Saturday, 8 June 2013

Apple Blossom, White bluebells & 1st trip to Romania

After the wedding and honeymoon there have been a few quiet days to unpack, ease back into life gently, ok not the last part! Chris was back to work straight away as was I preparing for my first trip to Romania to head up the research but more about that a little later. 

I had a couple of weeks at home to get some photography in and I made the most of the bumper crop of apple blossom this year. I don't think I have ever see it so vibrant and smelly so strongly in my life and there was a lot of it too! Not one to miss an opportunity off I went with camera and macro lens in hand ready to get creative and here are just a few of the images (there will be more uploaded to my website in the coming weeks):


I do hope that we get the right weather and a good crop of apple this year there is nothing quite like picking an apple straight from the tree and eating it there and then! But it was not just the apple blossom that caught my eye, we have some stunning white bluebells in the garden as well and these (had we had a spring like 2012 were going to be a additional to my wedding bouquet). Not to worry, I now had a great opportunity to spend several days photographing these beautiful flowers. I have been trying to let my creative juices flow more with my photography as this is what I really enjoy and on this occasion I don't think I took a standard image, so here are just a few of my white bluebells:


 And my personal favourite which I have called "wedding bells"

I had a lot of fun getting creative with these flowers and love the results, as always you can see all the technical details for these images on my website where you can also purchase them in various forms. Unfortunately for now although I am busy taking photographs (when it's not raining) I cannot share them directly with you, but I can share the link to my National Geographic Explorers Journal on which I am posting photos from the National Geographic funded research in Transylvania, Romania. We are a team of four conducting the research and you can meet three members of the team along with an introduction to the work we are doing and also the area in my first post. I will be posting fairly regularly and this is the only way to keep up to date and see some of the incredible images being produced, so here is the link:

I am currently in Romania and will be returning home on 19th June to continue with my work and also working on the identification work for the project. Hopefully I will have more images and news from my work soon. Until then, enjoy the sunshine I hear the UK is getting at the moment! 

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Wedding & Honeymoon

Wow, what a couple of months it has been! We had the most incredible and amazing wedding, all the time, effort and work that we put into making it personal was definitely worth it and it was so wonderful to be able to share our special day with so many friends and family. Here are just a couple of photos from our day courtesy of  Thomas and Paul from Willowstone Photography, a huge thank you for capturing our day perfectly. 


We had a week at home to sort out work stuff and pack for what would be an incredible 2 week adventure to Borneo for our honeymoon. It was a long flight and by the time arrived in Borneo we were exhausted, we were welcomed to our first stop the Rasa Ria Hotel right on the beach and decided to just chill out and book onto a trip to see the orang-utans for the following day so all that was left was to get some sleep! The next day after breakfast we headed off to see the orang-utans in the forest, we weren't to be disappointed! After chilling out the rest of the day, we watched the most incredible sunset then had a wonderful dinner in a gazebo on the beach! 

Borneo Sunset
Orang-utan in the forest

Atlas Moth

Next stop was the Borneo Rainforest lodge, deep in the heart of the rainforest, we arrived after a short flight and 2 1/2 hour drive but wow, what a place! Paradise in the forest, just perfect and we would spent a few nights here exploring the area with our personal guide and enjoying some wonderful food! There was so much we wanted to see, but top of the hit list was the Wallace's flying frog, we saw not one but two at their nest site, not to mention many many more frogs along the way! We also saw several wild orang-utans, some otters on the river and an Atlas moth! So here are just a couple of photos from our stay at the lodge:

Wallace's flying frog
Frog silhouette
Forest lizard

 After an incredible couple of days it was time to hit the road again and head for the Myne Resort on the banks of the Kinabatangan River where we hoped to see proboscis monkeys, pig-tailed macaques, long-tailed macaques, orang-utans and maybe even the Borneo pygmy elephants and a trip to the Gomantang caves to see the spectacle of millions of bats leaving the caves at dusk and we would spend the next few days exploring the area by boat with the odd trip into the forest. A lot happened in these few days, we saw so much, too much to go into here, but there were definitely some highlights so here goes!!! 

Baby pig tailed macaque
Praying mantis in the forest
Baby long-tailed macaque waking up in the jungle

 And now for the elephants, we found them and spent and amazing hour watching them eating and playing by the banks of the river and even swimming in the river!
baby elephant
A helping push in to the river

The Eye
Elephant greeting
Playing in the river

Alas, it was time to move on again and this time to Sepilok and surrounding area to see the orang-utans, proboscis monkeys and then on to Lankayan Island for a couple of days of paradise to finish our trip around Malaysian Borneo. First stop were the proboscis monkeys, these really are funny creatures with their big noses and crazy soft grunting sounds they make, not only did we encounter these but also some silver leaf monkeys and ...... a baby get ready for some cuteness! 

Female proboscis monkey
Male proboscis monkey
Proboscis monkey in the trees

Captivating eyes
Orang-utan silhouette
Baby silver leaf monkey

A couple of shots from the island paradise of Lankayan, the restaurant and us watching the sunset with a nice glass of wine to end what was an incredible and very special two weeks.

These are of course not all the photos, so if you would like to check out more of the images then head over to my website or Facebook page where you will find all kinds of different images! It really has been the most amazing and special couple of weeks and I am looking forward to many more adventures with the most incredible and loving man in the the world, a huge thank you to everyone who helped to make these few weeks possible. 

So, what next ............. 

Well, I head out to Romania to start the Nat Geo funded research for the Transylvanian Wildlife Project, not before I've had chance to capture some blossom and flowers before I go (that will be in the next post) and for Chris, well it is time to get the athletes ready for the Olympics! Stayed tuned for another update soon.