Abstractions in Black and White

The you realize seeing things in black and white is not necessarily a bad thing.  Just ask Edward Weston.

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Dancing Flame

Taking a picture of a candle isn’t particularly exciting.  To add a little zest to the standard lit candle image, I used a macro lens and a longer than one second exposure to capture the flame moving around.  And since the picture was indoors, blowing on the candle ever so slightly introduced the requisite amount of motion to capture the dancing candle light.

Yellow, but not Totally

As I was leaving Green Spring Gardens, I noticed a nicely backlit hedge of yellow flowers.  After a few pictures of the flowers (from behind), I walked up the short incline to take a closer look at the flowers.  Thin clouds close to the horizon diffused the light emanating from the afternoon sun.  Still hints of directionality, but much less harsh.   A good opportunity to take some flower close ups.  In the midst of all the yellow, there were insects hovering about. Before I started taking pictures with my macro lens, I never really paid attention to the bees flying about.  I was more concerend about that random bee sting not being so random.  It turns out that bees, for the most part, are more intent on sipping nectar than aiming that stinger on an unsuspecting photographer.  And, they are pretty good models to boot.  Just don’t touch them.

I have to say it.  Mellow yellow, with a twist.

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Autumn Leaves

A warm autumn day.  A walk at Green Spring Gardens.  Leaves, different in shape, color, state of decay.  Still clinging, soon to fall.  Why not take a look.  Sometimes, very closely.

The most colorful time of the year is also the time of great changes.  Birds migrate to warmer climes.  Bears are busy foraging in preparation for their winter sleep.  The squirrels store their treasures and in the process dig up the yards and gardens of the suburban (and urban) dweller.  The leaves, once green and infused with chlorophyll, gain their yellow, red, orange, and brownish coloration.  The trees too, will slumber.  Soon, gravity will pull the dying leaves from their branches, leaving trees threadbare, wintering in place, waiting for the warm spring sun to begin the cycle anew.  As the leaves fall to the ground, they will perform one last function in the cycle of life.    Decay leaves to breakdown;  what was of the earth becomes earthen once more.  And from the earth, life will begin anew, rising in triumph, death vanquished.

Beauty in Everything

We are surrounded by beauty.  Often times, we look at everything at the most superficial level.  We see a pretty face, a pretty dress, a beautiful landscape, a stunning sunset.  We travel all over the world to see the Andean glaciers, the auroras in Iceland, the arches and hoodoos of the American southwest, the water wonderland that is Guilin.  We dream of going to far off places, depicted so beautifully by thousands of photographers and artists who share the same passion of seeing, drawing, photographing the places and things that have been universally deemed as beautiful.

We ignore the innate beauty around us.  From a child gazing longingly at the candy cane in the window, the grandmother being escorted by a loving grandchild as they cross a busy street, to a homeless man grateful for a cup of coffee that a stranger provides.  There is so much beauty in the world, if we could only look beyond our preconceptions and prejudices.  And wonder at the beauty that is everyday life.

The bluebird singing.  The stars in the night sky forming patterns that have guided mankind’s journey throughout the ages.  That feather in the grass. Pick it up and look closely.  You may be amazed at what you see.

Seven is a Lucky Number

On the seventh day of the seventh month in the seventeenth year of this century (okay, the 7 stuff breaks down on the fourth descriptor), I was fortunate enough to have my camera and macro lens at Meadowlark Gardens.  Some of the best macro images I took over the summer (and in the last few years) were taken that day.  Moth or butterfly?  Beautiful either way.

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How often do you get a bee “facing off” “against” a moth (second image)?  Or two bugs sitting on a beautiful flower filled stem (first image)?  Or have a moth willing to have a lens close enough to see elements in its eye (third image)?