Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Pale blue bluebonnet

with 49 comments

Pale Blue Bluebonnet 9609

On March 25th off Harold Court in east Austin I found a few pale blue bluebonnets scattered among a colony of normally colored Lupinus texensis.

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 8, 2016 at 5:07 AM

49 Responses

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  1. Great application of depth of focus: extremely clear flower before an out-of-focus background enhance the perception of the blossoms.


    April 8, 2016 at 7:02 AM

    • As you point out, manipulating depth of field is a good way to separate a subject from its background. The closer to the camera the subject is, and the farther away the things in the background are, the better the separation. I listed this approach as point #2 in About My Techniques. If I’d been able to get the camera lower (which I couldn’t because my head was already down near the ground), I could have aimed upward a bit more to have the entire background be blue sky. That would have exemplified point #3 in the list of techniques.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 8, 2016 at 7:27 AM

      • As to holding the camera lower: I keep wishing mine had a movable monitor. I don’t want to have to lie flat on my tummy to get some shots.


        April 8, 2016 at 7:35 AM

        • My cameras don’t have a movable monitor either. I always carry a spongy mat with me to make lying on the ground easier. As an alternative to lying flat, sometimes I kneel, bend my head down near the ground, and take pictures upside down.

          Steve Schwartzman

          April 8, 2016 at 7:42 AM

  2. That clarity just makes me swoon. As for the color — if our usual, vibrant bluebonnets are a brand-new pair of jeans, these could be old favorites: well-washed, faded, and comfortable.


    April 8, 2016 at 7:27 AM

    • That’s a great analogy with jeans. I wonder if Levi’s would want to use the picture in an ad for their “light stonewash” jeans. As for comfortable, getting this picture (like so many others) wasn’t, given the contortions I had to go through to get down low.

      As for the clarity, once again I’ll have to thank my 100mm macro lens.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 8, 2016 at 7:33 AM

      • Many companies do regional marketing, so why not approach Levi’s? It’s late for this year, but they’ll soon be planning for next spring. What better way to appeal to Texans than through a casual bluebonnet?


        April 8, 2016 at 7:49 AM

  3. I love the idea of a bluebonnet ad for Levis. It must have been so pretty to see this pale specimen in with the more vibrant blues.


    April 8, 2016 at 8:47 AM

  4. a really incredible color, beautiful.


    April 8, 2016 at 10:37 AM

  5. Super lilac-grey colour. I wouldn’t object to this shade on my wall.


    April 8, 2016 at 11:49 AM

  6. Wow!


    April 8, 2016 at 8:11 PM

  7. So beautiful! And as always, blue enhances the flowers.


    April 9, 2016 at 12:07 AM

  8. Delicious!

  9. This one looks like it’s coming out of the screen. You’ve achieved a great 3D feel to this one, Steve. You also make it more attractive by having the two different colours in the background which highlight different colours in the flowers.


    April 10, 2016 at 6:33 AM

    • Once in a while I include two background colors, as here, in the hope of implying that the subject is reaching upward. I might have gone for my more-common all-blue background but for one thing: I couldn’t get the camera and my head any lower. As a result I settled for the two-tone background. I’m glad to hear that makes the image more attractive for you.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 10, 2016 at 7:01 AM

  10. My very first thought was … goose barnacles!

    Pairodox Farm

    April 11, 2016 at 3:54 AM

  11. Subtle beauty. My bluebell plant is rising out of the ground and looking healthy despite the recent freeze.

    Steve Gingold

    April 11, 2016 at 2:28 PM

  12. Perfectly beautiful.


    April 12, 2016 at 6:01 AM

  13. Love the way the sky backdrop not only shows off how pale the bloom is, but accents its rather smoky-silver tinge. Marvelous.


    April 12, 2016 at 2:54 PM

    • Thanks. I’d’ve had the whole background be blue to play up that lighter floral blue all the more, but I was down on the ground already and couldn’t aim up any more steeply without having the top go out of focus.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 12, 2016 at 3:29 PM

  14. This is so pretty


    April 12, 2016 at 8:38 PM

  15. […] took this picture on March 25 off Harold Ct. within sight of the pale blue bluebonnet you recently […]

  16. […] years ago you saw a largely white variant of a bluebonnet. (Most bluebonnets strike me as purple rather than […]

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