DP Photo Challenge: friend, take 2

The Big T and I spent quite a lot of time this last summer at the Muriwai gannet colony.  Although these gannets don’t necessarily mate for life, breeding pairs do share incubation and chick-care duties.

Watching the interactions between these magnificent birds, it is hard not to project human friendship traits onto their behaviour.

Daily Post Photo Challenge | friend.

DP Photo Challenge: evanescent, take 2

Sharing secrets? Girls at the LUX Light Festival, Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Sharing secrets? Girls at the LUX Light Festival, Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

The LUX Light Festival of Wellington has ended. Over 10 nights, thousands of visitors came to watch an ever-changing play of light and dark in a series of sculptures and installations around the city.

The cinema of the washing line. Images projected onto giant petticoat and bloomers. The Light Launder, by Raysordoll, seen at the LUX Light Festival, Wellington. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

The cinema of the washing line. Images projected onto giant petticoat and bloomers. The Light Launder, by Raysordoll, seen at the LUX Light Festival, Wellington. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Woman standing against projection of the word LUX, at the LUX Light Festival in Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

LUX. Light Festival in Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

The word LUX in lights, seen in Eva Street, Wellington during the LUX Light Festival. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

LUX. Light Festival, Wellington, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Daily Post Photo Challenge | evanescent

 

National Alpaca Day — yes, really

Close-up shot of alpaca. Image: Su Leslie, 2017. Edited with Stackables.

Alpaca love. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

So there’s that thing, right? Where you go through life oblivious to stuff (like National Appreciation Days), until someone (my friend Sarah, over at Art Expedition) makes you aware of them.

Then of course, they’re everywhere.

Which is why you’re looking at a picture of an alpaca.

According to a post I saw on FaceBook (no eye-rolling please), in which a friend was tagged, today is National Alpaca Day. At least here in New Zealand it is.

According to the National Alpaca Association of New Zealand, “… Alpaca owners throughout New Zealand open their farms to the public to promote alpacas, alpaca fibre, and alpaca products.”

So if I get off my bum quickly enough, I can spend today overdosing on camelid* cuteness.

Since that’s unlikely to happen, here are some I prepared earlier.

Close-up shot of two alpacas, edited to oil painting effect with Snapseed and Photolab. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

More camelid cuteness. Edited with Snapseed and PhotoLab. Image: Su Leslie, 2017.

Sarah is doing a series of posts this month around the daily National Appreciation Days that take place in May. Please visit Art Expedition to see her clever drawings and paintings, and wonderfully creative posts. Since I don’t have Sarah’s skill with a paintbrush, I’ve enlisted the help of the Snapseed, Stackables and PhotoLab apps.

Group of alpacas.Image: Su Leslie, 2017. Edited to painting effect with Snapseed and PhotoLab.

Not sure of the collective noun for alpacas? Image: Su Leslie, 2017. Edited with Snapseed and PhotoLab.

A song to play us out?

How Bizarre, by OMC (Otara Millionaires Club) was released in December 1995. It was hugely successful in New Zealand, and unusually for Kiwi music, also charted (in 1996) in a number of European countries, as well as Australia, Canada and the US.

I first heard this while driving on the M11 near Bishop’s Stortford.

For those of you who remember the song, does it evoke any memories for you?

May is NZ Music Month.


* Alpacas, like lhamas and camels, belong to the biological family Camelidae, the only currently living family in the suborder Tylopoda. Camelids are even-toed ungulates classified in the order Cetartiodactyla, along with pigs, hippopotamuses, whales, deer, giraffes, cattle, goats, antelope, and many others. So there!

Thank you Wikipedia.

 

DP Photo Challenge: security

Protesters in Auckland's Queen Street, marching against TPPA, 2014. Image: Su Leslie

Thousands protesting against TPPA, Auckland, 2014. Image: Su Leslie, 2014

While New Zealand does not have an unblemished history in terms of the State’s reaction to peaceful protest, I do still feel secure in my right to challenge those who govern in my name.

Young and old, Maori and Pakeha; united in exercising the right to peaceful protest. Anti-TPPA marchers, Auckland, 2014. Image: Su Leslie.

Young and old, Maori and Pakeha; united in exercising the right to peaceful protest. Anti-TPPA marchers, Auckland, 2014. Image: Su Leslie.

At a time when human rights are increasingly threatened, we must all raise our collective voice in their defense.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me. — Pastor Martin Niemöller

Daily Post Photo Challenge | Security

Regular Random: five minutes with my knitting

There are definite signs that autumn has arrived; dropping temperatures, falling leaves, shorter days — and an overwhelming urge to knit.

Knitting is something I do with much more enthusiasm than skill. After a few years of odd-shaped and unfinished sweaters, I’ve learned to limit myself to producing scarves and beanies for various community groups which distribute winter basics to some of the (far too many) children (1) who live in poverty in New Zealand.

I love the colours in this wool, and enjoyed taking five minutes out to capture a few images for Five Minutes of Random (the RegularRandom challenge), a weekly photo challenge hosted by Desley Jane at Musings of a Frequently Flying Scientist.

____

(1) According to UNICEF around 295,000 children in NZ (28 percent of all children in this country) live in poverty:

” … in cold, damp, over-crowded houses, they do not have warm or rain-proof clothing, their shoes are worn, and many days they go hungry.”

UNICEF NZ: Child Poverty in New Zealand