A fellow blogger at Lemony Shots has recently posted some beautiful images of Peonies in white, pink, and in black and white. I too admire Peonies and have also posted images in both pink and in white. This morning, before a bit of rain, Joanna reminded me the peonies were out and that I had better seize the opportunity before a deluge might strip away their petals. Joanna knows best, so I grabbed the camera and tripod and spent the next little while wading through her garden. I often wonder how my mind works as I compose each shot. I have said previously that I shudder to think that my photographic skills had plateaued at a level characterized by an ability to take a good snap shot. To advance my understanding of Adobe Lightroom I have subscribed to a series of videos produced by French photographer, Serge Ramelli. It was through these that I discovered 500px, a global platform for photographers to display their work. I have surfed here many times in an effort to train myself to recognize what, in my opinion, makes for a good photo. Look, let’s agree that it’s pretty easy to push the shutter release. What’s difficult, however, is to create photographic art. Subject matter and composition are critical, and then there are the technical matters of capturing the shot and of post-processing that can either make or break a potentially beautiful image. But I digress. I took a minute, while standing in Joanna’s garden, to think about how to present these colorful flowers to you. Surely it would have been a simple matter to point and shoot, but that’s not what I wanted. I wanted an image that would appeal, in terms of color, texture, and visual interest. The line between abstraction and just-another-pretty-picture can be quite fine. Too close and although the photo has interest, in terms of texture and emotion, it may be difficult to determine that the photo actually depicts a flower. Too distant and the bloom may become overwhelmed by the background. But, just like Goldilocks’ bowls of porridge, chairs, and beds, there is a distance which, to my eye, is just right. I hope you will agree.

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