Photo Blogging Challenge – Blue (November 2017)

This month’s photo blogging challenge features blue – the most common colour in my world thanks to the broad prairie sky overhead, its reflection in rivers, ponds and lakes, and the extensive use of blue-tinted glass in Calgary’s newest office towers.

The one constraint I imposed was to take all photos in downtown Calgary, since last month’s PBC post featured photos from Canmore. Here are my urban variations on blue:

1. I’m Really Not a Gopher Project

A temporary public art installation, I’m Really Not a Gopher, was conceived as part of Calgary Parks’ 100th anniversary celebrations in 2010. By popular demand, it was brought back as part of the year-long #Canada150 celebrations, with two big changes: 1) the number of “gophers” increased from 100 to 150; and 2) all the colours of the Canada 150 logo were used to repaint the “gophers”. I especially like the glacier-blue one this time of year – it seems very wintry! Read more about the project here.


2. Quiet and Still

When I am unable to concentrate or am feeling agitated about something, I find getting outside for a while helps me quiet my nerves and still my thoughts – especially if the sky is blue. I’m curious to know – does the same thing work for you? During one such walk this month, I noticed that despite the wind howling through downtown streets, this windmill a couple of blocks north of downtown was sheltered enough that it was barely spinning. Before pressing the shutter button, I moved around until I found a composition where the position of the windmill blades reinforced the delineation between clouds and blue sky overhead.


3. Blue Sky and Sunshine

Just a couple of blocks away from the windmill, there’s a constructed wetland with interpretive signs. It finally reopened this summer, four years after the June 2013 flood did extensive damage. This area is pretty much the only place in Calgary to take photos that include a reflection of the downtown skyline. The long-exposure effect in the clouds is entirely due to high wind speed (shutter speed = 1/200).


4. Blue and Silver

I’ve always preferred blue and silver vs. blue and gold. What about you? Anyhow, that’s one reason this parkade sign caught my eye, the other being that I think of parking signs in Calgary as being red, so this one being different also caught my attention.


5. Waiting for the #BlueLine

I have a bit of a “Waiting for the #BlueLine” series going on IG, mostly phone pics of things that I notice while waiting for a train to transit between home and downtown. I almost always take the train during the day, so even though I was feeling tired after an extra long day (that ended with my first-ever paid photo shoot 🙂 ), I stopped long enough to take a capture a couple of night shots before boarding the train. The lights at this particular station change colour, so I waited for them to turn blue before pressing the shutter. It was also the first time I saw the band of blue light atop one of Calgary’s newest office towers.


Curious to know if other PBC participants got more creative with the theme of blue? Then check out the link up at the bottom of PJ’s post.


If you’re looking for a gentle nudge to improve your photography skills, consider joining PJ’s photo blogging challenge. The time frame makes it a low stress “photo assignment” that motivates me to keep working on my camera skills and creativity. New participants are welcome any time. The key requirement is five photos; the amount of accompanying text is up to you. The next theme will be posted at a ‘lil Hoohaa on December 1st. Check it out!

6 thoughts on “Photo Blogging Challenge – Blue (November 2017)

  1. These are all so beautiful… my favorite is the first… the story and the photo!

    Outside means EVERYTHING to me as far as calming my nerves and bringing me peace. The ocean IS my calm. I get so stir crazy in the winter… I’ll wrap up in bundles just to go out.

    EXCELLENT pictures!

    1. I don’t get to the ocean very often, but get that same sense of “I’m small compared to the universe, so my problems must be small, too” feeling in the wide open prairie. I also bundle up to get out even when it’s terribly cold. Lucky me – Mr. GeoK is even more determined to get outside everyday than I am, so I have in house encouragement!

  2. How cool is that ground squirrels project? Too bad I didn’t know about that, I would have loved to spot them when we were in Calgary!
    Congratulations on your paid photography job, well done! What was the shoot about?

    I am with you on the blue and silver, they totally go well together. As for gold it belongs to red and green.

    To really calm down I like to go to a body of water: lacking access to an ocean in Switzerland a lake has to do the trick, even a pond of a certain size. As a pisces I am a water sign, so that may be the reason.

    1. I like water, too. I sometimes think the sound of waves on the shore or the current in a small creek is the prettiest music ever!

      It’s impossible to keep up on the comings and goings of public art in Calgary these days. It seems there’s a mini scandal of some sort every couple of weeks. There’s a bit of a hiatus on new public art until city council comes up with some new procedures intended to stem the tide of bad press.

      As for the paid gig, it was an event for an organization I volunteer with a lot, so the pressure wasn’t unmanageable.

  3. What a great selection of blues! The blue gopher made me giggle. And I love the composition of the windmill against the sky and clouds. Lovely reflection of the city, and the neon blue of the blue line was an unexpected surprise. Hope you’re keeping warm and chasing away the blues as the weather turns chilly. xoxo

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