Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Bull's Content


My husband and I like to take rides around the Maine countryside whenever possible, even if only for half an hour. With all this work going on, we need an occasional break!

There's so much to see in Maine: of Americana, rural life, and local color. Each home, farm or village seems to call out it's own unique history. The slick and staccato nervous pulse of the city is replaced by nature. And the story of each piece of property, reflecting the lives of its past and present owners, is often hinted at, if not readily apparent. I'm fascinated not only by the lay of the lush green land, but by the trappings of life, both humble and high-reaching but always human, that are visible from the road.

Above you see a shed that caught my interest, it's somewhat dilapidated form seeming to declare that it has been abandoned. "Stop the car," I said when I first spotted it and rolled down the window. To accomodate my photographic whim, my husband applied the brakes.

I was shooting the aged wood and rusty old tools and enjoying the angles of this country shed when my husband said, "Holy cow, there's an animal in there!"

At that very moment a gigantic bull emerged into the light to see what the commotion was, and stared at us somewhat dispassionately in the glaring afternoon light. No cow was he, but a very large animal, to say the least.



Here he is, pulled into view by my telephoto lens. Lucky me: I didn't have to move any closer! Even a young bull (witness the small, emerging horns) who seems complacent and may even have been castrated, was no draw for this cautious, city slicker. I kept my distance!



Yet he looked so sweet, all whiskers and soft, curious eyes, with strands of his (late) lunch protruding from the side of his mouth. No question about it, though, he was quite a large animal, young or not. It would be best to move off, let him have his peace and finish his lunch.

I hope he's comfortable inside his little house in the sunshine of the Maine countryside.

I love the landscape of the Northeast United States, particularly Maine. What places have you visited that take you out of your everyday frame of mind, or even take your breath away?

In the coming weeks I'll share more images from scenic Maine, with you. I apologize for being late in visiting your blogs, but I will get there as much as weeks of painting doors and a thousand moldings, will permit. I'm glad I wrote this post ahead of time, as I would not have been able to write it this week...


All text and photos c Lynda Lehmann. If you would like to see more of my art, photos, digital art and paintings, please visit www.lyndalehmann.com.

36 comments:

  1. Lol, that is toooo cool Lynda, right place at the right time, wow.

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  2. are you kidding!!!!??? tod saw that and said 'oh my god the devil!' ...blank stare...cold dead...wow i would have fainted. you are braver than both of us put together.

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  3. Lynda...wonderful pictures. As you know, I love old barns and buildings. I have traveled a lot in my life ans spent time in New York City but have never made it any further north and east. I really want to go into New England sometime...I am sure I won't be disappointed with the opportunity for beautiful pictures.

    Dan

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  4. I'm happy you shared these wonderful pics with us Lynda. They're very sharp and show a story of one bull's home. Hope all is well. Have a nice night.

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  5. lol Lynda
    great to hear that you are having some light relief from your building tasks.... what a stunning photo of the shed and the detail that you have captured with the bull is spectacular..I love it!!!

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  6. Lynda what a nice idea, and wow bull just like that, I hope he is not abandon. You know the place I live so much changed, the small town turning into a very populated town. All the farm lands were converted to subdivisions. So sad, because the character of our little town is just diminishing. I love old barns too. That was once excellent post Lynda.

    Anna :)

    PS I changed from IE to Google Chrome and sometime Firefox, and I don't have any more issues, even some of the blogs are now loading faster.

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  7. Lynda,
    I wanted to get back to you on your comment and question you posed on my blog this morning. I really like the larger format as well.

    I wasn't sure if you used Blogger for your blog. However, if you do...your photos are uploaded to Picassa. Go to your picassa page and find the photo that y ou have uploaded. Click on it...the choose "link to this photo". Choose the largest format and copy the script then on your blogger upload page, paste the script into the url ...right side. This should do it. Your work woudl really look nice in this format. Also if you do, choose the Stretch Template" in blogger. When you change the template, all of your info transfers flawlessly...at least mine did.

    Another thing I wanted to mention to you. Some of your work is similar subject matter to mine...and I know you like to experiment with new techniques. If you haven't yet...you just have to try HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography. It allows for some unbelievable results! Basically you take at least 3 exposures of the same image...under - normal and over exposure. Then through special software you merge the three together. This eliminates dark shadow areas and blown highlights. The Storm cloud and house pictures on my blog are HDR photos. As a matter of fact about the last 8 or nine photos have been HDR...I am now addicted to this style! If you want more info on the technique...let me know and I can give you some references.

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  8. the bull is wonderful! Now I just wantto visit Maine, I've never been there yet

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  9. Lynda, that picture is lovely, charming!! I too, love old barns and such.

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  10. OH God, I would have jumped so far back I'd have landed in Boston. What a great photo. Can a bull be cute? b/c this one sure as hell is

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  11. Kia ora Lynda,
    What a very journey and discovery! It reminds me a lot of Wisconsin, where I grew up and think of often. Yes, best to keep your distance from any bull, young or old, but a great moment to share. I have always dreamed of having a little study of my own, my own room, and it would be paneled with wood off an old structure like that. There is something very comforting in that somehow for me. Cheers!
    Aroha,
    Robb

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  12. Lynda, what a sweet face. This creature had no evil plans - I probably would have approached even closer to stroke his nose (I did in the past because across my gandma's home was a farm house - often with calfs and young bulls also) - he was so curious and maybe a bit bored, happy to find some distraction.

    Great post again!
    Hugs, Petra

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  13. BOB - HE was in the right place, lol, as long as he didn't charge that meager wood wall that stood between us!

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  14. self taught artist - You don't know how much of a coward I really am! (I guess I do have those occasional moments when I'm either very brave or very foolish!)

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  15. DAN - You would love it here. Because the infrastructure, both rural and urban, is a lot older than in many areas, it's chock full of local color. A feast for the eye. I can't stop shooting when I'm out and about, esp. if I've been penned up doing construction work all week!

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  16. DAN - You would love it here. Because the infrastructure, both rural and urban, is a lot older than in many areas, it's chock full of local color. A feast for the eye. I can't stop shooting when I'm out and about, esp. if I've been penned up doing construction work all week!

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  17. MICHELLE - He looked cozy enough in his little home, that's for sure. Not cozy enough for me to move any closer, though!

    Thanks for your visit!

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  18. KIM - I'm dragging my husband away from here again today, as the weather is gorgeous and we are both googly-eyed from his wiring and my painting, for days on end.

    Can't wait until this job is done, when our life will be at least a bit more relaxed. :)

    Kim, I saw on tv something about the killer jellyfish in AU. Do you have to avoid swimming at most of the beaches? Is there a local folklore about it?

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  19. KIM - I'm dragging my husband away from here again today, as the weather is gorgeous and we are both googly-eyed from his wiring and my painting, for days on end.

    Can't wait until this job is done, when our life will be at least a bit more relaxed. :)

    Kim, I saw on tv something about the killer jellyfish in AU. Do you have to avoid swimming at most of the beaches? Is there a local folklore about it?

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  20. ANNA - I'm glad you're having better results with the other browsers. I have had trouble with IE here and there, but Firefox has remained pretty stable for me.

    I know what you mean about your little town. All over the world, old villages and towns are being gobbled up by urban sprawl, and we lose so much charm, color and history by the march of "progress." That's why I love Maine: it's a feast of color, texture, stunning natural settings, and antiquity.

    Kisses to Matthew!

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  21. DAN - Thanks for being so thoughtful and leaving me this information. I think Anna blogged about this awhile back. I DO want to switch to the stretch layout and then be able to post larger images, and will try it as soon as i have a quiet moment, away from saws and hammers.

    As for the HDR, I read an article about it and it sounds tantalizing, albeit time-consuming. I will try it one day, along with photo-micrography and all the digital art I can't get enough of, but haven't learned enough about.

    I love ALL your posts and photos, and the way you seem to experience and appreciate the visual world. :)

    Thanks again, Dan!

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  22. LazyKing - You should visit Maine. There's an endless number of natural and man-made spaces to explore! I'm sure you would enjoy it.

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  23. The Unbreakable Child - So far, I haven't met too many people who don't fancy these old rural settings. I think the draw may be mostly our nostalgia for a time when life seemed more simple and gentle (even if it was also marked by adversity.)

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  24. bernthis - BOSTON?!!! You must be one heck of an athlete!

    As for me, I only flinched and held my breath, lol...

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  25. ROBB - I think spaces that have an aura of antiquity take us out of the context of present (therefore, limited) time-space and make us feel more connected to the great stream of human history.

    In the way that a stately forest does, yet different. I feel a combination of comfort, longing, and nostalgia. And wonder, too, of course.

    I bet Wisconsin is beautiful. I've never been there.

    Aroha to you, Robb. :)

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  26. PETRA - Great to see you, my dear. So you are at least partially a "country girl!"

    I am too, grew up in rural Pennsylvania with farmlands and furred hills around my house. We had a giant cornfield just behind our house, at one point, where I used to lose my kite among the tall fronds.

    Thanks for visiting. I'll let you know if I run into any more bulls. I agree, this one looked friendly, if not complacent. Not that he couldn't react to something and get aroused. Animals can be unpredictable!

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  27. Charming and delightful, Lynda. Both the old barn and its occupant!

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  28. I love this!! The photos, the bull, the whole thing. I grew up in Maine and just seeing these photos brought back so many memories. I could smell it, feel it, hear it. Oh to have a good camera and drive around Maine would be a THRILL!!! So many dilapidated buildings and weird funny hand-painted signs (mostly misspelled), all kinds of rusted junk. It's a treasure trove of wealth for the camera.

    I also had to laugh that you are innocently moving toward the barn and there is a bull. You really are so funny at times, even when you don't know you are funny. That's what makes you so endearing.

    Hugs and love to you dear Lynda.
    Robin

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  29. CONDA - It WAS great fun to meet him at his front door, that horned but affable bovine!

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  30. ROBIN - My husband says I've become quite funny over the years, but i think he's humoring me. It's his "nice" way of saying "gosh, you're an old, eccentric character!"

    I had no idea you grew up in Maine! It's my favorite place. I feel so at peace with myself and the world, when I'm here. And I love the rust and the rustic, as you do.

    Saw a great, black wild turkey today--he ran across the road in front of our car. Then a mile later, a deer sprinted in front of us. These are my favorite days, when I see a lot of wildlife.

    The green powder of pollen on the lake in the morning was magical, gleaming like pixie dust....

    Geez, Robin, now I know where your affinity for nature was born and nurtured, and why I feel such a kinship with you!

    Perhaps one year we will meet and share our spheres...

    xxx

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  31. Love this post. I must get to the north east someday.

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  32. Wow...I would not expect to find anything living in that tumble down barn. Amazing. Thanks for sharing these and this story.

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  33. what wonderful photos! The bull does look quite sweet and happy!

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  34. Lynda:

    Wow, how lucky you were to happen upon that photogenic old shed. Photographers live to find something like that. But the bull was an absolute bonus! Great pictures.

    Happy trails.

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  35. This story reminds me of the kids that stay with their parents well into their 30's and beyond. Wise young bull, this one! Now, where are the parents?

    Take Care,
    Peter

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  36. The derelict nature of the structure coupled with the almost sad look on the cow's face makes for a moving image.

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