In all the time that I have lived in the Ann Arbor area in the past and now again for the last year, I have never been to the Peony Garden at Nichols Arboretum. All I want to know is why did I wait so long? The place is absolutely enormous, smells incredible, and is just full of the most beautiful variety of peonies. I did a short video to attempt to show how large the garden is, but it doesn’t even come close. You really need to go there and see for yourself. According to their website, the peak time to see the peony garden in bloom is late May, early June. Yesterday they said the garden was was well over 50% bloomed, but we got quite a downpour today so I don’t know how many of those survived.
Sometimes it’s nice just to take photos for no specific reason at all. It gives me, as an artist, more room to play around with different techniques that I may not have tried before or have been wanting to give a whirl. When taking the image below in the peony garden, I already had an end result in mind. A few minutes before this photo, I had been messing around with the video capture on my camera and when I aimed at this flower it was under exposed, but I loved the way it looked. So I switched back to stills, under exposed just slightly and made the image. It was about 6:45p when I showed up at the peony garden, so there was plenty of light, but it took only a few tweaks in camera and touch of Photoshop magic to make this beautiful photo. This was my favorite from the day, but it’s quite possibly my favorite flower image I’ve ever taken thus far.