Sunday, November 20, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge, Day 20, Bokeh

Just in case you are reading my blog but aren't really a photographer, or, like me, you love photography and are trying to learn more, you might not know what bokeh is.  It is the way the lens renders out-of-focus points of light.  I think it's a cool photographic effect, though not always that easy to achieve.  It is a Japanese word.

My picture today is of some lantana flowers growing in our yard.  You can see the bokeh in the background.  Growing up at boarding school in Miango, the hill behind the boys' dorm, known as Mt. Sanderson, was covered with lantana.  I think we considered them a weed as they grew wild and profusely.  At certain times of year, they have little green seeds, that later turn black or bluish.  We would take the little seeds, put them in empty bic pens, and blow the seeds at each other.  They delivered quite a sting upon impact.  When the bushes flowered, the hill would be covered with yellow and pink flowers.  The odor of lantana is unmistakable.

Now in the US, people plant lantana as a decorative plant.  The first time I saw it in the US, John and I were on our honeymoon in Washington DC.  We were walking down the sidewalk when we both stopped, looked at each other, and said, "It smells like Miango!"  There in planters along the sidewalk we were surprised to discover lantana!  A weed being grown in Washington, DC!  And in our yard, apparently, where we enjoy it's beauty.  Let's just hope it doesn't decide to take over.

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