Sunday Stills: Fall Color Challenge–Acres of #Ochre

Banner yellow ochre color challenge

I’m introducing some color into the Sunday Stills photo challenge! Once a month, I will feature a seasonal color, which I hope will spark loads of creativity on your part as a photographer or writer.

Photo by Adonyi Gu00e1bor on Pexels.com

October’s color is ochre, a brownish yellow, as shown above, but can range from yellow to deep orange. Perfect for showcasing your Fall colors!

I dug into my archives to find images of the range of colors seen in ochre.

Seeing the Fall display of leaves is what I miss by not being on the university campus these days. By late October the ginkgo trees have shown their glorious yellow leaves. Once the leaves fall, the groundskeepers arrange them into circles and other shapes.

ginkgo leaf display

This next image isn’t very exciting but it shows yellow ochre in the form of saffron fields grown in the Central Valley of California.

saffron field of ochre
Saffron Fields

I managed to find an image of a yellow Anna’s hummingbird, perfect for Lisa’s Bird Weekly Challenge, starting with letter A. I have to admit, I’m not sure hummers have yellow feathers; it may have been a trick of the light. I did not change the color, but it sure works!

yellow Anna hummingbird

These dried marigolds could have been the star of last week’s “dry” theme. They show a nice range of the ochre color.

dry ochre marigolds

On my last visit to the Big Island of Hawaii, I captured this gorgeous peachy-orange hibiscus on my walk with Graham at Hilo’s Hawai’i Tropical Bioreserve & Garden. Both floral images are submitted for Cee’s Flower of the Day challenge.

Orange hibiscus
Orange hibiscus

What do I miss now? Having my fall decorations on my fireplace mantel. They are packed away!

hello fall

The rusted yellow sun is still hanging from my backyard shed. Why haven’t I packed it yet?

Metal Aztec sun showing a little rust

Last winter, I held some of the orange sand from Nevada’s Valley of Fire in my hand. I was surrounded by this rich ochre color.

Valley of Fire's Sand
Reddish-orange glow of sand

In November, the show begins in my front yard with the reds and oranges of my Japanese maple juxtaposed onto my mulberry tree’s yellow leaves.

Autumn Peak

These leaves and the ginkgoes’ are submitted for Dawn’s Festival of Leaves challenge!

I hope you enjoyed the color challenge today and that I sparked your imagination! I attempted to show each image from ochre’s lightest hue to its darkest. I’m looking forward to your version of ochre!

Autumn SIGNature

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Sunday Stills: #Yellow Leaves of Autumn

sunshine yellow leaf
sunshine yellow leaf

This Veteran’s Day weekend finds me relaxing at home amidst the changing Autumn landscape here in Sacramento.

As a city with a large urban forest and a “City of Trees” distinction, Sacramento’s Autumn show does not disappoint once the leaves begin to color. Between Vet’s Day and Thanksgiving (barring any crazy wind or storms) the fall colors reach their peak at this time. Fall here in 2019 got a slow start due to almost record-breaking heat, compounded by dry northerly winds that sparked several California wildfires.

As one drives along the various roads and freeways around town, the changing Autumn canopy is a riot of yellows, reds, oranges, browns, and greens.

Autumn splendor on campus
Campus view on my drive home

Not only does the Sacramento area boast a dense tree canopy that exceeds or rivals other cities like Boston, Paris, and Amsterdam, the Sacramento State University campus is a microcosm of native California trees and a lot more.

Every year, the ginkgo trees show their fluttery, fan-shaped leaves in a riot of yellow. You can see the color change below from this week’s post on Instagram. Last year during Thanksgiving week, the yellow was at its peak and I got a kick out of watching folks armed with cameras and cellphones stopping for photo ops!

I captured this 3-D effect of fallen ginkgo leaves last year floating in a rain puddle.

Fallen Leaves float in puddle amid the reflection of the tree from which they fell
Ginkgo leaves float in a recent puddle

Last week we visited Apple Hill where I captured the beautiful yellows of grape leaves in the Fenton-Herriot Winery’s vineyards. Those evergreens in the background are all over Sacramento and make a wonderful backdrop to the spectacular Fall colors.

grape leaves

What does Autumn look like where you live? Or if you are located in the southern hemisphere where spring is in full swing, do you have some favorite yellow flowers or leaves to share this week?

I’m linking this post with Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Yellow and for Dawn’s Festival of Leaves! Please share your yellow leaves and other flora to help celebrate nature!

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Sunday Stills: Signs of #Autumn

signs of fall leaves

Autumn Has Arrived, like a postcard

Saturday was the official start of Autumn with the autumnal equinox. According to Internet sources,

…the Autumnal equinox occurs the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above Earth’s Equator – from north to south. This happens either on September 22, 23, or 24 every year.

When this happens, both the Northern and Southern hemispheres will experience an equal amount of daylight, hence the word “equinox,” Latin for Equal Night. For those south of the equator, it’s the beginning of spring.

For many, Autumn marks a kind of sadness as longer nights set in. For myself, I love this time of year. After so many hectic summers working as a full-time Aquatics Director, trying not to lose my mind after working 30 days straight, being on emergency stand-by or dealing with 150 lifeguards and their drama, fall was a welcome respite at work. It meant I could be in my office and get administrative work done as I looked forward to some vacation time for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Now that I teach in Fall and Spring semesters, my Autumns are ironically busy, but in a different way. I don’t have to deal with the threat of drownings or other emergencies (unless you call a student’s desperate plea for an extension on their term paper an emergency). Plus I am inspired every day that I am on campus watching the leaves change from shades of green to a brilliant variety of colors.

This is one of my glorious views when the ginkgo trees hit their peak!

Campus Ginkos create both a canopy and a carpet of yellow

On a bike ride last weekend, on one side of the American River Bike Trail, were bushes of yellow cone flowers or Black-eyed Susans, which to me just scream “summer is still alive and well!”

Black-Eyed Susan on the trail
But just down the trail were some deciduous trees providing the preview of Fall shown in this image. The signs of Autumn SLOWwwwly morph our warm September days into those longed-for crisp Fall days.

signs of fall leaves

The traditional Autumn colors normally peak here in mid-November, around Veterans Day. Whenever we travel to San Diego for Christmas holidays, Autumn still shows her lovely self in many of the Liquid Amber trees that are still draped in Fall splendor.

California is slow to get into Autumn but we get a long dose of it over several months, depending where you live.

Which just makes it that more special to me as I fill up my Dropbox with yet another set of images of Autumn. For now I will continue to love Indian Summer and embrace the sunny yellows.

For those in the Southern hemisphere, tell me what you like about your autumn!

Festival of Leaves is back!

If your inner geek still needs more of a scientific explanation of the autumnal equinox, check out this article 8 Things to Know About Autumn.

Show us your favorite photos, poems, music, or stories of Autumn from your perspective for Sunday Stills! Link up or pingback your post to this post!

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