Thistle. What’s It There For

The next weed from my backyard for the blog is thistle.

A thistle plant.
A Canadian thistle plant.

I’ve been looking into uses for this one for a while. It does compost well and I’m reading that it’s good to eat. Haven’t tried it yet though. I’ve given up on killing it by natural means, but I will pull it in certain areas of the property.

So far, I’ve found websites that say you can eat it, but most reports on the taste are bad. For now, I’ll just compost them.

A Lot Full Of Junk Jaguars

Growing up in Mount Vernon, I was around many eccentric people. My best guess is that the combination of Kenyon College, farmers, and industrial types of people brought in the inventors and other types of intelligent people that had their own ideas about what would work.

I was happy to find this Jaguar collection. It let me know that the eccentricity was still alive, even though much of the industry is leaving or gone and the farming has left the hands of many private farmers.

Antique junk Jaguar car.
Junk Jaguar sits rusting in Mount Vernon, Ohio.

I have to wonder how many city ordinances he would be breaking in so many other places in the country.  It’s a great thing where you can still do want on property that you “own”.

Collection of Jaguars in Mount Vernon, Ohio.
Row of rusting antique Jaguars.

I found these cars to be inspirational. I’m not sure what he’s doing with them or what the future plans are. Right now, the collection is just intriguing and interesting.

Free Blackberries

The results of my research of permaculture are blackberries. I was following advice to let at least a small portion of your property go back to nature.  When I did, I was rewarded with blackberries.

Bowl of blackberries.
Free blackberries from my backyard.

I hope to learn more, but it’s been trial and error with a lot more errors than successes. Error’s aside, it’s been a enjoyable and interesting to try.

Chasing Sunsets Leads To A Moonrise

It’s a frequent event for my wife and I to head on out on our motorcycles in the evening. This frequently leads to seeing a sunset. Sunsets are nice, but photographically speaking, they’re boring without a subject. The night I took this photo, my subject, a farm, happened to be where the moon was rising instead.

Moonrise over an Ohio farm.
Moon rising over a Licking County, Ohio Farm

The trick with a moon in a composition is to get into a position with a zoom lens where a good amount of zoom is required. This enlarges the moon in the photo. I’m actually quite a distance from this farm.

I hope I captured the quiet tranquility of the scene as it was. I used a Canon 55-250mm STM lens that has proven to be a great lens to carry on the motorcycle. It’s a little large, but small enough to mount on a Canon T5i Rebel and have great zoom capabilities in a camera small enough for motorcycle.


Spring Calves Grazing

Calves grazing in the Spring
Calves grazing in the Spring.

It was getting read to rain on a late Spring evening. I came across these calves grazing as I was riding down an old gravel road. This was in the northwest part of Licking County, Ohio.

They get so curious. I suppose any approaching human at all means a high possibility of food to them, so it doesn’t take much to spark interest.

Light Underground

Light in an underground parking garage.
Light in an underground parking garage.

The patterns of light coming through the opening in an underground parking garage stunned me with the pattern. It’s like finding an unexpected treasure when you find interesting light in unexpected and mundane places.

I’ve learned that black and white is a great way to represent these types of photos where patterns and textures are an important part of the composition. It brings them out. The problem is that I cannot get black and white printed.  At least, I cannot get black and white printed easily and affordably. If I can’t do that, it doesn’t fit in well with my enjoyment of photography.

I am using this one to try out some other techniques that include color, but to a lesser degree.

Mark Spearman's Journal Of Photography, Motorcycles, And Other Cool Things