Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

March 13, 2009

Designs in Nature

Insect Mounds, AZ

Insect Mounds, AZ

I’ve always enjoyed looking for interesting patterns and taking photos of things many other people don’t notice or just ignore if they do notice. I guess that helps explain my fascination with close up photography and the number of Nikon macro lenses I’ve owned over the years (2 or 3 versions of the old 55mm, the 105/2.8 in both manual and auto focus versions, the enduring 200/4 in manual focus). And I’ll even use my 300/2.8 “bird” lens on extension tubes if I need to for dragonflies along a stream edge.

Now that I’ve added the compact 55-200 DX “plastic” lens to my gear I’m able to return to this type of subject matter whenever I’m out walking. The image at top was taken a few days ago at Veterans Oasis Park, where I spent most of my time photographing ducks and Killdeer. A lot of insects that live in the ground create these miniature mounds that look like lunar volcanos, so I”m not sure what made these. But I like the way the low sun picks out the rims and makes them three dimensional.

Taken with the D70 and 55-200 at 66mm, ISO 400, 1/125th at f/9 hand held.

To show I’ve been shooting a lot of the same subjects for a long time I dug out an old scan from a 35mm Kodachrome slide dating from around 1980 or so. This was taken along my driveway in Freehold, NJ, with a 105mm macro lens and probably a tripod. These mounds were definitely the work of ants.

Ant Mounds, NJ

Ant Mounds, NJ


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