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Spring has sprung, and for some of us, it feels more like summer. As I sat sweating in front of my computer, I decided it might be time for some cool inspiration – and I mean “cool” in the literal sense of the word. So I went searching through Flickr for Creative Commons licensed images that show water in creative and interesting ways, and might remind me (and you) of what it feels like to be nice and chilly.
One thing you should know is that many of these images are not formatted in a 16:9 aspect ratio – meaning, if you have a widescreen monitor, you will see some borders or experience a bit of image cropping. This is not a big deal, because even on “dedicated” wallpaper websites not all resolutions are always available. The reason I decided to go with Flickr is simple – attribution. Wallpaper websites often don’t fully credit image creators, and I wanted to be sure to credit the right people for their art.
The interestingly-titled Title? by Flickr user Chaval Brasil is a beautiful demonstration of kinetics and fluid dynamics. Or, put more simply, it’s a bunch of colored water caught mid-splash.
I love what Chaval Brasil did with the color. Not only is the water colored, but there are several different colors for us to marvel at. Very creative work, and definitely says “water,” at least for me.
H 2 Oh!?
The truly crazy part about lazslo-photo’s H 2 Oh!? is right in the middle of the image. The photographer somehow captured the background refracted in a droplet, spelling out “H2O” in perfect clarity, right in the middle of the shot.
It looks so good that I suspected it might be Photoshopped, but the creator didn’t say anything about Photoshop in the description, so I would have to assume (and hope) this is a happy coincidence along with some very skillful macro work. At any rate, if the colors in Title? rubbed you the wrong way, this image should set things right.
Luva Posting At The Water
Flickr user “Tambako the Jaguar” brings us Luva Posting At The Water, a striking image of a tiger cub cooling off at the zoo. The photo was taken in Zurich, but I was unable to locate the name of the zoo (Zurich-based commenters are welcome to tip me off below). While the tiger seems a bit concerned here (or at least focused on something), there’s something charming about this image, and it combines two things I love – cats and water.
Luckiamute Falls is another nature-themed image, showing a slow-shutter exposure of the falls in Falls City, Oregon. Creator Isan Sane captured the spontaneous beauty of well-preserved waterfalls well here; I can only wish I was there.
My fondness for macro shots is really coming through here, as this is our third macro in this roundup. Oh, Cherry by Flickr user Atomicshark takes one of nature’s most sensual fruits and gives it the love it deserves. Not a wallpaper I would suggest using if you’re on a diet.
Swan’s Down by Steve-h reminded me of how much fun it is to splash water around. This image was taken in Bushy Park, the second-largest of London’s Royal Parks. As with many well-captured images of nature, there is something majestic about this shot. The swan’s wingspan, the water frozen mid-splash – simply beautiful.
Breaking Wave, Tenerife
If you like images of splashing water but aren’t that much into macro photography, here’s a bit of scale for you. Breaking Wave, Tenerife shows what a lot of water looks like when it’s splashing. Photographer Szeke tells us people wait there to get a good soaking, and indeed, you can see two of them sitting on the left side of the image, just waiting for the wave to cool them off.
Water isn’t always liquid, as our last two images reminded me. Spangled by Jenny Downing captures the gentle, still beauty of a sunny winter morning, with the sun reflecting in a droplet hanging off a branch, while ice slowly melts on the right of the image. This image shows what early spring looks like (or rather, feels like) in many parts of the world – a true beauty.
Then again, speaking of ice realistically, any ice I might see this month is going to look like Icy Cold by Liz Marion. But just because it came out of the freezer doesn’t mean it’s any less cold than the all-natural ice pictured above – or any less beautiful, in its hard-core, industrial way. I love the lighting in this image – it’s almost as if the ice is glowing from inside.
Do you have any inspiring water-related images you’d like to share? Link to them below, and don’t forget to give full attribution. I’d love to see what you come up with!