Capturing this photograph gave me no end of satisfaction. It was a very small flower (< 5mm diameter) to work with and it was a windy day and getting focus and framing right using increased magnification from extension tube attachments on the lens was a challenge. Finally getting the black background using a remote flash was also difficult. In the end, the results showed a beautiful, almost hand painted flower with flecks of yellow, magenta and crimson on the petals. There is truly beauty in small things!!
Nikon D7000 with a 105mm Sigma macro lens with extension tubes.
One thing they teach in school biology is the concept of food chains and food webs – the links that show interdependence of organisms based on the foods they eat. The photo below shows one such food chain starting with the rose (the producer) providing nourishment in the form of sap for aphids. In turn aphids are milked by ants for honeydew, a secretion that aphids produce. Ants are also known to “farm” aphids storing their eggs over winter and then carrying newly hatched aphids to emerging plant shoots in spring (called a mutualistic relationship).
Nikon D7000 with a 105mm Sigma f/2.8 macro lens
ISO200, f/22, 1/60 with remote slave flash to give a natural black background
This year has been very good for the aquilegia plants growing in my garden. This must have something to do with the mild wet winter we’ve just had here in Cambridge. Below is a photograph of a single aquilegia flower. These hardy, and highly toxic perennials also go by the names Columbine ( which comes from the Latin for “dove”, due to their resemblance to five doves clustered together – Wikipedia).
Nikon D7000 with 105mm f/2.8 Sigma macro lens
f/22, 1/60 with remote slave flash fired from underneath
Processed in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and NIK Color Efex Pro.
In a German legend, when god had finished naming all plants, a small unnamed plant cried out “Forget-me-not, my lord”. Then god said “That shall be your name”. Another legend claims that after the Creator thought he had finished giving the flowers their colours, he heard one whisper “Forget me not!” There was nothing left but a very small amount of blue, but the forget-me-not was delighted to wear such a light blue shade.
The tiny, cheerful blue flowers of Myosotis have played an important part in European folklore and history – from being used as a symbol by Henry Bolingbroke (later Henry IV) after being exiled by Richard II to its adoption by the Freemasons during the Nazi regime across Europe. The flowers of forget-me-not are no more than 1cm in diameter and grow in long thin stalks bearing many flowers. They are popular in gardens and grow on the side of river banks and streams throughout Europe.
Nikon D7000 camera with a 105mm macro lens with extension tubes
ISO 200, f/18, 1/250 with external remote slave flash
For all the beauty and colour of the strawberry fruit, the Fragaria blossoms are small, white flowers with a yellow centre (about a centimetre across). The following photo is of a wild strawberry flower shot with a macro lens with extension tube attachments (hence extreme macro). Strawberries below to the rose family and have 5 sepals, 5 petals and many stamens arranged spherically.
Click on the photo for a larger version on Flickr.