Lady Bugs (1)

© Carla Capra

Lady Bugs (1)

Carla Capra level-classic August 06, 2010

During a nature walk I stumbled upon this delightful group/colony of lady bugs.
They had attached themselves to a old downed tree and at first glance made me feel slightly dizzy, because of the sheer number of moving lady bugs.
This part of the forest had the appearance of a rain forest and was mostly shade with filtered light. The image you see here has the uneven lighting predominate in the area and is what appealing to me. This image was taken in RAW/processed and has not been altered past that. I would like to hear your thoughts, tips, suggestions and .....
Thank you,
Carla #1295545

Dale Hardin August 06, 2010

An outstanding entry for the challenge Carla. I love the play of light and dark. Also enjoy the nice diagonal composition that resulted from the POV. Excellent detail as well.

Personally, I probably wouldn't change anything on this shot and because it so good, would probably abandon the other. #8811081

Rita K. Connell level-classic August 07, 2010

wow carla theses are outstanding. I love both of them. as for you first post I think I would dodge at 8 or 10% just a little on the dark area on the left with lady bugs on. I think that area needs to be open up just a tad.
I agree that the play of lighting is quiet nice. great fine!!! #8812065

Aimee C. Eisaman August 07, 2010

Wow...that's alot of bugs. My guess is that these are not true lady bugs. I forget what these are called though. I honestly have only seen a real lady bug once in the past few years. I wonder if these are taking over or creating mixed breeds. I honestly think you got a great shot and love the contrast in the first image. The balance of exposure is great and I don't say it often, but I'd skip post processsing on this! :~) Wonderful in camera work! #8812167

Carla Capra level-classic August 07, 2010

Oh my, I'm at a loss for words. But, thrilled by all your comments and compliments on this image. I'm over here do'n my happy dance..think snoopy :[)

Dale, really..no crop? :) Thank you!

Rita, I tried the dodge without much luck. I've seldom used the tool and may be using it incorrectly. I had it on shadows, between 5-10%, using an airbrush. It gave one area a gray cast that wasn't appealing. Thanks for your "outstanding" compliment.

Aimee, I actually selected a less populated area of the log to photograph. So, this isn't the half of them, lol. Not lady bugs? That is an interesting bit of info. I must research this because, I'd like to see a real lady bug and call these critters by their given name. Thanks for your "wonderful" comment.

I'm so thrilled! My new years goal was to learn my camera's manual settings and take, what I call, out of the camera images.

I must admit that since I posted this here, I've played with the image. I added a curve adj., sharpened and added some brilliance with nik effects. But, I don't think I'll use or post it. :)

Thank you very much!
Carla #8812282

Jeff E Jensen August 07, 2010

One two three
Four five six
Seven eight nine
Ten eleven twelve
Ladybugs
Came to the ladybugs' picnic

One two three
Four five six
Seven eight nine
Ten eleven twelve
And they all played games
At the ladybugs' picnic

They had twelve sacks so they ran sack races
And they fell on their backs and they fell on their faces
The ladybugs 12
At the ladybugs' picnic

They played jump rope but the rope it broke
So they just sat around telling knock-knock jokes
The ladybugs 12
At the ladybugs' picnic

One two three
Four five six
Seven eight nine
Ten eleven twelve
And they chatted away
At the ladybugs' picnic

They talked about the high price of furniture and rugs
And fire insurance for ladybugs
The ladybugs 12
At the ladybugs' picnic
12!

Fantastic image Carla!
#8812638

Susan M. Reynolds level-addict August 07, 2010

Wonderful in-camera processing, Carla :)
I Love the play of light and shadow in both photos Carla - also looks like you used the the use "chiaroscuro" - the use of deep variations in & subtle gradations of light & shade, especially to enhance the delineation of character and for general dramatic effect (that big word Dale talked about on Aimee's thread, too!) Great composition on them as well...don't think I'd change a thing! (Your poem goes perfectly, Jeff!)

Aimee's point (like Peter's so often do) about the name made me curious so I had to look up both photos of true ladybugs & they all looked like yours and the encyclopedia description.
On the "Ladybug Lore" site, I also found this part of a rather lengthy article on them.

"Their scientific names (Coleoptera, meaning "sheath-winged", & Coccinellidae, meaning "little red sphere") can be quite a mouthful, but by whatever name you call them, Ladybugs are well-known & well-loved all over the Earth. Nearly 400 species of Ladybug live in North America, & there are nearly 5,000 species worldwide. Also commonly known as the Lady Beetle or Ladybird Beetle, the name of these insects reflects the global admiration of mankind. None are much larger than a pencil-eraser (some are even smaller) & they come in a wide variety of colors, including red, orange, pink, yellow & black. They can have as many as 20 spots - or no spots at all."

I've seen red, orange and yellow ones both with & without spots, but have yet to see a pink one! Now that would be too cool!

p.s. Carla, I understand what you said about wanting to learn to get it right "in camera"...especially after taking Sean Arbabi's course on Exposure last winter.
It was the first time I ever learned to use Manual Mode completely on my camera & I love how it gives so much more control over the end results in camera. I decided not to take so many, many photos to get something right, but to concentrate on the quality of each and every one instead of the quantity of how many I would take. It's helped me be more conscious of everything that I'm seeing through the lens before I just start snapping the shutter.
sorry it's so wordy...
Love your photos~Spectacular entry for the theme!
#8812671

Michael Kelly level-deluxe August 07, 2010

Both shots are a real find Carla. I find big congregations of bugs occasionally but have never seen a mass of Lady bugs like this. Nicely done. I think you can go with them as is too.

Remember that most professionals shoot in either shutter priority or most frequently aperture priority mode. Manual is fine for specific types of shots but not as convenient or as accurate on most modern digital cameras. This includes at least 3 of the instructors at BP because I asked them at the conference. I don't want to discourage you from using manual if you really want to, but it is not the preferred method of most photographers so don't fall into the trap of needing to do it fully manual thinking that this is the method of the professional. There is a definite time and place for it though so it it good to know how to do it. #8812699

Susan M. Reynolds level-addict August 07, 2010

Interesting response Mike...Now I'll have to learn what needs SP and what needs AP -sigh!
Found this quaint bit of folk lore when I was looking at the ladybug site:
"LADYBUG LEGENDS"
Nearly ALL cultures believe that a Ladybug is lucky.
Killing one is said to bring sadness and misfortune.

In France, if a Ladybug landed on you, whatever ailment you had would fly away with the Ladybug.

If a Ladybug is held in the hand while making a wish, the direction that it flies away to shows where your luck will come from.

If the spots on the wings of a Ladybug are more than seven, it's a sign of coming famine. If less than seven, it means you will have a good harvest.

In Belgium, people believed that if a Ladybug crawled across a young girl's hand, she would be married within a year.

People in Switzerland told their young children that they were brought to them, as babies, by Ladybugs!(and we thought Storks did that!)

In some Asian cultures, it is believed that the Ladybug understands human language, and has been blessed by God, Himself.

In Brussels, the black spots on the back of a Ladybug indicate to the person holding it how many children he/she will have.

According to a Norse legend, the Ladybug came to earth riding on a bolt of lightning. (I wonder if her boyfriend was Zeus-Greek god of the sky and thunder?!?!)

The Victorians believed that if a Ladybug alighted on your hand, you would be receiving new gloves.....if it landed on your head, a new hat would be in your future, and so on.

In the 1800's, some doctors used Ladybugs to treat measles! They also believed that if you mashed ladybugs (ewww!) and put them into a cavity, the insects would stop a toothache!
#8812732

Susan M. Reynolds level-addict August 07, 2010

During the Pioneer days, if a family found a Ladybug in their log cabin
during the winter, it was considered a "Good Omen".

In the Spring, if numerous Ladybugs are seen flying around,
British farmers say it forecasts many bountiful crops. (Is this true Peter?)
Many Bretons believe that the arrival of Ladybugs will bring fair weather.

Folklore suggests if you catch a Ladybug in your home, count the number of spots and that's how many dollars you'll soon find.

In Norway, if a man and a woman spot a Ladybug at the same time, there will be a romance between them.
#8812734

Debbie E. Payne August 07, 2010

Great image, Carla and wonderful thread from all of you. I think the light is beautiful in the first image . Once upon a time I had a wonderful book on photography, I think it was by Michael Freeman and I can't find it anywhere but I remember reading about 'chiaroscuro". As for the issue about to use or not to use manual -- it is good to know how to shoot in manual but it isn't necessary all the time and SP and AP do a great job most of the time!

I LOVE all the "Ladybug Lore" you've all come up with! #8812781

Teresa H. Hunt August 08, 2010

Wonderful image Carla. I love the play of light!

If I saw this many bugs in one place I'd probably turn the other way and run! :)

Susan, the ladybug lore is very interesting!! :) #8813638

Peter W. Marks August 08, 2010

In Britain these are known as 'ladybirds', here as 'ladybugs' but without using the full scientific appellation they are 'lady beetles' and as Susan tells us there are several hundred variations in N.America. Not sure where you got your info from Aimee but these really are lady bug/birds/beetles and they truly are the farmers and gardeners friends. They feed on many of the insect pests and as any keen rose grower will tell you
they make short work of the aphids.
Thanks for the ladybug verses Jeff. Can you set it to music so that we can all sing along?
#8814060

Carla Capra level-classic August 08, 2010

Hi all!
Thanks for the poem Jeff and the 'fantastic' compliment!!

Thanks Susan, the play of light was deliberate and very intentional. I appreciate knowing the term for it.

Greatly appreciate your research on lady bugs. Whew....glad they were the real thing, lol. But, thank you all the same. I'm love'n the Lore.

Michael, thank you for the compliments.

Of course, you are right about the Manual mode shooting. It is just my goal for the year and was for self learning purposes only. I have learned sooooo much as I've traveled down this path. The journey is one I wouldn't trade.

Thanks for you wonderful comments Debbie.

Hi Teresa and thanks!

Thanks for your visit, Peter, and for the additional info on the lady bugs.

I greatly appreciate all your comments, interest, research, lore, poems and good fun.
CC
#8814094

Aimee C. Eisaman August 08, 2010

Here is a link to what I was thinking these are http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asian_beetle

And here is the wikipedia page on Ladybugs http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coccinellidae

But now I'm confused because they don't say anything about what distinguishes the two...they seem the same to me. Here is a question and answer page from wikipedia that pretty much says flip a coin http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Difference_between_ladybugs_and_asian_beetles #8814380

Peter W. Marks August 08, 2010

Where I think there is some confusion is that there are approx 5000 different sub-species of ladybug, ladybird,lady beetles and another is the asian bettle. All of them, by whatever name and the 4896 others are ladybugs to use USA terminology.
The usual difference in the two is that the asian one is larger just as a yorkie and a german shepheard are both dogs of vastly different sizes. #8814430

Debbie E. Payne August 08, 2010

Asian Ladybeetles have longer bodies and are generally more orange than red. And some of them can stink and like to get into your houses. We had an invasion of them last summer. None this year to report! But then no ladybugs either. #8814467

Jeff E Jensen August 08, 2010

Just four you Peter:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xr8vUTm64h0 #8814508

Peter W. Marks August 09, 2010

Hey Jeff, it is 5.20 AM, yes AM and here I am laughing like a loony as I replay the 'ladybug picnic'. This is something I shall save and play whenever I find myself getting too serious about life.
Thanks friend, now I am off to the uni gym for my tri-weekly workout. #8814865

Jeff E Jensen September 15, 2010

Congrats Carla! #8904471

Carla Capra level-classic September 15, 2010

Hi Jeff.
Thank you so very much!
;) CC #8904495

Dale Hardin September 15, 2010

Excellent Carla. Congratulations on the finalist. #8904989

Carla Capra level-classic September 15, 2010

Thanks so much, Dale!
:) CC #8905046

Michael Kelly level-deluxe September 15, 2010

Congratulations Carla - a wonderful finalist! #8905142

Carla Capra level-classic September 15, 2010

Michael, I'm so thrilled.
Thank you,
;) CC #8905162

Teresa H. Hunt September 15, 2010

Congratulations Carla!! #8905230

Carla Capra level-classic September 15, 2010

Thanks so much, Teresa.
;) CC #8905432

Susan M. Reynolds level-addict September 16, 2010

Kudos on the Finalist Carla! #8906898

Linda Blair September 16, 2010

Congratulations!!!! #8908228

Carla Capra level-classic September 16, 2010

G'morning Susan and Linda.
Thank you for taking a moment to leave such lovely congratulations.
Greatly appreciated,
;) CC #8908562

Carla Capra level-classic September 16, 2010

From: "Merna Nobile"
Good morning Carla: I want to congratulate you on all the fine work that you have accomplished in such a very short time. Your talent far exceeds any expectations that you could have dreamed about, and you deserve all the awards that can be given to you. You have worked very hard to learn how to express yourself with photographs and you should be proud!

I am so fortunate to be able to spend this special time with you. Thank you and Congratulations on a job very well done.....My best to you always, Merna


Thank you, Merna. This is so lovely and greatly appreciated.
;) Carla #8908720

Aimee C. Eisaman September 16, 2010

Awesome Carla...congrats on your Phinalist! :~) #8909492

Carla Capra level-classic September 16, 2010

Thank you, Aimee!
;) CC #8909633

Merna L. Nobile September 16, 2010

Dear Carla: I would like to personally congratulate you on your Finalist Award. #8911342

Rita K. Connell level-classic September 17, 2010

congrats this is an awesome picture. best luck for getting to the top. #8912061

Carla Capra level-classic September 17, 2010

G'morning Merna and Rita;
Your lovely compliments are greatly appreciated. Thank you for your support.
;) CC #8912166

Carol Eade level-addict September 26, 2010

Incredible, Carla, warm congratulations! #8930529

Carla Capra level-classic September 26, 2010

Thank you, Carol.
I was thrilled.
;) CC #8930697

Emile Abbott level-deluxe October 14, 2010

I have one very critical comment Carla. Do not change a thing. Fantastic in every respect. Congrats on well deserved award. #8967346

Carla Capra level-classic October 14, 2010

Whew Who, time for a happy dance...Rockdoc! Love the nick name!
I'm thrilled by your compliment.
;) CC #8967414

Patricia A. Stalter October 15, 2010

Fantastic! WTG. Good luck in the next round! #8968957

Karen Celella level-deluxe October 19, 2010

Congratulations on your awesome finalist, Carla and I really enjoyed reading the whole story! #8982399

Carla Capra level-classic October 19, 2010

Hi Patricia and Karen;
Thank you both very much.
I appreciate your thoughtful comments.
;) CC #8982750

Christine Lobsinger level-classic December 02, 2010

WOwoW Carla, this shot is Beautiful!!!!!
If they are ladybugs, and I believe they are, you'll have the best luck for 100 years....
Congratulations dear friend on your Awesome Finalist!!!
Simply stunning work!!!
Smiling Chris #9076104

Carla Capra level-classic December 02, 2010

Hi Chris;
THANK YOU!!
I'm thrilled by your visit, kind comments and this Finalist Award.
Do'n my happiest, happy dance.
;) CC #9076630

Maria A. Gonzalez December 11, 2010

A beautiful capture in their natural setting and habitat,Carla..
I love macro photography and I try to be truthfull to what I see,how I see it and presented in the real way they are in nature.I don't PP my images much,except levels,crop,and resizing.I chalenge myself to capture in manual mode as close as possible to what Mother Nature presents me with.Colors,details,mood,light are so very important and I love the chalenge nature often gives me.
So in other words I wouldn't change a thing in this image..It is perfect the way it is..It shows the conditions and the beautiful Ladybugs in their natural settings.
Very well done in camera work..Excellent capture,light,composition and play of light,shadows and darl areas.
Congratulations on your beautiful finalist.
Photography is an Art and I like how everyone expresses the way they see things and their visions.
My vision is very simple ,it is to present the viewer with the image I saw and how I captured at the moment I click the shutter.
Hope you have a wonderful day. #9092748

Carla Capra level-classic December 12, 2010

Hi Maria;
You have described my goal for 2010. Thank you for your comment and I appreciate knowing you better.
Thank you.
;) CC #9095295

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Description

During a nature walk I stumbled upon this delightful group/colony of lady bugs.
They had attached themselves to a old downed tree and at first glance made me feel slightly dizzy, because of the sheer number of moving lady bugs.
This part of the forest had the appearance of a rain forest and was mostly shade with filtered light. The image you see here has the uneven lighting predominate in the area and is what was appealing to me.

Exif: F Number: 14, Exposure Bias Value: 0.00, ExposureTime: 1/100 seconds, Flash: did not fire., ISO: 640, White balance: Manual white balance, FocalLength: 70.00 mm, Model: NIKON D70

Uploaded on August 06, 2010

BetterPhoto.com Photo Contest Finalist


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