Today's photos have been digitally enhanced and must be rightly referred to as digital art. They were all taken at Old Orchard Beach, Maine last fall. I wanted to create images with more texture and depth of color than the original photos to give you a feel for the natural elements in the photos.
Today's photo is the striking ranunculus flower in bloom. This often overlooked beauty produces blooms that look remarkably like roses, but the petals are glossier and have more intense color. They belong to the same family of flowers as buttercups and have the same silky petals.
Ranunculus flowers come in a variety of colors from brilliant yellow and orange to shades of pink, white and red.
Today's photo is a garden or flower fairy. According to FlowerFairies.com, these magical fairies live in treetops, along the forest floor and in gardens. They are the keepers of flowers and are in charge of taking care of their own flower or plant.
You may spot one perched on the branch of a tree or nestled among the leaves. Sometimes, they sit among the flowers.
But beware! You can only see flower fairies if you believe in them.
According to Maine Garden Ideas, there are several times a day when you are more likely to observe fairies, such as early morning before the dew dries, in the early evening when the sun's rays cast soft shadows and during the light of the moon.
Today's photos are of the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes). I encountered this lovely little fox on the way to a flower show. It was trotting along the side of the road. Although it kept its distance, it did allow me to take photos from an open window in the vehicle. He is looking down at a little stream in the distance.
Red foxes vary in color from yellowish-red to deep red-brown with many shades in between. This fox had a golden sheen to the coat.
The red fox is common in Maine, but they aren't typically quite as friendly as this one. I usually see them as they dash through the yard in chase of a rabbit. This fox stopped and looked at me as if to ask what I was doing.
This is the same fox. He looks longer and sleeker in this photo as he carefully makes his way through the tall grass. He looks more like the sly fox of storybooks in this shot.
This photo was taken out the window, but the mirror was in the way, causing his legs and underside to blur and discolor. I decided to get creative with the shot and add a background as I really liked the fox's face and head in this photo.
I got tired of waiting for the snow to melt and flowers to arrive, so I took my little garden fairy outside for some fresh air and sunshine. I think she made an excellent model and gave me the opportunity to get in a little practice with the camera. I love the light and shadows in the snow in this photo.
Taking a little break on the garden bench.
Posing pretty atop a plant stand.
She reminded me that photography doesn't always need to be about capturing a quick moment in time or shooting that elusive butterfly. Sometimes, photography is just pure fun. I hope you enjoyed the photos today.
Thanks for stopping by!
Today's photo is of Mt. Katahdin at sunset. It was taken two summer's ago in late July. You have probably seen photos of Katahdin in shades of blue with striking white caps, but it doesn't always look like that.
The color of the mountain changes with the seasons and with the time of day. Sometimes it is so pale that all you can see is a vague outline where the mountain meets the sky. Sometimes, at sunset, the mountain transforms to glorious shades of purple and violet.
Whatever its color, Mt. Katahdin is always beautiful as it stands guard over the land.
Today's image was/is Easter inspired. Although we don't have daffodils in bloom here in Maine, yet, I used my photos from last spring to create the heart of daffodils. Which started me thinking about why daffodils are so common in Easter photos and on Easter cards. I assumed it was because they are one of the first flowers to bloom in the spring and are usually in bloom for Easter. With a little digging, I discovered there is more to the story.
Symbolism of Daffodils
Sunny yellow daffodils have long been a symbol of rebirth and new beginnings since ancient times as they typically bloom near the Spring Equinox. This leads to their association with Easter, the Christian celebration of new life in Christ.
Lent or Lenten Lily
Legend has it that the daffodil bloomed for the first time during the Last Supper to bring comfort to Christ. Some churches associate the daffodil with the 40 Days of Lent. Many in the UK refer to the daffodil as a Lent or Lenten Lily.
Whatever you call them, daffodils bring a splash of color to the landscape after months of ice and snow. They are thought to bring good luck and symbolize love, respect and high regards.
Today's image is a composite of photos done in Photoshop. Each flower, fern and leaf was taken from one of my photos (except for the borrowed blue flowers and butterfly) and added individually to the image.
Here is the same image given a little texture using the online photo editor Lunapic. I hope you enjoyed my work today.
Today's photo is the backside of a dandelion head that has gone to seed. I took this shot because I thought it would be interesting to see a photo from a different perspective and I wasn't disappointed. I also liked the white seed umbrellas against the grey background, enhancing its soft, fluffy appearance.
What Makes the Fluffy Seed Head?
Dandelion seeds are designed for wind dispersal. The tiny seeds in the center of the puffy ball are attached to the base of the flower. A thin, umbrella-like structure connects the seed to the fluffy hairs on the end. When a gust of wind contacts the seed head the tiny hairs work like an parachute and take flight carrying the dandelion seed with them. They float in the wind until they touchdown and germinate to create a new dandelion plant.
How Did It Get the Name Dandelion Clock?
The dandelion seed head is also known as a dandelion clock. It got this name from the ancient legend that if you blow on the seed head to blow away the seeds the number of seeds that remain represent the number of years you have left to live.
Today's photo is a bee on Lupines. I originally thought it was a honey bee until I saw the backside of the abdomen. It appears this bee is actually a species of cellophane or polyester bee. To learn more about these amazing bees, check out my post on Maine Garden Ideas.
This photo was edited in Lightroom and Photoshop to bring out the colors of both the flowers and the bee. It is a little different than some of my photos, like my wildflower photos, because I was more interested in bringing out the beauty of the image than highlighting the details of the bee and the flowers. It gave this a softer look that I really like.
As a photographer, I find myself walking a thin line when it comes to editing nature photos. For some, accuracy in color and detail is vital, while at other times creating an aesthetically pleasing image is more important. Although I did not drastically change the color of either the Lupine or the bee, I did use highlights and shadows to emphasize the areas I found most interesting.
Here's the same image with some textures added and given a Museum frame. If you are an aspiring photographer, don't be afraid to play with different programs and try different styles until you find something you like. The textures and frame in the above photo were done with a free online program called ipiccy. You can also create some interesting effects with the free online photo editing program Lunapic. (Check out the famous artworks filters, but don't forget to slide the slider to the left to decrease the effect and hit "adjust" before saving the image.)