I returned to Sandilands Provincial Forest this week with colleagues Dave Benson and Chris Gray to check out the progress of the prairie crocuses that Dave and I found last week. It was heartwarming to discover that spring had finally sprung! I made a number of images of Manitoba’s provincial flower growing in various micro-habitats. This particular image was made along a gravel road using the road as the background. Three images were made with a 200mm micro Nikkor lens set at an aperture of f/8 and focused at different points. The images were later stacked into Helicon Focus software to produce one image with as much depth of field as possible without incorporating any distracting background elements. To add to the challenge, mother nature began to blow and gust as we enjoyed the cool, evening weather. But it was just ‘grand’ to experience the great outdoors!
The prairie crocus, our symbol of spring on the Canadian prairies, is one of those wildflowers that I can never get enough of! I photographed these early blooms in Sandliands Provincial Forest on a cold morning using a 200mm macro lens. I made 7 different images focused at slightly different areas on the flower to gain a little extra sharpness on the closest bloom.Shooting at a wide aperture allowed the background to remain blurred and soft. I later processed the images in Adobe Camera Raw and then brought them into Helicion Focus, software that combines any number of differently focused images into one final image. The green color in the background is the result of fruiticose lichens growing amongst the crocuses at the edge of this particular jackpine forest.
Happy Earth Day! Let's celebrate the small things in life as much as the big ones !
September 28, 2014
'Prairie Crocus' - Manitoba Series (Notecard and Photographic Print)
The prairie crocus, Anemone patens, is Manitoba’s provincial flower. It is one of the very first plants to bloom in the spring and can often be observed covered in hoarfrost or even by a late spring snow. It normally grows singly but can also be found growing in clumps. The pale mauve to dark blue-purplish saucer-shaped blossoms are very efficient in trapping heat from the sun during the early spring period. The prairie crocus is a fine symbol of perseverance on the Canadian Prairie.
The prairie crocus is a long-lived perennial and individual plants may live for 50 years. Like so many of our native prairie plants, the habitat of the prairie crocus has largely disappeared, being replaced by farms, cities and roads.
Notecards retail for $ 6.95 each
Photographic Print retail for $ 74.95 each
Available at WOW Mabuhay Gift Store in the Johnston Terminal at The Forks, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Spring is coming! Promise!