WPC- Focus

I’m getting a late start, but wanted to get into the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge (Focus). I usually try to take photos with very clear focus.

But sometimes I want to try for a different effect. I like to play with reflections, light trails, water, sun, atmosphere. All those things can make for more interesting photos than a clearly focused one can sometimes.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Order

I was at work last week (finally!) and while taking a break I was watching the fish swimming around the ship. It was a beautiful calm clear day, one of the few like that I saw in the month I was offshore. It was entrancing watching the fish swim around.

They mostly moved together, it looked like some sort of order. Was there a boss fish leading them all around? If there was, I sure couldn’t tell which one it was. They all just seemed to be meandering around, then all of a sudden they would change direction. All together. Weird. Spontaneous order.

I know some people don’t believe in such a thing (especially when it comes to human society). I see it all the time.

There have actually been studies done on how fish school together like that. On birds too. 

The science behind it is pretty interesting, but I think just watching is cool. Too bad we seem to have lost the ability to just sit and observe nature. That’s one of the things I love the most about working at sea. I haven’t even been home a week and I’m already missing it.

Check out more on “order” from the Daily Post here.

My Wish

Sharing wishes with strangers makes a powerful emotional statement.

I agree. So for my contribution to the Daily Post’s photo challenge and discussion of the week, here is my photo and wish…

So many people argue that freedom is unworkable, impossible- but I think it’s really the thing that works best. It has been proven to be the best system for increasing the quality of life for the most people in every society that has tried it- (USA before we gave it away, Hong Kong, Singapore are just a couple of recent examples).

Like John Lennon sang, Imagine!

Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need
PS- I took that gorgeous photo on a recent trip to Zanzibar, the scuba diving was fantastic!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Relax

Here’s my choice for the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Relax.

I took it my last night on Zanzibar, before I began the hectic process of returning to America and back to ‘real life’. Stress of airports and TSA BS pretty much negated the beautiful peaceful month I spent traveling overseas.

Dance: Bali

Here’s another post for the Daily Post’s Weekly Photography Challenge (Dance).

I took this photo a couple of years ago in Ubud. I was on vacation in Bali (Indonesia) and spent a couple of weeks checking out the beautiful island. The people are so friendly and the island itself is gorgeous. It’s small, so easy to get around. There are volcanoes to hike, whitewater rivers to raft, perfect waves for surfing, great wrecks for SCUBA diving, and the art scene is fantastic!

I was told that it’s part of their religion there on Bali to make something more beautiful every day. I saw that they really took that to heart. Their temples are amazing, and the people practice music and dance to perform in the temple ceremonies. They have entire villages where the people just make one type of art: stone cutters, woodcarvers, painters, silversmiths, batik, etc. You could spend months there finding something new every day. 🙂

Dance- New Orleans

Here’s a photo I took in New Orleans. I think it’s a good one for this challenge (Dance) from the Daily Post. I loved watching this couple dance and listen to the band play in the street. New Orleans is really great for this kind of thing. 🙂

The couple was really dancing up a storm (swing, jitterbug, etc.), the musicians were all tapping their toes and swaying to the music and everyone was having a great time.


Here’s a photo for the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Dance. 

I took this photo one Friday night at the Fiesta Mexicana in Old Puerto Vallarta.

I was down there for a month getting certified to teach English as a foreign language (TEFL). Every Friday night there were dance shows downtown by the beach. I never got there early enough to get a good seat, it was always packed at least a half hour before the show started. It was a real challenge to get any decent pictures.

This is one of my favorites. The show started with Spanish dances. 🙂

Gathering: Bikes and Blues 2

This week the Daily Post is doing a challenge on ‘gathering’. They seem to be looking for something more along the lines of a holiday gathering of family and friends. The typical Christmas kind of thing. I don’t really get into that kind of thing much.

Here’s a gathering of a gathering of bikers last year at the Summertime Bikes and Blues festival they have in Freeport every year. I have a lot more fun at these kinds of ‘gatherings’ then I do at Christmas!

I like to go to this event when when I can. It’s local, it’s not too crowded, it’s cheap. I love the music, the foods good, there are lots of cool bikes to check out and I always have a good time. 🙂

Gathering: The Daily Post 2

I haven’t been up to doing many of these challenges lately, but this week the Daily Post is doing a challenge on ‘gathering’. They seem to be looking for something more along the lines of a holiday gathering of family and friends. The typical Christmas kind of thing. Maybe I’ll find something like that later.

For now, I’m thinking more along the lines of gathering in the catch. Like this photo from the tuna boat. I took it a couple of years ago, when I was sailing as captain on the Pacific Breeze, hunting around the South Pacific.

I actually miss that job. 😦

Please check out my new blog: www.captainjillsjourneys.com


My response to the Daily Posts weekly photography challenge.

I took these at the Houston Museum of Natural Science a couple of weeks ago. A butterfly was just coming out of its cocoon. They have a beautiful butterfly center there. I thought it would fit this weeks theme of ‘transition’. 🙂


PS. Until I can figure out why this blog didn’t carry over to my new blog like it was SUPPOSED to, I’ll try to post here too (but it’s hard a lot of times even to post on the one site, so if you can- if you like this blog- please go to my new blog, it’s at http://www.captainjillsjourneys.com). THANKS!


Weekly Photo Challenge: My Home- Afloat

Here’s my entry for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat. I have LOTs of good pictures for this one. I’ve spent most of my life at sea. I’ve already posted a few photos, here are some of my latest ‘home’ afloat.

These photos are from my latest ship, the Ocean Rig Apollo. I’m actually aboard right now. We’re delivering the ship from the shipyard in Korea to it’s first job offshore Congo. I joined the ship with the rest of the crew onboard right now in Mauritius about 3 weeks ago.

These are some pictures from our voyage. The first one is our departure from Port Louis, Mauritius, the ‘cliffs’ are the coastline of South Africa, after we passed Cape Town (I was asleep for that so missed getting any pictures from there).

Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat

Here’s my entry for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat. I have LOTs of good pictures for this one. Here are some pictures of the kinds of ships I see daily while I’m at work.

Yeah, they’re all afloat, tho I sure don’t know how a couple of them manage it. 😉



Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat

Here’s my entry for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat. I have LOTs of good pictures for this one. Here are a few sea creatures to start off with. 😉



Shadowed: Bird Market

Here’s my entry for the Weekly Photo Challenge: Shadowed. These pictures show the shadowy stalls and the people who work (and live) in the “Bird Market” in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. It was such a fascinating place. There were all kinds of things for sale there. Birds, bats, reptiles, rodents, etc. And pretty much anything else you could imagine. These pictures don’t really do it justice (but I only had a crappy little point and shoot with me).


Here’s my entry for the Weekly Photo Challenge: Shadowed. These pictures show the shadows in different ways: shadows on the ground, a person in the shadows, a shadowy place (graveyard). I took these pictures in the famous Recoleta cemetery in Buenos Aires. I really loved it there. I’d go back any day!

I mean Buenos Aires, not specifically the graveyard. 😉

Colorful Creatures: Yellow

Here’s my entry for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Yellow. I had some decent photos of the brightly colored fish that they keep at the Houston Zoo. I love to watch the fish swim around and interact with each other.

I really love to watch the jellyfish, but they’re not yellow.

I go SCUBA diving every chance I get (which isn’t near often enough). I can see lots of fish like these when I go. I still can’t name a dozen of them, but there is so much life around a healthy coral reef it’s unbelievable.


Yellow: Submarine

Here’s another entry for the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge:Yellow. This one is more about things I see at work.

I took the first photo at the Maritime Museum in Aberdeen when I was there in July for the freefall lifeboat course (click the link for more on that). The museum is really great and well worth a visit. They had some great exhibits on the offshore oilfields, the fishing fleet and the square-rigged sailing ships they used to build so many of nearby.

Here’s picture of a ‘NEWT suit’ they use for deep water diving.

I took the next one at the Workboat Show last time I was home. They have it every year in New Orleans and I try to go if I’m not working. The show is a great place to meet old friends and make new ones. The big companies always sponsor happy hours to meet and greet, they’re a lot of fun and probably where most of the real business takes place.

mini ROV by SeaRay

mini ROV by SeaRay

I got to play with the little ROV (remotely operated vehicle) this time. Usually there are so many people trying it out I never get the chance. I worked for Oceaneering for years where we used their big ROVs to do all sorts of interesting projects. Similar to the one in the background of the top photo.

The ROVs were used when the work was too deep or otherwise not available for the divers (even with the NEWT suits).

I think if I ever lose my mariners license, I’d like to try ROV. It was a real challenge to get the buoyancy right, but I think I was starting to get the hang of it. 🙂

Yellow: Birds and Blooms

Here’s my entry for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Yellow. I really liked playing with the big, bright, sometimes blaring yellow flowers and the birds with just that subtle touch of bright yellow to set off the rest of their plumage.

2 bugs in a blossom

2 bugs in a blossom

What do you think? Do you like the big, bright blooms better? Or the birds in the background? 🙂

WPC: Twinkle

Here are a couple of shots of the twinkling stars and the last eclipse of the moon for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Twinkle.

I love trying to take pictures at night. So far, I have not been very lucky with getting my photos of the night sky to come out very well. I just got a telescope to play with. Hopefully that will help. 🙂



I just got back from a trip to New Orleans. I was there for the WorkBoat Show. I always try to spend some extra time there if I can. It’s such a great city to just hang out in. There’s so much to see and do and it’s such a creative place.

I saw lots of really beautiful Christmas decorations. Here are a couple of the Christmas trees for the Daily Posts Weekly Photo Challenge: Twinkle.