This past Sunday I took take part in a photographers day at the Center for the Birds of Prey in Awendaw.  The place was closed to the public allowing photographers to have some fun with the birds.  I have photographed birds of prey before but not in flight.  This was an amazing time and a learning experience for me.  My favorite bird was the Eurasian Eagle Owl, so this blog post is about him or was it her?  Not sure. They are so majestic and surprisingly quite vocal.  He/she was hungry and had the cutest call to tell the trainer to get busy and give him/her some food.  The last time I saw this bird was at an event on Daniel Island and the birds were very quiet, so this unique sound made me smile. It reminded me of my cats when they want to be feed.  They won’t shush up!

I want to thank the two volunteers who brought out the birds, gave us background on each, and made them fly. They worked tirelessly for four hours with us crazy photographers making sure that we got the pictures we wanted.  Not even lots of gnats,mosquitos, or no-see-ums could deter them from making sure that we were all happy.

Enjoy the pictures of this majestic creature!


Until next time.

Hugs,

Mary Wessner Photography loves to capture the beautiful  history of Charleston.  Yesterday I had some spare time and so with a good friend and fellow photographer, I  decided to take some new pictures of the city.  I hadn’t been to Magnolia Cemetary in a very long time, so that became our destination.  Magnolia Cemetery, built in 1850, is comprised of 92 acres on the banks of the Cooper River.  It was once a 19th century rice planation. Over 3,500 people are buried there, among them 2,200 Civil War  veterans (including the crews from the Confederate submarine, Hunley).  I loved photographing the old gates, tombstones, and buildings. While I was there two hours I only covered a small section of the cemetery.  I look forward to going back and seeing what else I can uncover.  Enjoy the history of Magnolia Cemetery!

Until next time!

Hugs,

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Several weeks ago I had the privilege of  photographing the Charleston Hat Ladies Eleven Year Anniversary Luncheon which was held at the Marriott on Lockwood Drive. As always these ladies were having a great time, enjoying each others company, catching up on the latest news and happenings. Whenever they saw the camera, they turned on their beautiful smiles for me to capture.  What more could I ask for- friendly women in beautiful hats with gorgeous smiles – a photographers dream.  Below is a small sampling of these lovely ladies!

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………Top Hat Lady Archie Burkel starts the festivities.

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.More beautiful hats for these ladies to  purchase!.

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Until next time….

Hugs,

I had so much fun photographing a two day Fourth of July event for the Daniel Island Property Owners Association.  It was hot, very hot yet I managed to remain cool as a cucumber (haha) and get some great photos.

There was a “mass” of people enjoying a warm but breezy evening at the Children’s Park on DI.  There were two great bands that performed patriotic as well as current music, face painting and jump castles for the kids, and good food and friends that created a perfect evening.  Here are just a few of the pictures from that night.

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The  fun continued  at 9:00 the next morning with breakfast served by Honeycomb Cafe at the same park.  After an hour filled with fun activities for the children including a musician and a juggler, the Fourth of July Parade to the Pierce Park Pool started.  When everyone arrived at the pool more fun games started including a mother/child balloon toss, a father /child piggy-back race in the pool, and a most unique boat race where the boats were constructed of cardboard.  Yes, cardboard!  Here are some more cool pictures.

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There are so many pictures of the event that I would love to share with you on the blog but.. I do have a space constraint.

So if you wish to see more, here is the link to where you can view them: http://marywessnerphotography.smugmug.com/Events/Daniel-Island-July-3rd-and-4th

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Have a great summer and stay cool  :)

Hugs,

On the twelfth day of christmas my true love gave to me, “Twelve Drummers drumming”.

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This picture of the twelve drummers was taken at Callaway Gardens during the fun Christmas trip with Mom and Steve.  I loved watching the joy and happiness on her face while we drove through the grounds VERY SLOWLY so she could take in all the lights.

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The Twelve days of Christmas is ALMOST over!  While I have completed my photo journal of the songs lyrics, it is only the 24th. Tomorrow is the BIG day ~ Christmas. Tune in for the grand finale of my Christmas project.

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I say this for the last time – as the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Ten Lords a Leaping, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eleven Pipers Piping, Ten Lords a Leaping, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Twelve Drummers Drumming, Eleven Pipers Piping, Ten Lords a Leaping, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the Eleventh day of christmas my true love gave to me, “Eleven Pipers Piping”.

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These golden pipers were taken at the Inn on Biltmore Estate.  In actuality, there is only one statue.  I took photographs of it from different angles and then photoshopped them together to create my “Eleven Pipers Piping”.  I looked long and hard to find other pipers for todays blog but..pipers are a rare bread of individual.  A marching band would have helped but, unfortunately, there were none available.

We are getting close to the end ~ only one more day left,  and then the GRAND FINALE!

So, as the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Ten Lords a Leaping, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eleven Pipers Piping, Ten Lords a Leaping, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the Tenth day of christmas my true love gave to me, “Ten Lords a Leaping”.

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These “ten lords a leaping” are ten amenable men from the Rotary Club of Daniel Island. It is 8:30 in the morning and they willing jumped for me before they went to work.  (No men were hurt in the taking of this picture).  They are lords of the golf course, lords of their homes, (we won’t tell them the truth, right ladies!), lords of their businesses, and most importantly lords WITH a heart.  They are all active members of the rotary club helping people in need in the community. And they are lords of my heart for being willing to jump in the air and look silly. (I understand the bystanders were having a good laugh) Thank you lords of the rotary.

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My friend Sara from Island Expressions comes through again.  What luck that she just happened to have on consignment a beautiful Fitz & Floyd candelabra. The picture does not do it justice.  I am just amazed that there even is a Ten Lords a Leaping candelabra.  Who knew?

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There are only TWO days left to the “Twelve Days of Christmas” photo journey.  Stay tuned to see what I have in store for Christmas Day!

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As the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, “Ten Lords a Leaping”, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me, “nine ladies dancing”. …………………………………………………………….

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These are the dancing HAT Ladies of Charleston. The head Hat lady, Ms. Archie Burkel, is the lovely woman in the white dress and fascinator. These pictures were taken at one of their holiday Christmas parties.  I mentioned to Archie that I needed nine ladies for my Twelve Day project and five minutes later nine where in front of my camera! At first I wanted them to pose for the camera, to ensure a good clear shot.  But that wasn’t working – these ladies wanted to dance.  And dance they did~ moving and grooving to NO MUSIC.  They were line dancing, twisting, doing the Charleston, whatever dance came into their minds. The only semi-posed shot I got, was of them starting to ballroom dance . But they weren’t still for very long. Soon they were gliding around the room.  I really think they could be on Dancing with the Stars!  These women were so accommodating helping me with my project and I truly appreciate their support.  They are a Fantastic group of Dancing Ladies!

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These fine ladies from the Rotary Club of Daniel Island were very nice to allow me (actually in this case, my husband) to snap their picture at 8:30 in the morning. That’s very early to dance, isn’t it?  We only had 7 ladies attend the club meeting that morning, so I had to step in and become a dancing lady.  Also, if you look at both the pictures, my friend Ann has just realized, she has a TWIN. Who knew?  she didn’t! Thank you all for being so sweet.  Everyone looks Fabulous Darling, simply FABULOUS!  (P.S. I am the one in the white top and black pants, on the left.)

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As the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me, Nine Ladies Dancing, Eight Maids a Milking, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of christmas my true love gave to me, “seven swans a swimming”.

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I took this picture last spring on a day trip to Middleton Planatation. These beautiful birds were gently gliding over the water silently  executing a graceful dance with each other. Actually, there are only two birds (life long mates) on this pond at Middleton.  I took so many pictures that I was able to photoshop them together to make the seven I needed for todays lyrics. I hope you enjoy their beauty as much as I do. (I decided to make this picture larger then normal so everyone could appreciate the swans beauty.)

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Callaway Gardens on the Christmas trip with Mom and Steve.

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Six and one quarter Swans a swimming!  I thought about photoshopping a full one in there but thought it would be more fun (and give you a chuckle) if I didn’t. This little cygnet (actual name of a baby swan) is having a tough time keeping up with her/his brothers and sisters. He/she needs to work on those feet muscles!

Taken at Callaway Gardens.

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As the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, “Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and  a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the Sixth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me, “Six Geese a Laying.”

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These lovely geese were very hard to photograph.  As soon as I got near, they ran off. You would think with all the cars and people around their pond, they would be used to someone coming near, but NO!  Patience is always the key when taking pictures of animals, especially wild ones. Perseverance paid off and I got the shot.

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In the above  picture you see the goose eggs laying right under or near these lovely birds.  I have a confession to make, I had to photoshop those in.  I took an egg from my refrigerator, snapped it, cut and pasted, and there you are, a goose egg.  Creativity is the key in my line of work.

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As the song goes:

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, “Six Geese a Laying, FIVE GOLDEN RINGS, Four Calling Birds, Three French Hens, Two Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree.