Friday, March 18, 2011

Chicago Flower and Garden Show - 3.06.11 - Post 3/3

So this is my last post on the flower show.  Just a few more shots I thought were interesting but didn't fit into my other themes.

The Geometry of Plants
 Fun with macros/Annoyance with macros.  I really wanted to get both of these cactus 'fingers' in focus, but my camera was having none of it.  Even on manual-focus.  I could get one or the other, but not both.  This may have had to do with the limited options I have for focal length when shooting in macro.  I also wonder if I had known then what I learned last week about spot-metering if I could have gotten them to both look better. As you can see, despite being two parts of one plant, the lighting on each was different.  That was how bad the lighting was at this place.  All that said, there are some very cool aspects of this shot.  Look at the piece in focus.  I love the geometric pattern the spines make as your eyes travel from the far left edge up the cactus.  There's hexagons and triangles and rhombi.  I love it.  This is when macro photography is fun.

Jewelweed in Ruby and Emerald
These jewelweed leaves were gorgeous but I'm learning that Red is Hard.  On my LCD screen, on my computer screen... red is hard to reproduce.  This is as close as I could get, and my mind's eye still tells me it's not saturated enough, but when I try to turn up the saturation, even a little, the red becomes magenta and that's not right either.
Arctur African Attempts to Stretch

 My awesome little daisies again.  These are African daisies and I find it amazing how many varieties of African daisies there are out there - all of these have white petals and purple centers.  My best guess, given the pointed petals is that this is an Arctur African Daisy.  But if someone out there is a better horticulturist, feel free to correct me.

Pretty, Purple and a Total Mystery.
I have no earthly clue what these are, but they're really pretty.  Like I said in an earlier post, very few flowers in the show beds were actually labeled.  And because these are cultured flowers, I can't even use my normal tricks of looking for websites that feature the wildflowers of a given area and then look at everything in the 'purple' category.  I can't even use the identifier programs because they want things like native location and when they bloom.  Guess what?  Who knows?  It was an indoor show where the flowers were forced, so... *shrug*  If you've got an idea, please holler!

Shades of Blue
These are blue hyacinth.  The blue can be seen best where the flower attaches to the stem.  They're bulb flowers like tulips and daffodils, but have many flowers on a stalk, which always makes me think they're something else.
On First Reflection

And, of course, my (sort of) first water lily of the year.  Water lilies are one of my favorite flowers.  I only count this as 'sort of' because it's in a garden show.  But I suspect that when I start getting out the the Lincoln Park Lily Pond in the next month or so or the Botanical Garden when the tulips start coming up, I'll start finding some that are working their natural cycle.

Okay, that's it for that show.  Last week I was in Nashville, Tennessee and we took my 15 month old nephew to the zoo.  Nashville, like most other zoos, has some brilliant set-ups for some of their animals - like the outdoor meerkat exhibit with a cluster of babies! - and some that are just awful and unshootable - like the red panda who spent most of her time pressed up against the corner of the glass grooming.  Those shots and a discussion of metering coming soon!

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