It’s been about seven years since I tired of Winter in Washington, D.C. The daylight is shorter, light is harsher, trees shed their canopy, and, as an architectural shooter, assignments soften. After all, what client wants to photograph a class-A building with no life around it?
For the first couple of years the escape to South Florida was rewarding. Verdant scenery, golden and blue hours for shooting and warm sun on my face. What’s not to like? After a couple of years photographing a variety of sunrises, kite-surfers and a stab at bird photography I started to experience a smidge of boredom. It got worse during the Covid thing of course, but still, I needed to find a different venue in which to produce new work. My trip to St. Petersburg on Florida’s West coast was terrific. However, without an overnight trip I could head an hour south of Boca to Miami, Coral Gables and Coconut Grove, areas lush with visual delights. Miami itself has striking architecture, then there is South Beach, the Wynwood area and for this past weekend’s outing, Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden, 82 acres of tropical plants, palm trees and a butterfly pavilion.
My visit to Fairchild was exploratory. I wanted to see what was on offer so I could plan for future photographs. I found out that the orchids and other exotic flowers show in February so there were limited opportunities. I did see a good number of butterflies, but those little suckers moved too fast for me to keep in the frame. I have to learn to use the tracking AF on my Canon camera. These two shots were static.
Ma Nature gives us colors, shapes and patterns worth exploring; iridescent ferns, water Lillies, orchids and birds of paradise to show a few.
In a couple of weeks I head back to my digs in D.C. and my studio. Next season here in Florida will include a return to Fairchild, the Vizcaya Gardens and the Keys, to start with. More to come.