Sunday, October 28, 2012

Our Last Trip to Breckenridge...

One of our favorite places in Colorado is the beautiful town of Breckenridge which is  located in Summit County, in north central Colorado. This is the heart of the Rocky Mountains--86 miles west of Denver.

We arrived and set about exploring the town. We went into the Breckenridge Photo Shop so that I could visit with Gary, the other wonderful photographer who was a tutor on the photography workshop I attended in Telluride a few weeks ago.

Gary is a fellow Nikon photographer and I spent most of my time in the workshop listening and learning from him. It was great to walk around his studio and see his work. Below are two of my favorites from his collection.

It was a cold afternoon so we headed up the hill to our accommodation at The Beaver Run Resort. We had a voucher from the resort for one night, not only was our accommodation free, but we were also upgraded to a fantastic apartment. We spent the afternoon enjoying one of the outdoor heated pools and hot tubs. We spent the night as a family watching The Pirates of the Caribbean. The kids loved this because it reminded us of our visit to Disneyland earlier in the year - The Pirates of the Caribbean ride was their favorite.

It was a treat to wake up to such a great view, but at the same time we were missing this beautiful town already.

After a hearty breakfast of bacon and eggs we headed back to the pool for a swim before the kids enjoyed playing in the snow.

We headed back into town for a late lunch and a final walk around town.

Goodbye Breckenridge - I hope I can return one day!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

John Fielder and a trip to Telluride...

Without a doubt John Fielder is Colorado’s premier landscape photographer.  I have spent many hours in his gallery in Denver this year admiring both his and fellow photographers images.

A few weekends ago I had the pleasure of participating in a colorful 3-day fall foliage workshop in the San Juan Mountains around Telluride, where autumn delivers layer upon layer of color. Fresh snow dusts peaks under blue skies, while golden aspens, yellow cottonwoods, orange willows and red sandstone hills add explosions of color to the high country John showed us his favorite backroads as vast ranches stretch out in magnificent valleys.

I took the image below along a magnificent stretch of, "Last Dollar Road". It was a beautiful morning and the sun was lighting up the brilliant fall foliage.

One of John's favourite places is Ralph Lauren's amazing ranch and surrounding land. The following image is a favourite of mine not only because of the wonderful vista - but I couldn't get enough of the Aspen bowl fences!

We spent hours, looking up to capture the towering yellow aspens rising against blue skies, and photographed horses and cows grazing in snow-kissed meadows. This was a wonderful opportunity to discover the heart and soul of nature’s beauty in the Colorado high country. I am still learning and feel that after this workshop I have been able to continue improving my images.

I have included a few images - I shot thousands over the weekend. I entered a number of images below in a Telluride Photography competition recently, and although I think the photograph is interesting, I was surprised when this was the shot that won second prize. Beauty must be in the eye of the beholder!

I submitted three images yesterday for selection, to be hung in John Fielders gallery in Denver in an upcoming exhibition. The panel will select only 18 images to hang - my fingers and toes are crossed. I am hopeful that one of my three will be chosen. This would be a fantastic end to a wonderful year of photography in the US in 2012.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Four More Years... Go Obama, Go!

If you are interested in politics then this is a great year to be in the US - election year! We have been reading, watching, listening and discussing all things political since our arrival last December. We have many friends who share our political ideals and alas a number of friends who don't. We have enjoyed many red wine infused evenings, discussing political parties this year with much vigor.

The election is only 13 days away and the three political debates are now over. Colorado is now becoming a very important state in the election and some even say that whoever wins Colorado will win the election!

Before we left for the US, Garry and I both agreed that to attend a rally with President Obama would be a fantastic experience. Today this hope became a reality!

The weather was bitterly cold as snow is expected tonight, and we lined up for hours with thousands of other supporters. It was fun to watch some of the interesting characters in the crowd as we waited.

After passing through the security checks we entered the park and joined the thousands of people who were already waiting.

It was an exciting atmosphere! We danced to a DJ playing dance song covers as we waited for Obama, who is racing through nine swing states in a no-sleep 38-hour stretch. Finally the great man arrived to enormous cheers and the chant of four more years from the massive crowd. I was standing about twenty people back from the barricade and could see Obama clearly at times - but photography was difficult. Everybody had a camera of some sort and often I just held my camera above my head and hoped for the best!

After his speech, I was able to move very close to the front of the barricades and was able to get some great shots Obama shaking hands with the crowd. Even though I couldn't actually see him at this time, I knew where he was because of the media who followed his every move, again I stood on tippy toes, held my camera as high as I could and hoped for the best.

Besides Denver, he will hit Iowa and Nevada on today in hopes of swaying those few, but critical, undecided voters in important swing states.

"We've gone through three debates, months of campaigning, way too many TV ads," Obama said to a crowd of about 16,000. "When you choose president, you don't know what's going to come up ... Trust matters."

The president then shifted into an attack on opponent GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, saying his plan is what "led to the Great Recession.""He's hoping that you, too, will likely come down with a case of what we like to call 'Romnesia,' " he said.

This is the 11th time the president has come to Colorado in 2012 and he suggested today he might return again before the election.

Go Obama, Go!