Photos from winter.
All of these pictures were taken with a broken camera I found in the garbage. The macro photos were shot using a homemade lens, build from the guts of an old Kodak disk film camera, and tuned to focus at 45 millimeters. Most of the macro shots make up my desktop rotation. The panoramic shots were stitched together using Hugin.
The camera was in the trash for a reason, as it was an HP photosmart. It has zero features, but the price was right. There are no moving parts at all, (boo fixed focus, boo fixed aperture) which gives it one redeeming quality: the best battery live of any camera I have ever seen. On the order of four to six months. It will run on batteries other cameras consider completely dead. And power hungry cameras will run fine on its month old batteries. Swapping batteries like this has already saved one vacation, so I won't complain about the camera too much.
Frozen condensation that oozed out of the mulch pile.
Guardians of the Raspberry Patch
This fellow was partially immature, the wings were not yet developed. Much easier to photograph that way.
Never noticed the head knob before.
The Cicada Killer: one of the largest solitary burrowing wasps on the east coast. The wasp will catch a cicada, paralyze it, drag it back to the burrow, and plant an egg in the zombie. The dirt mound in the foreground marks the entrance.
She would not cooperate, and kept lunging at the lens during head-on close ups.
"Mr Frodo! Samwise will save you from the Giant Spider!"
City and Botanical Gardens
Never did find out what the place was.
Delicious macaroons here.
Near the entrance of the China biome, I think.
The Japanese never cease to amaze.
Good train ride to and from, as well.
Random Things in the Yard
Rhododendron and Japanese maple in the background.
The full iridescence of a Metallic Sweat Bee.
Rose of Sharon.
Twenty feet from the back door, or a forested basalt ravine 200 million years ago?
The fruiting spores of moss.
Cliché, but these fellows were practically made to practice macro photography on.
Does not appear in my wildflower book. An invasive?
The flowering head of English Plantain.
This summer there were an abnormal number of bumble bees with wing deformities. This sad lady was the worst of the bunch, with completely clubbed wings. Somehow she managed to climb up into a day lily.
The young flowers of a Virginia Creeper.
A solitary ground bee. The three simple eyes on the top of the head are quite visible.
Right now, just a Northern Brown snake. He's almost 15 inches long, which is at the upper end of full grown. Probably the most harmless and docile reptile I've ever handled.
My hobbies include playing in the dirt and eating worms.