I posted a photo of what most folks probably know as a fiddlehead (a newly-developing, spiral fern frond) or a koru (in New Zealand) in my Isolation Antidotes post #3 three days ago and have had some very nice comments in response. In fact, one of my long-standing blog buddies, Mike Powell, posted a fiddlehead photo of his own yesterday and included a link to mine in his post. His blog (https://michaelqpowell.com), by the way, is really worth a good look and is a great source for a wide variety of excellent nature photos.
The winter of 1998 found me on work assignment in Australia and, the day before I was to fly back home again after a six-week adventure, a friend and I paid a visit to the Botanical Gardens in Canberra, the capital. Many would say that the weather did not cooperate, but I strongly disagree. Yes, it rained fairly heavily and mostly steadily, but we were both well prepared for it, and we helped each other in our photography by taking turns with a large umbrella. Actually, I love photographing in the rain, because I greatly prefer the even, soft light and the natural, gentle saturation of the colors to the harshness engendered by bright sunlight. This particular magnificent specimen was at least four inches (10 cm) across. I’ve been planning to add this image to my new series from the start, but it seems appropriate to move it up to the immediate present. I’ve presented it twice before—once in 2012 and once in 2015—but that, of course, was a whole five years ago, and I feel it’s worth dusting off and bringing to light again, so to speak.
I too love the soft light in, or after, rain. While I couldn’t do it in heavy rain, I learned to hold my umbrella with my chin and shoulder eventually (and held the camera with both hands to steady it).
You would know how harsh our Australian sun is in the warmer months and many a photo gets spoilt by over exposure.
These fiddleheads are a source of fascination with me and I’ve got some shots of my own, but not quite as sharply focused as yours or Mike. I started following his blog 2 days ago and caught his post yesterday.
I think the fascination lies in how the stalk/stem is curled up and the start of multiple fern fronds is hidden in such a small space.
They always remind me of tightly-wound springs ready to snap open any moment. Of course, that’s what they do, but in ultra-slow motion.
I love the way that you captured not only the complex fiddlehead, but also the sea of ferns that surrounded it. All too often I attempt to isolate my subject with my macro or telephoto lens and sometimes that is good, but very often I lose a sense of place, of the environment in which the subject is found. The wonderful saturated green seems to symbolize life, and in the case of the fiddlehead, new life. I love shooting in a gentle rain, but since I am most often shooting on my own, I end up in an awkward dance as I struggle to balance an umbrella and my camera.
I know that dance intimately, Mike. It’s too bad they don’t make those novelty umbrella hats the size of a sombrero. Rain seldom slows me down much, but when it’s combined with gusty wind, that’s another story.
The combination of wind and rain means you have no protection from the elements. There are cameras and lenses that would stand that abuse, but I don’t want to mortgage my house to get them. I looked on Amazon and apparently there is a 36 inch umbrella hat you can get. I doubt it works well, but it exists. :) https://www.amazon.com/Luwint-Diameter-Gardening-Umbrella-Headwear/dp/B013QV0MYS
Can you imagine having an umbrella hat firmly secured to your head when a serious side gust comes along? Personally, I’d rather not, for fear I’d qualify for a Mary Poppins audition.
You wouldn’t need a drone then. :)
Foreground and background playing so well together. I envy you your flora, especially the ferns and tree ferns, and what a lovely image this is. It’s a perfect example of what you said about the light on rainy days. And I like the way it is every inch the artistic image but also serves as a good botanical reference (at least I think it does). :-)
It’s becoming ever more of a challenge to try to get into the really special flora, especially with the travel restrictions and not owning a car here. But it encourages new introspection with the areas that remain available, exploring new parts of the garden, intimate sessions with the little critters so many ignore, and–of course–the ever-present lure of the archives!
Beautiful picture, my friend, and I’m all for posting images more than once. Two things. First, if its not been seen for 5 years (or less, the same), many will welcome seeing it again, it will be fresh. And also, of course, it will be completely new for those who have only more recently followed your blog. Being a maniac and also an ex-data analyst/manager, I’ve set up a spreadsheet that shows the date(s) on which each of my Archive posts previously appeared – well, I know, I don’t get out much … :) …
That’s a really good idea. I haven’t been blogging for as long as you have, and I’m still pretty confident that I can lay my hands, as it were, on anything that I’ve posted within a half minute or so; WP’s really good that way (and so’s my memory, so far). And yes, I completely agree that an old friend has every right to a new outing in the fresh air from time to time!
If you need details of my spreadsheet, let me know. Its very simple. :)
There’s that rule of thirds again—appropriate for a third appearance of the picture.
Third time’s the charm, does no harm, causes no alarm, and feeds my karm(a).
Pretty sure I hadn’t seen it before, much like you and my mushroom, so glad that it is appearing once again. What I especially enjoy is all the little pinna fiddleheads coiled up inside frond. Are those the same species in the background?
Yes, I’m quite sure that they are. And I’m with you on the little korus within the larger one. They also remind me of those party thingies with the feathers on their curled-up ends that you blow into to make them extend and squeak.