Oh, the stories that can be told…


Something different for today; I don’t usually steer my attention away from “nature”. But I find this image rich with story possibilities. From the couple in the foreground to the couple in the background (yes, there are two there), to the graffiti. What story comes to mind? I’d love to hear from you. These un-posed, random moments are incredible when so wonderfully self-composed.

Totally unposed candid image! Belmont Harbor, Chicago. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Patches of blue…


Chicory and Bee. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

The blue blooms of Chicory easily draw attention against the neutral grays of concrete. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Chicory (Cichorium intybus) graces the walls edge along Lincoln Park’s lakefront pathway. I call this plant by its nickname, “Cornflower“. Typical of many plant names both Chicory and Cornflower identify several unique species. Chicory shown here is an invasive Eurasian weed. Its cheerful blue flower is a welcome sight along an otherwise gray-toned location.

Concrete barrier along Lake Michigan serves as a flood wall and walking path in Lincoln Park. Chicory blooms appear frequently along side this pathway. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Attention please…


Photographing the same scene but choosing a different composition guides one to select a different focal point; the main subject matter is changed by the composition choice. The image with the bridge centered leads the eye to the skyscrapers. The image with less skyline reveals that there is a person on the bridge. They are in the first image; but the composition didn’t “lead you” to notice them before.

View of downtown Chicago from Lincoln Park's South Pond. Copyright 2016, Pamela Breitberg

View of downtown Chicago from Lincoln Park’s South Pond. Copyright 2016, Pamela Breitberg

Lincoln Park’s South Pond in Chicago with reflection of skyscrapers in water. Copyright 2016 Pamela Breitberg

Change of subject…


At first my eye was drawn to the opening Purple Coneflower. Newly emerged petals are pale green, which gradually, over several days, turn to pinky-purple when they have grown to their full length. Purple Coneflower are a favorite subject. More images of this returning favorite will follow soon.

Bringing the flower into focus showed me this new bloom had already collected some debris. Upon closer inspection, it became clear the stringy litter was actually the legs of a Daddy Long Legs {Pholcus phalangioides} spider. As a child they were part of summer’s entertainment; watching them climb brick walls was fun and for some reason they were a favorite critter to hold. I am friendly only from a distance with other spiders. Somehow, these Daddys seemed harmless to me. Perhaps my experiences with them as a child served to buffer fears of introducing “Rosey”, the Rosy Haired Tarantula, as a classroom pet.

Perennial favorite Purple Coneflower beginning to bloom. Copyright 2015 Pamela Breitberg

Perennial favorite Purple Coneflower beginning to bloom. Copyright 2015 Pamela Breitberg

Closeup of new Purple Coneflower bloom  accompanied by Daddy Long Leg spider. Copyright 2015, Pamela Breitberg

Closeup of new Purple Coneflower bloom accompanied by Daddy Long Leg spider. Copyright 2015, Pamela Breitberg

Looking at the details…


Nodding Onion copyright 2013 Pamela Breitberg

Nodding Onion copyright 2013 Pamela Breitberg

 

Nodding Onion bloom and bud copyright 2013 Pamela Breitberg

Nodding Onion bloom and bud copyright 2013 Pamela Breitberg

        Revelation is in the detail. Zoom in on each of image and see what more often than not remains unnoticed. Plump balls of morning dew crowd on pedals and stems while stamen and buds appear dry. These blooms nod not because of abundant mass but as an adaptation that helps deter insects while also protecting the nectar from rain. In spite of the incredible dexterity of flying insects most choose not to hang upside down. The bee is the benefactor of this plant’s design, enjoying the protected nectar of Nodding Onion (Allium cernuum) .


These images are busier in composition than I prefer; too many lines and no real focal point that makes the subject easily understood. The thin grass leaves are echoed by the long thin pedicels holding each flower. Only the change in color from green to pinkish white and the spherical cluster of blooms draw one’s eye to this plant. Yet, like the prairie, taking a close look at each image is time well spent.