As the temperatures hover in the high 90’s, our new meadow continues to display a variety of color. I long to be able to get our among the flowers and become one with my camera and the beautiful blooms. For the next several weeks, I will need to be content with viewing alongside and from above. Patience is not one of my strongest virtues.
The “Eastern Smooth Beardtongue” (Penstemon laevigitus) is one of our garden’s first bloomers. its three foot tall burgundy stems host brilliant white and pink flowers in the middle of the meadow.
Small beautiful vignettes like this help me focus on what is right with this world as I let go of the many difficult things we are all facing. Beauty is all around us, we just need to open our eyes and hearts to recognize it.
Here is to more color in the meadow. This time we’ve added a little orange to the yellow and purple. The patches of color are separate, but gently blend into one another. The yellow provides a little buffer between the orange and the purple. What a summer treat our new meadow brings us.
Clumps of yellow “Red Hot Pokers”. (Kniphofia uvaria) are scattered in several places around the meadow. They are the stars of the current blooming meadow perennials. They stick out like blazing candles on a birthday cake.
This image continues the theme from my previous post. The colors in our new meadow are striking. Adjacent colors were actually laid out using a color wheel. Here, opposite colors were planted next to each other to create the color contrast. Here again Monet’s perspective comes to the rescue.
We just finished carving out and planting a new meadow in the lower section of Heatherwood. The colors are already bursting out for its first summer season. Reds, purples, yellows, blues, oranges, and all different shades of greens are scattered about. We have a lot of bark covered ground showing through most of the areas. It will take a few years for the perennials to fill in. We have patience and are enjoying the individual plants as each one breaks into bloom. Hopefully we will have a flow of changing color throughout the summer and early fall. This is just a start. We will record the activity of the meadow and adjust as we go along. It will also be a “Never Ending Journey.”
I created this image today. It was my first time out photographing since I had my foot operation. I’ve been hobbling around for the past three plus weeks. I still can’t put any weight on my foot, so I got a little creative and hopped on my lawn mower and drove around our new garden meadow. I stopped and recorded many images from above. Getting the best perspective and composition was very difficult, and sometimes impossible. But, I just had to get out with my camera. When I started processing the images, I noticed that they were all a little out of focus. I guess the high frequency vibration of the lawn mower didn’t help my unsteady hand. So, I decided to cheat a little and convert the images into a blurred impressionistic versions. Thank you Topaz!
“A Different Perspective” Yakima Arboretum, Washington
I was a little bored today, so I decided to just play around with some recent infrared images of the Yakima Arboretum. From time to time, I get in a little rut of processing images using my “standard” process. Using advice from Tony Sweet a long, long time ago, when in a rut, try something crazy and different. So I did, using Lightroom, SilverEfex Pro, and Topaz Study, this is today’s result.
It is a pretty spring day here in the Yakima Valley. The cherry trees are out in the Arboretum. I’ve been a little restless so I decided to experiment and play a bit. I shot this with a converted full spectrum IR camera. The colors were a little gaudy. Black and white looked pretty good but I felt like a splash of color. So … I added a little artistic flair to simulate a watercolor painting. So here is something a little different for today. I hope it brightens your day.
A splash of white and pink, Against a sea of red, blue and green, Is a pleasure to be seen!
Clusters of orchids were everywhere. Tourists and other photographers were lined up to get that “perfect” orchid image. I stepped back and walked away when I saw this lone flower standing out all by itself. Behind it several feet, were other blooms and foliage of various colors. I walked around the flower to get an interesting combination of color as a background. I used a wide aperture to separate the flower and blur the background. It looked great on my camera display. I was happy!
But when I got home and viewed the image on a large monitor, I was disappointed. By using a wide aperture and blurring the background, the flower itself was not as sharp as I would like. I could not give up on the image and used a little Topaz Impression to add an artistic perspective.
As I walk around our garden, little pieces of art show themselves to me. Most of the time, I am just wandering when they appear. Something makes me stop and look closer. I imagine how I can best treat the gift appropriately. Sometimes they need to be accurately represented with fine detail. Other times they can be converted into an abstract blur. Still other times they are best processed by photoshop manipulation. This time I used a touch of Photoshop and Topaz Degas adjustments to achieve the end results.
I love to walk in our garden and enjoy all the little gifts that are given to me!