NIAGARA FALLS SPRING TULIPS: They are not out yet, but by late April, the tulips will be in full bloom throughout the Niagara Falls parks system. It’s a favourite place to visit early in the spring when millions of tulips adorn the well-kept gardens, the daffodils carpet Queen Victoria Park and the magnolias bloom along the path near the Floral Showhouse. If you plan your visit for when the magnolias are in full flower (usually late April/early May, depending on the year), you’ll also see plenty of tulips and daffodils too.
These tulips were at the Floral Showhouse, just ¼ mile south of the Horseshoe Falls at 7541Niagara River Parkway. The outside gardens are free to visit. There’s a paid parking lot right there. You can even stay up to speed with the pace of your favourite flows signing up for the Niagara Parks Bloom Watch.
Shot handheld with a Nikon D3100, 18-200 DX VR lens at 200mm, f/32, 1/100 sec., ISO 800. Photo by John Ecker | pantheon photography
TUSCANY ITALY: Tuscany and Tuscan inspired decor and colours became especially popular after the release of Frances Mayes’ book Under the Tuscan Sun in 1997 and released as a major motion picture in 2003. It seems every home paint manufacturer soon came out Tuscan inspired colours– typically in the red/ocher, orange, yellow/gold, green and– to a lesser extent, blue hues. I find the ocher colour of this farm building to be pretty typical of the Tuscan countryside. The Tuscan region is also where the Italian Renaissance was born– home to Michelangelo, da Vinci, Botticellie and Puccini. And, of course, it’s the also home of Chianti!
Shot handheld with a Nikon D3100, AF-S 10-24mm lens at 11mm, f14, 1/2000 sec. ISO 1600
Photo by John Ecker | pantheon photography
TWO GIRLS WEARING MASKS, VENICE ITALY: I was in St. Mark’s Square enjoying a beautiful summer day, admiring the shop windows. Murano glass, Italian leather and of course myriad Venetian masks fill so many shop windows in Venice. These two little girls were proud of their new masks and paused for a quick photo. I was struck by their pose and had just enough time to shoot two frames. It’s funny, one can wander for hours looking for a ‘perfect’ shot that might never come. Then, out of the blue, a beautiful scene assembles and disassembles, in mere seconds, right before your eyes. The long focal length and low light result in some motion, but in this case I think it only adds a dreamy quality to the photograph. Here’s a link to another of my favourite mask photos. And here’s a link to an excellent Venetian Mask Shop and more information about the history of Venetian masks.
Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 70-300mm at 210mm, 1/60 sec. f9, ISO 1250. Photo by John Ecker | Pantheon Photography