Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Southwest Harbor

with 15 comments

On June 10th we stopped at Southwest Harbor on Maine’s Mount Desert Island.

That’s the island most of Acadia National Park is on.

You’re seeing some of the patterns, textures, and colors I photographed along the shore.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 1, 2018 at 4:55 AM

15 Responses

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  1. Each of these presents colors and textures very familiar to me. Nice.

    Pairodox Farm

    September 1, 2018 at 5:37 AM

    • Given your history in the area, as you’ve recently been reporting, it’s easy to see why these colors and textures would seem familiar to you. And now you’re relatively close to them again.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 1, 2018 at 10:30 AM

    • By the way, do you happen to know what the aquamarine mineral in the second photograph is?

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 1, 2018 at 10:34 AM

  2. My favorite is the one with the green splotch of color! These are certainly weird patterns and textures… a science/biology explanation here for sure!


    September 1, 2018 at 8:50 AM

    • And don’t you wish we had more such things to see in Texas and Oklahoma? Pairodox Farm, who commented before you, has a background in marine biology and could explain some of what’s in the photographs.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 1, 2018 at 10:32 AM

      • The closest I get are lichen on the boulders at the Wichita Mountains, just SW of here. I just went to Pairodox Farm – what a nice blog!


        September 1, 2018 at 3:36 PM

        • I’m with you in appreciating lichens, which are often the closest things we have to the intricate forms found in more scenic places, especially along rugged coasts. Of course those places usually outdo us because they have lichens in addition to the other kinds of formations and life forms.

          Steve Schwartzman

          September 1, 2018 at 4:03 PM

  3. All kinds of nice textures, colors, patterns – – almost as nice as cloud watching, and more colorful, to try to see shapes and images.

    Robert Parker

    September 1, 2018 at 11:24 AM

    • When I find myself at a place with so many textures, colors, and patterns, I get excited and move around taking lots of pictures at different angles and in different compositions. I could have shown plenty more than these four. If Austin had more good cloud formations, I’d happily aim upward from home.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 1, 2018 at 11:35 AM

  4. Nice to see these. I didn’t make it to Southwest Harbor this year. I usually visit Wonderland at least once for similar shots but not this time around.

    Steve Gingold

    September 1, 2018 at 4:52 PM

  5. I could be wrong about this, but your second photo might show the rock known as pegmatite. Pegmatite’s known for the various crystals and gemstones that form within it. On this page, the fifth photo down on the right side (the Crabtree pegmatite) looks very much like what you found.

    It’s entirely possible that your aquamarine mineral is — aquamarine!


    September 1, 2018 at 10:23 PM

    • Here’s a more complete list of the gemstones that can be found in pegmatite.

      I got so excited by the sparkly stuff, I neglected to mention how much I like the photo of the green algae. The color contrasts are great, as are the contrasts in texture. It’s easy to imagine the water flowing across it.


      September 1, 2018 at 10:33 PM

      • This link says that aquamarine is common in pegmatite. That supports your conjecture.

        And yes, the green is pretty in its own right, even if not sparkly. I apparently visited Southwest Harbor at low tide, which facilitated my picture-taking, even if it meant that I saw no water flowing across the structures shown in these pictures.

        Steve Schwartzman

        September 1, 2018 at 10:45 PM

    • Thanks for the link. In addition, I just found one at


      which says: “Maine’s gems are typically found in pegmatite, a coarse granite in which miners search for pockets, voids where precious gems find the right conditions to grow, given the correct elements are present.”

      So while the overall rock may well be pegmatite, the aquamarine crystals could indeed be what you said: aquamarine. I was so intent on the colorful part that I didn’t pay attention to the rock containing it. I also had to look carefully to make sure I wasn’t seeing wax that had dripped from a colorful candle that someone might have lighted on the rocks.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 1, 2018 at 10:37 PM

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