Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Nature (and my Obsession with Geraniums)

04 July 2016


1. Geranium Florets, Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

1. Geranium Florets, Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

2. Geranium Florets; Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

2. Geranium Florets; Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

Let me know which you prefer. Click on image to enlarge, which takes you to another page. If you decide to leave a comment, please return to this page.


I admit my obsession with geraniums and their sumptuous florets. From afar the flower head appears as one large come-and-see-me blossom. But a close-up view reveals a cluster of florets that defy the initial gaze.

Each time one of my geraniums blooms, I am nonplussed by its singular charm–charm that is alarmingly seductive. And each time one of my geraniums blooms, I react as if it is my first sighting. That’s the magic of these annuals, a magic that continues in my eyes to reinvent itself.

As humans we cannot always explain our reaction, our unconditional devotion, our abiding focus, our unique predilections, our stubborn amplitude, our keen observations. Sometimes there is a person, a work of art, a slice of nature, a sentence in a story, a sudden realization, a perfect or imperfect moment that urges us to act–all in the service of our individual journey with its lessons and tribulations.

Why that object, why that scene, why that slice of the mundane? Why freeze frame that moment? And because it incites my inner lens does not assure that anyone else sees my images as a variant of my perceptions.

Yes, I admit my intense foothold in philosophy and even psychology, but I accept these parameters of my behavior and personality. It explains much of my steadfast directive as an introvert, which also acts as a force to understand the world through visual interpretation.

My belaboring the wondrous single floret with its back-up chorus has me in silent investigation of its unique character. For explainable and unexplainable reasons its oneness in a sea of other geraniums florets (scattered worldwide and not at all interested in each other) has me gobsmacked. I surrendered to its beckoning.

Still, my internal drive to appreciate these tiny beings is not that strange. Nature has always played with my attention, and I inevitably succumb with ease. And during a discovery my conscious state is overtaken by senses and sensibilities. I am helpless to do anything but graze upon the moment and the aftermath.

In the Lens section is the sighting of the florets that donned a geranium from 2015 gardening season, and blossomed in my kitchen last week. Its presence seemed to scold the budding geraniums in their sight that were sunning in the outside garden. It was a clever point in this year’s flowering season. I was enchanted.

The two images are only slightly different, but enough that I felt each has its merits. The floret in the foreground has a playfulness and a lightness of being that I could not resist. It seemed to want to float across time and space with assurance and whimsy, catching the light and my attention.

Tip of the Week:

When I am composing a post for a challenge, I continually check the internet to verify facts or search for answers to questions to use in the body of my “Pens” section. Or to include in the Tip of the Week. One of the ways that I can assist myself is searching a few apps that respond to queries about nature, specifically plant and tree identification. Here are two that you might investigate:

  1. Leafsnap

Price: Free

From their website: “A joint project by Columbia University, University of Maryland and Smithsonian Institution is helping people identify plants with a photo. Leafsnap uses facial recognition software for trees–all you need is a leaf and a white background and this application should be able to help you. The app currently covers trees of the Northeast and Washington, DC.”

2. TreeBook

Price: Free

From their website: TreeBook has 100 of the most common trees in North America as a helpful resource guide.”

Even if you are not in North America, you can search for your region of the world, and find similar apps. They are enormously helpful as sources to take on nature walks and to identify leaves, plants and trees. Hope that you find them useful, or discover your own to have ready for your next outing.

Other entries into this week’s challenge:


As always I welcome comments about this post or any part of my blog. My photographs for the mobile photography challenge are taken with an iPhone 6.

****If you would like to buy a print of any of my photographs or have any questions, please view the Contact Information found on the masthead. Thank you.

If you’d like to join this Mobile Photography Challenge, please click here for details and history of the challenge. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming 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, Panorama, 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 Design, Mobile Photography, Nature Photography, Photography, Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

42 Responses to Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Nature (and my Obsession with Geraniums)

  1. Maria F. says:

    Continue that obsession!

  2. I like them both but favor the one on the left more. Your pictures are stunning and make me smile.

  3. RMW says:

    I can’t pick which one because I am obsessed with geraniums too. I have about 35 geranium plants in pots on my deck and balcony… they are a year-round source of vibrant color.

  4. Prior-2001 says:

    The first one to me is the “clear” winner. Get it…. clear as in more clear too – ha! – well that is why I liked it…)
    also – loved this snippet from your writing: “oneness in a sea of other geraniums florets…”
    and I have geranium essential oil and I guess it is a natural bug deterrent…. I like it for outside…

  5. Nato says:

    Tough to decided. However, if I must choose one, I think I like the first for it’s crispness. Nature is certainly a power temptress to many of us. And, let’s face it, there are so many worse things you could be addicted to. Loving nature has to be a great addiction to have:)

  6. Both are dramatically stunning. I think maybe 1 is my preference. and what a lovely post and reflections!

  7. thirdeyemom says:

    Absolutely stunning Sally! Gorgeous

  8. Pingback: Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Nature | nowathome

  9. nowathome says:

    I like both of the images! I am new to this challenge . Here is my entry:

  10. I love the clarity of the first, Sally. Both are beautiful. Thanks for the links to those interesting-looking apps! Happy 4th of July! 🙂

  11. cindy knoke says:

    I prefer the first, but they are both lovely~

  12. Sally, I won’t choose between these two beauties. I’ll take both, please.


  13. Beautiful, beautiful-the second one speaks to me-such a bold and deeply dramatic red-pulsing it what came to mind-

  14. Allan G. Smorra says:

    Both of these photos are interesting to me, Sally. The first one is a good macro shot and the second one is a bit more moody and soft focus. I like it the most.

    Here is my entry for the week:

    Happy 4th,

  15. Tish Farrell says:

    Well that’s a fine obsession to have, Sally. I love them too. And I can’t choose between these 2 images. They are both gloriously sumptuous.

    • Wish, glad that we share an adoration for these annuals, which I consider perennials (since I keep them inside all winter). See you soon. Thanks.

      • Tish Farrell says:

        I always mean to overwinter my geraniums indoors, and last year some managed to do it by themselves outside. And I always mean to take cuttings. Maybe this autumn…

      • I usually take a cutting, and it has been a try-and- true method. But I also will bring a pot inside and trim the plant for winter growth. They continue to bloom for as long as I keep them.

  16. Chas Spain says:

    Love the slightly bluish tinge of the first but the intensity of the second – wonderful – a hard pick Sally.

  17. Amy says:

    Beautiful image of geraniums, I love geraniums! Mine is coming up…

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