Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for April 22nd, 2012

Not just people

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Click for greater clarity.

It isn’t just people who are drawn to the white prickly poppy, Argemone albiflora. Here’s a spotted cucumber beetle, Diabrotica undecimpunctata, that I found on one of the poppy’s diaphanous petals in St. Edward’s Park two days ago. This kind of beetle doesn’t seem to have 11 spots, as the species name implies, but 11 times the 2 of two days ago is 22, and today is April 22, and that date this year happens to be Earth Day, so here’s a second photograph—an entomologicofloral photograph—to celebrate two of life’s kingdoms on Earth Day.

Those of you interested in photography as a craft will find that points 1, 2, 8, 18, and 19 in About My Techniques apply to this image.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 22, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Symphony in white

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Click for greater size and detail.

In the winter of 1861–62, James McNeill Whistler painted a now-famous portrait that he called “The White Girl” and later, more abstractly, “Symphony in White.” I’ve borrowed his second title for this picture of a very different subject, a field of white prickly poppies swaying in the breeze. The date was April 1, the place a field on FM 2342 in Burnet County.

Argemone albiflora is the only poppy native to the Austin area, where it’s a common sight in the spring. Like so many other species of wildflowers in 2012, this one has been having a good year. A panoramic view of a whole field of them blowing in the wind seemed to me appropriate for Earth Day, which is today. (And I hope you’ll agree that in this blog every day could be thought of as Earth Day.)

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 22, 2012 at 5:34 AM

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