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Tag Archives: spring

Each spring, the air is filled with an intoxicating fragrance emanating from my Korean Spice Viburnum. With its unmistakable aroma, you cannot help but be drawn closer.

“Aurora” (Korean Spice Viburnum, Carlesi Compacta ‘Aurora’) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/3.5, 1/160s, ISO 640

The individual flowers of the viburnum are tiny and for me, have always proved difficult to photograph. Since it’s only the buds that are pink, when they ‘pop’ all you can see from above are rounded clusters of white. But, by getting underneath, I was finally able to capture the whole story of these sweet little blossoms. Hooray! 🙂

Across the yard, putting on a show of its own, stands the giant pink powderpuff that is the ‘Cornell Pink’ Manchurian Azalea. Now, while its ‘pinkness’ is indeed impressive (as seen here), I found this time I was more captivated by the flowers’ graceful stamens as they reached out with inviting gestures to all the insects and bees swarming around.

“Come to Me” (Pink Manchurian Azalea, ‘Cornell Pink’) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/3.5, 1/640s, ISO 640, Nik Silver Efex Pro “Expressive” Filter

So there they were, doing all the work but being overshadowed by the showiness of those fantastically colored petals. I thought by converting the image to black & white I was able to give the stamens some long overdue recognition. Don’t you agree? 🙂

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If we opened our minds to enjoyment, we might find tranquil pleasures spread about us on every side. We might live with the angels that visit us on every sunbeam, and sit with the fairies who wait on every flower. ~Samuel Smiles

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“Tulip Fairy” (Red Tulip) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/5.6, 1/500s, ISO 400

When I was photographing the dandelions last week, a nearby solitary red tulip caught my attention as the sun was lighting it from above, illuminating the interior like a flickering candle. I casually snapped off a few quick shots and then returned back to the dandelions, thinking nothing more of it at the time.

Imagine my surprise, then, to discover the presence of a flower fairy! She must have been watching me as they are known to be shy, yet curious spirits.

Not knowing a darn thing about flower fairies, I did a little research and was pleased to learn that the Tulip Fairy is associated with LOVE:

“Since the tulip is shaped like a chalice, this is the ‘loving cup’ from which the tulip fairy encourages you to imbibe, to feel the blessings of Nature. One of the messages of the tulip fairy is to have the courage to be vulnerable, because only in this way can any of us ever know closeness and fulfilment.”

Hmmm. I think, as artists, we often find ourselves in a place of vulnerability, essentially putting ourselves ‘out there’ for all to see and, therefore, to be criticized. I admit that some days, I struggle to find the courage to do it.

Perhaps, I simply need to look to the tulips. 🙂

“Spring Stretch” (Crocus ‘Yalta’, Tommasinianus hybrid, aka Snow Crocus) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/5, 1/80s, -0.7EV, ISO 320, Built-in Fill Flash w/Gary Fong ‘Puffer’ Diffuser, -0.7EV

Last year at this time, the Snow Crocus were still fast asleep, buried under two feet of the cold, white stuff.This year couldn’t be more different!

With an overall lack of snowfall during the winter and the crazy higher-than-normal temperatures here in the Northeast, the happy little blossoms are popping up all over the landscape.

One little beauty caught my attention since it appeared to be caught in a sleepy yawn, stretching its petals as if perplexed as to why it was roused so soon (we typically don’t spot crocus until mid-April).

The next bloom I found was hiding beneath a large rhododendron, seemingly timid to come forth, yet reaching for the warmth of the sun just beyond its grasp.

“Awakening” (Purple Snow Crocus) Nikon D300, VR 105mm F/2.8G, F/4.5, 1/200s, ISO 200, Built-in Fill Flash w/Gary Fong ‘Puffer’ Diffuser

As much as it is nice to see life returning to the garden, I’m not all that keen on rushing the seasons. Who wants to worry now if outdoor plants are getting enough water or if young shoots are struggling to dig their way out from under a bed of leaves? It really is just too soon. I’m sure I don’t have to stress over this as Mother Nature is known for teasing us with a few warm days followed by a return to chilling temps, even if the sole purpose is to remind us all of exactly who is in charge.

So, let’s hit the snooze button, shall we? I, for one, need a bit more time to get ready for the tasks ahead. 🙂

“I Heart You” (Dicentra spectabilis ‘Alba’ aka White Bleeding Heart) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/7.1, 1/50s, -0.7EV, ISO 500

 
Happy Earth Day! 🙂 

I tried to spend as much time as I could outdoors today simply soaking up all that this beautiful planet has to offer. (That is, until thunder clouds rolled in!) 😉

Even so, it was still a lovely spring day for the most part with lots of activity in the greening landscape. 

Bleeding Hearts are one of my favorite plants (amongst many) and I grow several varieties in my garden. 

How can you not love the heart-shaped blooms that dangle oh-so-sweetly off delicate stems? 

They are Mother Nature’s magical charms for sure. 🙂

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