope you participate.

© 2017 Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron on a Pedestal – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron With Pickerel Weed – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Shadow of A Great Blue Heron – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fishing at Waterfall – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fledgling in Territorial Display at Sunken Boat – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Beautiful Great Blue Heron Fledgling Basking – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Young Great Blue Heron in Molt – babsjeheron

Great Blue Heron Wings her Way Across the Lake – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Heron and Roots – B&W- babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Guest Birds: Two Red Tailed Hawks – babsjeheron

© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron and Four Chicks in Nest – babsjeheron

© 2017 Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron on the March – babsjeheron

© 2017 Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Herons with Litter – babsjeheron

© 2016 Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fledgling Greetings – babsjeheron


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Thanks to Ben H and WordPress for the recent WPC challenge: 2017 Favorites. Ben asked us to share our favorite photos posted in 2017. But enough about me! I am more interested in YOUR favorites.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater for my third one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.
.
.

Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2017 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron Wishing You Peace On Earth (Not Art Nbr 15)

© 2016 Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron
Greetings of Peace – babsjeheron

There is only one question:
how to love this world.

Mary Oliver
“Spring” (excerpt)
“House of Light”

Thanks to Ben H and WordPress for today’s Daily Prompt: Cherish. My love for the Great Blue Herons is no small secret, nor is my perpetual wish for peace on earth for all beings – human and other.

Thanks also to Ben H and WordPress for the recent WPC challenge: Rounded. The eliptical frame around this photo has rounded curves.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater in a one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.
.
.

Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2017 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

Beautiful Great Blue Heron – What Goes Up…

Great blue heron fledgling practicing flying one day before fledging for good.

Great blue heron fledgling practicing flying one day before fledging for good.

I am ready for flight
oh my wings are so ripe
come wake me
take me from the nest

Jimmie Spheeris, The Nest

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Thanks to Krista S and WordPress for this week’s WPC challenge: Ascend. What goes up, must come down… in one place or another. My heart was in my throat as I watched this Great Blue Heron chick learn how to fly, 80 feet above the island floor.

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Through July 13, 2017 I was a Featured Artist at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.

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From July 1 through July 30, 2016, I was the Featured Artist of the Month at the Summer Street Gallery. The Great Blue Heron photographs once again graced the walls of the lobby and theater in a one-woman show at The Center for Arts in Natick. In addition to the visual arts shown at the gallery, TCAN has a lively, dynamic lineup of upcoming performing artists.
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2017 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows

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