How do you celebrate the end of the year? Do you like to go out with a bang, with a big celebration and literal or figurative fireworks, or are you more pensive and reflective? I know that I am in the latter group.
My life this past year, both personally and as a photographer, has had some high points, but mostly it has been a year in which I have tried to find beauty and meaning in ordinary things. I have visited my favorite park over and over again, photographing some of the same species repeatedly. Patience and persistence have been my hallmarks and I have been rewarded with some wonderful photographic opportunities.
Somehow it seems appropriate that I end this year with a couple of images of this beautiful female Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) that I spotted in the cattails on Monday at Huntley Meadows Park. Red-winged Blackbirds are with us most of the year. They seem to come and go, but they are often there. The females are usually buried deep in the underbrush and are not seen as often as the more flashy and loud males. As you can see from these photos, however, the females are at least as beautiful as the males.
The blackbird’s body positions serve as a visual metaphors for my approach as I look forward to 2016—hanging on and occasionally looking back, but primarily looking forward with optimism to the future.
Best wishes to all for a wonderful 2016.
© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.