The lupine stands, of course, attract large numbers of bees and other pollen feeding insects. This large bee was among hundreds working the patch. You can see by the swollen pollen sacks on the hind legs that life is good for the bees among the lupines. And, of course, the bees are doing their part to ensure another crop of lupines in this meadow next year. Nikon B700 at 1440mm equivalent. Program mode. Vivid Picture Control. Low Active-D Lighting. -.3EV. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
It is that time of year again and you will have to bear with me as I get the Lupines out of my system. 🙂 This meadow, the best display I know of in Southern Maine, is about 10 miles from my home, 20 miles round trip on my electric recumbent trike, and a pleasant journey that also includes a stop at Emmon’s Preserve for dragonflies or whatever else is on offer. The Lupines are definitely the star of the show in early June. What we have here is three different perspectives on the same scene from the same spot. 18mm wide angle with the iPhone SE2020 and the Sirui 18mm lens, and then at about 110mm and 580mm equivalents with the Nikon B700. It is a good show indeed this year. 🙂 iPhone shot with the standard camera app on auto. Nikon shots, Program mode, Vivid Picture Control, -.3 EV. Processed in Apple Photos, with Polarr on the Nikon shots.
On Friday afternoon I rode my eBike out to Emmon’s Preserve to check for early dragonflies in the meadows, but mainly to check on the Lupine bloom in a field out that way. In the week between visits we have had some nice early summer weather, and indeed, the Lupines have responded. I took my landscape camera with me…the Sony a6500 with the 16mm lens (24mm equivalent) and the Ultrawide converter, which results in an 18mm equivalent view. I invested in this combination because I always enjoy the perspective of the ultrawide lens. I don’t carry it enough on my photoprowls around home. The sun was behind the clouds, where it had been all morning, when I got to the Lupine field, but I waited it out, and got a few shots at the end of the visit with the sun on the flowers. I offer this shot as celebration of Sunday! Sony a6500 as above with 18mm equivalent. HDR mode. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
Lupine. Kennebunkport, Maine. There is a poem that goes with this.
The lupines caught me by surprise
out Emmon’s way, late as the season
has seemed, and us with still a day
to go in May. The field at the fork
in the road there, where Goose Rocks
meets Guinea, where some years
the lupines make a purple pool under
the old maples and well out into the
hay, was coming into full flower already.
These last few days of 80 degree
weather have really rushed us on
toward June…only a few weeks ago
we saw our first rhodora and now
flag iris and geraniums are blooming
in the ditches and lupine in the fields.
There at the corner, they have moved
the old hay rake out next to the road
right among the lupines. It is is always
there in that field, and this year they
must have figured they would save
the trespass of all the photographers
who waded out and trampled hay
getting to it among the flowers further
out. Nothing like a field of lupines
(unless you see them among a white
birch grove as I did once in Acadia),
and I look forward every year to
catching them in bloom, there, out
Emmon’s way, in early June. If you
are going to caught by surprise, may
it always be something like lupines.
Sony Rx10iv at 24mm equivalent. HDR mode. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.
It is only fair to warn you that I still have a lot of Lupine photos from this year, and the season is not quite over. I am still hoping to find another patch. This shot uses the farm machinery as contrast to the masses of lupine blossoms. Since there were 3 other photographers working this field, I had to wait patiently for this shot without one of them in it. I shot from a distance, using the equivalent of a 200mm telephoto to isolate the flowers and machinery, and then cropped relatively tight at the top to make it more about the flowers. Sony RX10iv in-camera HDR. Processed in Polarr.
I am not, of course, done with Lupines yet. They only bloom but briefly, once a year, and they are so spectacular, at least to my eye. You will have to put up with my momentary indulgence…just as in August, if the season is good, you will have to put up with a flood of Wood Lilies. You can never have, in my opinion, too many photos of such wildflowers! Here the Buttercups provide the yellow grace note among the blues and purples. In-camera HDR with the Sony a6500. 16mm f2.8 plus UWA converter for an 18mm ultra wide equivalent field of view. Processed in HandyPhoto, Polarr, and TouchRetouch.
I went back to the best field of Lupines I know of within ebike range of home to see how it was developing. The field is back in between the inland fringes of Kennebunkport and Arundel, about a 20 mile round trip ride. I visited a week ago and wondered if it was still a bit early or if the bloom was weak this year. No worries! The field is now in full bloom and spectacular. There is, as in any extensive stand of lupin in Maine, a variety of shades of lupin…from this pure white specimen to deep indigo, to the more reddish-purple than blues. There are a few well grown maple trees in the foreground of the field, and the dappled light only adds to the beauty of the display. Sony RX10iv at 580mm equivalent. In-camera HDR. Processed in Polarr. Of course, I had to work around the 3 other photographers who had discovered the field and were visiting at exactly the same moment I was…one couple was from Ontario Canada. Popular field! Popular flowers.
I associate Lupine with Maine, mainly because of the children’s book, The Lupine Lady (one of my children’s favorites), and because of the magnificent spring displays of Lupine along I95 from Freeport north, and all over Mt. Desert Island and Acadia National Park. I have made several trips to Acadia during Lupine season, and photographed it there with some success. But, of course, it is native to the Pacific Northwest as well. I found this stand between the parking for the Trillium Falls Trail and the trail itself in Redwoods National Park north of Orick California. And yes, the color was this intense.
I have more conventional, and wider, shots, but I found this tel-macro composition compelling. The selective focus and the placement of the plants are intentional, and I think it works well (though I did have to fip it horizontally to accommodate my dominant eye :). Somehow this goes a bit beyond a photograph. It is almost the flower itself!
Canon SX50HS. Program with iContrast and Auto Shadow Control. 1200mm equivalent field of view. f6.5 @ 1/320th @ ISO 100. Processed in Lightroom for intensity, clarity, and sharpness.
Anther shot from the overgrown flower maze at the University of Machias. Daises and Lupine in abundance. This shot, from an odd angle, low down among the stems, captures some of the riot of blooms.
Canon SX20IS at 28mm and Super-macro. F3.5 @ 1/1250th @ ISO 160. Programmed auto.
Recovery in Lightroom 3 for the white petals and the sky. Fill Light and Blackpoint just barely right. Added Clarity and just a touch of Vibrance. Sharpen narrow edges preset.
From Machias 2010.
Happy Sunday! Again this year on my way up to Acadia I could not miss the masses of Lupine growing on banks along the interstate, and again, I determined to find a good stand in Acadia to photograph. The trick is not fining them…they are all over Mount Desert Island…the trick is finding them when they are not obliviously in someone’s yard, where it would be awkward at best to get out of the car to spend any time photographing them. Of course I need a good background too. Last year’s stand, near Southwest Harbor, was pretty sparse (I checked), but I found this field of them just off Route 3, near my motel. Good enough!
Of course, Lupine is not native to New England,
or even to the Americas. [Note: further research, prompted by some viewer comments, yields the fact that while the Lupines most common in New England are not native to New England, they are native to North America. The Blue-pod Lupine, which is what you see in these tall mass stands generally, was introduced from the Northwest. Other cultivars have escaped from gardens, and there has been some inevitable cross-breeding. There is also a Wild Lupine, considerably shorter on the average, which is native to New England.] There is a children’s book about the lady who actually, like Johnny Appleseed, is responsible for their proliferation in Maine and adjoining states. IMHO we owe her a debt of gratitude. They are strikingly beautiful in the spring.
Subdued afternoon light on an overcast day. Hence the white sky, but otherwise perfect for photographing the color and the details of this striking plant.
Canon SX20IS. 1) 28mm equivalent @ f5.6 @ 1/320th @ ISO 160, 2) 215 mm @ f5.6 @ 1/250 @ ISO 125, 3) 28mm and Super-macro @ f5.6 @ 1/800 @ ISO 160. I was experimenting with aperture preferred.
Similar treatment for all in Lightroom. Recovery for the sky (though it did not help much), Fill Light and Blackpoint just barely right, added Clarity and a touch of Vibrance. Sharpen narrow edges preset.
From Acadia 2010.