Thursday, May 24, 2018

Park Views

I started yesterday's shots with a view taken on Monday afternoon a week ago at the War Memorial. I took my company over into Major's Hill Park, where there are several tulip beds. Some of that lines up behind the statue of Colonel John By, such as the case here. 

The Chateau Laurier lingers in the background here.

Moving on, the path takes us to other tulip beds at the north end of the park, with the National Gallery of Canada and Notre Dame Basilica as backdrops.

A shift in perspective looks west. The blocks of Parliament can be glimpsed at the top of the rise in these shots.

This view from the other bed here features the American embassy in the background.

One more shot from here. I'll have another look in this park before I'm done with the Tulip Festival series, as I returned again this past weekend.

We headed back, stopping by this art installation. I have never photographed it, but have passed by it many times. Twist 1.5 is a large wooden spiral created in 1978 by Alex Wyse and Ken Guild, recreating the spiral motif that one often finds in nature. It is built out of British Columbia fir.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018


Today's post features the tulips around the National War Memorial. This first shot, taken shortly before five in the afternoon, has visitors on site and the sentries at their posts near the end of their day. Sentries are relieved every hour, and at five PM, the guard is dismissed for the day. Military police or city police are on site during the guard hours, and the van had come into place to remove some of the items around the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier for the night, such as the rope barriers establishing a perimeter for the sentries. I took this shot a week ago on Monday when Tom and Janette were in town. This area, centred on the Memorial and ringed by Parliament Hill, the Chateau Laurier, the National Arts Centre, and the Chambers, is referred to as Confederation Square, and a few months back a writer in one of our papers suggested that it is the Canadian equivalent of Trafalgar Square. I think they were right.

A couple of evenings later, I came back. The National Arts Centre stands across from the War Memorial, and its glass tower was lit up for the evening. Tulips in planters were positioned on the traffic island dividing Elgin Street here.

Here are some of the planters on the terrace leading up to the War Memorial, also taken that evening.

Another angle looks back at the NAC.

And this angle looks from the rear of the War Memorial. Aside from tulips in those planters, the tulips line the flowerbeds around the Memorial terrace, such as you see here. 

I came back again a day or two later around mid-day when the sentries were on duty 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018


Today I wanted to show tulips in other settings. I'm starting off with a morning shot taken in Dundonald Park, where tulips lurk among the flower beds.

They can also be found in the gardens of homes nearby, such as these two.

As I noted a couple of days ago, not all gardeners are human. These tulips are in the treeline in Central Park in the Glebe, no doubt transplanted by a squirrel from a nearby garden.

Painted tulip sculptures are found at various sites throughout the city during the festival. These are in the Glebe. The first one has St. Giles Presbyterian Church as a backdrop.

There were some white ones set up in the Glebe before the festival started, waiting for artists to start painting new designs on them. This one was being painted when I first stopped by and chatted briefly with the artist. Passing by the next day, it was done, and quite bright and colourful.

This one is outside a clothing shop some blocks down the street.

And here we have one of the tulip beds outside the Sunnyside branch of the Ottawa Public Library.

These are taken on an afternoon drive taken during the festival, and we're going to look at other spots from that time in posts after I'm done with the tulips. I had visitors- Tom and his wife- here last week to see the tulips, and we went up into the Gatineau Hills. Les Collines-des-l'Outaouais (literally translated as the Hills of the Outaouais, and that term is a French version for the name of the Ottawa River and this particular area of Quebec as a whole) is a regional municipality north of the city of Gatineau on the Quebec side of the river, home to most of Gatineau Park. It is a largely rural area, with its seat in the village of Chelsea. It was here in Chelsea that we stopped at a church, St. Stephens, to photograph the church and its accompanying cemetery. There were tulips here. I'll show you St. Stephens after I'm done with this series.

The village of Wakefield also lies in this regional municipality, north along the Gatineau River from Chelsea. This lone tulip was found near the entrance of a bridge, which I shall also show down the line. 

Monday, May 21, 2018

The Hill

Today is Victoria Day, a holiday here in Canada named for Queen Victoria, our monarch when Canada was organized under Confederation, and I will be largely offline photographing, as it's the final day of the Tulip Festival (lots more to come here, however). I thought it appropriate to feature Parliament Hill today, since its placement results from a decision Victoria made when she designated this place as the capital. And during the Tulip Festival, the flowers can be found around the Hill, such as in planters leading into the gateways. I always get in one post from here during this festival.

There are also beds of tulips out at the north sides of the lawns, with bushes as their backdrop.

They are popular with photographers- this view takes in the East Block as well.

I seem to like taking one stretch of these tulips and photographing them two ways- normal settings and black and white. Colour works better, obviously, as the red tulips become much less noticeable in black and white.

Crossing over to the west lawn, I photographed the tulip beds as they continue.

Another angle I like to take at least once during the festival- a view from the ground up incorporating the Peace Tower.

Aside from the main tulip beds at the north end of the lawns, there are two tulip beds that flank the sides of the Peace Tower. This is the west one.

While this is the east bed.

Leaving Parliament Hill, I crossed Wellington Street to the south side, passing the Parliamentary block housing the Prime Minister's offices, which stands to the left here. There are planters set up down this sidewalk, and the view incorporating the Parliamentary blocks beyond made the shot a fitting one.

Sunday, May 20, 2018


Late one afternoon before the Tulip Festival started, I decided to come up onto the rooftop terrace at the Rideau Centre mall downtown. There are pathways amid the grass and flowerbeds here, and tulips at this time of year. This first view looks east, with Arts Court and the old Carleton County Gaol in the background, and the campus of the University of Ottawa beyond that.

While red dominated the tulips in the eastern beds (at least during this visit), gold dominated elsewhere on the terrace.

Here we have proof that not all gardeners are human. Tulips not yet in bloom are growing among the bushes in this area- the result of squirrels, no doubt, transplanting bulbs.

I startled someone as I passed by here. He can be seen on the right of this shot.

I zoomed in a bit closer. There are a couple of rabbits up here. With plenty of grass around here, and the soil deep enough to support trees, they probably never leave the terrace, though they can, via staircases descending off the roof.

One final shot of tulip colours. We'll be off to another spot tomorrow.