Phoneography and Non-SLR Digital Devices Photo Challenge: Editing and Processing (The Light of Day)

29 December 2014


1. Morning Light,  Longwood Gardens; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

1. Morning Light, Longwood Gardens; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

2. Morning Light, Longwood Gardens; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

2. Morning Light, Longwood Gardens; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

Let me know which you prefer and why. Click to enlarge photograph.


Year-end conjures more and more introspection: analyzing where we have been, where we are and where we want to take our next steps. Mostly, we become voyeurs who watch the world as it turns on its own axis of humanity.

Henry David Thoreau said, ” It matters not where or how far you travel…but how much alive you are.” His words are an example of my current state of mind, which has been influenced by time’s hands: moving as they will from moment to moment, one year to the next.

The human animal keeps edging back and forth from light into dark, and then swerving into the light. So I dedicate this year’s last post to radiant, glowing beams that are brought by figurative and literal light, and cast brilliantly upon our inner and outer journeys.

Ode to the Light of Day: Light filters through the trees, spreading truth, ignoring lies. Hope leaps forward and surprises. Silence provides calm, listening to the earth’s vibrations, listening to a child’s growing bones. Listening. Responding. Respectful. Choice: clearly to abide by nature’s majesty, her grace, her persistence in the face of our onslaught. Hope leaps forward and surprises. Exhaling for the new and unexpected.

In the Lens section are two photographs. Each taken in Hipstamatic. The first is the moody, darker original that shows the burst of morning light. The second fills the image with omnipotent hope. They speak to the ambience of this year-end post. I wanted to use a duo from my 2014 photographic archive to take my blog into the unknown of 2015. They are my token of appreciation for what has transpired, and also are a pledge for what is yet to be inspired.

The silence of each photograph is made vocal by its storytelling. This quiet duet of light and dark has its own voice that carries a message of unbridled energy and radiance. They signify my trust in Mother Nature’s wisdom; she is my hope for day-after-day of light; she is my hope for the New Year.

Tip of the Day: Many of you are familiar with TED Talks, which is an online lecture series that introduces the power of ideas. The talks are short, almost snippets of the speaker’s subject. You may or may not agree with the concept, but each topic is thought-provoking. Recently, I watched Pico Iyer’s “The Art of Stillness” (view it here). Iyer’s is a well-known travel writer who explores unconventional aspects of local and global cultures. It seems appropriate to introduce you to his short video (15:37 minutes), because it relates to my commentary about the quiet appreciation of the light of day. Iyer “talks” about how moments of stillness can infuse rich rewards into our lives, even travel. He suggests that sometimes going Nowhere is most beneficial to become aware of everyday quiet journeys that take us nowhere and everywhere.

TED Talks

View other entries for this week’s challenge:


As always I welcome comments about this post or any part of my blog.

If you’d like to join the Photo Challenge, please click here for details. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming Photo Challenges:

1st Monday: Nature.

2nd Monday: Macro.

3rd Monday: Black and White.

4th Monday Challenger’s Choice (Pick One: Abstraction, Animals, Architecture, Food Photography, Night Photography, Objects, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).

5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.

This entry was posted in Black-and-White Photography, Nature Photography, Photography, Writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

64 Responses to Phoneography and Non-SLR Digital Devices Photo Challenge: Editing and Processing (The Light of Day)

  1. Lignum Draco says:

    I like #1 best. Hard to define, but the shadows define the light better.

  2. Light is so inspiring! and the introspection of the deep woods!! I like both but maybe the first a bit more!!

  3. I do like the darker photo best, the darkness with the flickers of light and hope, yet to come 🙂 happy new year 🙂

  4. ~meredith says:

    Hi, Sally; love your black and white photos. I liked the white best, and I just wanted to thank you for your inspiration. Happy New Year. Meredith

  5. Both of these are really nice, Sally. As different as night and day! (pardon the pun!) I believe I prefer the light one myself. It sort of brings me up and out of myself; love the brightness. I also really enjoyed that Ted Talk. I’ve been complaining for years how technology is wonderful but it’s also killing everyone. You’re expected to be tuned in and connected in some fashion nowadays at least 24/7. Even at work. We should all learn to disconnect and meditate on a daily basis! And have a happy New Year! 😀

  6. Aquileana says:

    Very neat!… Wishing you a wonderful 2015 ahead!. Aquileana 😀

  7. I like them both. Each one creates a different mood that stirs our imagination and feelings. Happy New Year and wishing you and your family a 2015 full of adventures and blessings.

  8. Hard to pick between the two photos, Sally. I think the second has a magical, slightly ethereal quality, so I will go with that one! Happy new year to you!

  9. Su Leslie says:

    Hi Sally. I love the second photo; it is so delicate and dream-like. I’ve so enjoyed these challenges this year and look forward to being part of this again in 2015. I hope you had a great Christmas and all the best for the new year. Here’s my contribution:

  10. elisa ruland says:

    I often save your blog for the end of my blog reading, so I have more time to immerse myself in your words. I enjoyed your post, and both photographs. I was immediately drawn to the first one, but did like the delicate light of the second. All the best for a wonderful New Year, Sally!!

  11. thirdeyemom says:

    I always love your posts Sally both photos and words. Wishing you all the best in 2015! And of course looking forward to each and every post! 😊

    • Nicole, I’m humbled. The feeling is mutual. I truly admire your dedication and persistence to make the world a better place through advocacy and education. Warm wishes for a relaxing turn into the New Year.

  12. LavendarLadi says:

    I like the mystery of the darker photo.

  13. nalinki says:

    Hi Sally, I prefer the second one – the light and contrast are amazing. That’s true painting with light. Happy New Year!

  14. Nato says:

    I think both have such wonder, yet different qualities. But, I think I would pick the first because it has more drama and flare. I really enjoyed your words. I am listening to the “talk” now. I love it! Appreciation is so important for people, and I think many miss it. I love going nowhere. It is my goal for 2015:)

  15. ima_soulman says:

    First day here and need time to digest what’s going on. Great site. I’m picking the darker of the two, drama, mystery and Edgar Allen Poeish. Cheers.

  16. Tina Schell says:

    What a unique post Sally – I do prefer the second shot but I especially liked your commentary and quotes this week. Nicely done and Happy New Year to you.

  17. I prefer the first photo – the blackness gives the photo ”weight”.

  18. Archita says:

    Such a great post, Sally. I saw both of your fantastic pictures, the darker one is more favorite to me, maybe because I found it more magical. Here’s my entry to your challenge:

    Loved the TED Talk. Sharing idea is the best. 🙂 I hope you’re enjoying the holidays.

  19. Great photo but I have to go with the first image. 😀

  20. Happy New Year Sally! I have clicked on both images and I think my fave is the light version, but both have endearing qualities. 🙂 Here is my entry

  21. MJF Images says:

    Very thoughtful post. Have a New Year filled with fun, happiness and meaning.

  22. Maria F. says:

    I like both Sally. I’m really liking high key effects lately, and yours is beautiful.

  23. Luanne says:

    I think I prefer the first. It’s more what woods are to me. The 2nd is pretty, but also very unrealistic haha.

  24. prior says:

    what a nice post to end the year with – love your play on light – in words and in photos!
    and the 2nd one is my fav – a “washed out refreshment” with a nice feel. 🙂

  25. DG MARYOGA says:

    Love the second one,Sally !!! It’s so bright and beautiful !
    Wishing you & yours a Glorious New Year filled with Happiness & Love ❤ ,Doda 🙂

  26. Thank you for sharing the TED Talk.

  27. Good morning from Philly, Sally, (at least for the next hour and a half.) What a great year it’s been for taking and sharing iPhotos. I was given a set of Olloclip lens for Christmas, so I’m excited to figure out how to use them and to get lots of great photos.

    I like both the photos and with the different light, they’re at opposite ends of the spectrum. But I lean towards the mysterious look of the first.

    Happy New Year (almost)!


    • Janet, you’ll love your Olloclip lens. Hope that you get to use them soon. I did want to ask you about the space on your blog. I also am nearing capacity. What do you plan to do? Have you investigated WP Premium? I need to decide what to do. Let me know your plans. I started a few months ago uploading medium-size photographs, which has definitely slowed the percentage of space used. Happy travels. Thanks for supporting the challenge; it’s a joy to know you.

      • Sally, I’m not sure what I’ll do. I’d love to have the Premium option, but don’t know that I want to pay $99 every year. I’m going to start going back and looking at old posts, possibly deleting some. I’m also think of going back to the old posts with lots of photos and replacing the big ones with medium-sized ones. I don’t really want to start a new blog, as that’s a pain for current followers and I’ve also made it to the first page of Google for “This, that, and the other thing” and hate to start that all over again. Bill says there’s a way to start another blog, upload that photos there (not in a post, but in the library) and then use them in the first blog, but I’m not quite sure how to do that yet. I’ll let you know if I try it. The problem is that I like the big photos. 🙂

      • Yes, it’s a lot to consider.

    • Lignum Draco says:

      To Sustainabilitea and Sally,

      Sorry to intrude but I was reading about both your problems with file size. In general, the quality of the image to the reader is dependent on the file size of the image and their viewing monitor, and also the theme you are using. Each theme is optimised to a certain pixel size and going over that limit causes your theme to compress the shot. For example Sally, the 1st photo in your post is small but clicking on the image shows a very large file.

      Consider limiting your photo size. My photos are limited to 1200 pixels long-side and show up exactly the same size in the blog. No wasted storage. I have almost 700 images in my media library and am using only 12% of my free storage.

      If you can, gradually replace the large files in your earlier posts with smaller files to free up your free storage.

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