minding the clouds in my front yard

Saturday, September 14:  I got a new iPhone at the end of July, finally joining (most of) the rest of the world in having a smart phone.  The main reason I wanted a smart phone was to be able to take decent pictures when I don’t happen to be lugging my Olympus PEN EPL-1 along.  In late August, I joined Instagram because I like the idea of taking random pictures using the phone and posting them immediately.  I also really like Instagram’s Weekend Hastag Projects, which seem more creative and challenging than most of the other photo challenges I see out there, including the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge.  I really do enjoy the Photography 101 blog posts that WordPress has initiated of late, and I love the photo challenges related to those photography lessons.  However, I admit I am getting a little tired of entering photo challenges by just looking in my archives and finding photos that match the challenge.  It seems to me that a photo challenge should be about taking pictures AFTER the challenge is entered, within a certain time frame, say a week.   Many people, often including myself, post pictures the minute the challenge is posted, meaning they’re not actually going out and taking pictures in direct response to the challenge.

a vase of wispy flowers
a vase of wispy weeds

My goal is to do the opposite whenever I can, because I want to be challenged to actually take new pictures meeting the challenge. I want to learn to think outside the box, something I’ve never been good at, and try to see things in the world that I might not otherwise notice. I may not always succeed, but at least I’m going to try.

wispy flowers and clouds
wispy weeds and clouds

This weekend’s project is to get people interacting with clouds.


Instagram’s Hashtag Project’s challenge for the weekend of September 14-15 was to take creative and playful photos and videos of people or objects interacting with clouds. Some tips to get you started: Take time to notice the shapes of clouds and what you think of when you see them, then use that inspiration as a starting point for the shot you put together. Second, be patient and pay attention to perspective. It’s important to line your shot up well so others can understand what you’ve created. Finally, have fun! Don’t be afraid to let your imagination run wild. PROJECT RULES: Please only add the #WHPmindtheclouds hashtag to photos and videos taken over this weekend and only submit your own photographs and videos to the project. Any image or video taken then tagged over the weekend is eligible to be featured right here on Monday morning.

where does one end and the other begin?
where does one end and the other begin?

These are the results from the weekend on Instagram: #WHPmindtheclouds

butterfly on rudbeckia with wisps of clouds
butterfly on Rudbeckia with wisps of clouds

All of these photos are taken with my iPhone in my front yard on Saturday.  On Sunday, we head to Sky Meadows in Delaplane, Virginia, where I continue the project.

10 thoughts on “minding the clouds in my front yard

  1. I like photos 2 and 3 where the silky fluffy seed heads really do imitate the fluffy white clouds. I know what you mean about the photo challenges – most of my entries are from dipping in the digital shoebox, however I do sometimes respond by going out to capture something new if I know I can find something which meets the challenge. It is always good to try thinking outside the box – even if I hate the expression ‘outside the box’ 😉
    I won’t be joining you in this challenge though, as I AM one of the few people in the world who doesn’t have a smart phone!
    Jude xx

    1. Thanks Jude for your comments about my seed head & cloud photos. I often drop into my archives as well, but I guess it gets a little boring for me because I’ve already shown most of my photos throughout all my blogs. It’s just like rehashing the same thing. I can’t always find new shots to meet the challenge, so lately I’ve been skipping them a lot. I also find many of the challenges a little repetitive (how many times have I done “through” or “height” or something similar?) I love looking at Steve McCurry’s groupings of photos for inspiration on thematic photo posts, but sadly I don’t have any photos as captivating as his are! I would love to try a Steve McCurryish photo grouping using my own photos, but I think I would be so disappointed after seeing his!

  2. Lovely fluffy shots. 🙂
    I’m probably the last person on the planet who doesn’t have a smartphone. Interesting challenge. I’ve always thought the purpose of the challenges (including WP) was to go out and take a new photo…? That’s one of the reasons I don’t always participate in them. I can’t always find the time.

  3. Yep, another vote for no. 3. Great job there, Cathy 🙂 I do try to use a current photo for the challenges but that’s partly because I don’t have a user-friendly filing system, just folders in date order. I’d need a spectacular memory otherwise. Sometimes shots stay in my mind, but finding them!!! But, like Jude, no smartphone. You must be a trend setter, Cathy 🙂

    1. Haha, Jo, if I were a trendsetter I would be a lot more diligent about blogging. As it is now, I’m always under pressure at work, and bringing work home with me has really put a damper on both my photography and my blogging. I wish I could get out every day for a walk and photo shoot. 🙂

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