Featured on The Daily Compost blog

23 09 2010

Jennifer, author of The Daily Compost, recently asked for permission to use my image of a Neoscana spider to illustrate her recent post— Giant spiders: one more reason I love fall. Go check out her great blog and see. Thanks for the shout out and showcasing my photo, Jennifer!

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Craft project: Garden aprons

23 09 2010

When my friend Karen and I go down to her lakehouse, we always feel compelled to bring our sewing machines and make something. In fact, we both agree we can’t really sew anywhere but the lake now. We’re spoiled! We put up my folding table on the screen porch and spread all our fabric around and get going. Her house overlooks the lake, so we can watch egrets and herons landing and taking off, kayakers rowing and fishermen trolling, and giant carp fins circling around like something out of Jaws. No phone calls, no interruptions. Snacks and music always. I ask you how sewing in a kitchen townhouse can possibly compare to sewing on a screen porch overlooking a lake!

We talk about anything and everything and one weekend we began singing while stitching….and ended up creating Sewing—the Musical, sung to the tune of Donna Summer’s No More Tears (Enough is Enough)—and chock full of references to the craft of sewing. Yes, we wrote down the lyrics and yes, we intend to one day perform it off off off off off off Broadway…you know…in our spare time! Just you wait…

When we started sewing at the lake, we started making curtains (no pattern, just winging it!) for the patio doors and shams and coverlets for the twin beds in one room. This year we spent Labor Day down there, sewing machines in tow. I was inspired to copy a cheapie dollar store gardening apron. I made three aprons that afternoon. Karen is using the blue one in her skin care salon. They’re a lot of fun to create (and a quick project, too!) and I might even try selling some on Etsy…you know, in my spare time. Ah, something else to keep me busy in the winter (besides crocheting a gazillion hats that I don’t need) when I can’t be out photographing my beloved flowers.

Taking orders for aprons…anyone?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





A wedding in the garden

21 09 2010

Abbie and Todd got married at the Sayen House and Gardens in Hamilton, New Jersey on September 12 and I was hired as their official photographer. These are just a fraction of the many photos I’ve been working on (happy one week anniversary today, you two!). The ceremony was originally supposed to take place in the Temple Garden under a gazebo but the weather wouldn’t cooperate. Just after the ceremony, it stopped raining and we were able to do my much-anticipated photo shoot in the garden. Everything was intensely green because of the rain, so that was a definite plus!

I’ve got a lot more to prepare, but wanted to share this compilation on my blog because it does have a connection to gardens. Enjoy!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Newest additions to my Green Spring Gardens-only zenfolio gallery

16 09 2010

I just added more photos to the Green Spring Gardens-only gallery on my Zenfolio site. Click on this link here to view all 191 photos in thumbnail size. If you double-click on a photo, it will enlarge and a sub-gallery will show on the right side of the screen. You can also select “slide show” at the top. I hope you enjoy viewing them as much as I did photographing them!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Ah, that September light…

15 09 2010

Every fall, I am sadly aware that there will be less and less flowers blooming for me to capture (and in case you hadn’t noticed, it is a passion for me), but the light is always exquisite when I do find a subject to immortalize in pixels. I was drawn to this Mallow flower mostly because of the light behind it, which with a large aperture, morphed into this dreamy soft background with lovely bursts of chartreuse and the rusty browns that fall brings. I’m sure this flower is in the Mallow/Hibiscus family; I just don’t know what variety it is. Anyone?

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria, Virginia

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Cat’s Whiskers (Orthosiphon stamineus)

15 09 2010

Part of the mint family, Cat’s Whiskers are herbaceous perennial flowering plants originating in tropical East Asia. They grow up to two feel tall and three to four feet wide. The flowers have an orchid-like appearance and are white or lavender, sprouting long stamens that resemble cat’s whiskers. They attract butterflies and hummingbirds and can be harvested to use in herbal teas. I photographed this plant at Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria, Virginia.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Aptly named ‘Heavenly Blue’

10 09 2010

This is the view I had outside the front door this morning—more than 100 beautiful blue blooms on my ‘Heavenly Blue’ Morning Glory vine (and many more buds yet unfurled). I didn’t plant any seeds this year, but apparently seeds from last year’s vine thrived this year! And can you spot the “bonus bug” coming in for a landing in the top shot? I didn’t see him until I zoomed in on the image in Photoshop.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Skipper on ‘Zowie’ Zinnia

7 09 2010

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria, Virginia

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Can you spot the moth larvae on this Ageratum plant?

3 09 2010

I actually didn’t see them when I was photographing the plant this afternoon at Green Spring Gardens. Back in the studio, I zoomed in on the image in Photoshop and voila—there they were! I’ll give you a clue—you’re looking for two fairly visible ones and one tiny head of a third.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Skippers on ‘Zowie’ Zinnia

3 09 2010

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens, 9.3.2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Common Buckeye on Gomphrena

3 09 2010

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens, 9.3.2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Somebody’s watchin’ me…

3 09 2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Milkweed nymphs

3 09 2010

Photographed at Green Spring Gardens, 9.3.2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Another Monarch for Mary Ellen!

3 09 2010

This one is for Mary Ellen Ryall, creator of the Monarch Butterfly Habitat in Shell Lake, Wisconsin! I photographed this Monarch butterfly on a ‘Zowie’ Zinnia at Green Spring Gardens this afternoon. An overcast but very bright sky made for great lighting for photography. The gardens were swarming with insects—including Eastern Tiger Swallowtails, Spicebush Swallowtails, Monarchs, various Skippers, Sulphurs and Common Buckeyes. I photographed an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on a ‘Zowie’ Zinnia  few weeks ago here.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Cucumber Beetle on Clematis

3 09 2010

I was working on a graphic design project this morning and glanced outside to see a tiny splotch of pink through the slats of the fence in the backyard garden. I didn’t have my glasses on, so I wasn’t sure if it was a pink-shirted neighbor passing by (albeit rather slowly) or—gasp!—is that a (very late blooming) Clematis? It was the latter—a lovely solitary bloom showcasing its beauty on the outside of the fence. I grabbed my camera with a normal lens and took a few shots. I zoomed in on the screen and noticed what appeared to be an insect’s legs in the petals. I ran in to get my macro lens and shot several images of this Cucumber Beetle. By the time he was done with his foraging, he was covered with pollen, head to toe!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.