Color makes me happy. Forget pastels that are supposed to be calming. I played around with values and filters with this shot to see how it would intensify everything from the dirt to the color of the leaves. I especially like the fact that the lower part of the cement on the left looks like it has just been poured and could still be imprinted with something, while the top portion of the cement seems to glow. That effect was simply an intensification of how the light had hit the two sections of cement differently.
I had purchased these roses because they are my favorites: a lovely peach color, lighter in the center and ringed by a deeper hue. Sometimes the outside petals have the darker color on the tips, as you can see in the bottom rose. Once I got them home, and in the confines of my apartment, I realized that they were heavily scented. Their perfume was wonderful, but I am allergic to the fragrance. My nose started stuffing up almost immediately. What to do? I thought about giving them to a friend, but I truly loved their variegated color and didn’t want to part with them. So I put them out on the balcony. It was the end of December and while it is very rare for there to be a freeze here in the Bay Area, it was quite cold. I didn’t know how the roses would react, but the one thing that was certain was that I couldn’t keep them inside the apartment. So I took a chance and put them outside, careful to place them where I could see them from the couch. I expected that at most they would last a few days or a week. To my utter astonishment and delight, they lasted more than a month. The day I took this photo would have been my husband’s and my 44th anniversary. The fact that the roses had lasted that long was as if he had sent a bouquet.
This was one of those rare occasions when I felt like I had captured the perfect picture with my iPhone with the subject clear and the beautiful background perfectly blurred. It reminds me of Monet’s use of color in the background, or even sometimes in the full painting. Although he never worked in oranges to the best of my knowledge. The oranges are closer to Renoir’s use of color in the sunlight.
And here is a closeup.
I don’t actually have a macro lens yet (I’m saving my pennies) so I have to use my 200mm telephoto, then enlarge and crop. (The image would have been clearer if I had a macro lens.) As a result, I didn’t even know I had captured this beauty. I thought I was just taking a picture of a beautiful flower that I could enlarge to show the detail. As I was looking at this photo in my iPhoto library, I noticed something was sitting on the bottom portion of the flower. I wasn’t even sure what it was at first because I was just browsing thumbnails. I clicked on the photo to see what I could do with it – whether or not I could edit it into a usable photo and voilà! C’est merveilleux! And an unexpected grace.
*This, by the way, is a butterfly, not a moth. You can tell by looking at three things.
- The antennae are smooth, not hairy or feathery looking.
- The butterfly is resting with the wings up. Moths generally rest with their wings spread out flat.
- This picture was taken during the day. Moths come out at night.
A few weeks ago I was walking the dogs part way around Lake Merritt at low tide. I’m always excited when that happens in good weather because I can get some really beautiful photographs.
And some humorous ones.
SG #1 “Ah, FINALLY a sunny day at low tide.”
SG #2 “Yeah, did you hear The Gull on the weather report? He said there would be sunshine all day!”
SG #3 “Eh, that guy is such a bird brain! You can’t trust anything he says.”
SG #1 “Quick, everyone keep an eye on the sky. Let out a cry when you see the first rain cloud.”
Look how the innermost leaf curls into a graceful neck like a swan. Could it be named anything else?