“Floral Summer”

This summer has been a floral summer for me. Instead of the traveling I usually do, I’ve ended up spending much more time with garden flowers, and trips to botanical gardens. Here are just a few of the images I’ve taken recently. A little summer color for you!! Enjoy 🙂

"Zinnia Orange King" A Stunning deep orange hued Zinnia!!
“Zinnia Orange King”
A Stunning deep orange hued Zinnia!!
"Summer Tiger Lily" Also known as Day Lily, Tawny Lily, and Ditch Lily.
“Summer Tiger Lily”
Also known as Day Lily, Tawny Lily, and Ditch Lily.
"Sangria" A Rose among many colorful flowers!!
A Rose among many colorful flowers!!
An imperfect Marigold in lovely morning sunlight and dew!!
An imperfect Marigold in lovely morning sunlight and dew!!

“Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Bloom”

The Matthaei Botanical Gardens are part of the University of Michigan system located in Ann Arbor Michigan. They contain beautiful botanical gardens, lovely wooded and open natural areas with loads of trails, wetlands and also several habitat areas for research. There is also a conservatory which is open all year round. Which we certainly need here in Michigan!

During the summer months though, everything comes to life in vibrant color!

I originally planned to talk about the many varieties of plants and flowers in this post, some wild, others cultivated. Instead I decided do that in another post, especially with the large amount of images I made.

When I began processing some of the many images from the gardens, I felt compelled to work on these that you see here, first.

Let’s start with the physical entrance to the main flower garden. A beautiful metal gate. I have photographed it previously, but this time I decided to take only a part of it. Instead of the focus being on the gardens behind it, the focus shifts to the gate itself with only a reference to what lies beyond.

Also while processing just a few of the images, they seemed more abstract in nature. Very colorful, lots of bokeh. Some peaceful, some even a bit chaotic.

I tried to get an ID on the maroon colored flower, and wasn’t able to. There were no markings there as to what it was, and after many Google searches I finally gave up. If anyone has an idea I’d be happy to hear it!

So for now enter here at the metal gate, and take a different look at this main garden which is brimming with summertime color. We’ll start with just a few images today.


"Through the Garden Gate"
“Through the Garden Gate”

-Purple Coneflower Dream-  800x600
“Purple Coneflower Dream”

"Illumination in Yellow"
“Illumination in Yellow”
"Sunlight on Maroon"
“Sunlight on Maroon”

“The Scent of Spring”

Although I know that not everyone who reads this is in the deep endless cold, wind, and snow of winter. I can venture to guess that many of you are!

I am one of those who actually looks forward to, and loves winter. The season offers its own beauty and the fun of winter sports. This year though we seem to be having an extra large dose of the cold stuff. The Polar Vortex, and many clippers have given many of us some of the most difficult weather in a few decades!

To help you out of winter dreariness and blues I give you two of my recently processed images. Peonies! One in a vibrant flaming fuchsia, and the other a soft creamy white!

In early June here, depending on the weather these beauties burst forth in many varieties and colors. The blossoms only last for a couple of weeks, but it’s something myself and many others wait anxiously for! It is time I feel is well spent both enjoying and photographing these gifts of late spring!

I am not well versed on the exact varieties. I just enjoy them for what they are. Pure loveliness!

If anyone knows the specifics, feel free to let me know. If not, then just enjoy this pure peony love!

"Peony Flame"
“Peony Flame”
"Peonies in White"
“Peonies in White”

“Raindrops on Springtime”

As you can see, I’m still trying to get in some more spring images before fall arrives, and being that it is now September 1st, well it’s certainly on our doorstep!!

In May, I found large areas of beautiful bright pink Azaleas in Virginia. This day happened to be a rainy one, which played really nicely with the flowers.

For the most part I’ve been processing them in color, but I decided to do one in monochrome. This one was processed first in Lightroom, then in Nik Silver Efex Pro.

There isn’t a lot of contrast here, but I like the tone on tone look to it. When adding more contrast, it seemed to detract somehow from the flowers themselves.

Take a look, and see how you like it!! 🙂

-Raindrops on Springtime- mono

“Cascading White” B&W

While doing some botanical photography recently I took a quick stop at the orchid section of the conservatory before heading to the desert climate area for some succulent images.
I thought I’d like to process these orchids in a strictly black and white form, giving them more of a contrast. They really came out with what I feel is a contrast of darkness and light in a very literal sense!
On 500px I uploaded a very similar image, although not the same one, but in color if you’d like to take a look at that.
So if you’re having a dark and rainy today like we are, and want some some black and white drama, here’s the image for you. All we need is a little thunder and lightening to go with it! 😉

 Orchids in monochrome

Orchids in monochrome

“Sparkling Orange”

I guess I’m switching gears so to speak from auto photos, back to nature! 🙂 I’m in the middle of processing wayyyy to many photos from the auto show, so I thought I’d bring us back to nature tonight. To a little bright and lively color!

An orange and creamy white Amaryllis in full bloom. This is one of many images from a conservatory that was featuring many types of Amaryllis at the time. These are bulb flowers, and make a great showing during the winter here. Inside of course! 😉

Just think, it probably won’t be too many more months till we can all get outside again, and drink in the beauty of the earth, and all it has to offer! 🙂

For now though, we shall be satisfied with whatever we can find of beauty, or interest and In truth all we need to do is look, and we’ll find something wonderful that grabs our attention and then we can’t resist the urge to get out the camera, and have some fun!!

I’m sure I’m not alone in that sentiment! 🙂

Brilliant Orange and cream Amaryllis!!
Brilliant Orange and cream Amaryllis!!

“Sun Flare” 2

Well, I thought we may need a bit of sunshine today, left over from last summer’s flowers! I don’t know about your location, but it’s cold and rainy here, and has been cloudy for a good long while!
Last summer the flowers in our local botanical garden weren’t as abundant as usual because of the severe drought, but despite that, some hearty survivors gave a good show!
This is some type of sunflower. These seem to range in color from reds to yellows. With brown, mahogany or dark purple centers, and can tolerate dry soil, and drought! Thankfully!!
I hope this brightens your day if you too are having a dark and rainy day! 🙂

A bit of sunshine on a dreary day!
A bit of sunshine on a dreary day!