Dwelling in monochrome; Living in multicolor

I wasn’t going to make an entry for this week’s PostAWeek theme, ‘monochromatic’. The theme struck me as being more for folks who have advanced technical skills than for someone like me. (Which is totally fair … the real photographers must have their fun too.)

But then a funny thing happened. Just having the concept floating around in the back of my mind over the next few days made me more aware of monochromatic color schemes in my environment. When I was walking my dog around the apartment building one late afternoon, I happened to look up and see this housing complex that the swallows had built.

swallows wider

swallows close up

At first what I noticed was the color palette — all those shades of beige against the dull red of the bricks. That’s why I snapped the picture.

When I was cropping and doing some light retouches, however, I found myself amused by the fact that I’d shot  what amounts to an apartment complex attached to an apartment complex. I was particularly struck by how angular the human construction is in comparison to the the bird construction … yet both styles reveal that the housed species can be quite comfortable living in close proximity to neighbors,  who live in an almost identical housing situation … and that’s kind of weirdly monochromatic too.

The swallows who live in those mud balls are colorful little birds. They have iridescent-blue backs, creamy bellies, and russet faces. They spend their days swooping over the pond, first gathering their building materials in the spring, then catching hundred of tiny insects each every day until mid-summer. They court and they fight most of the time, then they rest snuggled against each other, especially when it rains.

Some are more persistent that others when it comes to trying to claim a prime bit of real estate. Some stay far away from us humans with whom they have to share territory, while others pass close enough to move a person’s hair with the breeze from their wings. I assume the birds themselves can perceive other individual distinctions too.

So they are all the same, yet all different. Just like the humans that live beneath them.

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Here are some of my favorite entries for the Monochromatic prompt  from others:

(I’ll add more as I have time to browse, so feel free to check back.)

stained glass | parrot camouflage (esp. the 2nd one) | esp. stump on the sand | gloriously lit fence | demolitionAn Alley in Prague | magickal girl in meadowLuisenburg Rock Labyrinth | Baredine Cave Croatia | a gallery of six monochromes | golden farm scene | the poem makes the post |