Everything about a flower is meant to attract—its odor, color, shape, line, shape, texture and geometry. These are its aesthetic dimensions. Flowers are the quintessential demonstration of how beauty ties to function and propagation in the natural world. My long-standing attraction to them as photographic subject matter has mostly to do with their color, texture, and geometry, features that in combination evoke the nature and sensibility of all living things, particularly process and change. Flowers may not last long, but the contribution they make—to the environment and the human spirit—is immense. I find that a flower’s aesthetic qualities are amplified when the camera is close up and the light is coming from behind—to emphasize form—or from the side to reveal texture. Color is a given.
I’ve learned from watching Linda that maintaining and nurturing a flower garden is an integrating and humbling activity. The challenges require planning, creativity, knowledge of the subject, management skills, discipline, hard work, knowing where and when to get the best quality items at the best price and there’s a healthy dose of allowing—fluctuations in the weather and invasions by unwanted pests and weeds to name a few. While I couldn’t do what she does, I’m so grateful that I get to share in the end result. Year round I have subject matter to photograph. More importantly, we’re surrounded by beauty every day. All of these photographs were made in Linda’s garden.
Gardening is the art that uses flowers and plants as paint, and the soil and sky as canvas.