April 24 - South Mountain Park / Phoenix

I'm in Scottsdale for business, but being on a business trip doesn't mean you can't have a little fun while you're in the area! So I hauled a few bits of my camera bag and a tripod along with me and made a quick trip down towards the South end of Phoenix to watch the sun set. There's a mountain park there with several observation areas. I got there slightly too late to watch the sun set, but there were some good colors left on the horizon long afterwards.

This is a stitched image from three negatives taken with a tilt /shift lens (and looking at it closely, it looks like one of the seams are showing, so I'll have to go back and do some more work!).

After it got darker, the color wasn't as interesting, so I developed this picture as a black and white. This is the small building at the observation area.

April 22 - Broadwater Hollow

The camera club took a trip to Arkansas today to hunt for waterfalls. Broadwater Hollow is a familiar place to me, as is the surrounding area. Nearby Cecil Cove is a favorite hiking place, and is in the Ponca Wilderness Area - also one of my favorites.

I decided to get up pretty early to get into Broadwater Hollow before light started hitting the water, and I was in place and shooting by 6:00am - just as it was getting light enough to see without a flashlight. It was a lot of fun scrambling around the rocks, trying to get into a good position for a picture or two.

I started at the top of the falls and used a special Blue and Gold filter that can do some interesting things with water...

The next two are of the larger falls. Broadwater is a series of interesting little falls with one nice sized one, though small by comparison to other Arkansas Falls. Not too far beyond this point the creek disappears entirely into a sinkhole and standing on top of this sinkhole you can hear the creek running many feet below - I hear it runs into an underground lake at some point.

April 19 - Springfield MO

I went out briefly tonight near dark on my Uncle's property north of Springfield to see what was blooming. It was a pretty nice night for photography with nearly no wind, though the pollen count was pretty high and I sneezed quite a lot.

First up was a dogwood tree - something I've always struggled to photograph justly.

Not too far away, I found a patch of May Apples. These are plants I've always loved, the shape of the plant, the flowers, the fruit - all really cool!

I was surprised to find a Shooting Star, but it's another of my favorites. If you look really closely, you'll see a tiny worm on the stem between the petals. I think he was jumping up and down because I had a really hard time getting the plant to stay still long enough to photograph.

April 16 - Yard Flowers

Both of these flowers were found at ground level in several back yards of places in which I found myself this weekend.

The first, a Grape Hyacinth, is from Springfield. Beautiful little "grapes" on these guys.

And the second, a Bleeding Heart, is from Illinois. I've seen these many times in books, but have never had the chance to photograph them in the wild and was very appreciative of the opportunity to see them today. I love these interesting flowers!

April 8 - McCraw's Ford

The camera club took a trip to a nearby location to snap a few pictures of wildflowers. I didn't have a lot of time to shoot since I had commitments out of town. But here are a few of the pictures...

lots of bluebells!

and a Dogtooth Violet.

April 1 - Busiek State Forest

I went out twice today to take pictures. The first trip was to Mt. Vernon Prairie (unsurprisingly, just North of Mt. Vernon), but didn't find the circumstances very conducive to wildflower photography - just not enough flowers. So, after several hours, I gave up and headed home.

The next stop, later in the afternoon, was to Busiek S.F. It had just rained, so everything was slightly damp (delightfully so).

The dark skys were moving out of the area when I arrived, but there was just enough clouds left aroound to make this sycamore pretty interesting.

It wasn't a very long before I started seeing wildflowers in abundance! Some of my all-time favorites were there including this Purple Trillium.

These next two are of an unknown (to me, anyway - I've tried to ID it from my reference material, but have had no luck so far), but ir ended up being very attractive.

And then there's the gaggle of Dutchmen's Britches. I don't think I've ever seen quite so many flowers bunched together! One of my favorites!