Melting Away

Trying to get back into things and I thought a quick jaunt around the yard with my camera would be a good start. Denver had a mini blizzard on Saturday and it’s melting away now.

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Communing With Humpbacks

My family spent the last week in Boston, MA for summer vacation where we also visited Salem, Plymouth, and Nantucket. While we were on Nantucket Island we spent a few days filled with the beach, riding bikes, and exploring town. My favorite day, however, was the all day whale watching excursion my siblings and I went on.

Once our boat got out to open ocean, the first half of our day was spent with a mother humpback whale and her calf and the second half was spent with some dolphins pods. For 45 minutes, the mother humpback and her calf spent their time checking us out while we all checked them out, both parties being equally as curious about each other. At one point, the calf even rolled over on its side to get a better look at all us funny looking creatures with our cameras. The calf’s mother was content to let it explore while she dove periodically below our boat. When they tired of us finally, our captain steered us off in search of more whales. What we came upon, however, were some pods of dolphins totaling to upwards of 250 individuals. For half an hour, as the boat cruised along, the dolphins busied themselves with playing in the boat’s wake while they swam along with the boat. Eventually, they also went off in their separate directions as time ran out before we had to head back into port, but not before running across a last group of humpback whales as they were preparing to dive leaving us all with an amazing display of their tail flukes.

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Graduation

Today is the day. The day you strive towards your whole life. College graduation.

Forget high school graduation because this is a lot scarier. In high school, as you made the walk, you knew exactly what your purpose was in life at that moment and for the next four years: to go to college. In college, as you make that same walk, you realize that nothing is certain in life anymore. This time you have your whole life ahead of you, and for most, the possibilities are endless. The lucky ones will know what lies ahead for them, but, like me, I’m sure there are plenty who still haven’t quite figured it all out. Life, unfortunately, isn’t going to wait around. So for all you college graduates out there, get ready to embrace what life throws your way because it’s…

OFF WE GO!!!

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Oh, Ah-Caching We Will Go

Last weekend, one of my friends took another friend and I out geocaching. We started the morning out early, crossing not a single soul as we headed out to our first geocache on campus. Following the GPS, we found the location among some gardens and greenhouses. Near a gazebo-like structure with an overgrown water feature we turned over rocks and dug through fallen leaves beneath the trees searching for the tiny cache.

After several minutes we had to head back to the car to review the cache description because we were having a hard time trying to figure out its hiding spot. Half an hour later and we weren’t sure where to look anymore and forced to give up.

Our second cache was another one on campus and quite easy to find compared to our unfruitful first attempt. It was just an old water bottle covered in camouflage-patterned duct tape hidden in a bush near some dorms. I can see why geocachers head out so early because, if not for the fact that everyone was still asleep, it would’ve been awkward to have someone catch us rummaging through a bush.

Our third cache required a short drive away from campus up into the foothills a bit into Pleasant Valley. We pulled over into a parking lot with a small picnic area and made the short walk up a hill to the lookout area. Below us was spread the gorgeous valley surrounded on all sides by the foothills.

Like the cache before, this one was super easy to find and was only hidden within a rock formation atop the hill where we stood. For this cache, as with all caches, we signed and dated the log and had the option of taking a small token as long as we left behind a token of our own, but decided not to as we had nothing left to leave.

Deciding we still had time for another, we drove into town for our fourth and final cache of the day. We soon found ourselves driving through a neighborhood near campus and having to park and walk along a trail to reach the cache by following the GPS. As we approached a small lake, we soon connected the dots between a hint provided in the description and a small physical detail which prohibited us reaching the cache. We were able to deduce that, according the GPS’s approximate distance we were from it, that the geocache had to be located on the tiny island in the center of the lake. As none of us were in the mood or prepared to wade through the water that morning we abandoned all hopes of reaching it. The decision was quickly made, therefore, to head back home for some breakfast and a nap.

History in the Present

Similar to the other day, as in Parts of a Whole, my friend from My Life in Pictures and I decided to continue with some of our other ideas for photography collaborations. This afternoon we focused on capturing the character of some of the historic buildings on campus. Compared to today, the original part of campus is much smaller and the buildings all ring a central open area. Of the few dates we were able to find, it would appear that most of these were erected in the 1920s even though the university is much older than that. In our student center, there are several old photos hanging on the wall and they make me wish I could go back in time and experience what this place would have been like back in its prime. Maybe I’m just a sucker for old architecture and history though. Whatever the case, its neat to see what the university once was and how it’s changed over the years as it has expanded and grown. I believe this holds true for all historical buildings, however, and what makes them so special. The other half of this collection can be viewed here.

Administration Building

Gymnasium

Statistics

Parts of a Whole

In the few photography classes I’ve taken, I’ve done projects such as finding the alphabet using inanimate objects, pairing two pictures to demonstrate what color meant to us, and expressing play or fear through the use of images and music. Along with my friend at My Life in Pictures, I thought it would be cool if we could somehow incorporate similar ideas into several, smaller collaborations. So what started as a quick run to the park, turned into a brainstorming session and, later, a spontaneous beginning to our project. I started by taking pictures of trees from afar or as a whole while my friend took closeup pictures of the same tree. Together, we picked our favorites and then made each pair into a collage. Half of them can be seen here and the other half can be seen here.

Spring Nature Hike

My friends and I trekked into the foothills to go on a brief hike on a trail that two of us had previously been on. There’s nothing better than sporadically going on a nature walk in the middle of a busy week. Especially when I should have been super productive originally. It’s just that as the semester is coming to an end quicker than we’d like we’re finding we’d rather be spending all our time together or on adventures than doing homework. The coming of spring and the warmer weather doesn’t help that out one bit either. Why be inside when you could be outside enjoying nature instead?

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