A short family vacation to Florida was a nice respite from all the cold and snow here in Southern New Jersey. It was hard to leave the warm 81 degree weather and come back to more winter. Since the purpose of the trip was to be with family I didn’t do much photography and with new carry on limitations and fees I brought just my camera and ‘walk around’ lens. We went to a couple of outdoor eateries that were along a lake, under large grandfather oak trees draped in spanish moss. Of course the trees are quite different from what I am used to so I couldn’t resist studying them and taking a few shots.

Retired in Florida

‘Retired in Florida’ © Denise Bush

Spanish Moss Study

‘Spanish Moss Study’ © Denise Bush

A couple of weeks ago I went on a photo shoot to Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia, along with some friends. I have lost count of how many times I have been there. This February day it was very cold and we weren’t planning on staying long so I went my own way and got right to work. With each visit it gets a little more difficult to find something I haven’t photographed before, but I enjoy the challenge. I bypassed the popular barber’s chair and Capone’s cell, scanning the cell blocks, looking for something other than the typical images of cells and halls. Displayed are a few favorites from the morning. An old boot I had seen and photographed before turned out better with a second try. I liked that it added a human element and completed the found still life. I noticed a mysterious, mossy wall with a blocked doorway that spoke to me and framed an unconventional composition, juxtaposing the radiator with the doorway. Windows showed their character with exposed stone and plaster and an entrance to the hospital ward cast some interesting shadows. Finally sun streaming in some doorways reminded me of the very different world outside these walls, both then and now.

I enjoy going back to locations I find interesting because it gives me a chance to study a place more completely, fine-tune compositions and discover new ones. Returning to Eastern State Penitentiary on several occasions over the years has been both visually rewarding and a lot of fun!

Still Life With Boot

‘Still Life With Boot’ © Denise Bush

'Tomb Of The Unknown'  © Denise Bush

‘Tomb Of The Unknown’ © Denise Bush

LookingOut, Looking In

‘Looking Out, Looking In’ © Denise Bush

Hospital Ward Entrance

‘Hospital Ward Entrance’ © Denise Bush

No Escape From Winter

‘No Escape From Winter’ © Denise Bush

Prison Light & Shadow

‘Prison Light & Shadow’ © Denise Bush

I am a bit late posting my 2014 website photo gallery … a yearly tradition since 2003. This 12th year of digital photography took me on some fun photo adventures with the highlight being a trip to Iceland. It was something my friends and I had anticipated for almost two years and it did not disappoint! Locations near and not so far make up the rest of the gallery and I hope you will enjoy taking a look. Now I can check ‘2014 gallery’ off my to-do list and as mother would say, ‘better late than never!’ (Click the picture to see the gallery.)

Going through my 2014 images folder, I’ve been tossing shots I know I’d never use to make more room on my hard drive. It’s a good thing … I’ve discovered a few I will have to go back and work on. I came across a couple of intimate landscapes from May and they lifted my spirits. If you are feeling the dull-drums of winter maybe they will help you to remember spring is right around the corner too!

'Boggy Reflections'  © Denise Bush

‘Boggy Reflections’ © Denise Bush

'Lilies & Cedar Trees'  © Denise Bush

‘Lilies & Cedar Trees’ © Denise Bush


Peaceful Pines


When it started snowing one morning a few weeks ago I headed out with my camera … to remedy my cabin fever if nothing else! I wasn’t sure exactly where I was going and traveled quite a few miles looking for something to call out to me. I checked out several of my usual spots for something special happening in the gray and snowy, winter lighting. Finally I found myself at a spot where some white pine trees grow. The trees, planted neat and orderly are something one doesn’t see often in the Pinelands where I live and being a bit of a ‘neat freak’ they spoke to me. Not wanting the fun to end I went to a second location not too far from the first and photographed there as well. Providing some shelter from the snow and wind, it was very quiet and being among the pine trees gave me a feeling of peace. I have often said that I find my spiritual inspiration in nature and this was an experience that certainly supported my belief. These studies, about pattern, texture and repetition are just the beginning. I hope to return in different light conditions to explore more photographic possibilities among these peaceful pines.

'Snow Falling On Pines'  © Denise Bush

‘Snow Falling On Pines’ © Denise Bush

'Peaceful Pines'  © Denise Bush

‘Peaceful Pines’ © Denise Bush

'All In A Row'  © Denise Bush

‘All In A Row’ © Denise Bush

'Forest Pattern'  © Denise Bush

‘Forest Pattern’ © Denise Bush

'Winter's Trail'  © Denise Bush

‘Winter’s Trail’ © Denise Bush


The title sounds like the beginning of one of Aesop’s Fables but what I’m blogging about is a day trip to Island Beach State Park, New Jersey. A friend and I had a fun day photographing the foxes and searching for the elusive snowy owls who winter on this natural, barrier island. I am really not much of a wildlife photographer and my full-frame camera and 400mm lens are often not enough in terms of magnification … but I do have fun trying and watching animal behavior. I will admit, photographing the foxes was like taking candy from a baby! They stood out in the road greeting us while begging for food … an unnatural behavior brought on by those who don’t know they shouldn’t feed wild animals. We hiked the beach relentlessly, getting in quite a bit of exercise while searching for a snowy, without success. Then, just when we were about to give up we got word that two had been seen 30 minutes before, just down the beach. We hurried to the spot and there they were, on either side of our trail! They were quite far away but their bright white color made them stand out against the cloudy sky. Slowly and quietly we approached a small group already photographing the closest owl and began clicking our shutters. When some people scared it away we followed it to the next parking area. This time my friend and I were able to get closer and each time the owl turned its head I inched nearer. Unfortunately this owl must have been very tired as it didn’t open it’s eyes once, even though it appeared to be keeping a watch on us and the area. It really was a thrill being able to see them in the wild, even if I didn’t get the capture I would have liked.

'Who Are You?'  © Denise Bush

‘Who Are You?’ © Denise Bush

'Got Any Food?'  © Denise Bush

‘Got Any Food?’ © Denise Bush

'Dozing Off'  © Denise Bush

‘Dozing Off’ © Denise Bush

'Defending Territory'  © Denise Bush

‘Defending Territory’ © Denise Bush

'Snowy On A Dune'  © Denise Bush

‘Snowy On A Dune’ © Denise Bush

'Sleepy Snowy'  © Denise Bush

‘Sleepy Snowy’ © Denise Bush

'Still Sleeping'  © Denise Bush

‘Still Sleeping’ © Denise Bush


Happy Holidays!

© Denise Bush

© Denise Bush



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