Taking a Break

A small, slightly battered butterfly rests on a partially burned log in the woods.

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Nikon D5100 f/11 ISO 400 1/350s Nikkor 55-300@300mm – Summer 2012

One small spot of sunlight picked him out, showing his beauty against the darkness beyond.

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Face Off!

Tiny toad versus butterfly! Who will survive?

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Nikon D5100 f/16 ISO 800 1/180 s Nikkor 55-300@170mm – Summer 2012

Actually, the toad held perfectly still and ignored the butterfly as it walked past, picking up moisture from the mud with its proboscis. The butterfly seemed totally oblivious to the toad (which really resembled at tiny bump of mud)… If it had been a larger toad, I think the butterfly would have become dinner. Maybe.

Just in case the photo doesn’t make it plain, I want to tell you this is a truly tiny toad, around 1/2 inch long!

Silvery Secrets

Multitudes of small, silvery butterflies flutter around these flowers on warm summer days.

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Silvery Flutters - Summer 2011

Until looking at the still images, I was unaware of their secret beauties. The delicate, black and white striped antennae tipped in golden yellow is the most striking hidden feature. I also love their furry little faces and the false eye and face at the other end that might serve to trick predators into attacking a less vulnerable part of their anatomy, hopefully giving them a chance to escape.

I have always loved being out in nature, but the camera both gives me “permission” to spend more time outdoors and also reveals so many lovely little secrets that I couldn’t (or didn’t) spot with my own, “normal” vision. I hope I am becoming more observant and also winning my lifelong fight to grant value to the artistic side of my personality, rather than dismissing it as unuseful or not worthwhile.