Monthly Archives: December 2022

Wrapping up the Year: Flower Close-Ups

White Anemone © Harold Davis

Heading into a new year, I always like to look back through my photography of the waning year to see what I might have overlooked. Here are a few candidates in the “flower: close-ups” category. 

Best wishes to all for a great 2023!

Poppy in Pink © Harold Davis

All things must pass © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

My parents soon after they met

This is a photo of my parents, Martin and Virginia, taken soon after they met, probably in 1952 or 1953, and most likely on the campus of the University of Illinois in Champagn-Urbana, where my Dad had his first post-doctorate teaching assignment.

My parents soon after they met © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Wishing you joy and light this holiday season!

Posted in Photography

Harold Davis—Best of 2022

2022—another “interesting” year! Travel brought me to Maine, Colorado, France (twice, once in the spring and once in the autumn), Spain, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy. Professional highlights included the publication of Composition & Photography, seeing my work as U.S. Postage stamps, and receiving the PSA Progress Award. Many flowers were photographed!

I’ve been making my “personal choice” best-of selections for many years, going back to 2013. These selections can be found here. My choices are idiosyncratic, based on no discernible criteria whatsoever, and simply are my personal taste. These selections are by no means complete. A more thorough catalog of my work can be found on Flickr, Instagram, and on my blog (but many of my images never get blogged even if I like them).

Starting in January, 2022, with Purple Tulip, I used my macro probe lens placed inside the outer petals of the floral blossom. Read more.

Purple Tulip © Harold Davis

Petal Dancer made me laugh, because the composition of this partially dried flower petal seems to resemble a high-stepping dancer.

Petal Dancer © Harold Davis

Speaking Truth to Power, created in March, 2022, is self-evidently an abstract work. But truth, justice, peace, and kindness can be in such short supply—and creating this kind of patterned abstraction helps to calm me in the face of the heedlessness of the world. The colors—Iris and Daffodils, with invading Tulips— are intended to bring those of Ukraine to mind.

Speaking Truth to Power © Harold Davis

About Calla Lilly Study #4, Scarlet Black on Flickr comments: “I love how this close up references subjects beyond the flower. Sun, celestial bodies, orbits and galaxy swirls step into the frame once imagination lets go of the calla lily. Even with that imaginative detour, the flower is nice to come back to.”

Calla Lily Study #4 © Harold Davis

Flowers Party Too! Yes. Well of course they do.

Flowers Party Too! © Harold Davis

I am always amazed at the the delicate intricacy of flowers in the Protea genus. My image is an attempt to render both the complexity and delightful delicacy of this flower in monochromatic, using a light box.

Proteus Monochrome Light Box © Harold Davis

Quantum Entanglement is only vaguely understood and seems pretty weird. In my image I hoped to echo this sense of scientific befuddlement using glassware, a light box, an LAB inversion, and compositing. Read more.

Quantum Entanglement © Harold Davis

In April I left for France. Spending some time photographing Paris with friends was great fun. Some of the images I made were from the footpath on the Ile aux Cygnes, and showed reflections in the windows of the buildings of modern Paris.

Parallel Reflections © Harold Davis

In my blog, I noted after arriving in Toulouse “the hubbub of the nearly perpetual marketplace in the Place du Capitole (shown below from a window in my hotel).” Read more.

Place du Capitole, Toulouse © Harold Davis

Along the Camino de Santiago, I made a grab shot into a mirror. Read more.

Dr Caligari’s House © Harold Davis

Back home after various adventures and misadventures, I posed the question “what if James Bond had liked flowers more than guns, gadgets, fast women, and cars?” in Too Many Tulips Are Not Enough. [Answer: the world might be a kinder, gentler, and more colorful place.] Read more.

Too Many Tulips Are Not Enough © Harold Davis

Flowers make such interesting patterns. One such is shown in Dodecagram Papaver Pod.

Dodecagram Papaver Pod © Harold Davis

What happens when you use my light box techniques for Photographing Flowers for Transparency without a light box? I decided to find out in Florista on White. Read more.

Florista on White © Harold Davis

Over my garden gate, the Clematis vine is thriving, provided we keep its “feet” moist. Two of the Clematis flowers bloomed together, and I cropped them to make this composition on the light box. Read more.

Clematis in Love © Harold Davis

As summer 2022 began, I created a bouquet. Read more.

Summer Bouquet © Harold Davis

Some flowers remind me of sea creatures, an idea I explored in Do Flowers Come from the Sea? Read more

Do Flowers Come from the Sea? © Harold Davis

In Lavatera trimestris I used my macro probe lens to create a different view of a Rose mallow, with an idea to showing details and symmetry.

Lavatera trimestris © Harold Davis

I taught Composition & Photography at Maine Media Workshops in September, and had a great, small group of students. It was great fun getting to photograph “stuff” that I didn’t have to take care of, store, or own! One such collection is shown in Tripping the Glass Fantastic.

Tripping the Glass Fantastic © Harold Davis

From Maine I went to Colorado, where I photographed this steam train. Read more.

Steam Train © Harold Davis

Starting in October, I was in Europe. There was almost too much to photograph. One such sight was the Himbachel Viaduct. Read more.

Himbachel Viaduct © Harold Davis

In Heidelberg, Germany I made X-Ray and Fusion X-Ray images of flowers with my friend Julian Kopke. Read more.

Dahlia X-Ray © Harold Davis

Calla Lilly Fusion X-Ray © Harold Davis

Julian and I enjoyed the Tuscan landscape, particularly the early mornings wreathed in fog.

Morning Comes Softly © Harold Davis

In Orvieto, in Umbria, there was much to photograph, including the spectacular Duomo. Read more.

Duomo Window © Harold Davis

Duomo in the Morning Fog © Harold Davis

Duomo in the Clearing Fog © Harold Davis

Early Morning, Orvieto © Harold Davis

Closed © Harold Davis

St Patrick’s Well, or Pozzo di San Patrizio, is located in Orvieto, Umbria, Italy. There are 248 steps down (and up). The view in my image is looking up at the daylight at the top of the well. The whole thing is like a tower that goes down into the ground, rather than standing above it. Read more.

Well of St Patrick’s © Harold Davis

In Florence, I enjoyed an exhibition of work by M.C. Escher, and was surprised to learn how much he was influenced by the Italian landscape (one just doesn’t think of Escher in the context of landscape, at least I don’t)!

I moved on to Trieste, and photographed the hotel where I was staying, and contemplated Escher. Read more.

Mirror Selfie © Harold Davis

Hotel Savoy, Trieste © Harold Davis

Venice is one of the places in the world I most enjoy visiting and photographing. Of course, like everyone else, I always try to visit when no other visitors are there!

Gondolas © Harold Davis

Back home for the waning of the year, there are always flowers to photograph! With Floral Gestures, as the title implies, I was trying to create a composition where the image was gestural, almost as it one was having a conversation in the wild with a floral entity.

Floral Gestures © Harold Davis

Every flower is unique, of course, which is part of what I enjoy so much about photographing them. This Chrysanthemum somehow makes their individuality very apparent to me, hence the title.

Every Flower Unique © Harold Davis

I hope you’ve enjoyed this overview of my 2022 photography Odyssey. This year has been not without challenges for myself and our family, but I always find it worthwhile to review what I’ve done artistically.

Most of my images are available as prints. If you are interested, please let me know.

Check out my self-selected bests from previous years in Best Images Annuals!

Posted in Best Of

Fusion X-Rays

These two flower images are fusion X-Rays: one part medical X-Ray combined with one part light box photo. I created them last month in collaboration with my friend Dr Julian Kopke, radiologist and photographer extraordinaire. Some more info about the fusion process can be found in this story.

Check out the X-Ray category on my blog, and my portfolio of X-Ray images.

Calla Lilly Fusion X-Ray © Harold Davis

Rose Bouquet – Fusion X-Ray © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, X-Ray

2022 PSA Progress Award

The Photographic Society of America (PSA) gives their Progress Award annually to recognize “a person who has made an outstanding contribution to the progress of photography or an allied subject. The recipient does not have to be a member of the Society.”

I’m proud and grateful to be the 2022 recipient of this award, specifically cited for “the development of a high key digital HDR workflow and set of techniques involving specific kinds of back lighting that make it possible to create luminous translucent imagery.”

Given annually since 1948, previous recipients of the Progress Award include Walt Disney, Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Eliot Porter, Robert N. Noyce, John & Thomas Knoll, and Ken Burns. I’m excited to be part of this august company (as you can see in the iPhone photo below, snapped by Nicholas Davis)—and look forward to moving creatively onward from here!

Posted in Photography

Home

It’s great to be home. The image shows a ceramic bowl I bought as a gift for Phyllis in Orvieto, with lemons from our tree.

Lemon Bowl © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography