Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Clematis drummondii flower and buds

with 12 comments

On July 15th in Great Hills Park I sat with some Clematis drummondii
vines and made these close portraits of buds and a flower.

I aimed at a higher angle in the second picture and so won the sky as a background.
Flash and a small aperture made the bright blue seem unnaturally dark but I like the effect.




Speaking of unnatural, there’s more “Hands up, don’t shoot” in the top picture than in the narrative that has become an article of faith—a false faith—among certain activists. The Clematis at the top hands-down has a greater claim to having its hands up.



© 2022 Steven Schwartzman





Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 31, 2022 at 4:28 AM

12 Responses

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  1. The dark background enhances the metallic look of the clematis.

    Peter Klopp

    July 31, 2022 at 7:10 AM

  2. I laughed at that top photo. It could easily be captioned, “Who, me? I didn’t put my hand in that cookie jar!”
    Your approach with the second photo allowed even the still-closed buds to show off that silky sheen so typical of the plant; against that sky, they’re very pretty.


    July 31, 2022 at 1:16 PM

    • I think the top picture is an easy one to anthropomorphize. I did and you did, and I suspect others will have or have had the same reaction.

      How did I live most of my life without the sheen of Clematis drummondii? I’m doing my best to make up for that lack now.

      Steve Schwartzman

      July 31, 2022 at 3:20 PM

  3. So the flash is responsible for that vivid contrast of pure white against the stunning blue! Thanks for sharing that technical detail.

    Yes, the first image is a great personification – and there is humor in that pose! One could easily scrawl a pair of eyes (looking skyward) and a subtle smile – and use that ‘upsweep’ at the top to extend it into a ponytail!

    • If anyone would appreciate that blue, artist you would—just as your imagination has extended the bud in the top image into a ponytail and added eyes and a subtle smile. (That last word reminds me now of Smilax, the greenbrier vine, which I seem to remember you’re familiar with.)

      Steve Schwartzman

      August 1, 2022 at 6:38 AM

  4. The bud looks like a stick person.

    Alessandra Chaves

    August 1, 2022 at 9:18 AM

  5. I immediately saw a gesture with two arms on the first … just needs a face drawn on!


    August 1, 2022 at 2:30 PM

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