Category Archives: Sunlight

The Best Summer Sunsets, Nightly Shows of Color

The Best Summer Sunsets, Nightly Shows of ColorSummer is here, but it never seems to last for long. In fact, if you blink you might miss it.

What do you appreciate most about summer? Do you like the hot sun? Water activities? Outdoor outings with friends and family?

For some, the most magical part of summer is the setting sun. Summer sunsets are captivating. They seem to cast shades of radiant orange, purple and pink that aren’t visible in other seasons.

If you enjoy a good summer sunset, you are in good company. People travel all over the world chasing these nightly color shows.

According to National Geographic, there are 10 places you should travel to experience the most colorful sunsets.

10 – Australia

If you visit the “Land Down Under” be sure to stop by Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock. The massive sandstone geography is said to turn radiant red as the sun falls behind the rock.

9 – Tahiti

Tahiti is made up of 118 islands, and you can probably see majestic sunsets from each one. However, the island with the best view of the sun meeting the horizon is Bora Bora. Have you been?

8 – Taiwan

Tropical plants and birds are known to habitat the Kenting National Park, but not many tourists visit this scenic location. Break away from the crowd. Stop by and take in the radiant nightfall.

7 – South Africa

Clifton beaches are home to some of Cape Town’s wealthiest residents. Even though they may have been drawn to the beautiful beaches and crystal clear water, the sunset is said to cast a “million dollar view.”

6 – Greece

At the northern most spot of Santorini is a village known for its Oia Castel. Go there to watch the sunset if you ever find yourself in Greece. Some call it breathtaking.

5 – Chile

Chili peppers are often red but Torres del Paine National Park in Chile glows pink at dusk. With granite mountaintops and lakes galore, there are many rosy sunset views.

4 – Florida

Key West is proud to be the southernmost point in the continental United States. But this title doesn’t hold a candle to the show that comes when the sun dives into the ocean at sunset.

3 – New York

Thanks to great architecture and a gift from France, New York Harbor is a beautiful place to watch the sunset. When the sun casts its beams off skyscrapers and falls behind Lady Liberty, an array of colors accompanies it setting.

2 – Utah

Utah is known for its Great Salt Lake, but residents might as well know the Great Salt Lake for its sunsets. At Antelope Island State Park the setting might as well be called, “picture perfect.”

1 – Hawaii

It’s hard to find a bad view in Hawaii. The tropical weather, crisp ocean air, soft sunlight and eclectic natives are captivating. But no sight can hold one’s attention like a Hawaiian sunset. Aloha ‘Oe.

Have you experienced any of these 10 sunsets? When was the last time you saw an immaculate sunset? Did you take a picture? If so, share it with us on our Facebook page or send it our way with a Tweet. We’d love to see what you consider to be the best sunset.

The Best Summer Sunsets, Nightly Shows of Color 2

Read more Segmation blog posts about nature and art:

Colors of Cancun

Communicating with Color in the Animal Kingdom

Preserving the Art of Earth: Robert Smithson’s “Spiral Jetty”

Be a Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

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Sunflowers are Summer’s Glory

Sunflowers are Summer’s GloryAre you enjoying the act of gardening this summer? Do you like to water plants, till soil, and watch flowers sway with a warm breeze? What does your garden have growing in it this time of year?

Sunflowers are a main attraction in many yards. Helianthus (as they are scientifically known) seem to catch everyone’s attention. They are popular because of their unique appeal. The flower is commonly associated with happiness because of its unusual height and brilliant color.

The tallest growing flower, with potential of reaching between 8 and 13 feet, is a summer favorite in North America and throughout the world.

Cheer Up Your Garden

Has this summer inspired you to add more color to your life? If yes, consider cheering up your garden with sunflowers.

There are many types of sunflowers you can plant. Some grow taller than a person and develop bright yellow blooms the size of dinner plates. Others come in shades of orange and red.

With tall stems and large, colorful blossoms, sunflowers are known to be useful too. They can create a natural fence to block a neighbor’s unsightly yard and distract from the view with pops of color.

Why Plant Sunflowers

Sunflowers are native to North America but can be found all over the world now. They are easy to maintain and can begin growing within six months of planting seeds. In addition, seeds can be planted up to 100 days before freezing temperatures strike. Any seeds that fall on fertile soil (as this is important for sunflowers) may surprise you by shooting up quickly next spring.

When autumn begins to sweep in, you can cut the head of the flower off a few inches down the stem. Hanging it up in an airy place to dry will produce many seeds. You can gather the seeds and use them for cooking or save them to plant the following year.

Interesting Facts about Sunflowers

Sunflowers are not only a beautiful addition to any garden, they are also interesting. There are many surprising facts about sunflowers. Wet your curiosity with these four truths. Then, learn more by reading this blog:

  • A single sunflower is made up of thousands of flowers joined together- each pedal represents one flower.
  • Sunflower heads track the sun, which is correctly known as heliotropism.
  • Sunflowers are the national flower of Russia.
  • The tallest sunflower grew to be over 25 feet tall.

Sunflowers are summer’s glory. There are many ways you can express your creativity this season, and many mediums that allow for artistic expression. Gardening can be a canvas to those who like to be outside in nature.

Yard work does not seem very artistic at times, but think about it this way: no two gardens are the same. By all means, get outside and create your unique art garden this summer.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Gardening:

Garden Art Knows No Limits

Where Urban Life Meets Natural Art

Tulipmania Art

Be an Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

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Catch a Wave

American recording artists, the Beach Boys said it best; “Catch a wave and you’re sitting on top of the world.”

Is this how surfing feels? The mighty energy of water folding under one’s feet must be exhilarating, and there is no doubt that it mimics the sensation of sitting on top of the world. But how many people really get to experience this sensation?

Not only is it challenging, it’s a rather limiting exercise, especially considering one’s location may prohibit their access to these energetic waves. That’s why people living in places like Hawaii, California, and Australia are more likely to take up this activity, while those in landlocked regions don’t necessarily have the option. However, the sight of an individual climbing the wall of a crashing wave is alluring to almost everyone. This is why it has become such a popular setting in paintings, photographs, and even movies.

Paintings

There are many ways of painting a wave. Some artists like to paint them as precise as possible, down to the fine detail of the ocean spray. Others, make the art more abstract. However, one thing is necessary when painting a wave– it has to be inspired by the energy of the water.

Surf artist Peter Pierce says that his wave art is, “… inspired by the actual act of riding quality waves. Likewise, the true ‘surf artist’ understands the rareness/value of quality waves via living a life passionately devoted to the pursuit of such waves… ”

Therefore, Pierce paints waves because he knows how to ride waves. But people can also “ride a wave” from the comfort of their beach chair, and capture a similar energy with their paint brush.

Photography

Capturing this energy with a photograph is a bit more challenging. The surf culture itself is very active, and to keep up with the waves, and people riding them, one must be quick to point and shoot.

With the speed and force of rising and falling water, the active lifestyle of surfers and surf artists can be down-right-dangerous. In fact, photographers who desire to get the perfect picture oftentimes put themselves into compromising positions. In pursuit of a breathtaking image, they will put themselves into the water with the surfers but without the advantage of having a floating board (and instead happen to be carrying expensive, water-sensitive equipment).

Although, perhaps that is the price these individuals pay to do what many others cannot: Surf art photographers are able to literally catch a wave so that those who can’t surf still experience the sensation of sitting on top of the world.

Movies

Movies about surfing, and more specifically, movies about the sea creatures who live beneath these transportable waves, have been popular for quite some time. And why wouldn’t they be? A movie about surfing has many elements that a successful movie needs. This is because the active culture of surfing is inviting, crashing waves are thrilling, and the risk of danger is high.

Just this year, the most recent surfing movie, Soul Surfer, was released. With an all-star Hollywood cast and amazing cinematography, the movie captivated its audience and shared the thrill of catching a wave.

There are countless other movies that survey the surfing culture. All of them have something in common — the artistic capturing of natural scenery.

Even though many people don’t have access to large bodies of water conducive for surfing, most everyone enjoys the energy that comes from catching a wave. Whether they can actually ride a wave or just look at one, energy exudes from the image of swelling water that is on the verge of collapse. This allows surfers, artists, and observers of both, to catch a wave and sit on top of the world.

Thank you featured surf artists Peter Pierce and Trent Mitchell. If you want to know more about this art wave and craze, visit http://www.clubofthewaves.com.

Be a Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

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A Summer Activity for Leisure Days

© Dave Dugdale: Flickr http://www.learningdslrvideo.com

Summer days are notorious for bright sun, hot temperatures and endless activities. The irony here is that summer days are also supposed to be days of leisure. This is why lounging around inside is okay even when the sun is bright. In fact, one of the most enjoyable things about a summer day is air conditioning!

Indoor summer activities often consist of watching television, sitting on the computer and working around the house. It is challenging to find a leisure activity that is also mind stimulating. This is why Segmation offers the perfect summer activity for all ages.

Paint by Numbers

Since the 1950’s, paint by numbers has been known as a leisure past time and summer activity.  It became popular when people began making more money, working fewer hours and increasing the amount they shopped. As a result, people purchased items to use in their free time. With consumers buying items like TV sets, barbeque grills and paint by numbers kits, these popular past times became better known as “new leisure.” To this day, paint by numbers, among the rest, are still a favorite past time, even though they all have new faces.

The Artist in Everyone

© Kara Allyson: Flickr

Paint by numbers is not just a great past time; it allows anyone to become an artist. Even a clumsy hobbyist can paint the perfect picture. This is why the box tops of paint by numbers kits formerly proclaimed “Every man a Rembrandt.” While every person can craft the perfect picture with paint by numbers, different levels of expertise offer this leisure activity at any skill level.

Now you have it all; all you need are leisure summer days to awaken the artist in you. The virtual paint by numbers program, Segmation, will turn you into a Rembrandt, or at the very least, a graphic design artist. Enjoy picking colors, following a pattern and watching your masterpiece appear on screen. With Segmation, this leisure activity awaits your next air conditioned summer day.

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Why You Should Make Art When You Travel (www.segmation.com)

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When you’re traveling, one of the best ways to capture the energy of a place is to draw or paint it. While most tourists are glued to the viewfinders of their cameras, rushing from one attraction to the next, you’ll be calmly painting or sketching the scene before you, noticing all the wonderful details that normal tourists miss… from the delicate curvature of an architectural detail to the way the evening sunlight casts long shadows on the children playing in the town square.

Making art while traveling allows you to experience your new surroundings on a deeper level than most tourists ever will. By carefully viewing a scene, structure, object, person or people with the intense gaze of an artist and interpreting your vision on paper or canvas, you can freely observe the subtle nuances and hidden undercurrents that comprise the fabric of daily life in any given location.

Why do we travel? We embark on vacations to places we’ve never been before because we want get away from it all, to escape the routine of our daily lives and the familiarity of the place where we live. We yearn to explore something new, to embrace the unknown, and to learn something along the way. Art-making while traveling fosters an open mindset, encourages curiosity, and creates an easygoing attitude – 3 essential ingredients for making the most out of any travel holiday.

Plus, making art while seated in a café, sitting in a park, or standing in a town square is a great way to meet locals, thus deepening your travel experience. Curious bystanders will often look over your shoulder and make comments, but even if you don’t understand the language, you can still make a meaningful connection through the common language of visual art.

And the end result? Aside from a memorable experience, you’ll also wind up with a beautiful travel journal filled with your original images and insights – a truly unique reminder of your special trip.

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