Eclectic Max

31 08 2008

This afternoon Gina and I stopped by one of our favorite little shops, Eclectic Nature. Their address is 1503 Mt. Vernon Avenue, in the Del Ray area of Alexandria. They were having an “end of season” sale with all plants 50% off. There wasn’t much left, of course, so we left empty-handed (which doesn’t happen very often!).

Eclectic Nature sells plants, unusual containers, and garden art outside. Inside the gift shop, you’ll find original paintings, jewelry, gardening supplies, home decor, knick-knacks, and other eclectic stuff. And you’ll most likely run into Max the cat. He’ll probably be right smack in the middle of the checkout desk, vying for your attention. He had just come in from the nursery when I got this shot of him. He is the sweetest thing and very affectionate. He looks like a gargoyle, doesn’t he?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Honorine Jobert

31 08 2008

…otherwise known as a “Japanese anemone.” The common name for this plant is “windflower,” and if you have ever tried to photograph this plant when there is a breeze, you’ll find windflower an appropriate name! Another common name is thimbleweed. I photographed these at Green Spring Gardens this morning.

‘Honorine Jobert’ is a vigorous, mounding, compact Japanese anemone hybrid best grown in zones 4-8. It was discovered in Verdun, France in 1858. This herbaceous perennial from the Ranunculaceae family reaches 3-4 feet high and spreads 1.5 to 2 feet. The beautiful 2″ snow white flowers bloom from August through September and the plant likes full sun to part shade. Low maintenance and easily grown in average, well-drained soil, ‘Honorine Jobert’ does best in part shade to protect it from wind. Once established, the suckering shoots will spread, so plant it where it has room to grow. Divide in early spring or autumn or take root cuttings in the spring.

Summer for thee, grant I may be

Summer for thee, grant I may be
When Summer days are flown!
Thy music still, when Whipporwill
And Oriole—are done!

For thee to bloom, I’ll skip the tomb
And row my blossoms o’er!
Pray gather me—
Aenome—
Thy flower—forevermore!

—Emily Dickinson

Photos © Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Introducing Ashley Jocelyn

31 08 2008

On Tuesday, August 26, at 4:14 p.m., Ashley Jocelyn graced the world with her presence, weighing 7 lbs. 6.4 oz, and measuring 21 inches long. (See her very first portrait in the collage below). Her father, Mike, asked me if I would consider photographing it since he had never seen a childbirth in still photographs and thought I could capture it beautifully. (Thanks for considering me for the project, Mike and Alicia! I hope I did the event justice with these images.)

Believe it or not, this is not the first time I’ve photographed a baby being born. About 13 or 14 years ago, I photographed a friend’s sister having her second child. This was pre-digital photography days, so I shot print film the couple had provided and then handed the rolls over for them to process. Unfortunately, I’ve never seen the images, even though I was told that they turned out well. It’s the first and only time I haven’t seen the results of a shoot, and as you can see, I still remember that fact!

Suddenly, here was a chance to shoot digitally and be able to get immediate feedback—so I jumped at the chance. It was a privilege to witness Ashley’s birth and to photograph her entrance into the world for Alicia and Michael. Below are some of the images of this amazing event.

I photographed Alicia in early June in my studio with Mike and their two children. You’ll see those photos in my posting titled, “And baby girl makes five…” I also got some great shots of the kids here. I’m looking forward to the opportunity to photograph Ashley and her family again.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Out came the rain and….

30 08 2008

didn’t wash the spider out! Pat’s web was gone early this morning. Then a little while later, despite the rain, she was spinning another one. The little white dots you see are water droplets. Today’s soggy, rainy day explains the somber gray background, of course. I shot the first photo right before I went out to lunch with a friend. The second photo was shot after I returned, and if you look closely, you’ll see Pat is wrapping up her freshly-caught lunch (a fly, I believe). Yum!

The backlighting makes her orange stripes just glow in these photos.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





T.G.I.F.

29 08 2008

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Boy of a million faces

28 08 2008

I photographed three month old baby Jonathan and his parents in early August. He’s one of the most expressive babies I’ve ever photographed. Amy says, “we call him the boy of a million faces, because he’s made so many faces—even in the very early days when they say they don’t really smile.” Jonathan was born May 18. Welcome to the world, Jonathan!

These are some of photos I got that morning. I hope to photograph him again so I can get some closeups!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

…and proof that he has rightfully earned his title, “boy of a million faces.”






Pat, extended

27 08 2008

Now that looks like a spider, doesn’t it? After I shot the through-the-window images, I went outside to photograph Pat and she skidaddled. A bit past dusk she was back to web-central, legs extended, waiting for dinner. To give you a sense of scale, with her legs extended, she’s about an inch long (yes, I held a ruler up to the window…just for you). I must admit she looks a bit more spider-y-ish with her legs extended. She looks tick-ish in the previous posting, doesn’t she?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.