Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swimming Lesson

Momma duck still has seven chicks and they're getting bigger. I'm hoping they'll be able to fly away soon as they seem to have taken over the swimming pool.

"Swimming Lesson" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Bloom 'n Buds

I was at a friend's today dropping off some items and found these in her cactus garden in the front yard. Spring in the desert offers lots of great flowers.

"Bloom 'n Buds" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Palo Verde Blossoms

One of the beauties of living in the desert is the spectacle we get this time of year when the Palo Verde trees bloom. Spanish for "Green Stick", these unique trees adapt to drought conditions by dropping their small leaves and photosynthesising through the bark, which is green. A favorite of humming birds as well as honey bees, these trees add wild splashes of yellow across the desert when in bloom since the entire tree is usually covered with these tiny yellow blossoms.

"Palo Verde Blossoms" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Monday, April 27, 2009

Morning Shadows

Early morning light is a photographers dream. The colors are more intense and the longer shadows add drama to what could otherwise be a boring photo. This blooming crown of thorns didn't let me down.

"Morning Shadows" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Bumper Crop

I live in an area with a wide variety of agriculture. Dates, grapes, artichokes, strawberries, basil and other herbs, okra and lots of citrus. The development I live in is also loaded with lots of citrus trees, oranges, grapefruit, tangerines and lots of lemons. All free for the picking.

"Bumper Crop" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Someone's Been Eating Cheetos

I love Cheetos and the beard on this iris is the exact color of these crunchy yummies.

"Someone's Been Eating Cheetos" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Friday, April 24, 2009

And Now There are Seven

When I posted these little ducklings on Monday there were 10. Today, I counted only seven. They're getting bigger and cuter but fewer in number.

"And Now There are Seven" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Ocotillo Buds

Even though it's 100 degrees today we still have spring blossoms. These Ocotillo buds were growing in a wash in the Anza-Borrego desert. In dry conditions these tall, spindly plants look like a bunch of dead sticks loaded with thorns. But when it rains they sprout little green leaves all over their branches and get these red-orange blossoms on the tips.

"Ocotillo Buds" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pismo Rose

I was in Pismo Beach this weekend for a wedding and spotted this beautiful apricot rose in the late afternoon sun.

"Pismo Rose" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Monday, April 20, 2009

Out for a Walk

We've had problems with ducks claiming the community pool as their own. Everything has been tried to discourage them but to no avail. I was out of town for the weekend (I had no wifi so was unable to send the blog) and when I came home today I discovered that our duck population has grown by ten. They are so cute when little and I hope they'll fly north as soon as they're able.

"Out for a Walk" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Friday, April 17, 2009

Guatemalan Weaver

I came upon this weaver wearing her back strap loom after lunch one day in Antigua, Guatemala. She and her mother were selling handmade items to support their family.

"Guatemalan Weaver" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Let's Dance

I found these furry critters at a local carnival and thought they looked ready to do a chorus line.

"Let's Dance" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Guadalajara Centerpiece

While taking a walking tour in Guadalajara, Mexico, I came upon this simple centerpiece at a local courtyard restaurant. I think it's the bright colors that attracted me. They are so happy and festive.

"Guadalajara Centerpiece" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Louisiana Iris

I found these at a local nursery and was intrigued by the name. This native of the Southeast is basically a water iris, these beardless members of the iris family are evergreen and do well in extremely wet soil (if you don't have a pond to plant them in).

"Louisiana Iris" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Monday, April 13, 2009

Peruvian Lily

These South American plants, that occur mostly in the Andes, have made it big time in North America. Used mostly in floral arrangements as filler flowers, they are actually quite beautiful and easy to grow.

"Peruvian Lily" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Field of Daffodils

Daffodils are a wonderful sign of spring. Fresh and perky, they come in a wide variety of colors and combinations.

"Field of Daffodils" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter

Although not the "official" flower of Easter, the Stargazer lily is about as fragrant as they come.

"Happy Easter" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Friday, April 10, 2009

Evening Storm

On my way home this evening I spotted these storm clouds sneaking into the valley. They were predicting rain and sure enough, I few drops fell on my newly washed car. It never fails!!

"Evening Storm" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Puerto Rican Houses

Old Puerto Rico is teaming with houses painted in bright and colorful patterns. I think that's what adds to the charm of this earliest of colonies in the Americas.

"Puerto Rican Houses" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Field of Gold

This patch of gazanias was a delight to the eye as I was driving down a local street. So much so that I had to stop and take pictures. I learned a long time ago to always carry my camera as I never know when a photo op will appear.

"Field of Gold" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Fountain, La Quinta Resort

I love spending time at the La Quinta Hotel and Resort. An old and elegant hotel, it is loaded with charm and lots of scenes to paint and photograph.

"Fountain, La Quinta Resort" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009

Springtime at the Huntington

Spring at the Huntington Library and Gardens in San Marino offer so much for the visitor. These Chinese Magnolias are just some of the beauties putting on a show.

"Springtime at the Huntington" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Almost Monet's Garden

I'm having a luncheon tomorrow for the gals who are joining me at my watercolor workshop in France next month. A little meet and greet before we go and to talk over last minute details. Next month about this time I'll be able to post the real picture of Monet's Garden. I've gotten permission to paint there and really excited to walk in his footsteps.

This photo is actually at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, B.C.

"Almost Monet's Garden" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Reflected Light

While enjoying a pre-dinner drink at a local pub in Victoria, B.C., I noticed the late afternoon light was being reflected off the windows on the building across the street. The rays hit the flower on the table and created this unusual lighting.

"Reflected Light" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Friday, April 3, 2009

Hi, My Name's Gracie

I live in a gated community and Terrina, the evening guard, has this cutie sitting in the window. It brings a smile to everyone who drives through.

"Hi, My Name's Gracie" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Peek a Boo

This Indian Blanket Flower and friend were fresh with the morning dew.

"Peek a Boo" © Kathy Dunham 2009

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Hot and Orange

Iceland poppies are a favorite of mine. I love the vibrant colors and the crinkled petals. They are extremely dramatic when the light hits them just right.

"Hot and Orange" © Kathy Dunham 2009