Seeds

by Iain Gilmour November. 21, 2019 372 views

I have always found Karl Blossfeldt's photographs of plants, flowers and seed heads as appealing today as they no doubt were when they were published in his books Urformen der Kunst and Wundergarten der Natur. 

Papaver rhoeas, 2019

Papaver rhoeas, 2019

Henry Fox-Talbot’s calotypes and the cyanotypes of Anna Atkins had pioneered the use of botanical specimens as photographic subjects, indeed Fox Talbot once wrote to his friend, the astronomer Sir John Herschel, asking him for any spare plant bulbs he might have to practice his new technique that he called 'photographic drawing' a technique he believed would be of great help to botanists. Herschel came up with a name that stuck – photography. Blossfeldt's work, however, was unique in its use macrophotography to emphasise the patterns and textures of plants. 

Nigella damascena, 2019

Nigella damascena, 2019

Nectaroscordum siculum, 2019

Nectaroscordum siculum, 2019

He wrote in Urformen der Kunst that he never obtained his plants from florists and rarely from botanical gardens instead gathering them from along country lanes preferring plants often denigrated as weeds as he found their forms fascinated him the most. For this project, these seedheads have come from our own country garden, including some that might be considered weeds!

Physalis alkekengi, 2019

Physalis alkekengi, 2019

Papaver somniferum, 2019

Papaver somniferum, 2019

Nigella damascena, 2019

Nigella damascena, 2019

Physalis alkekengi, 2019

Physalis alkekengi, 2019

I intentionally shot the images as jpegs, using FujiFilm's Acros film simulation and in-camera settings that mainly entail boosting the shadow tones to around +2 and the highlight tones to +1 with a very slight warming of the resulting jpeg.

Nectaroscordum siculum, 2019

Nectaroscordum siculum, 2019

Papaver rhoeas, 2019

Papaver rhoeas, 2019

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There are 11 comments , add yours!
Heidi Egerman 1 year ago

Wow! These are all very nice. I'm a big fan of monochrome and of botanical photography. Well done.

1 year ago Edited
Lee Santiva 1 year, 4 months ago

I really enjoyed your black & white compositions they are very well done

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Trinicia Perch 1 year, 4 months ago

Very beautiful shots.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 1 year, 4 months ago

Masterpieces - all of them.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Iain Gilmour Replied to Antonio Gil 1 year, 4 months ago

Thanks Antonio.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Heike 1 year, 4 months ago

Very very beautiful photos! If you like Karl Blossfeldt you might also like the Wet plate flora photos of Dave King. https://g2creativedesign.wordpress.com/2012/07/13/inspiration-wet-plate-flora-photography/
(Something I would really like to do one day.)

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Iain Gilmour Replied to Heike 1 year, 4 months ago

Was not a ware of Dave King's work, remarkably creative and inspiring though I think it would challenge my rusty dark room skills to the limit. Thanks for looking Heike.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Gary Luker 1 year, 4 months ago

Wonderful ! These are the kind of images that really inspire me...thank you grinning

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Iain Gilmour Replied to Gary Luker 1 year, 4 months ago

Glad you like them, thanks for looking.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Benny Law 1 year, 4 months ago

Another great black-and-white series.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Iain Gilmour Replied to Benny Law 1 year, 4 months ago

Thanks for looking Benny.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
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