Mike Moats Flower Macros Contest – Wrap-up

OK, I can take the hint . . . except maybe I can’t.

The number of visitors and views have dropped significantly since I started this series exploring macros. Apparently, people hate macros . . . or flowers . . . or macros of flowers.

I also inadvertently have been flooding Mikes comments section by linking the contest in every post (it creates pingbacks), so I will not be linking it here (look back a post for the link), but will remind readers they should at least try and enter. The prizes are worth it.

Now, if you, the two or three readers still with me, have something to do, you might want to take care of it before starting in on this. As usual, I don’t do galleries as they register too many hits (views), or at least they did. Besides, I like adding a narrative.

Macros . . .  a lot of what I posted in the previous six posts can be considered borderline macros. They are close-ups, but they don’t really ‘get in there’, as it were.

For instance, take the Cone Flowers . . . this next shot might be considered more of a close-up than a macro.


So might this . . .


This, however, is more what I think of when I think of ‘macro’.


Also these . . .

Flowers, Flowers,

Those last two shots are from last year, when a late frost hurt the flowers, and they never quite made it into full bloom.

But it’s not just getting close. Some macros end up being ‘art’. 

Macros don’t have to be ‘art’, but when looking at something in minute detail, there is the added opportunity to take advantage of the strangeness of it, and also make it ‘artsy’.

Take the remnants of a poppy flower . . . I try and present it not only in a new perspective, but also as something you might hang on a wall.

Flowers, untitled-2490_DIGI untitled-3123_DIGI

OK, so maybe you would not hang those on a wall, but what about these Yucca Plant flowers?




I can definitely see that last one hanging at a funeral home.

Some flowers lose too much of their familiarity, and what makes them attractive, when you zoom in too much.


I mean, it looks interesting, but Daisies, at least for me, appear best when one can see more of the flower, as in these two examples (although they are also helped by the color).

Flowers, Flowers,

Salvia, on the other hand, give you ‘more’ when you look at them up-close. From a non-descript purple mass, they go to this . . .

untitled-8013_DIGI untitled-8016_DIGI

I mentioned in a previous post how difficult it is to show some things with a lot of detail in the specified limit of 600pixels.

Well, it can be done; it just needs more work.


That is one whole Salsify seed ball. Not too bad, and speaking of art, the composition is not by accident. I was trying to give the impression of an ‘explosion of seeds.

This next one is more about showing the structure of the seeds.


There is a lot of detail there, and it takes a bit of playing around to get it to show up. By the way, nearly all of the photos in this and the other six posts have been processed using the onOne Effects module.

As you can see, I tried a few different approaches . . .

untitled-6616_DIGI untitled-6616-3_DIGI

But these next two are the ones I liked the best, both for being ‘more macro’ and for their artistic presentation.



Of all the Salsify shots, although difficult to choose, I like the last one the best.

Clematis is another flower I find difficult to present . . .


But maybe I’ve been approaching it all wrong . . . this composition looks more interesting.


Of course, sometimes they look OK on their own (with a little processing) . . .

untitled-7791_DIGI untitled-7790_DIGI

I don’t know . . . I keep getting toward showing more and more of the flower even as I know this . . .


. . . might not look as good as this . . .


. . . and that neither of those are as close as this . . .


I mean, you can’t beat a tiny straw monster coming out of a flower.

Oh, heck . . . I don’t know what one ought to for macros, and I certainly don’t know what increases the odds of a viewer connecting with any photo I post.

I suppose a lot has to do with one’s own preference for not only flowers, but colors . . . 

Flowers, Flowers,

. . . and for texture mixed with color . . . 


Then there is the whole visual impact thing.


You know, it never occurred to me to save these at full resolution, and I’ve already blown away the files (the processing generated huge files, often over 100 MB).

A lot of these look good as are, but they look spectacular at full resolution . . . maybe next time.

So, back to square one . . . whole flower . . . 


. . . or close-up?


I suppose the case can be made for both. 

Perhaps the key is to present something unusual . . . these are chives . . . 

untitled-2279_DIGI untitled-2280_DIGI untitled-2280-2_DIGI

I seldom look at them, but when I do, I am surprised at the structure and colors.

I can be surprised even with something as familiar as columbines . . . 

untitled-2319_DIGI untitled-2316_DIGI

Petunias . . . I like saying the name, but I also like the flower’s structure, color, and details . . . 

untitled-2468_DIGI untitled-2463_DIGI

Monochromatic flowers can sometimes present a challenge, one I respond to by doing weird processing stuff.

untitled-2926_DIGI untitled-1958_DIGI

Also, what do you do when the flowers are already tiny . . . well, I show more than one.

untitled-1000312_DIGI untitled-3084_DIGI

Well, I could go on, and on, but I’m sure by now I’ve lost nearly everyone who started reading this, and I still don’t have any clue as to what I will submit. 

I just hope I’ve motivated enough people to enter the contest so that when my submissions don’t win anything I can attribute it to the sheer number of entries having reduced my chances of winning to near zero. 

. . . although, what will annoy me is if the winning entry is substantially similar to one of the photos I have, but did not submit. Well, it won’t annoy me all that much . . . I least I will know I am capable of taking photos similar to those that win.

And now, I end . . . OMFSM! I completely forgot about water and flowers! I have many, many shots of drops on flowers!

Alaska Cruise 2012

No! . . . ain’t doin’ it! 

This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


Note: if you are not reading this blog post at Disperser.Wordpress.com, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.


Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards About “likes”:   Of “Likes”, Subscriptions, and Stuff

Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
This entry was posted in Effects and Filters, Flowers, Macro Photography, Photography Stuff and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Mike Moats Flower Macros Contest – Wrap-up

  1. oneowner says:

    The shot of the Salsify seed ball are definitely contenders. They may also be more of what passes for “macro photography” than some of the others. The second Clematis shot is also excellent but in my opinion, the best shot is the chives (the last one). Not really sure if you (or anyone, really) agree with that but I call em like I see ’em.


    • disperser says:

      As you know, I like everything I do (that’s why it’s great to me me – no chance of self-flagellation), but were I to enter, and were I to be restricted to these choices, the three contenders would be . . .

      The last of the Salsify, the second Chive (not really macro, but the directions include near-photos), and the close-up of the mini rose (the one after the rose bud).

      Were I to judge on color and “artistic” presentation, the Clematis seed pod, the last of the Yucca plant flower, and the closeup of the blue pansy.

      Of course, I saw the full size, full resolution versions, and those might be influencing my choices.

      The closeup of the chive is not that different than the full shot of the flower (it’s a 1:1 crop) when viewed on my screen before scaling to 600pixels.

      Thanks for the input . . . if I decide to enter the contest I will have a heck of a time choosing (there’s the six other posts to consider).


  2. Emily Heath says:

    My favourites are the salsify and poppy shots. The Yucca flowers I’m not fond of. This is personal preference!


  3. AnnMarie says:

    The third chive photo is MAGNIFICENT! That’s the one that got my attention!


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