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Calm Reflections Photography shares beautiful photographs that can be placed on mugs, mouse pads, canvas, puzzles, T-shirts, coasters and prints. Joanna Macaulay makes souvenirs of St. Mary’s County for tourists and local residents. Information about St. Mary’s County attractions, travel, events and photography can be found at her site. She now does pet photography as well.

To buy my photos, photo cards, and photo crafts of wildlife, pets, holidays and more, visit my Zazzle Photo store at

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Cormorants from St Michael’s Manor in St. Mary’s County.  They were very far away, and my focus was off a little, but I liked the reflection...

Thursday, May 24, 2012

The SMAWL Animal Fair in St. Mary's County

I attended the 8th annual  SMAWL Animal Fair on May 12th with my husband to see all the cute critters.  There were many visitors with every breed of dog imaginable. I saw a cocker spaniel that looked just like my 2nd dog (awww) a beautiful white samoyed, a beagle and russian wolfhounds just to mention a few.  Dog service groups abounded including Greyt Expectations Greyhounds, All Shepherd Rescue, Doberman Assistance, Northern Chesapeake Sheltie Rescue, SMAWL Cats, Golden Retriever Rescue, Snowflake Society (horses), the Tri County Animal Shelter, and even the Hedgehog Welfare Society.  Fair visitors could buy doggie clothes from Custom Dog Jackets, adopt a pet or buy candles.  Also in attendance were many of the local veterinarians like VCA St. Mary’s Animal Hospital, All Kinds Veterinary Hospital, and the Well Pet Clinic. Kennels galore were in evidence too like Chesapeake Pet Resort & Day Spa, Farmstead Kennels an Indian Bridge Kennels & Suites.
 We had a lovely conversation with a woman from Pets on Wheels.  They bring therapy pets to nursing homes, assisted living facilities and Veteran’s homes to help improve their health and cheer the local residents.  We watched Dakota’s Legacy Horse demo with several horses walking backwards and a young cart horse driver.  We chatted with the pet photographer, Gary Garcia from ImageZ Galore Photography, Inc., watched a dog fitted with doggles (dog goggles) and met a piglet.  Fun activities included a musical dog sit, an animal pet parade and woof it down pie contest and a silent auction. It was altogether a fun time for pets and their people.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Flowers from the local Garden Center in St. Mary's County

I enjoyed photographing more flowers at The Greenery in Hollywood MD and Meadow Farms in Leonardtown when I was looking for an anniversary gift for my husband.  They both have quite a variety of lovely flowers this time of year to enhance your garden.  There were many flowers to pick from both perennials and annuals.  I especially liked the white gardenias bushes (that smell heavenly) and the red zinnias at the Greenery.  I think the last flower may be a red dahlia, but I'm not sure.  If you know,  please comment.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Photographing Spring flowers

I've spent some time recently photographing spring flowers using a micro (macro) 60 mm Nikon lens and 2 small flashes on a ring around the lens (a special Nikon flash system).  The azaleas, dogwoods and tulips were in bloom.  A tip for photographing flowers is that uneven numbers of blooms look particularly nice.  I often like dark or blurred backgrounds and the flower's center and foreground should be in focus.  Azaleas were difficult because they tend to bloom in pairs not triplets.  Red flowers tend to get overexposed with a digital camera, so I underexpose them a little in RAW format and check them on my camera viewing screen often.  I particularly like backlit flowers and flower shots taken from unusual angles, like underneath.  To learn a little more about flower photography, check out this article by the New York Institute of Photography.