Posts Tagged ‘bee in flight’

Flowers are beautiful, of course, but when it comes to taking photos, I seem to be equally (or more) attracted to insects among the flowers. Yesterday we finally had some sunshine here in Northern Virginia after three soggy days in a row and I made a trip to Green Spring Gardens with my mentor Cindy Dyer to check out the flowers in bloom.

The wind was blowing most of the afternoon, which turned many of the flowers into moving targets, but patience and persistence allowed me to get some shots of some of my favorites, like love-in-a-mist and columbines. I am still going through my images, but I was immediately attracted to this shot of a bee in flight that I captured as it moved from one iris to another.

I remember being a little surprised to see a bee gathering pollen from irises—there seemed to be much candidates nearby, including some large, showy peonies. The bee didn’t spend long in each iris and the long petals of the iris often hid the bee from view. As I was tracking the bee, I somehow managed to maintain focus and captured this whimsical little shot of it in mid-air. My shutter speed of 1/640 sec was not fast enough to freeze the wings, but I really like the blur of the wings, which enhances the sense of motion for me.

bee and iris


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved


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Have you ever tried to take photos of a bee in flight? In the past, I have managed to get a few such shots accidentally, when a bee took off as I was shooting.

However, a few days ago when the light was fading in the early evening, I decided to try to photograph a bee in flight using my pop-up flash. I knew that timing would be critical, because the time required for the flash to recycle meant that I would get only one shot each attempt, and not a burst. It was a fun little challenge, even though most of my shots were out of focus.

I especially like the first image, in which the bee appears to be attempting to hover in mid-air. The second shot makes it look like the bee was free-falling, waiting for the optimal moment to deploy his tiny parachute.

It’s easy to get ultra-serious about photography and get bogged down thinking of settings and exposures and composition—it’s nice sometimes to just have fun and then share the results of the fun time.


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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