Thursday, October 24, 2013


Timberpress is offering those who sign up for their contest the chance to win a copy of the book Seeing Flowers, plus a print of one of the flowers. To enter the contest just click on this following link and enter your email address. The contest is open until November 8th.

     Some years ago a photographer friend showed me a macro photograph of a cluster of harlequin bug eggs. The intricacy and detail was something the naked eye was unable to see. As a gardener who takes photographs I have also learnt to appreciate the fine structure of flowers which might be missed with a casual glance.
    In Seeing Flowers, Robert Llewellyn, with his remarkable photographic technique, brings that world right into our living room. By taking many images of each flower, at different points of focus, and stitching them together, we see the flower as though we were holding it in front of our eyes. When I first opened the book I felt a little disappointment. I think I was expecting to see the kind of detail I saw in those little eggs. Small parts of the flower shown in incredible detail. That is how I think of macro photography. Then as I looked more closely at the photographs I really did begin to see the flowers captured on paper in their full depth and glory. A cluster of Ipheion flowers with every part of the flower in full focus. How many times have I tried to do the same with my camera and my Ipheion; without success. The photographs are truly amazing.
   But this is not just a book of beautiful photographs. Of the several hundred families of plants in the plant kingdom twenty eight have been chosen and each is given its own chapter. Terri Dunn Chase, writer and editor has teamed with Llewelyn to share some characteristics about each family. Not just the usual information found in a flora but interesting facts. Did I know that the name of that poisonous alkaloid, atropine, found in Deadly nightshade, comes from the Greek word atropos. Its meaning is "to cut the thread of life" Or that those beautiful blue petals on my love-in-a-mist are actually sepals. In the photograph it is just possible to make out the diminutive true petals which lie beneath the stamens. Here there is much to learn and much to enjoy in the pages of Seeing Flowers. This is a book that should delight gardeners and non gardeners alike.
    You can read more about the book and the authors when go to the giveaway web page. Don't forget November 8th is the deadline to enter.

1 comment:

  1. I'd read about that technique - the taking of multiple images and overlaying them to achieve a sort of focus equilibrium on every portion - and found the idea fascinating. I imagine it to be the perfect intersection of technique and patience. I'm happy to read you found it wonderful even if it was a bit of a slow reveal. Sounds like a great book to win OR buy. Thanks for drawing it to our attention!