Monday, August 24, 2009

Cactus Monday - Shadows

One advantage to living in a desert which gets more than 300 days of sunshine per year is that shadows are easy to stumble upon. Incredibly, I hadn't paid much attention to shadows, clouds or even reflections until this year when I started blogging and getting ideas from other blogs. Here are some shadows I've found. This first one is simple and bold:
Sometimes shadows are more animated than the objects that cast them.
My favorite shadow of an old cholla cactus skeleton looks like the head of an animal.
Some shadows are huge, but before blogging I wouldn't have noticed them.
Just for fun, I cropped out the real saguaro cacti and just left their shadows behind the desert spoon plants.
This palm tree was at Reid Park and I was actually trying to focus on a duck. The bird got away, but when I saw the palm shadow in my camera's LCD screen, I decided it was a keeper.
When my son showed me his new flowerpot, I "staged" this shadow shot by propping up the back of the pot until I was pleased with the shape of the shadow on the cement walkway.
And, I looked around for other objects to put in the sunlight, such as a small metal patio table.
I hadn't thought about capturing shadows on a portable surface like blank paper, but that's what Warren of Touch the Wind did in his post called, "purposeful shadows." Now I feel inspired to take some paper along with my camera to Sabino Canyon this week to explore different cactus shadows.

For more Cactus Monday posts, visit Teri's Painted Daisies. Have a great week!

29 comments:

yoon see said...

Hi Diane,
Great ideas! Loving all the shots here. I feel so uplifted because I was a bit down just now.
Shadows canmake wonder, thanks...this is what I need:)
Happy Cactus Monday!

Outside In said...

Great photos of shadows, Happy Cactus Monday!

-Cathy

studio lolo said...

What a fantastic post!! I have always loved shadow play. Thanks for sharing...and HCM!!

Icy BC said...

Beautiful shadow shots, Diane! The first photo has bold and clear shape, and so are the rest of your wonderful photos..Love it!

Teri C said...

Wow, what a bunch of beautiful shadows! Isn't it great when an idea and inspiration hits us?! Gives me inspiration also.

HCM

James said...

I've always been a fan of cactus. Who knew that they made such nice shadows. :-)

marianne said...

Great pictures!!!
HCM!

Gaelyn said...

All great shadows. Blogging does open the eyes to new sights to photograph. Love your creativity.

Lance said...

Hi Diane,
I really love that one that looks like an animal head, too! Very cool!

Jen said...

All awesome shots Diane. I saw Warren's post the other day, he really got into it too.
Funny thing is I was in the garage the other day and something startled me, yep, it was my shadow. ha!

Lindy MacDuff said...

Great shadows from great subjects! Thanks for suggesting the "purposeful shadows." That was an interesting link. You've given me some new things to try.
:-)

Prospero said...

Hi Diane. I have to say that I like the first shadow the best. It's so statuesque.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

What a unique way to showcase some cactus. I wish you could see the shadow of my smile this caused. It is huge too. HCM.

NotSoAngryRedHead said...

Beautiful shadow photography. I think the saguaros cast the best shadows. I guess that's partially because they're so iconic.

Phoenix C. said...

Oh these are wonderful, Diane! I like the first one best of all.

Shadows are so interesting. I love watching moving shadows of leaves in the wind too.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Beautiful Diane. Isn't it amazing what we ALL have learned through blogging??? Love your shadow pictures.
Hugs,
Betsy

betchai said...

the first one struck me really hard, and your description made me really ponder, i am one of those who failed to see the inspiration our shadow brings. thanks for bringing it up to us.

Stephanie said...

Hi Diane, I like all these pictures of the shadows you have captured. Now I know shadows are beautiful too ;-)

Warren said...

Great shadow pictures, Diane! Can't wait to see your closeup shadows! Thanks for the link too.

Pam said...

You have a wonderful eye for photography, Diane. I enjoy seeing the beauty of the desert through your eyes.
Thanks for the journey :)

Julie said...

I love that you found all this beauty in things we might ordinarily ignore! What an awesome post!!!

Rajesh said...

Lovely creative shadow captures

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

It is amazing how everyone learns from the other here on the blogging pages. I love your shadows Diane, they are very creative.

Martha Z said...

Love these shadows Diane, each is unique. I'll see if I can get a few posts up before we take off again. It is hard to believe summer is almost over in our mountains.

Judy Butler said...

Diane, Oh my. I am continually amazed at how creative you are in your artistic eye. From the vase, to the mountains, to the cactus. Cleaver, cleaver. The way you organize your themes. I remember the purple theme that was so creative and now I will think often of this shadow theme. I will be thinking about something completely unrelated and one of your images pops into my head, like the squirrel with its cheeks stuffed. Then I have to go back to your blog and look at it again. That image of the squirrel often comes to my mind and I just have to smile. Now, every where I look I will notice shadows. Wonderful blog. Judy

Ashley said...

Beautiful shadows, and a very inspiring idea! I will have to try it out. I love the shadows of the saguaros!

Dee said...

How fun! I love the pictures too! You always have a fun slant on topics!

Jannie Funster said...

Really love the palm and the patio table. Shadows are so neat and you've done a super job of sharing them here. Thanks.

Kim Hosey said...

This is great! I love the idea of playing with shadows. The first one is especially striking, but they're all fantastic.