Monday, 19 July 2010

Ladybugs Arrive - but it's ok...

In order to shoot close-ups of ladybugs, one must first have - - ladybugs!

Since just before the snow left Toronto, I've been nagging the local (and not-so-local) nurseries, asking when they'd be getting ladybugs in stock. I'd get all kinds of answers. "Mid-June", "...any time now", "about 3 weeks"... These answers were consistent until just last week when, low-and-behold, I got a bag of ladybugs. Apparently, they're harvested in California and the weather there this past winter/spring was so cold the bugs didn't 'do their thing' on time.

Don't worry - they're not the Asian variety. They don't have a nasty bite (if any at all), they don't smell (mind you, I haven't squished any to check) and they're not supposed to multiply like rabbits! These critters are the ones everyone likes (and they're good for the garden)!

So I spent all day yesterday taking my time with a couple of well-frozen ladybugs, carefully posing them again and again. It was fun. Tedious, but fun.

That's a dollar store plastic 'don't pee your mattress' sheet hanging up there. Very low-tech by today's light-diffusion equipment standards, but the Scottish blood in me prefers to use this econo-model - and I love the low-glare results!

By the way - putting a ladybug in the freezer for even a few hours won't harm it... They have a natural 'anti-freeze' in their system. Within a minute of removing them from the freezer (after only a couple of hours in there), they'll be scurrying all over. If you need a more 'permanently seated' model, leave it/them in the freezer for a day/two. They won't move much after that - or so I've found.

To see my results, visit my web site and see the 'Photo Art' section. They're right at the top of the section.

As always, please drop me a note to let me know what you think - or would like me to try next.