Addition 201701

It’s 2017, and besides the sense that the world is on the brink of disaster – nothing much has changed.

Welcome back. I hope this year will be a good one, in which we will appreciate the kindness of others, and continue to work at actively making the world a place where nobody will get left behind.

I’ve added a couple of photographs since we last spoke, and most of my activity here (and on social media) has revolved around my work with the students at the Elizabeth Galloway Academy of Fashion Design. I really enjoy that work, and I’m happy to say that I will be back there this year – teaching student and photographing stuff.

But as a gentle reminder that I photograph other things too, there’s this…

I spent some time with my parents in Stellenbosch during December. They’ve got a beautiful garden which attracts a fair amount of wildlife. Mostly birds. This baby Common Waxbill was brought into the house by Lybica – my parents’ cat (and main source of joy). It seemed like Lybica was just bored and wanted something to play with, because – besides possible emotional trauma – the bird hadn’t been harmed. It also seemed to be rather exhausted, as it kept falling asleep in my mother’s hand after she caught it. Falling asleep is not a great idea when you’re the only threatened party in a potential life-and-death situation, but it didn’t seem to understand that. After admiring how beautiful it was, the Waxbill was set free – with the hope that it would find its way to safety, safely.

A couple of minutes after being bid farewell, it was returned to us. Lybica was being quite diligent, and the Waxbill quite silly. This second rescue was turned into a slightly more elaborate affair, with some food, and foliage placed in a large glass bowl (with it) so that it could get some rest in a safe place, and be observed some more.

At one point during the first rescue, the silly little Waxbill escaped from my mother’s gentle grasp and found itself poised on this Delicious Monster – blissfully unaware of the looming threat.

See larger image here


A View of Table Mountain during Winter.

Winter is still my fourth favourite season. One of the many reasons for this is the unendurable task of drying washed clothes.
If you’re old-school - or poor - you’ll know exactly what I mean.

This afternoon, while hanging another bit of clothing out to dry in the sun on a clothes-drying rack on my balcony, I noticed a Southern Double-collared Sunbird in the tree that graciously blocks my would-be numbing view of Table Mountain through a stretch of electrical cables. When out in public, sunbirds usually dart about from flower to flower collecting nectar, or chasing after insects, so I thought I’d just watch it for the brief moment it was to be in view before fluttering off, and then carry on with my day.

By the time I finished hanging the washing he was still there. So I watched him a little longer.

I’d had my moment of observing, then thought I may as well fetch my camera – knowing that he would certainly be gone by the time I got back to the balcony, but satisfied that I had managed to spend some time enjoying his presence - therefore countering the disappointment of missing the moment.

So I went inside, swapped lenses, and when I got back he was still there! Calmly hopping from branch to branch as if inspecting the neighborhood as a potential home turf.

The area inside the tree was relatively dark, and I had to shoot through layers of branches to get where he was sitting making mental notes.

Check larger images here: Southern Double-Collared Sunbird Gallery