Portraits of Nature
I would not call myself a nature photographer by any means. When I do shoot outdoor scenes, it is usually not to showcase nature (or my mediocre skills and equipment) but to call attention to the patterns and arrangements I see. Here are some examples, taken from 2006 onward. Compiling these images, I was surprised to find how often I shoot nature in portrait mode. Well, so be it.
I only wish I could share 24-inch x 36-inch prints with you, instead of these 600-pixel wannabes.
• Toadshade Trillium — Asheville, NC (2022). The Botanical Gardens at UNCA Asheville are wonderful. The setting feels so natural, one can imagine that these plants somehow found their way there, then thrived and multiplied all by themselves. I don’t know how much human intervention is needed — my hope is that it is minimal, but my experience says that it is more than one might guess.
• Buttonbush Flower — Pisgah Forest, NC (2007). The Cradle of Forestry has always been one of our favorite, easy nature walks.
• Tower of Rhododendrons — Pisgah Forest, NC (2007). Another beautiful scene from the Cradle of Forestry. The rhododendrons bloom in late June in these parts.
• Bark Crack Network — Great Smoky Mountains National Park, NC (2006). I have probably taken enough tree bark photographs to fill a mulch yard, where the majority of them no doubt belong.
• Hickory Nut Falls — Chimney Rock, NC (2006). The creek that falls 404 feet here is named, unimaginatively, Fall Creek.
• Tree in Craggy Gardens — Black Mountain, NC (2012). An appreciation of a rugged survivalist.
• Sails on Stems — Asheville, NC (2022). Another lifeform in the Asheville Botanical Gardens. If someone knows its name, please reply.
• White Trillium — Asheville, NC (2022). Nature likes threes.
• Frosty Lamb’s Ear — Asheville, NC (2006). Probably the “Silver Carpet” variety, Stachys byzantina, a member of the mint family.
• On Frozen Pond — Flat Rock, NC (2007). An oak leaf frozen into the surface of a pond at Carl Sandburg’s farm.
• Early Riser — Ottawa, Canada (2013). Tulips in a bed on Parliament Hill.
• Tangle — Bent Creek, NC (2022). Rhododendron branches at the NC Arboretum near Asheville.
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