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Tag Archives: insect

This post is actually a few days late, but for good reason. I was out shooting more of my newly acquired annuals when I spotted a bumble bee just dangling from one of the Calibrachoa flowers. The day was partly cloudy and this had actually been the third bee I’d seen behaving rather sluggishly. I was quite pleased with my good fortune as I composed my shot, already creating the resulting post in my head which would be entitled “The Secret Life of Bees“.   

I never got to the post that night and the next day came and went as there were too many other things on my ‘To-Do’ list. So, I planned the post for Friday, never once thinking it would be ironically derailed.

“Quasimodo” (Golden Northern Bumble Bee with Calibrachoa Blossom) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/4.5, 1/40s, ISO 640, Built-in i-TTL Balanced Fill Flash, -1.0EV

I find bees completely fascinating and have never been afraid. As far as I am concerned, these guys are little miracle workers as they are absolutely necessary for propagating the flowers I so love to photograph! I’ve never been stung, which is quite remarkable as I spend most of my time outdoors in their domain. Hubby, on the other hand, isn’t quite so lucky and has already been stung twice this summer. 

We actually discussed this very topic earlier in the day as I was rescuing (yet another) bee from drowning in the pool and happily watched it fly away to pollinate once again. I even said something like, “See? That is how it is done“,  referring sarcastically to his latest encounter where in the course of rescuing a drowning bee he managed to flip it back onto the float he was laying on where it promptly turned on him and stung him in the calf. (I chalked it up to bad karma on his part). 😉 

Okay, returning to Friday. We had just returned from the doctor since I’d been suffering from a blocked right ear for about a week and decided it wasn’t going to go away on its own. The doc prescribed Flonase and amoxicillin and as we were out grilling our evening’s dinner, hubby decided that I could use a hug since I was “broken”.  

Folks, I never saw it coming. Unbeknownst to moi, a Yellow Jacket was laying in wait on the back of hubby’s t-shirt where my right hand would ultimately land. What should have been a moment of comfort immediately turned into a scream of burning pain as the stinger embedded itself deep into my palm. (They say karma’s a bitch, right?) We promptly removed the stinger but my hand swelled and felt like someone was hammering a stake into it unless I kept it constantly encased in ice. I couldn’t believe that one small sting was causing so much pain!

It took about a day and a half for things to completely subside and for me to regain full, pain-free function of my hand (I’m right-handed so it has been an interesting couple of days to say the least). I’m glad to say I’m back but have alot of catching up to do! 

Despite my ordeal, I’m still not afraid of bees as technically, a Yellow Jacket is a wasp. But, at least for the time being, hubby now gets a once over before administering any future hugs. 🙂

When I was a child, my dad was a giant to me. At a height of 6 feet, he stood a whole foot taller than my mom making him seem larger than life. His hugs would completely engulf you and once captured, you weren’t safe from a barrage of kisses! Yes, my dad loves his kids, and me being the youngest girl, I think I got more hugs and kisses than the rest. Lucky me. 🙂  

I’ve inherited many things from my dad (height not being one of them). My sweet tooth (yeah, my thighs thank him for that), the ease at which I make friends, the ability to drum up a conversation with a complete stranger (a trait of his that used to annoy the hell outta me as a kid), a non-judgemental attitude towards life, a love of the outdoors (especially water) and an almost extreme persistance (okay, stubbornness) when it comes to wanting to know how things work. But, above all, he gave me the propensity for all around ‘nice-ness’. If nothing else, my dad is a nice guy. I don’t think he knows any other way to be.  

"Daddy Longlegs" (Harvestman Arachnid) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/8, 1/40s, -0.7EV, ISO 1000

Living a distance away, I don’t get to see my dad very often. But, even just talking on the phone, I can feel the warmth of his hugs as he says (again) how so very proud he is of me. I can’t tell you how many times that is exactly the kind a thing a daughter needs to hear.  

Happy Father’s Day, Dad! ♥ ♥

One thing this Project 365 of mine has taught me is to look beyond the obvious and see the potential in subjects that, in the past, I would have promptly dismissed. 

For example, spring cankerworms have certainly done their fair share of damage this season, which is a source of aggravation for any gardener. However, as an ‘enlightened photographer’ ;-), I am now able to view them from a completely different perspective. 

"Inch By Inch" (Spring Cankerworm aka Inchworm) Nikon D300, 105mm, F/8, 1/250s, -0.3EV, ISO 400, Built-in Rear Curtain Flash, -2.0EV, Silver Efex Pro 'Split Toning' Filter

Plus, with my project finish only one day away, they are also very timely! 😀

Something a little more fun from me today! 🙂  

While photographing rain-soaked hosta leaves, I was already drawn to their wave-like form. So, when a small black gnat decided to do some surfing, well, it’s times like this you simply cannot believe what you are seeing through the lens!

"Shooting the Tube" (Black Gnat Surfing on Wet Hosta Leaves) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/8, 1/50s, ISO 640, Black & White with Blue Tint

Since the foliage colors of this particular hosta are a variegation of green, white and yellow – not the hues that evoke a strong feeling of the sea – I decided a color change was necessary to successfully convey the ‘surfing gnat’ idea. So, the image was first converted to black & white and then tinted using blue. I also bumped up tonal contrast a bit using Color Efex Pro.  

Gnarly, dude! 🙂

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04/21/10 Update

Sean Kane requested a close up of the ‘surfing gnat’ so, here he is! 🙂

"Hang Six" (Surfing Gnat Close-up)

 (If you listen really closely, you can hear ‘wheeeeeeeeee!’ 😉 )

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