Wild Focus

Sometimes I take great photographs.  It is important to know what we do well  and acknowledge it and I am good at composition. But sometimes all the images I take are rubbish.pig and chickens

So, yesterday as I puttered about in the melting snow and ice,  filling all the water troughs  with the hoses and feeding my animals and birds, enjoying the rising temperatures,  I took rubbish photos. It was warmer but darker yesterday.  The kunekune took themselves for long, long walks. Tima was almost all the way down to the letter box. I had to fill my pockets with apples and go and retrieve her – she was getting too close to the road. Not that there is traffic but you know what I mean.

Tane got so much mud on his face that when he came home and lay down in the barn for a rest after his big walk the straw stuck to his face.  He is growing tusks, they seem to be growing at right angles out the side of this mouth.  Though they are feathery looking they are sharp and he does not like me to examine them. D you think his jaw aches like a teething baby?  I must check Manu and see if he has baby tusks.

Did you ever see that movie Delicatessen?.  I can barely remember it. What I remember the most is the darkness. The lack of light.  Yesterday was like that. Except for the eating of the people bit. At least I think that was what that movie was about I need to watch it again. Maybe I am mixing it up with Eat the Rich  – though that was nothing like Delicatessen. Different countries.

I think I drunk too much in the 90’s – all those movies have fallen into the blender with the potato peelings vodka.

Speaking of dark foreign movies, last night I watched “Ida”. It is a Polish movie.  Made in 2004 I think. Black and White. Beautiful. Startling in its simplicity.


I love winter for a number of reasons – one reason is the time I have to myself. Once the chores are done and all the dishes are washed and stacked I can retreat into the world of books and movies. The animals retreat into sleep when it is cold. I retreat into words and images.

I hope you have a lovely day. Tomorrow might be sunny and I will get better images for you.

Much love




52 Comments on “Wild Focus

  1. Sorry but I have to strongly disagree with you (don’t do that often). It is impossible for you to take ‘rubbish’ photos!! They are ALL great shots of whatever you point your camera at!

    • Yes, mostly your photos are really beautiful and sometimes quite extraordinary, but NEVER rubbish. They all tell a story, your story, and I always — always — spend time over them noticing little things.

  2. Weather man is saying 50* for us by Saturday ! Hopefully we see the sun too. Love all of your pictures.

  3. Delicatessen is definitely about eating people, but so is Eat the Rich. If you can get hold of it there’s an amazing weird Serbian film called Underground (by Emir Kusturica), which won the Palme d’Or at Cannes in 1995. The reason I mention it is because I was thinking of all three of those films on Saturday. No cannibals in Underground though 🙂

      • Underground is completely mad, but very enjoyable none the less. Black Cat White Cat by Kusturica is also very good.

  4. Wow you just blew my mind! I have been thinking about that movie lately. No one that I know has a clue what I am talking about when I tell them about it. Are you talking about the one where Ida was a young polish girl who was becoming a nun? If it is the one you are talking about I loved that movie.

    • Yes. That is the one. Isn’t it extraordinary. The angles he uses. The framing. I was entranced. And such space. I thought it was brilliant. So glad you saw it too. Haunting. Don’t you think? c

      • Where are you all finding these seemingly very interesting movies??? Netflicks??? XO

      • Yes, and when Ida found out her history and her aunt’s story ( and her torment/grief) and when they found out what actually happened to the family and the baby and how Ida was dropped off with the nuns. I felt like I was reading a book and the movie was my imagination. It was so good but sad.

  5. Funny, I like black and white photo’s (mostly) but avoid black and white films! Will you have to have Tane’s tusks removed or will you have the vet file them down a couple of times each year? Laura

  6. Celi, your photos are all interesting and give us the real feel of being there with you. I felt the dampness in Tane’s face with the straw stuck to it, it is only in weather like this we get that chance. The expectant mothers are blooming over at The Cadillac Chew Choo! Enjoy your peace and quiet times.

  7. I must say that I love all your photographs. All great movies, I would recommend any of them to anyone that has not seen them yet.

  8. Your compositions are the important thing. The light levels merely reflect what is, it’s not bad photography. A grey day makes a darker picture. Will having tusks make Tane a bit more of a risk to be around? Not that I think he’s aggressive, but a bit of kunekune exuberance and head tossing could have dreadful consequences if they grow too large. It will make him a handsome devil, though, a real he-pig! Tima will be unable to resist him…

      • Manu will always be something of a risk, like Carlos IV. I think you are fully aware and respectful of that risk, though, if you don’t like to de-tusk.

        • So far so good.. they are well socialised and obedient so far, Manu has already been trained to step back when food is coming down (something Poppy refuses to learn and frequently upturns her bowl as it is being set before her.)

    • It was a parts car, the convertible is in the garage.. John refused to move it out so I turned it into a hay feeder!! The calves climb in and sleep in there sometimes too.. c

  9. Oh – question – will you remove Tane’s tusks? And if Manu has them, will you remove them? I know many people ‘dehorn’ their cattle – so I am curious about pigs and tusks…. (and go get poor Tane some scraps from the local pub with with extra beer…. that will help with his teething. 😉

      • I had to have Roosevelt’s (my pot belly) tusks cut when one of them developed a crack. The vet put him to sleep and used a wire saw. I spent several hours in a recliner in the back room of the vet’s clinic waiting for poor old Rosie to wake up. When we got home I had to help him up the steps into the house and there he sat, like a dog with his front legs splayed out and his head hanging. For all the world like he was in the throws of the worst hangover ever!

      • GOOD! I was just wondering. It seems quite barbaric. Just as removing the claws on a cat…. Just be careful with Manu when his grow out please….

  10. Don’t fret about the photos. A poet once told our class that when he publishes a book he’s lucky if there are three good poems in the lot. But they wouldn’t get there (from him as well as from the publisher) if he hadn’t tried the others.

    I do that same retreating you mentioned at the end. But it’s not from the day’s war, which can be productive too, hopefully without violence of spirit. It’s more like like a religious thing–at least very transforming,as you know. Happy better weather day.

  11. Rubbish photos – phooey. I don’t believe a word of it my sweet friend. I live through your eyes and your adventures. They are awesome and full of vision and beautiful things. XOXO – Bacon
    P.S. And yes tusks hurt. It gives us pain like tooth aches for humans. Well, that’s what I’ve been told by my vet. I never got any. I guess that’s a good thing huh?

  12. I agree …your photos are not rubbish! and for heavens sake- the pic of cows lunching out of a car trunk is hysterically funny!

  13. I love the shot of The Three Amigos. Ida was a stunning film, I remember one wild visual where she is standing by a curtain at a window and she twirls into the curtain like a helix of light.

  14. I’ve loved every photo I’ve seen here. They are real!! I love winter for the same reason, Time to read a book or watch a movie and even get a bit of my sewing projects done. Summer is filled with outside chores and by the time you are done, you just want to close your eyes and sleep. I love a long, cozy winter too.

  15. The movie Ida was great. I just watched another good polish movie but I can’t rember the title. It’s about a Polish prisoner saving young Jewish girl in a concentration camp and what happens later in the life .

  16. Digital is a blessing, isn’t it? I’m just learning to use my new DSLR, and believe me — the learning curve is much more tolerable when you can ditch the poor ones. I went out Saturday and took a cardful of photos — all at an ISO of 6400. I’d been messing with settings, and forgot to change them back. The good news is that I figured out what was wrong.

    Like you, I have a good eye for composition, but getting just the effect we want can take a bit more: sometimes knowledge, sometimes patience, sometimes luck. In the meantime, we enjoy what we have. I like your attitude: realistic and accepting.

    • Hi Libby! Here are some things I loved on netflix: Damages, Orange is the New Black, PARENTHOOD!!!, Bones and more which I can’t immediately recall just now. These mentioned are series. Enjoy! Gayle

  17. Today lovely photos as always, Celi! Love best the pic of the car feeder – that’s mine.
    Here the snow went away too. Suddenly. Today we had 11°C and the birds are lively announcing spring. Beautiful. I hope they will not get disappointed later, when winter comes back. We must not forget, it’s still January, not May… 😉
    Wishing you happy winter relax…..

  18. I think you’d have to work very hard to make a rubbish photo, much harder than to just take a good one. You’ve got the eye, the sense of what you want to capture and how. I like the well decorated Tane, it didn’t seem to bother him any. TIma has mischief in her eyes, watch that girl.

  19. If you do take rubbish composition pics I hadn’t noticed… still haven’t. And, if winter means time to retreat into the world of books and movies, well, I’m underwhelmed by our topsy-turvey summer weather anyway.

  20. I had to smile at your stuffing apples in your pockets to retrieve your wandering Tima.

  21. Some days I take rubbish photos too. This morning is a Delicatessen morning here–very heavy dark grey skies and flat light–unusual for us except for this summer! xx

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