Photo Journal: Random Impressions of the Last Week

It Summer Holiday so that means less time behind the computer and more time spent with the family. Some random impressions of the last week below.

Evening Walk

Earlier this week we had an incredibly warm day. Later i the evening, to cool off a bit I went for a walk with my oldest son to see this amazing sunset right around the corner.


If there are a few things that are dominating in terms what the back yard is all about it is probably the butterflies, the veggie patch and playing children. In a recent post I detailed the cycle of the Monarch Butterfly. And after these beautiful animals took off we already have a number of new caterpillars running and eating their favorite Swan plant.

Besides that we are very pleased with the promise of home grown vegetables such as the spinach, tomatoes, cauliflower, carrots and silver beet.

Are you getting hungry yet?

Hagley Park

Hagley Park is again quite stunning this year and it is so amazing to see how it is different every year. Here some impressions of this every beautiful park and one of my favorite places to go to for a quick walk. There is always the beautiful scenery and at thew same time the beautiful detail if you keep your eyes open: flowers, insects, birds.

Time for a rest near one the amazing ponds in the park.  Who would not be amazed, inspired by scenes like below.

Barnett Park Walk Way

In the absence of our youngest, we took the other two out for a highly recommendable walk up the Barnett Park Walkway: a two hours walk (with kids) up to a large cave, near Sumner, Christchurch with beautiful views over Christchurch  and a nice walking challenge for the boys.

Yes you guessed it right, the black spot in the rocks up there is the destination. The great part was that the track is cyclic so you walk back down a different route.

Again it was a great mix of stunning scenery and beautiful detail making oit clear how much the two are related. From the cave there was a spectacular view back to Christchurch.

Inside the cave it was the breathtaking scenes provides by the differently colored rock formations that took all of my attention.

Any abstract painter would be pleased with an outcome like that.


Finally we ended up for a quiet afternoon at Rapaki, a little settlement in one of the bays near Lyttleton. A lovely alternative when you want to go to the beach but have the luxury to hang out in the shade of the trees when the sun gets to warm. A walk around and a little chat with the fishermen or in my case the fisher ladies, having their minds set on catching some fish for diner.

Keep an eye on my flickr stream as I will be uploading more there.

Photo Journal: Spring Is Here Again (as far as I am concerned)

Spring might start next month officially, but as far as I am concerned it has arrived.  The weather was nice today and we went for a walk in Hagley Park.The change of season brings its own beautiful mix of colors and scenes and Hagley Park is certainly a place to enjoy that.

For the first time since last autumn we had our lunches outside in the park.
But more importantly: during our walk in the park we had the pleasure to see the first daffodils, crocuses and snow clocks for this year. SPRING HAS ARRIVED as far as I am concerned.

And there were other messengers.

What a fantastic walk it was and again and again I am amazed at how beautiful Hagley Park is. Whatever season.

Go for a walk and see for yourself how beautiful it is there.


Photo Journal: Winter Magic in Hagley Park

What a glorious day today I felt an urge to make pictures but also to clear my head and just be quiet. I ended up in Hagley Park and even if I would have had an urge to talk, sing, pray out loud, I was so blown away by the scenery that I would not have been able to speak a word anyway; it felt at times like I was walking through a fairytale. So, I’ll keep it short and just let the pictures do the talking.

It was an amazing play of mist, light, sunbeams and with that shadows, lines and sun rays and other magic.

What’s left to say but ‘what an amazing collaboration between Creator and the created.’  All I could do is stand back in  awe. I suggest you go and check it out yourself.

Photo Journal: Evening Picnic in Sumner

I for one am always in for eating in the open air. With winter coming up we best try to enjoy as much of the sunshine as we can. So earlier this week we took the boys out for diner at the beach. The day started relatively cold. A snail agreed on the nippiness and as soon as we opened the window in the morning he quickly came in trying to find some warmth.

Later that day it became time for diner at the beach. School uniforms off and beach clothes on, off for an evening picnic. Nice and simple: some bread, cheese, and other stuff to put on the bread and some juice.

The boys loved it, for one because the are very energetic and sitting at the table is not one of their greatest virtues. In between bites they now enjoyed the sand, water and all that came in with the tide, no matter how BIG

or small.

Me and my wife just enjoyed each other, the boys, the sound of the sea  and the beautiful evening skies which at times looked like a painting.


Greetings from New Zealand

Greetings from New Zealand by JohnDierckx
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A beautiful view on the way back from Hanmer Springs.

I remember well how I was looking back from the car, simply had to get out and there I was on the highway shooting this amazing view.

CURBSIDE BEAUTY a new series started

No no no, this is not a series about prostitutes ( although you never know what the future might bring, the step from flowers to the proverbial butterflies of the night may well end up falling exactly within the scope of this series).

When started using a camera more and more and it developed into a hobby, it struck my how it brought about such a different perspective on everyday things and the world around me. I started seeing things  I would normally not have noticed or would not have left a lasting impression. I remember well how, just before I was about to head back for the Netherlands, we came back from Hamner. I was quiet and sort of mentally preparing to leave all this beautiful scenery behind and than I looked back one more time, to see this:

I asked my wife to stop the car immediately and so we did I walked back as quickly as I could to get this moment captured. And there on the edge of a cliff, dangerously close to the road and passing traffic it was as if God him- or herself was trying to tell me something; this light coming through the clouds ( symbolic in various senses), the heavens opening up to poor some divine light over the scene I was capturing. This has been an image I could not get rid of all, the time I was in the Netherlands. Long story short, in three weeks I was back to stay and to this day I think that the image above had something to do with it.

This new series: Curbside Beauty is all about little things that sort of make an otherwise ordinary thing like a curbside into something special. So far it seems that flowers especially seem to have this ability and power to transform their environment.  Humans are considered special because of their ability to adapt to all these different circumstances but most of all because they can change their natural environment to their requirements. While that is true, we humans do not always seem to manage to do this in the most aesthetic way. That it seems is where flowers come in, nature’s way of restoring the aesthetics where we humans failed to preserve it.

Just what to think of this little blue flower, alone at the edge of a parking lot. It’s easy to park your car over but really it was amazing how it transformed an otherwise dull strip of grass at the end of the parking lot.

There is already something about blue flowers but this certainly was one small, actually tiny  flower with a lot to offer taking into consideration its environment.

Or what to think of this mini-violet, making a strip of concrete slabs to serve as a driveway all of a sudden look so much better.

Here we are, a line of concrete slabs, dull, grey and with dirt, sand and earth in between them where they have started to shift over time.

And here is this little violet that seems to think:

It’s easy in a nice well kept garden, but this grey area needs a little color, and since nothing else seems to be doing it, I will have to do it by myself.

Well I think this little violet did a great job if you are willing to see it.

And then there was the yellow high dandy lion or something like it. Here was a patch of grass, kept short and meant for nothing more that to separate footpath from road. A place you use to park your garbage containers

On it’s fifty centimeter high thin stalk this otherwise simple dandy lion dominated and transformed the impression of this strip of grass along the road completely all by itself. Who would dare to put his garbage container on top of that and not feel guilty. A beautiful pest.

But I was most impressed by this bunch of incredible gerberas transforming a similar patch of grass. In fact they attracted so much attention that it could have ended in accidents I have seen people that literally hit the breaks to check out this incredible and isolated bunch of attention seekers.

I got so caught up lying in the gutter for a different perspective that a car almost ran over me: dangerously beautiful.

There are more images in this new series that can be found here >>>, or you could of course have a browse around in my complete photostream on Flickr here >>> where there are over 600 more photos. All favorites for some reason or another. And if you see something you like do leave me a comment.

Martin Luther,  the initiator of the Protestant Reformation once wrote:

God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees and in the flowers and clouds and starts

Looking at these curbside beauties does this make sense all of a sudden?  Bringing beauty and joy to otherwise overlooked, at times desolated and neglected places. Who does that remind you of?