Wednesday, August 22, 2018

2018 Wildflowers in Mono County's Conway Summit



A profusion of blooms in a short stretch of the road!

 
A return visit to Conway Summit a few weeks later in July found even more wildflowers in bloom.  So many different species were thriving at an elevation around 8,143 feet (2,482 m) in a short stretch of the road to Virginia Lake, just off U.S. 395 in Mono County, California.  


Wildflowers in the Conway Summit, California


 
The first to catch my eyes were the blues, lavenders, and yellows.  


Sulpher Buckwheat, Silvery Lupine, Showy Milkweed


The yellow was Sulfur Buckwheat, Eriogonum umbellatum, a species of wild buckwheat. This  plant was used by Native Americans for a number of medical purposes.  


 
The blue flowers were the Silvery Lupine, Lupinus argenteus, which is in the legume family.
 

Silvery Lupine, Lupinus argenteus



The lavender-purple was the California Showy Milkweed, Asclepias speciosa, which is a great pollinator for hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees.  The fibers from this plant were used by Native Americans to make ropes, nets and other items.
 

California Showy Milkweed, Asclepias speciosa


 
Across the road there was a thick cluster of showy red flowers, the Desert Paintbrush, Castilleja chromosa.


Desert Paintbrush, Castilleja chromosa



Desert Paintbrush flowers are edible in small amounts and contain selenium.


Desert Paintbrush, Castilleja chromosa



Small yellow flowers of the Five Finger Cinquefoil, Potentilla erecta, stood out from green, five-parted leaves.  For such a tiny plant, this Cinquefoil has a number of interesting uses.  It offers an important food source to pollinators, rabbits and other wild critters.  Furthermore, its young shoots are eaten with salads and it is even used in magic spells to ward off evil. 


Five Finger Cinquefoil, Potentilla erecta


 
A nice grouping of Skyrocket or Scarlet gilia, Ipomopis aggregate flowered against the rocky bank of the road.   


Skyrocket or Scarlet gilia, Ipomopis aggregate


 
The Nude Buckwheat, Eriogonum nudum, named for its naked stem was growing in numerous places.  At least one butterfly subspecies (Apodemia mormo langei) uses naked buckwheat as its primary food source. 


Nude Buckwheat, Eriogonum nudum


 
Further along the road, I noticed a flowering plant that almost looked like a small bush.  Spreading dogbane, or the fly-trap dogbane, Apocynum androsaemifolium, is a flowering plant in the Gentianales order. All parts of the plant are poisonous, however it was used by Native Americans for a number of ailments.   


Spreading dogbane, Apocynum androsaemifolium


 
Just as I was about to run out of wildflowers, I saw tall stalks of white flowers growing profusely along the slopes of the roadside.


Bonnie Rannald photographing Sierra Angelica on Conway Summit


The Sierra Angelica, Angelica lineariloba, is native to the Sierra Nevada in California and Nevada at 6000 to 10,600’ elevations.   


Sierra Angelica, Angelica lineariloba


 
The afternoon was growing long with more smoke and haze drifting in from the California wildfires.  It was time to call a wrap to this awesome photo-adventure.  I took a chance on a return visit to this area of wildflowers and sure was not disappointed with the results.  If this warming trend continues, I might just return again to see what else might be flowering as the Indian Summer approaches.   


Wildflowers, Conway Summit, California



If you found this post interesting check back often where I will focus on the story behind the image or give tips on my ventures as a nature photographer.

Your comments are always welcome and I will reply back ASAP. 


Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!


Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry" 


Many of these images are available on my website:

 http://www.bonnierannald.com/ 


For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall



No images on this blog are within Public Domain and are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.







Saturday, July 14, 2018

Wildflowers Blooming at Conway Summit

Blues, reds, yellow and orange!
What a colorful photo-adventure this was


On a day trip to Eastern Sierra’s higher elevations, what could be more rewarding than coming across a huge section of wildflowers blooming along the roadside?  Just before the July 4th weekend, I took a drive over toward Virginia Lake in Mono County, California.  Turning off U.S. 395 at the Conway Summit, I noticed yellow wildflowers standing out against the green landscape.  


Photographer Bonnie Rannald, Conway Summit, California


As I stopped to catch a scenic view of the mountains that still had traces of snow, patches of lavender blooms stood out in the foreground.   


Conway Summit, California


Driving forward a short distance, the rocky banks on either side of the road were accented with clusters of lavender and periwinkle.  


Sierra Penstemon, Conway Summit


 
At closer observation, I realized these were Sierra Penstemon flowers. 



Sierra Penstemon, Conway Summit


 
Many of the Penstemon were growing with tall, lanky Lupines which had just started to bud. 



Sierra Penstemon and Lupine, Conway Summit


Moving further along the road and to my delight a group of scarlet Beaked Beardtongue stood out next to more periwinkle Penstemon. 


Scarlet Beardtongue and Sierra Penstemon, Conway Summit


 
Up in the distance and swaying in the breeze a large area of red caught my attention.  



Desert Paintbrush, Conway Summit


 
I had to tread safely along the narrow, rocky shoulder of this road and keep a watch for passing cars.  



Bonnie Rannald photographing wildflowers, Conway Summit


Getting a closer look, the reds were Desert Paintbrushes.  I’ve never seen so many growing in such a small area!


Desert Paintbrush, Conway Summit


 
This photo-adventure was like being in a lush alpine flower garden!



Desert Paintbrush, Conway Summit


Accents of orange against the subtle green desert sage caught my eye.  These flowers are the Applegate’s Paintbrush and the first I had ever encountered growing wild. 


Applegate's Paintbrush, Conway Summit


Numerous stands of Mule’s Ears with yellow flowers and elongated leaves were inter-spaced through out the road side.  


Mule Ears, Conway Summit

The day was moving along and the winds were getting stronger, it was time to head back down.  What a thrill to just happen on so many wildflowers.   I have learned from past experience to follow my yearnings and allow the adventure come to me.    



If you found this post interesting check back often where I will focus on the story behind the image or give tips on my ventures as a nature photographer.

Your comments are always welcome and I will reply back ASAP.  


Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!


Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry" 


Many of these images are available on my website:

 http://www.bonnierannald.com/ 


For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall



No images on this blog are within Public Domain and are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.








Friday, July 6, 2018

The Western Fence Lizard


 Shiny, black lizards waiting as sentinels on each fence post!


What to do on a warm day in early June when the temperatures are reaching near the century mark?

Well, I took a road-trip to Nevada’s backcountry on the Lucky Boy Pass Road and decided to try my luck with the rugged Corey Peak trail.  Corey Peak stands at 10,501’ (3.201 m) and is the second highest summit in the Wassuk Range of Western Nevada.  


Corey Peak Trail, Nevada


Traversing on the narrow, winding trail to reach the summit of Corey Peak requires maneuvering through some dense growth of bushes and trees that are fed by the mountain streams. 


Photographer Bonnie Rannald checking out Corey Peak Trail


As I ascended the trail, I stopped to marvel at the geological formations in several of the high up rock-outcroppings.  What a story these rocks tell.  


Geological features, Corey Trail


Up ahead the trail began to open and off the road-side I noticed a wire fence with  wooden posts. A  small dark shape on one of the posts caught my attention so I paused to take a look with my 200mm lens.  To my surprise, it was a lizard sunning in the afternoon sunlight.  


Photographing the Western Fence Lizard


Approaching more fence posts and each one has a similar lizard resting on top, perhaps hoping for quick snack of insects or spiders.


Western Fence Lizard


I learned that these lizards were the Western Fence Lizards or Spiny Lizards, Sceloporus occidentalis.  


Western Fence Lizard


Unlike their cousins, the Sagebrush Lizards, the Western Fence Lizards are not usually found in the desert.  This was my first encounter with this fascinating creature which grow to around 8.4 inches, 213 mm in length.   


Western Fence Lizard


As the day was growing long and the trail was getting narrower, I decided it was time to turn back.  To me, it had been an eventful photo-adventure while I was able to observe a new critter
in the wild.              


Corey Peak Trail




Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level. 




What an exciting and interesting photo-adventure this day has been.  I love it when I am drawn to an area and not knowing what to expect I get treated to new experiences. 

Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!


Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry" 




Many of these images are available on my website:

 http://www.bonnierannald.com/ 

For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall


No images on this blog are within Public Domain or are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.





Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Fine Art Photography Success or Failure



Success starts with volunteering


Numerous times I have been asked by aspiring photographers to help them get started selling their photos.  I often feel that they think I took some photos, had them printed and was an instant success. In my future blog posts, I hope to recount how over time my road to a successful photographic art career was started.

After moving to Las Vegas, Nevada from Houston, Texas to follow my dream of becoming a collegiate coach, I discovered the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.  I was infatuated with the topography of red sandstone boulders and rugged, colorful mountains.  During my Track and Field coaching tenure we would load up the athletes in an UNLV van and go out for distance training along Red Rock’s 13 mile loop.  The scenery was so awesome and the higher elevation was slightly cooler than urban streets. 


Calico Hills, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, Nevada 


I retired from my profession of teaching and coaching to follow my new dream of working fulltime in the photographic arts.  This allowed me to spend much more time exploring the Red Rock Canyon area.  Looking back, I was as fascinated with the art of Red Rock Canyon as was Ansel Adams of Yosemite.  


Calico Trail, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area 


From sunrise to sunset and even after darkness fell across the desert, I was fueled by the passion to record each inspiring moment in this awesome work of nature.  



Spring Morning at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area 


One afternoon I was at Pine Creek Trail when I met a law enforcement ranger and he started quizzing me on my new Nikon 8008s film camera. 


Pine Creek Trail, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area 


To keep a long story brief, the ranger took an interest in how I was taking photographs and eventually invited me to join the volunteer program to assist the BLM Rangers. 


Bonnie Rannald Photographer at Red Rock Canyon, Nevada 


 As an official Red Rock Volunteer, my duties included inspecting hiking trails for damage or trash removal; plus acting as a hostess to the multitude of visitors, giving directions and general information about hiking and exploring in the Red Rock Canyon.  


Calico Tank Trail, Red Rock Canyon, Nevada 


Working in this official capacity allowed for new opportunities that I might not have experienced otherwise.  It was a responsibility that I embraced.  


Skull Rock Trailhead, Red Rock Canyon, Nevada 


Furthermore, by giving of my time to others I was blessed with experience and learning opportunities that would help to mold my identity as a photographic artist.  Of all the photography books that I read and studied, the working relationship of being a volunteer gave me hands-on experience.  I was introduced to people from all nationalities which furthered my skills to communicate to others about my love of nature and photography.    


Spring Mountain Sunset, Red Rock Canyon Nevada 





Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!



Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry" 


Many of these images are available on my website:

 http://www.bonnierannald.com/ 


For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall




No images on this blog are within Public Domain and are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.






Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Commercial Photographic Art, the Beginning


Being a volunteer helped advance my photo career



Many years ago when I was first becoming serious about my photography, I was also a volunteer with the Red Rock National Conservation Area.  My assigned duty since I had a 4-wheel drive CJ-7 Jeep was for trail inspection.  I would go out as far as I could drive and then hike the trails looking for illegal fire pits or any trash that needed to be removed.

While I was out on the trails, I always had my camera along so I could take photos and report back to the rangers of any problems that needed their attention. 

After entering some of my photos in the Red Rock Photo Contest, I was invited to do a solo exhibit in the Visitor’s Center Gallery.  During the reception, I was to give a talk to the audience about my photos. 

One of the photos on exhibit was ‘Dawn at Red Rock”.  It was taken at the entrance to the park and was the first scene that people saw as they entered the area.


Dawn at Red Rock


The curator for the gift shop was especially taken with this photo and wanted it available to sell in the Visitor’s Canter.  This presented me with a whole new learning curve with commercial printing.  The poster was printed with 5,000 copies and sold exclusively at the Red Rock Canyon Visitor’s Center. 

By volunteering and donating my free time I received the benefit of being out in nature doing something that I enjoyed. I also learned from these experiences and they enabled me to follow my dream. 


The photograph of “Dawn at Red Rock” is one of my classic images that is available for purchase through my online gallery and website:  www.BonnieRannald.com


Nature Photographer Bonnie Rannald at Red Rock Canyon



If you found this post interesting check back often where I will focus on the story behind the image or give tips on my ventures as a nature photographer. 

Your comments are always welcome and I will reply back ASAP.   


What an exciting and interesting photo-adventure this day has been.  I love it when I am drawn to an area and not knowing what to expect I get treated to new experiences. 

Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!


Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry"



Many of these images are available on my website:
For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall


No images on this blog are within Public Domain or are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

Bonnie Rannald Business Card   





Wednesday, March 28, 2018

My First Sale with Fine Art Photography


How reaching for the clouds launched my photography career!


When I was still a novice during the early days of my art show sojourn I remember a more seasoned artist remarking that doing art shows was like going out in public naked and exposing your innermost soul.  She was definitely correct about her feelings.  I had been a teacher for many years in both college and secondary, had done my share of public speaking, but standing there displaying my photographic art was the most uncomfortable situation that I had ever experienced.

So when I made my first sale at my first art show, I was dancing on clouds, only with my clothes on!  And speaking of clouds, this first sale was of a photograph of cumulus clouds producing crepuscular rays. 


Carpe Diem


I had taken the photograph when driving along Spring Mountain Road in Las Vegas, Nevada and saw the cloud forming to the west.  I pulled over, parked and managed to get 2 clicks of the shutter before everything changed.

There is a philosophy that art is about the creating and not for the commercial aspect.  This is very true because the pressure to produce commercially can override the moment of creation when the work materializes from the inner soul.

Furthermore, people can “Like” your pictures and tell you how great they are, which is always appreciated.   However, when someone is willing to own a piece of your art, it establishes a sense of worth and value.

Throughout my professional photography career, I never did allow the commercial aspect to over-ride the creative force behind my passion for the art

 “Carpe Diem”  remains on my list of classic fine art photographs and is available for purchase through my online gallery and website:  www.BonnieRannald.com

BTW, the woman who purchased “Carpe Diem” located me at another art show and told me that she loved clouds and collected artwork with unusual cloud formations.    






If you found this post interesting check back often where I will focus on the story behind the image or give tips on my ventures as a nature photographer.

Your comments are always welcome and I will reply back ASAP.   


Sign up and follow my blog to see where my next photo-adventure will be!


Photography places me in the moment where I can share that moment in time. It becomes a life story as represented by my interaction with the scene. The happiness and beauty or the sorrow and strife; how I focus leaves a lasting impression that might touch the viewer on a spiritual level.


 "Reflecting Nature's Artistry" 


Many of these images are available on my website:

 http://www.bonnierannald.com/ 


For custom matted and framed images:
Off The Wall



No images on this blog are within Public Domain and are available for free download. 

 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.