Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Artistic Photo - 6/4/14 "Tropical Mix - Brazil"

NF Photography prompt: Abstract Photo

Photo Heart Connection
challenges us to choose a photo that was taken or worked on during the previous month (May) ---the one to which we have the strongest connection to our heart and soul. I served in the Peace Corps in Brazil right after college. There is something about Brazil that keeps me emotionally connected to the country. The Brazilian people were warm and welcoming to me then. I don't think a day has gone by in the 45 years since I returned home that I haven't thought about Brazil and the tiny, underdeveloped town where I served, and especially the wonderful people there. In 2011, I returned for the first time ---was greeted at the airport by about 25 of my friends and former students and treated like royalty for a week. When I started to work on this piece in May, I combined photos from one of my favorite places in Brazil ---Rio's botanical garden ---and a photo of one of my favorite tropical plants. I added lace because many women made handmade lace in the northeastern Brazilian town where I had lived and worked.  This is my first entry to Photo Heart Connection.

At Journal52, Chelle posts weekly themes for art journal entries. I just found out about it, so I am jumping in with this (already created) image because it fits themes for 2 weeks: Week 22 - Travel, and Week 23 - Passion. Four of my passions are photography, art, travel and Brazil.
"Tropical Mix - Brazil"
I used three photos to create this image.  I added lace because when I lived in Brazil (1967-69)
many older women in the small interior town where I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer

spent their days tatting.  I bought several yards of their handmade lace.
I still have a few scraps that I use occasionally in my art work. 

The Jardim Botânico of Rio de Janeiro has about 6,500 species of Brazilian and foreign flora on display over approximately 130 acres with additional land forming a park that totals 370 acres. Among its plants are 900 varieties of palm trees. It includes a research center and library housing over 32,000 volumes. It was founded in 1808 by King John VI of Portugal and was originally intended to grow spices that had to be imported from the West Indies. The garden was opened to the public in 1822 and is now open during daylight every day except Christmas and New Year's Day.

Botanical Garden, Rio de Janeiro, August 2011,
assorted palms near a lake.
Botanical Garden,
Rio de Janeiro, August 2011

I have no idea what this plant is.
Red Bromeliads and other plants
Phipps Conservatory, Pittsburgh
August 2012
I had taken several photos of Bromeliads in Brazil in 2011 and at the local conservatory in 2012, but didn't know much about them. Later I learned that they range in color from cream to yellow, orange, green and red. They aren't really flowers, but are colored leaves. They grow in tropical climates in cone shapes, some resembling the leaves of a pineapple to which they are related. Water collects in the cones to keep the plants hydrated through dry seasons. They perform a community service, too. Insects, birds, monkeys, and other forest animals use them as watering holes.

Although I didn't use this
photo for my abstract, it shows
the cone shape that can
collect water between leaves.

Bird Park near Iguaçu Falls
Brazil, August 2011


Viv@within the Frame said...

Love your photos and your story is fascinating ....

Sarah Huizenga said...

Welcome to Photo Heart Connection. I know you will love the community here. What an awesome place to revisit and be welcomed back so warmly.

Lmkazmierczak said...

Lovely results...enjoyed your blog.

Madeleine Begun Kane said...

What beautiful photos!

And thanks so much for your fun contribution to this week's Limerick-Off. I hope you'll be a frequent participant. (I post a new Limerick-Off every Sunday, and it runs all week.)

Thanks again!

seabluelee said...

Wow, way to jump in! Your image is beautiful and the story behind it is fascinating. It's a wonderful Photo-Heart Connection. I hope you'll continue to link up in the future!

Andrea Priebe said...

I love the Bromeliads and these pictures are wonderful. I love how you merged them with the lace. A pure delight, CJ ... I think it is awesome that you spent time in the Peace Core ... that was started way back when I was young and it is still going strong. A wonderful opportunity to learn and to give to others.You are to be commended for your big heart and your talents.

Andrea @ From The Sol

Prairie Jill said...

Oh, what a beautiful abstract piece! And a lovely Photo-Heart Connection.

NatureFootstep said...

a very beautiful world you are sharing. Both as the real thing and as abstracts. Love it all. I have visited South America, but sadly, not Brazil.

MaggieGem said...

Great photos! Such a wonderful connection to make.

via PHC