Common Blue Dasher dragonflies

22 07 2016

Ready yourself for an onslaught of Common Blue Dasher dragonfly shots (last week I inundated you with Slaty Skimmer dragonfly images from Kenilworth)…quick trip to McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area in Poolesville, MD with my friend Michael Powell (visit his nature photography blog here). We may have avoided morning traffic by leaving later, but we sure did endure some increasingly hot weather. We started at a different parking area than normal—this area had a large pond and a gazillion (no exaggeration) Common Blue dragonflies (Pachydiplax longipennis) perched on every stick I passed by! I like this image because it shows another dragonfly way out of focus in the background in stark contrast to the sharply-focused one in the foreground.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB Two Blue Dasher





Crab spider on Ornamental onion

25 07 2015
Teeny, tiny crab spider (maybe 3/8″ span!) on Ornamental onion (Allium senescens), photographed at Green Spring Gardens. My friend Michael Powell and I went to shoot there about 4:00 this afternoon—there is so much in bloom now!
© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.
Chives Crab Spider lorez




Assassin bug on Sea Holly

13 06 2015

Assassin bug (fairly certain) on ‘Blue Glitter’ Sea Holly (Eryngium planum)

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Orange Bug Sea Holly





Scenes from an exhibit reception, part 1

18 04 2012

WOW. That’s how I can sum up my photography exhibit reception on Sunday at Green Spring Gardens. My friend Martha says her favorite moment was when I came by her and simply said, “I am just soooooooooo happy.” I kept repeating it like a Stepford character. I’m just soooooooooo happy. Really, I am just soooooooooo deliriously happy! Sales and attendance were way beyond what I expected (or dared to hope for).

Remember, the show is up for two more weeks—you have until April 29 to see it if you haven’t already done so. For more details and directions, visit my show site: www.gardenmuseshow.com! FYI—I will have an etsy.com store up and running soon. I’ll be selling matted and framed images, greeting cards and jewelry (and any other crafty endeavor that strikes my fancy!). Stay tuned for more info on that venture. More photos to come from the reception…

Reception photos © Ed Fagan, Columbia Photography

Martha, my friend who came up for the weekend from San Antonio, Texas, confidently pitches the “buy all eight greeting cards for $20 and get a nifty floral gift bag” deal to a potential customer.

Above, from left: dear friends Holly and Tom, yours truly (with my trusty Coolpix) and lovely Sue-in-blue, who flew up from Huntsville, Alabama

With a lot of help from family and friends (Karen B., her daughter Margot, my sister Debbie, sister-in-law Nancy, Karen W. and Martha), the table decor—inspired by spring and all things gardening—became the perfect backdrop to showcase Barbara‘s wonderful sweet and savory appetizers! The only downside—putting all those decorations back in their place in our townhouse.

Above, left: The view of the banquet tables from the “savory” side. Right: Barbara Kelley, caterer extraordinaire, displays her Magnolia Bakery vanilla cupcakes, topped off with homemade fondant butterflies made by Karen B., daughter Hannah and me.

Above: The photo pendants were a hit, much to our delight! My friend Paula and I made about 30 of them and we sold more than half of them. I’ll be preparing more to sell in my etsy.com store, which I’ll be working on next month. We hung them on satin cords (longer length), vinyl cording and silver-plated chains and sold them sans chains as well.

Barbara and Hollace made open-faced tea sandwiches and adorned them with edible flowers—which required some cajoling to get attendees to eat. I heard several times, “are you sure we can eat these?” Michael proved they were edible by devouring a complete pink rose (photo to come). Another guest poked at the mozzarella balls (!) and asked if they were real (!) Thank you to Sue for helping me festoon the cupcake stand with garden-inspired fabric and ribbon. We went through a lot of hot glue on that project!

Above: getting the store set up before the crowd comes through the doors. Thanks to everyone who set up the shop—Michael, Karen B., Karen and Joe W., Pete and Nancy, Martha and Debbie. We filled up 3.5 cars with matted/framed prints, greeting cards and buffet decor elements. From left: Holly and her friend Helen examine the necklaces on display; center: Michael explains how to use his credit card machine to Karen B. and her daughter Margot; far right: me explaining something (?) to my friend Leda

Above: seven of the eight 5.5 x 8.5 greeting cards available for sale. Not shown, my “Unfurled” image with a ‘Negrita’ Tulip

Above: another shot of the buffet—tea sandwiches, fruit skewers and pesto pinwheels

Above, left: the jewelry display with my brother-in-law Pete in the background. Peter and his wife Nancy (Michael’s sister) drove up from the Columbus, Ohio area. Right: one of my favorite people—friend and neighbor Michael P. —deciding with “hairy legged” insect photo to purchase (thanks for giving Vault and Whirly Girl a good home, Michael!) Below: lines began to form—how cool is that?

Above: It was so great to see my former roommate (from way back circa 1998 or so) Wendy and her husband Mark—I last saw Wendy at Potomac Mills mall when her son Eli (now 17) was still in a stroller! We reunited on Facebook (but of course) and they truly surprised me by driving down from West Virginia just for the reception! She has asked me to do a presentation to her second grade class on “how to learn how to see” things in nature. Now that I can do!

During this entire process, I have had such a tremendous show of support from family and friends. Since the show went up, I have had guests coming from Florida, Texas, Ohio, West Virginia, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Alabama and Maryland. I am so blessed to have these people in my circle!

In preparation for the show and reception, I’d like to thank a slew of great people:

A very special thanks to Jeff E.—thank you for the kick in the pants to get “exposure for my exposures!”
Dorothy Norpel
, F.R.O.G.S. (Friends of Green Spring Gardens) show coordinator, for giving me the opportunity to exhibit
• Mary Olien and Janet Hammes of Green Spring Gardens for their support of my work and Janet in particular for letting us in early on Sunday so we would have ample time to prepare for the reception (and also for purchasing several images!)
• All the employees and volunteers of Green Spring Gardens who answered questions, fetched a ladder, made a sale, answered my myriad questions and honored my requests
The Green Spring Gardens horticulture staff who are masters (and artists) at what they do—for always having something new and beautiful for me to photograph (not many people know that more than 75% of the images in the show were shot at Green Spring Gardens)
Dad
for his financial input, patient framing guidance and being the best cheerleader/dad/patron of the arts a girl could have
My sister Kelley for helping me select all the images for the show and being the genius behind the idea to name the images
Tom and Holly for loading up 98% of the framed images in their van and transporting and unloading it all—you just don’t know how much I appreciated that!
Dear Camilla for flying up to help me hang up the show and her invaluable creative direction (not to mention her long-time friendship)
• Karen W.
and Michael for helping hang the show from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (thanks also to Karen for constantly promoting my work, whether it’s jewelry making or the exhibit—there’s a reason you’re a key component of the K.I.T.A. club, ya know!)
Carmen and her sister-in-law Ester for driving eight hours from Greer, South Carolina just to attend the exhibit
Mary Ellen
for flying from Wisconsin
My sister-in-law Ronnie and her husband Ed for coming to see us and the exhibit en route from Florida back to their home in Cleveland
My sister Debbie and our friend Martha for hopping planes from San Antonio to share in the big weekend
Karen B.
for helping design the buffet tables, create the table covers and decorations, making fondant butterflies for the cupcakes, sleeving greeting cards and for every single creative project she is willing to tackle alongside me (I enjoy all our creative time together, KareBear) and for her patience in heading up the store
Mo Sherman
for spreading the word to his Virginia and Maryland friends and for being so supportive of my work
Sue
for flying here from Huntsville, AL, helping me make the three-tiered tea sandwich stand and putting matted prints in sleeves (and for her never-ending cheerleading!)
Hannah
for help with creating the butterflies and manning the store with her mom
Margot
for her flower arranging skills, buffet decorating and helping in the store
Paula
for helping me make those pretty photo pendants that were such a hit (and for her and Ken spreading the word of the exhibit to their friends and colleagues)
Nancy
, Pete and Martha for helping frame (assembly-line style) some last-minute pieces
Karen W.
and Joe for preparing and bringing a great breakfast spread to the house Sunday morning so we wouldn’t pass out during the day
All the help transporting to and fro in four separate cars from Michael, Pete, Joe, Nancy, Karen W., Martha and Debbie
Barbara
and Hollace for the amazing reception food—it was colorful, tasty, imaginative, filled with love, and I couldn’t imagine a catered event going more smoothly than this one did—you are a pro, Barbara!
Karen B.
, Margot, Hannah and Martha for minding the store and taking care of sales, wrapping, etc. (I know it was a crazy, unexpected time and I thank them profusely for all their efforts; nothing I can do can repay their generosity of time!);
Michael for running errands to get more change, to the house for more supplies and bringing fans to cool off the place (we learned that they turn off the air at the Horticulture Center on weekends!)
Karen W.
, Debbie, Martha, Karen B., Margot and Nancy for all their help decorating the buffet tables and setting up the store
Jeff S.D. for his constant support and helping me determine pricing (why is this always so hard for an artist?)
Brian for his mentoring and valuable input, always
Kudos and thanks to my hard-working friend Ed for so thoroughly and beautifully documenting that wonderful day with nearly 700 images (shot from above, below, from the side, on a ladder, on the floor and from the ceiling)!

If I have left out anyone in the never-ending gratitude list above, it is not intentional. Finally, thank you to all my local friends, faraway friends, Facebook friends, WordPress fellow bloggers and design clients for being a constant source of support and enthusiasm for this pet project of mine. Thank you to all my local friends who were able to make the reception and for your purchases as well. I thank you profusely and Green Spring Gardens thanks you, too!





Garden Muse Show: Random Dozen

5 03 2012

My photography exhibit, titled “Garden Muse: A Botanical Portfolio,” is up and ready for viewing at the Horticulture Center at Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria, Virginia. Green Spring Gardens is located at 4603 Green Spring Road in Alexandria, VA. All images are for sale and a portion of the proceeds will benefit Green Spring Gardens’ FROGS program (Friends of Green Spring Gardens).

The exhibit runs February 28-April 29, 2012, so there’s plenty of time to come see it if you’re in the Virginia/D.C. area or are planning to visit this spring. The reception is Sunday, April 15 from 1-3 p.m. So set aside your taxes (if you’re not already done with them at that point!) and come join me at the reception for some mingling, delicious appetizers (catering by Barbara Kelley of Kelley Hospitality) and refreshments. There will be additional framed images, matted-only images and greeting cards for sale during the reception. And please don’t forget to sign my guest book!

Show website: http://www.gardenmuseshow.com/

Directions: http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/greenspring/directions.htm

Below is collage of just a dozen of the images (out of a whopping total of 74!) featured in the show. All images are matted and framed and eight images are gallery wrapped canvases that range from 18″x24″ up to 20″x30″ in size. If you’ve never had your best photos transferred to canvas, don’t get started on it. It is highly addictive and quite pricey, but the results are so spectacular that you’ll have a hard time resisting the pull. And the larger you go, the higher the price (and the bigger the smile, too). Intervention, anyone?

____________________________________________________________________________________

I just found out that the Washington Post listed the exhibit in their online “Going Out Guide,” and I have five reviews online so far!

Impressive—This is by far the best exhibit I have seen at Green Spring Gardens. This is a coup for them. Of course, Fairfax County Parks are the best. But this show tops everything. Nature captured!”

This Will Make You Smile—This is macro photography at its best. Ms. Dyer manages to inspire smiles from her deeply colorful and sometimes playful images of nature. A burst of color fills the room. Green Spring Gardens must be very pleased to have this exhibit.”

Incredible Color—This exhibit grabs you as you walk in the building. Don’t miss the images on canvas! Absolutely beautiful. I have so many favorites! The detail, color, composition of every one of these images is fantastic. This show is not to be missed!”

Wow…I mean…wow.—I’m a photographer who had a show in the same space a couple of years back and seeing what Ms. Dyer did with her show blew my mind. It is a gorgeous display of nature photography. Just a joy to see.”

A Feast for the Eyes and a Lift for the Soul—This photographic show is an exhibit of beautifully-composed macro-photography of plants and insects. The flowers are lovely and a riot of color and composition. Many of the photographs were taken in Green Spring Garden Park. I loved it and I am recommending it to my friends!”

Excellent Photographer—I have been waiting to see this exhibit for weeks! Lovers of nature, botany and excellent photography will not be disappointed.”

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Re-post: A lighter shade of pale

10 02 2012

Originally posted Feb. 11, 2009

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

brightwhitecollage





Chinese Maple leaf canopy

13 01 2012

While preparing for my March/April 2012 solo photography exhibit at Green Spring Gardens, I stumbled across this image I captured at Garvan Woodland Gardens a few years ago. I was on a road trip with my friend, Sue, and we visited her Aunt Gaye in Little Rock, AR. I’m considering this image for a 12×12 print for the show.

Mark your calendars for March-April 2012 for my exhibit!
This will be my first art exhibit since college days (way back when!), so I’m very excited. The exhibit will be in the Horticulture Center in the park. The reception isn’t until Sunday, April 15, from 1-3 p.m., but the show runs all of March and April, so if you’re in the area, that’s ample time to stop by and see the show if you live nearby or plan to be in the Washington, D.C. / Northern Virginia area during that time!

Green Spring Gardens is conveniently located off of 395, at 4603 Green Spring Road in Alexandria, VA 22312. The Horticulture Center is open weekdays from  9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and Sundays from 12 – 4:30 p.m. Parking is free and the park closes at dusk.

All works will be for sale, with a portion of proceeds going to Green Spring Gardens. I also plan to have unframed and matted images available for sale during the reception. The show consists of 12×12 images, 12×18 images and 8×12 images, all matted and framed for the show. I’ll also have more than a dozen gallery wrap canvas transfer images (a very contemporary look with no framing needed!), ranging in size from 12×18 to 20×30.

The show includes a great deal of images I’ve shot at Green Spring Gardens, as well as images from Butchart Gardens in Victoria, B.C., Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Virginia, Brookside Gardens in Maryland, Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens in Washington, D.C., McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area in Maryland, Garvan Woodland Gardens, Atlanta Botanical Garden, and in my own front and backyard gardens.

Stay tuned to this blog for an announcement of my show website with more details and a sneak preview of some of the images that will be featured. The website will also include ordering information if you’d like to purchase an image (whether matted/framed or matted/ready to frame) but can’t come see the show in person.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.