Phoneography and Non-SLR Digital Photo Challenge: Macro (A Single Oak Leaf)

08 September 2014


1. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

1. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

2. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

2. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

3. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

3. Fallen Oak Leaf, iPhone 4s; Copyright © 2014 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved/Lens and Pens by Sally

Let me know which you prefer and why.


In the pre-autumn days I become a collector, ever vigilant for one of the symbols of the upcoming season: fallen single or multiples of leaves. In my world each leaf represents the life cycle as well as the essence of our individual journeys. They never cease to intrigue me.

Autumn is without reservation a memorable place on my mental calendar of time and place. It would be a struggle to live where this transformation does not exist.

As summer wanes, the landscape gives hints of the days ahead. Spent flowers are going to seed, providing needed food for wildlife. Birds seem especially ravenous. Migration is nearing. Leaves become signposts for these changes. So I am on my most observant behavior.

It’s not planned; it’s instinctual. I become a more diligent voyeur of nature’s dance. Leaves entrance my visual field, transfixing my attention during daily walks.

Even though they cascade in silence, I behold their presence as newly fallen or aged. Sometimes they have not transformed and simple separate from their host, taking weeks for alterations to be noticed. Mostly, small to monumental changes become the usual.

Over the last few weeks the landscape has begun this transition; the performance has started. Already dogwoods are multi-colored. Oaks have started to tint. Leaves are sprinkled here and there.

I’m discovering small gems to dry and savor. Each one easily becomes its own personality with unique qualities.

Some plants and trees hold these small wonders longer than others, keeping them is dependent upon temps, the ticking of days and variations in climate. Macro is a way to spy on their designs–designs and patterns that are hidden from our naked eyes.

These delicate yet critically-important slices of nature are apt examples that show Mother Nature does not waste anything. Unlike human littering and loitering upon the planet, nature recycles.

Eventually everything becomes something else: the new, expected and unexpected appear and reappear and reappear again. Life continues.

Tip of the Week: This week I’d like to introduce you to another nature macro photographer: Canadian Damien Clarke. He says, “I want to connect people to the small world that is all around us and remind them of the smaller beauty that is so often missed. I try to bring happiness, awe or quiet contemplation into people’s lives.” His work moves across the genre of nature photography that includes animals, abstractions, flowers, and insects. Clarke is equally concerned about color, form, depth perception, and light. You can view his work on a few websites. Here are two: click and click. His photographs capture the miniature essence of each subject, which is achieved with sharp clarity and attention to composition. Hope that you enjoy his online collections.

Cold Morning Daisy, Flower Collection, Damon Clarke

Cold Morning Daisy, Flower Collection, Damon Clarke

Lichen Untitled, Forest Collection, Damon Clarke

Lichen Untitled, Forest Collection, Damon Clarke

View other entries for this week’s challenge: Macro


If you’d like to join the Photo Challenge, please click here for details. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming Photo Challenges:

1st Monday: Nature.

2nd Monday: Macro.

3rd Monday: Black and White.

4th Monday Challenger’s Choice (Pick One: Abstraction, Animals, Architecture, Food Photography, Night Photography, Objects, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).

5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.

This entry was posted in Abstraction, Design, Macro Photography, Nature Photography, Photography, Writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

66 Responses to Phoneography and Non-SLR Digital Photo Challenge: Macro (A Single Oak Leaf)

  1. restlessjo says:

    Hope you’re enjoying Autumn, Sally. 🙂

  2. cindy knoke says:

    I’m hopeless. I like them all!

  3. I love the leaves They are a work of art. Love the macro!!

  4. DG MARYOGA says:

    Hi dear Sally ! All three are handsomely taken, but I find the second one with both parts/colours more balanced and effectively displayed ; incredible details,great work as always 🙂

  5. Tina Schell says:

    Lovely choices Sally. I too love the seasonal changes. Here in SC we are still deep in the summer’s throes but it won’t be long now!

  6. Like you I love transitions in the landscape – and with the seasons. Of the photos this time – of the seasonal change – I find it hard to choose a favourite. They are all so beautiful. Maybe the last one for the more intriguing composition. By the way I didn’t know about Damien Clarke, so thanks for the links.

  7. Inspiring warm colors of Autumn. Can’t believe Summer is over although looking forward for pumpkin patch and Halloween events for my 8-year old. Happy weekend my friend.

  8. Sweet as a Picture says:

    I love autumn. Love your photos and the links provided. Thank you!

  9. Maria F. says:

    This is beautiful, what a detail!!!

  10. Virginia Duran says:

    Hello Sally, my favourite is #2. Love how the light goes through in two points, making it a diagonal composition. I find it very architectural. I also like the contrast between colors 🙂

  11. Su Leslie says:

    These are lovely shots Sally; they remind me of a sculpture by Maurice van Cooten, a young New Zealand artist (perhaps you can see why which a friend bought a couple of years ago. Anyway, here’s my contribution this week:

  12. thirdeyemom says:

    Gorgeous Sally! I love the photos but the words resonate so much with me. Thank you. I love fall too. Unfortunately for me it is a reminder of the long cold winter ahead. But fall in Minnesota is spectacular.

  13. Gallivanta says:

    Number 3 is my favourite this week. I love the reminder of Nature’s perfect recycling habits.

  14. Beautiful leaf textures and colors, Sally. Every year I try to get excited about fall but knowing winter is ahead dampens my enjoyment a little. Photos like these are great reminders of the good things about our next season though and today my favorite is #1. 🙂

  15. Angeline M says:

    Late for the party, but here I am. I really like the last one, simply because there is more of the green in the middle, and the upward direction of it. It looks sort of like a Google map. I’ll be back to peruse the links, thank you for those. Have a great week.

  16. Leaves are a great subject and you show them to great effect here. The third photo is the one that draws my attention this week. The balance of colour and form is excellent. Here is my contribution:

  17. says:

    I love this Sally and strangely enough I took long walk in the woods yesterday morning at my mom’s house. I will gratefully participate ! #3 is my favorite!

    • The woods are so inviting this time of year. See you soon. Thanks so much.

      • says:

        Some of my photos are eerily similar to others (great minds etc) so I will wait a day or too ! I was thinking of inviting you to LWG but I am only here until Friday so I think I must wait until October? I hope you are game then?

      • Yes, that would be better. I went last week, and the meadow was full of spent flowers. Just a few small sunflowers and some stray wildflowers. October will bring an autumn glow, which we could enjoy. My schedule is crazy, and it would be good to let me know a bit in advance. Hope that we can meet.

  18. They are all great photos. I love the textures in them. 😀

  19. So beautiful Sally, what a gorgeous post! All of your photographs and lovely words too. Thank you for the introduction. 😦

  20. Thanks for the introduction to Damon Clarke, who we now know does excellent macro work in nature.

  21. Suzanne says:

    I really like all of these images – hard to pick a favourite – maybe the last one because it shows more of that variegated colour. I probably won’t go in the challenge this week. I can’t get my phone to zoom in and take macro images. Then again I might play with the scanner if I have time. 🙂

  22. These are beautiful autumn leaf images, Sally. I must admit I miss fall living here in Central Florida!

  23. Sally, I didn’t post these pictures last week because they were too much like yours then. Turns out when I posted this week they were even more like today’s! Wow Great minds and all 😉
    Number 2 has a wow whimsy factor for me.
    Very happy Weekly Challenge

  24. The detail in these images is outstanding. Great stuff Sally.

  25. These are wonderful Sally-each and everyone of them-but I find myself drawn to the last one in part because of the angle and in part because we see more of the yellowish center colors–like you, I love autumn and while we do not get the kind of color down here that you see up north, if you keep your eye open, you are bound to stumble on interesting and beautiful finds-

  26. Sally, you give us impossible challenges each week–to choose the photo we like best. 🙂 I’m attracted to each for some similar (beautiful colors and shapes) and different (gut feeling) reasons so once again I waffle and say simply that I like them all. Thanks for linking me. I have my posts go live at 2 am EST each day, then I link when the challenge is up. Today I was walking in the park, enjoying that light you love, when you posted, hence my tardy response. I’m going to link now, but just ignore the second pingback. I want readers to be able to come to your site if they want to do so.

    Have a wonderful week, filled with marvelous photos.


  27. LavendarLadi says:

    Lovely photos and a perfect description of pre-fall.

  28. I too love the amoeba shape…very unique…great find.

  29. pattimoed says:

    Damien Clark’s work is stunning! Thanks for the inspiration! And of course your work is inspiring too! I especially liked the middle photo–I think the amoeba shape is intriguing. And the interplay of patterns. –Patti

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