I’m letting the bull thistle grow here and there, for the sake of the goldfinches. Here is a thistle head as it was today, July 8, 2014 - not ready to flower yet by a long measure. An insect is upon it - probably a grasshopper or katydid nymph. Click for a larger image.
This image is made form 18 exposures, stack focused together, taken with Pentax K3 and A* 200mm macro lens.
Just a few dragonflies from June 14, 2014 - first, a few shots of a Carolina Saddlebags:
I am reasonably sure there are Carolina Saddlebags and not the very similar Red Saddlebag Dragonfly based on the red pattern on the lower wing - BUT - there is the possibility that this is a Red and not a Carolina.
And here are a couple of documentary shots of Dot Tailed Whitefaces - mature males, showing the Dot Tail and White Face markings clearly:
Taken with Pentax K-3, A* 200mm macro, flash, etc.
Back to an old project… A few years ago I experimented with B&W film exposures of sunlight in the woods, usually in the middle of the day and by definition in full sunlight. The project had mixed results but I feel a call to get back to it and to try to capture what I see and feel at those times. A couple of weeks ago I took another run at it and took a few rolls of 35mm B&W film in lush green foliage using an #11 (XI) green filter. Films is so slow - developing, scanning, printing to a digital file… I have more to go but here is a promising photo:
Pentax Mz-S, FA 20-35 f4, TMax 100 (expired 2010) stand processed in Rodinal 1:100 for 1 hour.
Pam and I took the Hidden Kalamazoo tour today, peering into some seldom seen aspects of Kalamazoo’s architectural past. It was a fun afternoon… Here is a grab shot of the interior of the State Theater, a “palace theater” built in 1927, originally hosting silent movies and vaudeville acts. (Click on he image for a larger view.)
The theater still brings in a great mix of live performances. It was designed to simulate a Mediterranean villa where you are sitting under the open sky, and the ceiling is adored with stars in an dark blue sky like you’d see at late twilight. I recall going to shows there in the mid 1980’s and they used a cloud projector to create the image of high overcast clouds gently rolling by.
Pentax K-3, DA 17-70 f4 zoom. Hand held 1/8th of a second at ISO 3200.
Spring 2014 is advancing ever so slowly… Here it is, late May, and there are still many trees just starting to push out leaves. At long last, a few days of warm temperatures have finally brought out some spring dragonflies.
Dot-tailed Whitefaces (Leucorrhinia intacta) are usually the first to appear around here, and this season is no exception. Here are a few from the Allegan Forest (click on the images for larger files):
A Frosted Whiteface (Leucorrhinia frigida):
These Clubtail Dragonflies (Gomphidae) are usually abundant in May - I have never gotten a positive identification on them. Today I only say this one - hopefully more are on the way:
Lastly - an unidentified Bluet Damselfly:
All images were made with a Pentax K-3, SMC A* 200mm macro lens and AF360FGZ flash. Come to think of it… this was my first excursion into insect photography since purchasing the K-3 last November. I think it passes muster!
Here are few more wildflower photos from April, 2014. Click on the images for larger files.
Dutchman’s Britches has emerged as the spring progresses:
Hepatica seems to have come and gone very quickly - one last straggler:
Marsh Marigold is out in the wetlands:
Lastly - a stack focused composite of leaves emerging in early spring - from early in April:
All images taken with Pentax K-3 DSLR and A* 200mm macro lens.