It is hard to believe that so much political upheaval has happened because of a vaccine, but it has. In the botanical world, Agave plants also seem to have their version of a jab, and that’s what the featured image is about. I don’t really know how it happened that the plant is poking itself, but since it is, I thought I had a good opportunity for a photo. I took it at the UC Davis arboretum ( f/16, 1/5s, iso 320), from the top of a tripod, using my awesome Nikkor Z 24 mm 1.8. The photo is a welcome addition to my GeoGalleries “leaf” portfolio, where you can also find a few other examples of my succulent plant photography.
Succulent plants are a joy to photograph for a variety of reasons. In the central valley of California, their primary advantage is that they do not wiggle too much in the wind. They are also drought-resistant and will look nice even in the heart of summer, California’s driest season. Practical reasons apart, I particularly enjoy photographing the curves of the leaves of Agave americana. They yield interesting compositions in monochrome, which are more abstract in essence and present strong graphic elements.
On a more personal note, the morning I took this photograph, I was freezing! It is possible that 37 F (2.7 C) is like summer for some of you, depending on where you live, but for me, it was really challenging. The tripod was like a piece of ice. It was hard to maneuver the camera settings with gloves on, and my glasses were fogging while I tried to protect some of my face with a scarf. Perhaps it was an amusing scene to watch! And although I was working really hard and managed to concentrate on what I was doing, a lot of the Agave photos I took that morning with another lens, my 105mm 2.8 macro, turned out blurry or simply not sharp enough. I am still trying to figure out what happened.
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