street photography

Durrow Scarecrow Festival: part I

scarecrow festival

Beautiful village of Durrow, Co Laois are hosting their annual Scarecrow Festival this week. It officially opened last Sunday afternoon, but a fantastic job of preparation and scarecrow making started long before the day. Colorful and happy looking scarecrows sitting on the perches, trees or simply on the ground follow you on your way through the village and promise a good time and lots of fun.

scarecrow festival

Oh, even the President and the First Lady are… wait… never mind…

The Scarecrow glorified by L. Frank Baum is one of the most loved characters in children’s literature. He is gentle and kind, honest and wise. Seeking to get a set of brains he still appreciates the straw he is stuffed with, and his logic is unbeatable:

Scarecrow: I haven’t got a brain… only straw. 
Dorothy: How can you talk if you haven’t got a brain? 
Scarecrow: I don’t know… But some people without brains do an awful lot of talking… don’t they? 
Dorothy: Yes, I guess you’re right.

I will try to not do an awful lot of talking. The pictures will talk by themselves.

scarecrow festival

scarecrow festival

scarecrow festival

Scarecrow: Witch? Hmph, I’m not afraid of a witch. I’m not afraid of anything – except a lighted match.
Dorothy: I don’t blame you for that.

scarecrow festival

scarecrow festival

scarecrow festival

Who is the famous Scarecrow’s of Oz predecessor? It must be a Feathertop, the main character of the short story of the same name by Nathaniel Hawthorne,  first published in 1852. It is an almost Kafka-esque, thought-provoking story.

“Poor Feathertop,” Mother Rigby said, looking at the heap on the floor. “He was too good to be a scarecrow. And he was too good to be a man. But he will be happier, standing near the corn all summer and protecting it from the birds. So I will make him a scarecrow again.”

scarecrow festival

There is a long forgotten, but nevertheless brilliant movie Scarecrow (1983) directed by Jerry Schatzberg. It is a drama starring Gene Hackman and Al Pacino.  I was sure there is a comedy related to scarecrows, and  I did find a 1920 short comedy The Scarecrow. You can watch it here on Youtube it is just a few minutes of laugh 🙂

When did scarecrows become the horror icons? Some say that it all started with the 1981 horror mystery thriller Dark Night of the Scarecrow, directed by Frank De Felitta. I haven’t seen the movie, and to be honest, I haven’t seen ANY scarecrow horror movie. I would be terrified, I hate creepy things like murderous clowns and scarecrows. I’d better stay with this cute Snow White 🙂

scarecrow festival

There is so much to see in Durrow this week. Humans are watching the scarecrows ( you never know…) and…

scarecrow festival

..Scarecrows are watching humans…

scarecrow festival

There is even a local war going on!

Cowardly Lion: Come on, get up and fight, ya shivering junkyard! Put your hands up, ya lopsided bag o’ hay!
Scarecrow: Now that’s getting personal, Lion!

scarecrow festival

Children are actually very quiet here. I cannot blame them: the real and the surreal are tangled and unclear 🙂

scarecrow festival

Watching the performance I thought  I would take a picture of these fire red hair owners.

scarecrow festival

Suddenly all three of them turned back 🙂

scarecrow festival

That’s all for today. More pictures coming Friday.

I want to share a short fun video courtesy of Hattie Wilcox (the video is on this page of her website). It is filmed in Ireland, it is about the scarecrows, so it is quite relevant.

Hattie Wilcox is a terrifically talented composer, singer, poet, songwriter, photographer, and most humble and hard working  person. Please check out her website and blog.

Photography tip of the day: Use the White balance feature of your camera. Take pictures with different settings and chose the result you are happy with.

inese_mj_photographyHave a great week!

Clancy Brothers music festival in Carrick on Suir

clancy festival

What a great time to visit Ireland! This weekend Carrick on Suir, Tipperary, hosts the 7th annual Clancy Brothers Music and Arts Festival! The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem were an influential Irish folk group in the 60s; they are loved and honored in their hometown and recognized by folk song lovers throughout the world. There are a few pictures of the shop windows decorated for the occasion. clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

A harvest time for street photography, but for me as a jet lag casualty it is impossible to see everything.  I just walked Main Street to listen to the street performing, or busking, competitions, and went to the Ormond castle for a Family Day fun. I find it very fascinating to watch the street performers. Closeness to the art happening in front of your eyes gives you a false feeling of belonging, but when you look in their inspired face you realise how far away they are now, unreachable, deep in their work, focused and beautiful.

257clan

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

Ormond Castle welcomes families to enjoy the medieval experience.

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

Some people enjoy it even more than the others 🙂

clancy festival

The Falconry exhibition was grand  but this 7-weeks old  baby owl girl stole the show.  It is exactly what we call a cuteness overflow. I wish you could hear the gentle sounds she made and see her cuddling in my lap.

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

There are so much more music and creative arts events, I wish I could be everywhere… Song writing workshop and competition, concerts of local and visiting performers and choirs, pub live music sessions all over the town, a river walk, children drama workshop and theatrical performances, visual art exhibitions…

clancy festival

clancy festival

clancy festival

Now you can go to the first picture and tell me what is your idea about the Guinness pints on the table. As you see some of them are full, some not 🙂

I didn’t make it to the River festival, so I just share with you my favorite song.

inesemj_photographyHave a great day!

St Patrick’s Day Parade, Carrick on Suir 2014

I want to share a few photos taken during the St Patrick’s Day Parade in Carrick on Suir. I love street photography.

Happy St Patrick’s Day to all!

patrick_day

patrick-day1

patrick day2

Tip of the day: Use your widest lens for the street photography.  To take these photos i used shutter speed about 1/800-1/1200 for the moving people, and 1/125 for standing. Remember to ask permission if you want to take close up pictures of children.

inesemj_photographyHave a great day!