Archive for the 'butterflies and insects' Category



18
Jul
09

7/18/2009

Happy Harvester

Happy Harvester

Of course the happy part is pure anthropomorphism. Can bees be happy? I certainly don’t know, but the sight of one busy in a flower makes me happy, once I get by my diffuse fear of stinging insects.

It was a brilliant day at the Coastal Botanical Gardens in Boothbay Maine, and the high sun cast strong shadows, but picked out all the subtle detail in both petals and bee. One of the advantages of the articulated LDC on the H50 is that I can hold the camera one-handed, well away from me, out over a bed of flowers, for this kind of close in and personal shot.

Sony DSC H50 at full wide and macro. F5.6 @ 1/400th @ ISO 100. Programed auto.

Just my basic added Vibrance and Clarity and Landscape sharpen preset in Lightroom. There was a bit of purple fringing along the bottom petal edge which I also removed in Lightroom.

From Coastal Maine Botanical Garden.

And a second bee in flower from the same day…this time in open shade.

Happy Harvester 2

Happy Harvester 2

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05
Jul
09

7/5/2009

Who Knew? Green Bee on Blanket Flower

Who Knew? Green Bee on Blanket Flower

Who knew?  There are green bees! Tiny. Very strange. Maybe even the original of the Green Hornet (though, outside comics, there is not such actual insect.) It took me an hour of searching to find a name for this critter on the internet…or rather to confirm the name that popped immediately to mind. Green bee. Genius Agapostemon. Appears there are many species and I am not certain which this is, but it is without doubt, a green bee…tiny and jewel like in its metalic splendor, posed on this Blanket Flower, right in our front yard.

Sony DSC H50 at full wide and macro. F3.2 @ 1/60th @ ISO 100. Programed auto.

In Lightroom, just a slight crop from the right for composition, added Clarity and Vibrance, and Landscape sharpen preset.

And here without the bee, an even closer view of the Blanket Flower.

Extreme Blanket Flower

Extreme Blanket Flower

From Around Home, Kennbunk ME.

29
Jun
09

6/29/2009

Black Admiral

Black Admiral

The thing about butterflies is that they have two sides. The upper side is beautiful, and the underside can be two. The second thing about butterflies is you take what you can get. Some never sit with wings open, so open wing shots are almost certainly collected samples, and some only sit with wings open. The Black Admiral is one that does both, though closed wing is more common. When this one lit beside the trail, I was able to get one tel-macro shot of it open winged, and then it closed, and, though I waited, and though I worked the equally beautify closed wings, it never sat open winged again for me.

This shot is taken from about 2 cm. using the H50s macro setting on full wide. In this case the butterfly was perfectly posed, with background foliage far enough behind to be well out of focus (and some interesting bokeh). I like the way the light, slightly from the side, catches in the furry surface of the wing and brings out the detail.

Sony DSC H50 at full wide and macro. F4.0 @ 1/160th @ ISO 100. Programed auto.

Cropped slightly from the right for composition in Lightroom. Some Recovery to bring down the brightness of the sunlit leaf. Added Clarity and Vibrance. Landscape sharpen preset.

From Around Home: Kennebunk.

And for those who wonder, here is the open wing shot, cropped slightly to make the subject larger in the field.

Black Admiral (open wings)

Black Admiral (open wings)

27
Dec
08

12/27/2008

 

Impression of Fritillary

Impression of Fritillary

Two years ago, the Jekyll Island Commission planted wildflowers along the causeway out to the island, and when I visited in October, they were in their prime. Fritillary migration was also at its peak, so the flower expanses were were filled with butterflies. I got a lot of excellent portrait shots of butterflies (and bees) on the flowers, but this chance shot really pleases me. “I could not have done it if I had tried.” Sometimes chance is better than any amount of calculation.

Sony DSC H9 at the wide end of the macro zoom. F4.0 @ 1/100th @ ISO 100. Programed Auto.

Nothing much more than a bit of crop, some Vibrance, and some Sharpening in Lightroom.

From the Jekyll Island Gallery.

13
Dec
08

11/14/2008

North American Butterfly Gardens, Mission TX

Crimson Patch: NABA Gardens, Mission TX

 

 

A morning at the NABA Gardens, right on the Rio Grande river in tropical Texas, is always rewarding. Butterflies everywhere you look. Spectacular butterflies. The challenge is finding one perched for long enough to photograph it. A fairly long lens, zoom, with macro, is recommended.

This was taken at the wide end of the macro zoom on the Sony DSC H50, at an equivalent of 31mm (in 35mm terms), from inches away. F4 @ 1/100 second. ISO 100 (Auto). Programed Auto with no exposure compensation. Auto White Balance.

Minimal post processing in Lightroom. Clarity and Vibrance. Landscape Sharpen preset. 

Shots like this are possible because of the big, relatively bright, articulated LCD. Really though, if you spend any time at the NABA Garden, you can’t miss. You will come away with memorable shots if you are half trying.