Night and Day : A Dahlia Story
Yesterday I suppose I had things to do. Well, yes, of course I had things to do - proposals to write, contracts to get out, a really unkempt house to attend to and more clothes to put away than I could emotionally deal with. But as tends to happen to me from time to time, I got a little distracted by a few flowers. And my camera. You see, I was driving home from a morning errand and I passed New Hope Baptist Church in Avondale. I was almost around the corner before I barely noticed some large round bursts of color amongst a tall wall of green. As a florist I have developed a keen ability to spot anything interesting growing pretty much anywhere I am, even while I'm driving, which may or may not be slightly hazardous.
Anyway, I checked the rearview, slammed on the brakes and made a u-turn. My instincts were correct - a huge dahlia garden the likes of which I've never seen. I of course got out of the car and commenced a reconnaissance mission to determine who I needed to approach about purchasing some of the lovelies. After knocking on about 8 locked church doors (lord knows I'm glad I hadn't come to church to get born again as I'd have been right out of luck), I found a phone number posted in the garden which I called when I got home. Needless to say within 10 minutes I was back in the car and in the garden with a pair of clippers in the company of a very nice lady, Jeannine, who told me all about New Hope's community garden. Apparently anyone in the neighborhood can reserve and use a plot for no charge. And a portion of proceeds from any sales go to an empowerment program for underprivileged members of the community. Excellent!
These dahlias were just so stunning that I had to get out the camera. Pretty much all day, I arranged flowers and photographed the process. And when my husband got home we totally geeked out and brought out some very official lighting and a backdrop to photograph them indoors. Setting up lighting is not one of my favorite activities as I am (unfortunately) SUPER impatient and it requires just that. But the light Scott dialed in was so delicate and reminiscent of a dutch painting that I'm glad we persevered. I'm also, as usual, grateful to have a husband who is both more patient than me and even more talented. He's taught me everything I know about photography and more than I ever could have fathomed about love. As I tend to do on this blog fairly often, I'd like to say thank you to my husband for helping me capture the beauty of these special flowers.
Here are some shots I took in the light of day.