Patterns In Nature

There is a school of thought that says that all good human design is derived from patterns in nature, and that we have a natural sympathy for objects that echo what we see around us in the natural world. Indeed, even the most abstract of human creations, be it painting, architecture, or simple tools, all seem to stem from what nature has taught and revealed. The subject of this month’s Picture This! assignment is Patterns in Nature, where we requested readers to go out and find those most pleasing, often intricate, and quite mysterious designs that we discover in the natural world and reveal through composition, lighting, and point of view with our cameras.

Prismatic Hot Springs

These springs in Yellowstone offer amazing contrasts of color, light, and atmosphere, as captured here by Jim Ullrich with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II and a 24-105mm L lens. Exposure was f/11 at 1/800 sec at ISO 400.
© Jim Ullrich

Sunflower

Ronald G. Marvin’s photo of this sunflower combines color, composition, and a revelation of one of the most intricate and beautiful designs in nature. Exposure with a Sigma DP1 was f/5 at 1/60 sec.
© Ronald G. Marvin

Ripples

Wind is the sculptor of these sand dunes in Death Valley. Marcus W. Reinkensmeyer made this photo at sunset with a Nikon D300 and a Nikkor AF-S 12-24mm lens and a B+W polarizer with the rig atop a Gitzo G1325 tripod. Exposure was f/14 at 1/20 sec.
© Marcus W. Reinkensmeyer

Brittlestar Arm

Jim Kendall made this photo in the waters of Bonaire, Netherland Antilles, with a Nikon D200 and a Nikkor 105mm lens in an Ikelite housing using Inon strobes. A +1 diopter was inside the housing with a removable wet diopter on the end of the lens housing. Exposure was f/20 at 1/80 sec.
© Jim Kendall

Backlit Fern

Greg Tucker set up his Nikon D200 and Nikkor 70-180mm lens so that it was as parallel as possible to the fern and awaited the rising sun to illuminate the fronds.
© Greg Tucker

Jellyfish In Sand

Looking all the world like a comet streaking through the night sky, Jim Gavin made this photo of “rain, sand, jellyfish, and the effects of the Pacific Ocean” at Long Beach, Washington, with a Canon PowerShot G10.
© Jim Gavin

From Above

What could be a macro shot is actually an aerial view of Alaska from 36,000 feet made by John Elonover Jr. with a Kodak single-use film camera.
© John Elonover Jr.

Alamo Palm

Gerald Swede photographed this plant at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, with a Nikon D7000 and a Nikkor 16-85mm VR lens. Exposure was f/11 at 1/60 sec at ISO 400.
© Gerald Swede

Penguin Pattern

Frank Lawson wrote: “I was struck by the mirror-like pattern of the two gentoo penguins as well as the bold pattern of their formal get-ups.” Exposure with a Canon EOS 50D and a 70-200mm f/4L IS lens was f/7.1 at 1/200 sec at ISO 200.
© Frank Lawson

Nature’s Art

All the intricacy of design and variation in texture and tone of this tree in Banff National Park was captured by Jeff Signorini with a Canon EOS 50D and an EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens. Exposure was f/4 at 1/20 sec.
© Jeff Signorini

Repeating Forms

The proliferation of plants in the field creates a rhythm of design and color in this photo by Rich Leon. He worked with a Pentax K-r and an 80-320mm lens.
© Rich Leon

Oceano Dunes

This monochrome image of dunes is tonally rich and visually sensual. Robert Oliver photographed with a Chamonix 4x5 camera and a Nikkor 90mm f/8 lens on Kodak T-Max 100 film with an exposure of f/64 at 1/4 sec.
© Robert Oliver

Frost

The intricate pattern formed by frost on a window pane was captured by Linda Witteveen with a Nikon D90 and an AF Micro-Nikkor 105mm lens with an exposure of f/32 at 1/13 sec.
© Linda Witteveen

Queen Anne’s Lace

Debra Kreider made this photograph from underneath the plant to give us this unique point of view into an even more intricate pattern. Exposure with a Nikon D40 and a 55-200mm zoom was f/10 at 1/30 sec.
© Debra Kreider

Glacier Park Wall

The abstract expressionist painters must have learned all from the natural world, as evidenced by this photo of a wall painted by nature in Glacier National Park. Exposure with a Canon EOS Rebel T2i with an EF-S 18-135mm lens was f/4.5 at 1/50 sec at ISO 200.
© Paul S. Wilson

Fire Runner

Wallace Johnson captured this amazing form created by fire at the Eternal Flame at President Kennedy’s grave in Arlington National Cemetery. It looks, he wrote, like “a man charging forward carrying a flame or a torch.” Exposure with a Nikon D300S and a Tamron 18-270mm lens was f/6.3 at 1/2000 sec.
© Wallace Johnson

Picture This! – Our Next Assignment
At The Flea Market

The setups at flea markets and yard sales can seem like they were tailor-made still life setups for photographers. How you frame and the disparate subjects you include in your frame speak to both your eye and your comment on the stuff we all seem to collect. This month’s Picture This! assignment, “At the Flea Market,” is all about composition, form, and color and how all come together in those found moments you come across along the way. This photo was made with a Canon EOS 40D and an exposure of f/8 at 1/160 sec at ISO 100.


© George Schaub

Please Read This
It is important that you read and follow these guidelines. We need to follow this procedure because of the large volume of images we receive. If you have any questions, please e-mail us at: editorial@shutterbug.com.

1) Images sent to us cannot be returned. You retain complete copyright over the images, but do grant us permission to print your image(s) in the magazine and on our website, www.shutterbug.com.

2) Because images are not returned please send a quality print or duplicate transparency. We will not accept or view images on CD, ZIP, or any other electronic media.

3) Images will be selected on the basis of content and technical quality. Please mark your outer envelope with the topic of the month (for example, “Wide View”).

4) Enclose a short caption with the image stating camera, lens, film and exposure, plus location. If you are submitting an image with a recognizable person we must have a model release or signed permission from that person to reproduce their image in the magazine and on the website.

5) Please submit no more than three photos for consideration (4x6 up to 81/2x11).

Send your image and information to:
Picture This! Shutterbug Magazine,
1415 Chaffee Dr., Suite #10, Titusville, FL 32780.
Deadline for submission: March 15, 2012.
Images will appear in our June 2012 issue.
Our next topic: Silhouette
Deadline: April 15, 2012
Publication Date: July, 2012

Please note: We receive hundreds of submissions for Picture This! each month and want to be sure we properly identify each image we publish. Please be sure to attach your name and image information to the back of each submission.

Want to see images selected for past Picture This! assignments? Go to www.shutterbug.com and click on Picture This! in the “More Articles…” box on the homepage.

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