Insects

Bees (Three Photographs)

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There are times when all you have to do is wait and the bees will come to you. I use a flash, but they seem pre-occupied and unaffected by my presence . The difficult part is that often the detail of the bee is lost in the dense black of its colouring, this includes the eyes and sometimes you just have to accept that. By the way this is one of my few bees in flight photos.


Mourning Cloak Butterflies (Three Photographs)

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For the past few years I have posted photographs of mourning cloaks, very often taken on the same two dark wood trees. This trees are not tall but they leak sap. When that happens you could set off fireworks and the butterflies wouldn’t budge. These are the earliest butterflies in the spring and they last into summer, but as you can see they have some wear and tear on their wings indicating age. I have tried in every photograph to capture the checker board eyes. That is easier with my macro kit but unfortunately I did not have it with me for these shots.


Comma Butterfly (Three Photographs)

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Two of these photographs come close to breaking my personal rule of always seeing the eye in the photo. However these comma butterflies are magnificent insects and they show themselves off well, that is if you can spot them. Their camouflage is almost perfect on some trees and leaves.


Bees (three Photographs)

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I am so looking forward to shooting more of these this summer. I haven’t posted these before but they are from one of the best years we had for insects so I had a few left over to process. Bees for the most part are benign, they won’t bother you. The bright light of a flash does not sway them from their task. Unless harassed most species will let you get close enough for a shot. The other thing to remember is you are going to have to significantly crop your images even if you use a micro lens and extension tubes. Bees’ eyes are reflective so they can catch the sun or your flash. They take their time on good flowers and bushes so that helps a lot.


Butterfly (Two Photographs)

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In an earlier post I wrote about framing, here is another example. Basically only the subject is in focus. I prefer the black and white but it works in colour as well. The same effect can be done in post processing by fading around the subject, but it’s never as good as done in camera.


Dragonfly (Two Photographs)

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Dragonflies come in many colours and for the past few years the largest ones have been hard to shoot. The variety here are quite common and are often in “swarms” not a nice word for a spectacular Christmas tree effect. When you see the swarms you know there is an abundance of food which for us humans might mean less mosquitos:). The wings of these insects are amazing and show up well in B&W.


Size (Two Photographs)

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When photographing small things, it important to recall that size is relative. We can say something is small, we know insects are small, but how small. Including indicators in the photograph, things to compare the size of the insect to can be a challenge. Often a flower is a good basis for understanding size or leaving in and not cloning out all the spider webs (things we can see in the photo but cannot see with the naked eye). These give visual clues to size even if not exact. These two butterfliesare not the smallest butterflies but they come close.