Thursday, July 28, 2011

Back Roads

This afternoon I drove North into the hills...
It was very humid walking around the meadows and forests, but worth it. There is going to be a load of blackberries this year. I had a great snack as I walked along.
Many butterflies and other insects filled the meadows. Wildflowers everywhere and staghorn and smooth sumac. 

 I seen many monarchs flying around this afternoon.
I really enjoyed exploring the new found meadows and the back roads today.
 Forest Opening/Small Meadow
Country Road

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Green frog...

This green frog proved to be a challenge to get a shot of.
Yesterday I went to explore a new place that I have not been to in years. I found this cool water hole in a swamp that was loaded with mosquito's. I thought I had plenty of bug spray on, but they still tried to bite. Anyways I moved in slowly so I would not scare the frog away. It was muddy and it really smelled the closer I got. I lowered my tripod to ground level and started to shoot. I was able to get about 20 images when I made a wrong move and ended up in the water. Camera gear was fine, but my leg and boot were soaked in mud and other stuff. I guess it was to much for the frog and it dove under the water only to come up further in the middle. I was not going to wade in this mucky water. It was leech I just headed on down the trail. The deer flies were even worse than the mosquito's. At least I came home with some nice images.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Just Plain Awesome!

This is just plain awesome!
There is a pair of Twelve Spotted Skimmers that have been hanging around my garden and ponds. I knew I could get some shots of them using my 300mm. I have taken many over the last few days, but today this Male was kind enough to let me get close enough to use my macro lens. As I worked my way close I became very frustrated with the gnats buzzing my head. As I sat down he flew up and grabbed one right next to my ear. He then flew right back and landed on the perch he was using. I was now less than a foot away and began shooting. I moved in slowly and carefully and was at the end of the focusing range..only inches away. Suddenly he flew up and grabbed another one and landed on my head. I froze and he flew off back to his perch. It was than I noticed something on his leg. When I uploaded the images...I discovered it was a strand of my hair. I guess I'm loosing my hair in my old age....LOL. Anyways, he stayed there for about 20 minutes flying back and forth grabbing gnats from around my head. He landed on my arm once, but not for very long.
So it has been a very good afternoon. 

 Notice the strand of hair

Monday, July 18, 2011

What does it mean?

What does photography mean to me?
I have given this some thought and it hit me today...
What it means to me is that I can share with others what I see through my eyes and lens. I don't care if it is perfect, because we live in a not so perfect world. Just sharing with others, images of the beauty that surrounds us is why I enjoy photography. So many things that we pass by everyday that holds some sort of beauty. I'm not out to try to impress people with my photos, but to share how I feel and what I see. Everyone sees different and has different thoughts about photography. It becomes so confusing sometimes...just in the last couple of days I realized that I am trying to hard to  "Make" an image that I have lost the real reason I am doing this. After uploading the images and looking at them I noticed a big change. So I'm going to pursue this new discovery and see how it goes. I'm not perfect and my photography is not perfect, but at least I am enjoying something that means so much to me.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Butterflies and Grasshopper Love

Been a great day! Lots of great images and many more to edit. Spent the morning and early afternoon in the meadow. Kind of warm, but well worth it. The meadow is alive and so beautiful.
I ended my day by going down to the pond and taking sunset photos and just enjoying the view. It's the weekend so lot's of people around.
 Painted Lady enjoying shade under a fern.
 Meadow in full bloom.
 Painted Lady
 Painted Lady
 Grasshopper Love
Mio Pond Sunset

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Perfect Day!

Spent the better half of the day in the meadow. many butterflies, dragonflies and other insects flying. Many wildflowers in was perfect. I was able to photograph this mating pair of...
Aphrodite Fritillaries (Speyeria aphodite)

Not only was I able to photograph this species, but the one I was after for a few days finally let me get close. Close enough to use my macro lens. I found a spot where the butterflies where gathering and enjoying some kind of minerals. Must have been 30 or more feeding. I carefully crawled up to them and laid there and filled 2 0f my 4 gig memory cards up. I am so glad it was a hazy to partly overcast sky. The lighting was perfect for today's trip to the meadow. I guess good things come to those who wait.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Chasing Butterflies

Today has been one of those days that are few and far between.
The last couple days I have been trying to get some photos of this hairstreak that has been eluding me.This morning I spotted it, but before I could even get close enough it flew away. I searched and searched, but no luck. I did see others, but they were just as fast. I think they were playing a game with me. So I came home and went back late this afternoon and had luck. After uploading all the images I took today...I can safely say I will be editing for the next month. I reviewed them quickly and I have many wonderful images. I'm so tired out that I passed up a great sunset tonight.

Coral Hairstreak - Satyrium titus
This is a new species that I can add to my life list. 
Painted Lady

Monday, July 11, 2011

Still Humid

I made it to the meadows for about and hour today. I went just to see if I cold get a few shots of this hairstreak I have been after. I seen three, but was unable to get any photos. I did however get a shot of this...
Twelve-spotted Skimmer
(Immature Male)

I'm planning on going back in the morning...should be a cooler day.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Way to Humid...

I was out to the meadow for only a very short time this morning. It was just way to humid and with the sun beating down made for a not so fun time. Harsh lighting also, so I gave up and went home. I did however get a few shots of this beautiful Square-stemmed Monkey-flower. This is the first time I have ever seen this species and it is really cool looking. I'm going to try to get back out there maybe tomorrow afternoon...if it is not so hot. The wild bergamot is starting to bloom and by the looks of it will cover the meadow.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Mud Puddle

Yesterday afternoon I explored a new area. Not far from the meadow is a recent clear cut. Most of the trees have started growing again and it is really thick. As I was following the old logging road I found three green frogs sitting in a mud puddle. At first I tried to get close using my macro lens, but they would not allow me to get close. So I used my 300mm with an extension tube. I laid down in the mud and started shooting. The light was harsh, but the puddle was shaded by the trees. I still had some harsh lighting to deal with so I moved around till I got the best lighting I could. The mosquito's were very thick, but with bug spray on they seemed to leave me alone. The frog was the target of some of the mosquito's. I spent one hour watching and photographing these three frogs. It was enjoyable watching them, but afterwards I looked a mess. My white shirt was covered in mud and I smelled even worse. I guess this just adds to the enjoyment of photography.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Long Hot Day!

Let's see...where to begin?
This morning I went to explore a new place and it was great. Two frog species...many dragonflies and wildflowers. It also was hot and very humid. The ride home really tired me out, but at least I am loosing weight and it feels good. I have so many images to edit that it will take me weeks to sort through them. I have the moth sheet up and lights I don't see much editing getting done tonight. Here are a few dragonfly photos I shot last evening.
 Eastern pond Hawk Male
 Eastern Pond Hawk Female
 Dusky-clubtail Female
Dot-tailed White Faced Female

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Wonderful day!

I was bale to go to the meadows twice today. Once this morning and than late this afternoon. Both times were rewarding. Many dragonflies, only spotted a few butterflies. Lots of wildflowers blooming and soon the meadow will be covered in summer flowers. Both time sit was very hot, but it was worth enduring the heat. Drank plenty of water and used lots of bug spray.
Twelve-spotted Skimmer - Libellula pulchella - Male
Banded Hairstreak

Sunday, July 3, 2011


Been staying around the house for the last few days. To much traffic and people to be out in the meadows and woods. I like to keep the places I go peaceful and really don't like it when someone sees me taking photos and stops and starts to ask questions and than later find out they picked the flowers or disturbed the subject I was shooting. To many people from the big cities think they can pick and take from the woods. So staying home till after the big holiday weekend is over. Plenty of subjects in my garden to photograph.
 Banded Hairstreak
 Red Poppy
Banded Hairstreak