Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘tulip’

Here are some bright colors to kickstart your day as you look into the center of one of the spectacular tulips in the garden of my friend and neighbor Cindy Dyer. Have a wonderful day!

tulip

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

Read Full Post »

The color and texture of this tulip reminded me of a ripe peach when I first saw it yesterday morning. Alas, it will be months before peaches will be in season and the canned cling peaches that I remember from my childhood can’t compare to the fresh ones.

Like so many of the wonderfully colorful flowers that I have featured recently, this beauty is from the garden of my neighbor and photography mentor Cindy Dyer. Thanks again, Cindy.

At this time of the year, I tend to shoot most often with my 180mm macro lens. With my APS-C crop sensor camera, I get an equivalent field of view of almost 300mm, which gives me some standoff distance for shooting live subjects like dragonflies. However, for shooting subjects like flowers, I found it difficult to frame the images because I was shooting from so far away. For this shot, I switched to a 60mm macro lens and shot with the aperture wide-open at f/2.8.

tulip

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

Read Full Post »

What are your feelings about the future? For me, they are like this tulip bud, full of the promise of new life and beauty that is yet to come. The challenge for us all is to be patient and wait with joyful expectation.

As with all of my other recent tulip shots, I photographed this bud in the garden of my neighbor and friend Cindy Dyer. Thanks, Cindy.

tulip bud

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

Read Full Post »

From a distance, I noticed yesterday that some yellow tulips were getting ready to bloom in the garden of my neighbor and photography mentor Cindy Dyer. Cindy deliberately chooses colorful, photogenic flowers for her garden, so I love visiting it frequently. As I got close, I noted the spectacular two-color patterns of these tulips. When I sent a photo to Cindy, she informed me that they are known as “broken tulips.”

Perhaps she told me some time in the past what “broken tulips” are, but I rushed to Google to find out why they are considered to be “broken.” This term refers to the dramatic color-breaking of these flowers, an effect highly sought after during the 17th-century Dutch “tulip mania,” according to Wikipedia. Historically, these changes are caused by a virus infects the tulip bulb and causes the cultivar to “break” its lock on a single color, resulting in intricate bars, stripes, streaks, featherings or flame-like effects of different colors on the petals.

Unfortunately, the virus weakens the bulbs and as a result some famous color-broken varieties no long exist. Today’s “broken tulips” are no longer caused by a viral infection, but are stable variants produced through breeding. Cindy noted to me that her tulips have been going strong for at least five years.

I was feeling creative yesterday when I took these photos and tried a lot of different angles and settings to get some unusual looks. I decided mainly to feature the areas with the different colors and deliberately shot with a shallow depth of field that causes the edges that are away from the center to be soft and out of focus. I think it worked out pretty well.

I decided to post these images today as a counterbalance to the photograph of a wolf spider that I posted earlier, a kind of “beauty and the beast” set of postings. I am guessing that almost everyone will like at least one of the two postings.

broken tulip

broken tulip

broken tulip

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

Read Full Post »

Need a blast of bright color? Here you go, a shot I took of the inside of a gorgeous red tulip blooming this morning in the garden of my neighbor and photography mentor Cindy Dyer.  This view straight down into the tulip reminds me of the kaleidoscopes that fascinated me endlessly when I was a youth. I managed to frame this shot almost exactly as I had envisioned, so I decided not to crop it at all, which is pretty unusual for me.

tulip

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

Read Full Post »

When you think of a gorgeous tulip, do you have to see it flowering to recall its beauty, or does a mere hint of its future shape and color suffice?

This image is different from my “normal” style of images, which tend to emphasize a kind of detailed realism. It is an almost abstract look at this flower, emphasizing shapes and colors and lines, with a minimum of details. There is an “artsy” side of me that I consider to be underdeveloped. Every now and then that tendency comes to the surface and I’ll step out of my comfortable box and try something a bit different.

tulip

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

Read Full Post »

Do you pass by flowers that are past their prime? Their beauty is still visible in the fragments of their former glory.

tulip_memory2_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

This final image of my mini-series on unopened tulips is my favorite—I love the simple composition, the almost monochromatic palette (with the slightest touch of pink at the tip), and the  sensual curves of the leaves.

It was almost six o’clock in the evening when I took this shot and the light was still pretty strong, but was starting to fade. I knew that I wanted to shoot some close-up shots of flowers, so I was using my 180mm macro lens. I probably should have been using my tripod for increased steadiness, especially because the lens does not have image stabilization (VR for Nikon folks), but I hadn’t brought a tripod with me.

As is often the case with my macro lens, I ended up focusing manually, trying to get as much of the tulip in focus as I could as I carefully composed the shot. The settings for this shot, for those who might be interested in such technical details, were ISO 400, f/8, and 1/50 second. The shutter speed is a bit slow, I’ll admit, but I was able to brace myself pretty well and I was trying to avoid increasing the ISO and introducing more noise.

If you haven’t seen the other images in this mini-series, Anticipation I and Anticipation II, be sure to check them out. Is there one that you like more than the others?

 

IMG_0907 web

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

With the cold, gray days of winter receding in my memory and the world exploding with color, I’ve taken a brief break from focusing primarily on wildlife photography and have turned my attention to capturing the beauty of flowers and blossoms.

I’ve never quite figured out how to photograph broad expanses of color, so I tend to focus more on the details of a single flower and try to isolate it from the background.  (One of my favorite bloggers, Camilla, of Calee Photography did an amazing job in capturing the beauty of tulip fields by photographing them from a small airplane. Check out her posting.)

In this case, my eyes were drawn to the not-yet-open tulip, where the color of the flower was beginning to be revealed. The composition is simple and graphic and a little abstract.

I can already sense the beauty that is to come—the anticipation makes it even more sweet.

IMG_0790 web

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

Anticipation, waiting for the moment when a tulip will burst open. For now, all we can see is a little tongue of color, a foretaste of the beauty that is to come.

Anticipation web

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

This red tulip may have been at its peak a few days ago when it was in full bloom, but it has retained its beauty in its current faded state.

tulip_faded_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

I like backlighting a lot, especially when the light shines through and illuminates beautiful colors, like those of this tulip in a neighbor’s garden.

backlit_tulip1_blog

Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »

Here is a splash of color to start the work week—a close-up shot of the inside of a deep purple tulip called Negrita.  I photographed this flower while visiting an orchid exhibit at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens in Richmond, Virginia this past weekend.

Tulip Negrita

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

Read Full Post »