Assassin Bugs Take Flower

Smart Cameras

The iPhone 11 and Google Pixel 4, among others, are the latest smart cameras that happen to also make phone calls. Their sample images in reviews look fantastic! But picture this, not long ago, cameras didn’t have phones built into them. My first digital camera was a 3.2 Megapixel Canon PowerShot A400. It wasn’t much, but I was able to take a shot with it that, to this day, is still one of my all-time favorites.


Shooting Bugs

One day, before the iPhone existed, my wife and I visited Maas Nursery in Seabrook, TX. The place was huge, full of pottery and plants and photographic opportunities. I happen to like macro shots with flowers and bugs, so that’s what I aimed for.

Of the many pictures I captured with bugs on flowers, one takes the prize for me. I don’t know what kind of flowering plant this is called, but the insects are Assassin Bugs. This image is awesome to me because of the composure of the bugs within the full framing of the flowers, the pose of the main bug, and the secondary color complements of orange, purple-ish, and green.


Smart Photography

Given this example of a photo made with a low resolution, tiny sensor in a “dumb” camera, it goes to show that specs and hardware are not the most important parts of the art of photography. A good subject with good lighting and good framing is what counts the most.

But imagine if macro lenses became standard on the newest smartphones! My wallet is ready to open.


What was your first digital camera? Comment below, or write to me here! Thanks for reading!

Bunches Of Bluebonnets

It’s that time of year again when the Texas Bluebonnets fully bloom! And that means it’s time to dust off my “real” cameras and get to shootin’!

 

 

Every Spring, we get blessed with bunches of blue flowers called Lupines. In Texas they’re called Bluebonnets. They grow in small clumps of bushes close to the ground and to one another, so they can spread like a blue and green blanket across wide swaths of land.

Here’s my Bluebonnets 2019 Gallery.

They’re beautiful! They also attract bees – lots of bees! So you have blue flowers with orange bees, which is a nice complementary color contrast.

One of the great joys of making these pictures was settling down outside amongst nature in the pretty and calm countryside. The fragrant smell of the Bluebonnets was strong and sweet. The breezy wind was warm and soothing. I found rest while waiting for bees to buzz around the right flowers. I think I could almost hear God whisper serenity to my soul. It was quite satisfying.


At our house, the Bluebonnets have spread more in the past few years. So I had lots of good places to try and get nice pictures. I used my Canon S5 and Nikon D60. I also used my iPhone 7 for a few landscape establishing shots and edited those in the Photos app right on my cellular telephone.

With the Canon, I typically used either the Super Macro setting and varied the aperture a bit to get a good depth of field, or I used the 12x (72mm) optical zoom to capture subjects with the background nicely blurred.

For the Nikon, I tried the 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 kit lens and the 85mm macro lens. This last lens made some of the best photos with nice bokeh in the background.

I did edits in old-school Lightroom on the PC – although I’d like to do all my edits on my iPad, but that’s another story here.

I’m trying to improve my Bluebonnet shots each year. Here are my 2017 Bluebonnets and 2018 Bluebonnets galleries. And here are the blog posts for them: Bluebonnets In Bloom and Blooming Bluebonnets.

This year’s flowers are in my Bluebonnets 2019 Gallery.

If you’re curious, you can also read how a Bluebonnet photo with my first digital camera sparked my photography hobby.

Enjoy!


Like these Bluebonnets? Have any questions? Leave a comment or email me. Thanks for your time!

Blooming Bluebonnets

Every year, I like to add a fresh batch of bluebonnet pictures to my collection. They’re the Texas state flower, and they only last about 3 to 4 weeks a year–plus they’re blue! The bluebonnets for 2018 sprung up a day or two before the equinox; I first noticed them on March 20th and started taking photos. Continue reading Blooming Bluebonnets

Flower Bugs Made Me A Shutterbug

A photo I took of a single Texas Bluebonnet with bugs on it is the picture that made me become a shutterbug.

To others, this image is nothing special. But to me, it was seminal; it had a big impact on my life. We all have these kinds of experiences in life: an event, a circumstance, a person…somehow they can be special turning points.

So how or why did this single photograph, Bluebonnet Bugs, cause me to focus on photography? Continue reading Flower Bugs Made Me A Shutterbug