Monday, May 25, 2009

Beauty in a Yucca

The Yucca, commonly thought to be a type of cactus, is actually
a plant within the agave plant family and is an evergreen shrub.
Those who have spent time in certain desert climates in the
Western United States and Mexico know about the Yucca plant.

While they are visually unobtrusive, and often growing around
other small shrubs and bushes, they have long, very rigid
needle-tips that are ridiculously sharp. Throughout
the years, they have always provided a wealth of jokes
(and pain) for myself and my friends. If there is a Yucca
anywhere in the close vicinity, it is inevitably
going to stab someone.

Never have I had any desire to spend much time around them
until recently. Once I resigned myself to the fact that I was
going to lose some blood that day, I put the 100mm macro
lens on my camera, on a mini-tripod, laid myself on the desert
floor, and got up close and personal with one. Within a single
Yucca plant, I found a surprising beauty. Within this hostile
and vicious product of survival-of-the-fittest plant-evolution
lies the most wonderful tiny little world, delicate and whimsical.

The second image shown here has been juried into, and will be on display at the 18th Annual Louisville Arts Association National Photography Show, of which I am also the co-chair for. Please join us for the opening reception of the show on Saturday June 27th, 7:00 - 9:00 PM, at the Louisville Art Association. More information can be found at .

07/04/09 Post Note:
The second photo on this post won 2nd Place in the in the Louisville Art Association- National Photography Show (Color: Still Life, Scenic, and Abstract Category) on June 27th, 2009.


Katariina Järvinen said...

"delicate and whimsical" - well put! Gorgeous shots. Hope you didn't have to pay the model too much (blood). ;-)

Scott said...

A couple drops of blood on the desert floor, a result of when my focus hand went astray... a small price to pay for the photos! Thanks for commenting.

Azure Islands Designs said...

Congratulations on being juried into the Louisville Photography show...the photo is very appealing to me. I like the long corkscrew at the end, I'm assuming this is what stabs all you folks?

Up close like this especially in the first photo the white "curly cues" look very soft and as you say delicate...definitly not like something that causes pain!
Looks can be deceiving... :0)

Scott said...

Hi Heather. Thank you!

I was excited for the Louisville Show as co-chair of it, but now that I have my art in the show as well, it is that much more exciting!

It is not the white curly things (I'm so scientific) that are sharp, it's the top-end of the green stalks that they grow out of that are sharp. I should post a full photo of a yucca, so my readers can see the whole picture.

Thanks for commenting! So much going on in my world right now - more photos coming very soon!

Mark Alan Meader said...

I've lost some blood and suffered some pain shooting cactus myself.. occupational hazard I guess:) Easy to forget what's behind you when concentrating through the viewfinder! These at least don't break off and stay stuck to you like the chollas do (not sure if you have those up in your area.. they are especially nasty even though they look all warm and fuzzy). Good to see some new work and congrats on the show.

Scott said...

Ha! I too have suffered the pain of cholla, prickly pear, and others. Oh, how we suffer for our art! :)

Robin Easton said...

Oh Scott!! These are simply gorgeous. I had to chuckle as we photograph yucca in almost the same way. I am honored to say -- as I see you as a VERY professional photographer -- that my photos look almost like yours. Wow! I'm improving!! Yeah!! I've a long way to go though before I even begin to master any kind of night photography like what you do. :))

I've been tied up with work and not had as much time as I would like to blog/connect but I had to stop in and "see what YOU are seeing".

I hope you are doing well. Are you going camping this summer? I hope to do a trip but not sure yet. Keeping my fingers crossed. Also doing lots of barefoot walking. I can actually walk across goat burs now. I was walking the other day and heard this weird sound; looked down at the bottom on my feet and they each had at least 20 goat burs in them and I had not felt them. Very very cool. I was soooooo happy!!! LOLOL!!!

Take care my friend. I'm sending hugs, Robin

Scott said...

Thanks Robin! Do you have your yucca photos posted anywhere? I would love to see them.

I am in the same position - too much work in too short of a period of time. I look forward to catching up with you and your beautiful world!

I am hoping to get away for a short camping trip or two, but the way my business is looking it may not happen. Worst case scenario is I will have a lot of eastern Colorado farmland journeys this summer, as I can get there in a half an hour.

I have some fun blog posts coming up, from timelapse video to more Utah photos, to some farmland thunderstorms to more night trees.

All in good time! ;-) Good to hear your soles are prepared for hiking! Keep me informed of what's happening in your world, my friend!

Enjoy the sunshine!

Tiffiny Felix said...

These pictures are so amazing! I'm so glad you commented on my blog so I could follow you here. I really enjoy beautiful photography and look forward to seeing more :)

Scott said...

Thanks Tiffiny! I haven't posted new work on my blog for a while, but some new posts are coming soon. Your Potato and Beet recipe is amazing - I can't wait to try some of your other recipes as well.

Thanks for commenting!~