Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Animations That Are Over the Rainbow

Communication is an integral part of society. We talk, we chat; we advertise, we promote; we boast, we comfort. There are so many ways to reach out to people, so many stories to tell and things to say.

The internet has, of course, created a whole new way of getting your message out. Whether you have a website for your business, a blog through which you share relevant or personal information, or you simply enjoy sending emails to correspond with friends and acquaintances, you need no longer rely on pen and paper, print and broadcast media or even the telephone if, like me, you have an aversion.

One of the fun aspects of all of these is that we need not rely on words alone to  convey our thoughts and ideas. An elderly relative of mine used to decorate her letters to friends with drawings of flowers. They added a lovely old-world feminine touch, but it's not something most of us feel compelled to do.

These days, however, graphics can add a wonderful visual component to web design and emails. Two years ago, for example, fed up with the price of stamps for sending Christmas cards, I opted instead to do a mass emailing complete with an adorable animation. People loved it. Or at least they said they did.

Now with summer just short weeks away, finding great animations to adorn your online communication, your is a breeze. In keeping with my rainbow theme this week, I found a few cheery examples from the wonderful AnimationFactory

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

How to Photograph a Rainbow

The world in which we live is a veritable visual smorgasbord for photographers. From snow-capped mountains to tropical sunsets, the beauty is theirs to capture.

One could assume that such natural perfection ensures any attempt at photographing it will be equally as impressive. However, the trick in photography is to take what everyone sees and make it fresh.  It's not enough to take a picture. The challenge is to capture a mood or provide a different perspective. Seeing the cool waters of a still pond, sunlight sparkling in its gentle ripples, is satisfying. Conveying that mood in a photograph, however, is the challenge.

Such permanent fixtures in the landscape, however, mean that you can keep working at it. If the first shoot doesn't come out quite the way you hope you can always come back and try again. There are, however, images in nature that are more transient and seeing them, setting up and photographing them can require more speed and chance than other subjects.  The rainbow, for example, one of creation's most impressive spectacles, can be elusive, as quick to disappear as it appears. Actually getting a picture of one can be a feat in itself; taking it beyond the expected is nothing short of miraculous.

Such an opportunity presented itself to me at the end of a rainy afternoon one summer day a few years ago. The sun had broken through just a few hours before twilight and the rainbow that appeared in my backyard was as vivid as any I'd ever seen. By the time I had grabbed my camera, got it and myself ready,  it was already starting to fade. The end result was not what I had hoped.

In the hope of not missing an opportunity like that again, here are some excellent sites with helpful information:

Digital Photography School How to Photograph a Rainbow

Digital Photo Secrets How to Photograph a Rainbow

Dreamscapes Tips for Better Rainbow Photos

Camera Techniques for Photographing Rainbows

Finding and Photographing Rainbows

Monday, June 2, 2014

Beautiful Rainbow Photos

No one would argue that Mother Nature loves to put on a show. From the bursts of colour in the spring to the sparkling monochromatic landscape of winter; from a fierce display of lightning to the brilliance of the setting sun, she gives us spectacle after spectacle.

One of the most impressive, however, is also high in symbolism. The rainbow is not just one of creation's most glorious phenomenon, but recognized as a sign of hope, faith and inspiration.

Is there anyone who hasn't been awed by that radiant arc? Or by seeing the cascade of a  waterfall through soft translucent bands of colour, sunlight playing off the mist. Its sudden appearance at the end of a rain is breathtaking, the perfect cue that it's time to stop and reflect. Even if you're too busy to pause  for a second, there's no question you will take notice.

Driving through a nasty rainstorm on our return home from a holiday last year, my husband and I were surprised by the sight of not one, but two, rainbows, lying before us like two brilliant portals through which we were to pass. Certainly, this was one of the most spectacular I've ever seen.

No, there's little doubt that a rainbow is one of Mother Nature's most impressive performers. Here then is a photographic lineup of some of the stars. Rainbows

National Geographic Rainbows Beautiful Rainbows