Sometimes, It’s Almost Too Beautiful To Describe

Reminder:  You can enlarge any of the photos in this blog by clicking on it.  Click again for a full-screen image.

It was just a little over a year ago that I began concentrating on photographing wildlife with a macro (close up) lens and a flash attachment.  At the time I really had no idea what I was going to see when I started inspecting the small places in our world.

I was staggered by what I encountered.  I’d never imagined that many of the things that we barely look at in our day-to-day lives could be so beautiful.

Such is the case with tonight’s subject.  This is a sweat bee, a species of bee that is barely 1/4 inch long and that spends its life almost invisible to us.  If we notice it at all, it is as a small buzzing creature that is attracted to the salt in our perspiration.  I think that each of us has swatted more than a few of these tiny bees in our lifetimes.

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How could something so incredibly beautiful have evolved?  And, how could something so beautiful exist side by side with us humans with most of us never noticing it?  It’s just amazing to me.  And, yet, this insect is not unique.  Our natural world is filled with thousands of species that are as gorgeous as is this little and totally unassuming bee.  We just need to take the time to look closely.

Image made with a Canon 5Diii, 180 f3.5L Macro Lens assisted by Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite, ISO 200, M setting, f11 @ 1/160.

3 responses to “Sometimes, It’s Almost Too Beautiful To Describe”

  1. jvhigbee says :

    I am just starting to follow your blog thanks to a tip from Tom Munson. I like what I see and am inspired to know you just started a year or so ago on macro.

    • stevenkessel says :

      I’ve owned macro lenses for years but never really did much with them. The problem for me was that my images were always too blurred to be usable and, since I shoot a lot of things that are in motion, a tripod was not an option. Then, last year I bought a 180 mm macro lens and a flash. The longer focal length enabled me to stand further away from my subjects, causing less stress and increasing the chances that they would pose naturally for me. The short duration of my flash “froze” the motion and helped to produce much sharper images. From that point on it was just a long learning process of trial and error to get the right settings and the best techniques.

  2. Liesl Kii says :

    Truly a beautiful but seldom-noticed creature.

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