A slightly modified vineyard

This is the original picture:

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It’s the vineyard of Sir Robert Stanford Estate in our village but adding a few elements such as in the top the neighbouring Weltevreden Estate, two gates (at the right) and local people (left and right bottom) gives the original image more ‘vuma’.

Well … that’s what I think….

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‘Watching Angels’ and ‘Guardian Angels’

Both imaginaries are inspired by this recent blog posting.  The first, ‘Watching Angels’ is the pre-amble of the second ‘Guardian Angels’ and does not need any comment. On first sight I’m very fond of ‘Guardian Angels’, partly because of the symbols here and there in this imaginary, i.e. the dove as symbol for ‘peace’ and ‘Holy Spirit’ and the stork for new life to mention a few. On my way to the photo session with the angels I passed a fully neglected cemetery. Fully, not entirely for only one ‘poor man’s grave’ is regularly foreseen with fresh flowers… Respect for burial places is something I’m born with and to honour the past what else could I do than passing the message to the angels?

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'Watching Angels' and 'Guardian Angels'

Both imaginaries are inspired by this recent blog posting.  The first, ‘Watching Angels’ is the pre-amble of the second ‘Guardian Angels’ and does not need any comment. On first sight I’m very fond of ‘Guardian Angels’, partly because of the symbols here and there in this imaginary, i.e. the dove as symbol for ‘peace’ and ‘Holy Spirit’ and the stork for new life to mention a few. On my way to the photo session with the angels I passed a fully neglected cemetery. Fully, not entirely for only one ‘poor man’s grave’ is regularly foreseen with fresh flowers… Respect for burial places is something I’m born with and to honour the past what else could I do than passing the message to the angels?

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Cape Dutch Gable

Just after I shot the ducks yesterday afternoon (see previous posting) I focussed on a new house in our street that has a traditional Cape Dutch gable. Used the Sigma 70-300mm and adjusted the Sony A77 camera to twilight to bring some evening sphere in it. No photoshopping needed; just as is. Stanford is our home and if you look to our pictures than you also know why it was awarded with the prestigious “Best Village Destination of South Africa”.

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Shot some ducks, just now

Just now, this late afternoon, I made a long walk with our dog and my camera along our road and back along the other side of the ‘Vlei’ (natural water reservoir of our village) and that is where I shot these ducks with the sun opposite me behind the trees.

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Beautiful View

Guesthouse ‘Fraai Uitzicht’ (‘Beautiful View”) in the Klaas Voogds hamlet in the Western Cape, South Africa does not only offer the guests stunning views from the restaurant terrace or amazing surprises to look at in the own garden but also a look at the guesthouse itself is worthwhile to stay there for a couple of days. And than I’m not going to describe the mouthwatering dishes that are prepared in the kitchen. This superb guesthouse qualifies with ease for five stars but the owners stick to their 4 stars for marketing reasons. Well …. let’s have a look.

 

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Angels

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Not mentioned in any known travel itinerary is the shop window in Stanford, South Africa. It’s in the main Victoria Street at the Stanford Hotel. It’s there where The Angel of Stanford resides. Every now and than ‘shebeen owner’ Penny van den Berg redecorates the windows with her ‘girls’. And that is quite a process of meticulous fitting the right dresses, the right wigs and the right gadgets for the right occasion. This week Penny is in heavenly spheres and all her thoughts are with angels. Her installations are a true art. She does not only use the windows but also the space behind thus also using the old shopping counter and the cupboard behind. From her childhood onwards Penny has been collecting dolls in all sizes; from a tiny Swedish ‘Pippie Langkous’ to life-size fashion dolls. And there is something more to it as well; every time when a known villager passes away Penny adds a candle behind the window and this candle, accompanied by a picture of the deceased, will burn until after the funeral. For all on a road trip in South Africa and co-incidentally in the area it’s worthwhile to take a turn into Stanford. After about 1 kilometer the window is on the right.

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Stanford; a village in the green

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In my (our) other blog you can read all about our privilege of living in this wonderful village; somewhere in nowhere between Gansbaai and Hermanus in the Western Cape, South Africa. It’s a truly green village and honestly I don’t think there is any village or town in the Western Cape where per head so much solar power is utilized. Except for the (main) Victoria Street where most of the restaurants and shops are located there is an abundance of green all over the place. Herewith a visual impression with some pictures I made this morning. It’s a green portrait of a wonderful village.

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A few loose ends

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I just figured out that I delete about 9 out of 10 pictures while they are still in the camera and once filed on the hard disk I delete about half of the ‘chosen ones’. And still I am in doubt about the ‘left-overs’. That also applies for the photoshopped elements (“imaginaries” as I call these). Normally I erase about 6 or 7 out of 10 after finishing them and later 1 or 2 others by review. Of the latter ones here a few examples plus a few examples of pictures which, on third/fourth thought also will be trashed…. Still a long way to go but (originally a Dutch expression) “Practice makes perfect”.

The image above is a photoshopped ‘cross breed’ between the flowers of a cactus and a succulent plant from South Africa. The large picture below is that of ‘Township mothers in South Africa photographing the future for later’ and is an impression of the graduation ceremony and township/location visit I wrote about a couple of weeks ago. The second imaginary below is what I named ‘Traditional values’

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Rits and the 'Tibetan Pitbull'

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November 1997 is a memorable month and my back still aches by the thought of it. We went for a short break-away to Shri Lanka and on the way back to the airport in Colombo Yvonne saw a life-size wooden dog in a shop window and once she set her mind on something it becomes a mission and this time I was the one who had to carry it all. The shop did not have credit card facilities and the banks nearby were out of money so I had to go downtown (luckily with the husband of the shop owner as a guide) through a busy maze of (side-)roads to find a bank with money in stock. Ever participated actively in the traffic in Colombo? Well I can assure you that this is very stressful especially when you are pressed to be on time at the airport as well… But the worst had yet to come; I also had to carry the dog all the way from the car rentals on the airport in Colombo and from the customs on Amsterdam airport to the car parking and guess who parked the car there and forgot all about where….???… But that is history except for my back.

I never carried that dog; not even with our removals to and within South Africa. Until this morning for a photo session.

All the pictures were taken within 10 meters from the corner in the living room where our ‘Tibetan Pitbull’, as I disrespectful named this sculpture since my miserable experience, resides. The featured B&W is photoshopped.

And of course I had to make a portrait together with Rits; our lively lab who feels a bit alone since his sister Roets went to the ‘eternal sniffle fields’ a few weeks ago. It went all very well as Yvonne co-operated in the carrying this time …..

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