Helene Grogan

Nature Writing and Photography

Words and Pictures

Moving Toward a New Season

It's early September, and while it isn't technically autumn yet, we are already seeing signs of the season's change. This week has gotten hot again, but at the same time, some early leaves have started falling from the trees, and in the meadow everything has gone to seed.

Tags : photography

After the Rain, the Photos

It rained off and on this past weekend, and I wandered outside after one of these showers passed by yesterday. I like to catch the little details sometimes, and what caught my eye this time were all the little water droplets clinging to the clover. So I got down close to the nearest patch of clover with my macro lens on.

And when I straightened up, I realized I wasn't the only one out there among the raindrops and flowers...

Tags : photography

Deep Blue Waters

I like photographing bodies of water, and while I usually like to show at least one edge where the water meets the land, sometimes there is just something eye-catching about the color and texture of the water itself. So here are two closeups of water, all by itself. :)

Tags : photography

Ethereal Blue Damselfly

I always worry, when I have the macro lens attached to my camera, that something big is going to happen -- a hawk will perch nearby, or a bear will amble out of the woods -- and I'll miss the picture because I've got the wrong lens on. But sometimes, I'm fortunate enough to have the opposite thing happen. This afternoon I stopped by a field of Queen Anne's lace, trying to get a good close up shot of their clusters of white blossoms, and a delicate, electric blue damselfly drifted slowly toward the camera. It's amazing to me how something so brightly colored can still look so ethereal, but damselflies manage to do it!

Tags : photography

Fluffy Fledgling Yellowthroat

Last week, a common yellowthroat chick left its nest in our sprawling multiflora rose bush and made its first flight. It landed right on some purple hostas, making for a wondeful photo opportunity. After the first flight, though, it didn't seem to know quite what to do, and stayed in place for a while, crying to be fed. Eventually it made its way into the equally sprawling forsythia bush across the yard, where both of its parents showed up -- the father perched nearby for moral support, and the mother brought a plump caterpillar. Yellowthroats for the parenting win!

Tags : photography

Color and Texture

I love dragonflies. I was standing outside by a patch of red bee balm, waiting for the hummingbirds (who can never stay away from it for long), but found my attention captured instead by a pair of red dragonflies that kept lifting off and resettling on the ends of slender branches. I particularly like the way this picture came out, with so much detail in each wing (and look at that segmented tail!) but also the gleaming highlights where the wings catch the light.

Tags : photography

Summer Days

I love the colors of summer. Right now we have orange daylilies in bright profusion, and a small but fluffy crop of Queen-of-the-Prairie -- or as I like to call them, Pink Cotton Candy. :) The combination of pink and orange in one flowerbed is really very striking, especially when you add a yellow tiger swallowtail butterfly to the mix! (I'm still working on getting a picture of that, though.)

Tags : photography

Ah, Refreshing

I have gotten used to seeing some pretty, er, wild things around my house -- it sometimes makes it hard to leave, as I mentioned in my last post involving a bear. But I did not expect to look out and see two bears yesterday, one of which decided to wade right out into the pond while looking up at me.

Personally, I think he looks like a big Rottweiler in that picture. And then he turns his head...

He finally got tired of me snapping pictures (plus at this point my dog had finally noticed him and was barking enough to warn the next town). Time to get out of the pool!

Tags : photography