Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

July 1, 2010

Butterflies are Free to Fly

Filed under: Uncategorized — Karma @ 6:42 pm
Tags: , ,

While spending a sunny morning puttering around my yard recently, I was happily suprised by a visitor to my butterfly bushes.  I have two quite large bushes on one side of my deck starting to bedeck themselves in lovely pink and purple blossoms.   I’m hoping to feature a nice wide shot of the butterfly bushes when they are both in full bloom, which should be any day now.  In the meantime, after a couple days of photo frustration, I was rewarded with this beauty:

That’s the first shot I took.  I realize its underexposed, but with all the disappointment I’d had recently in getting any  interesting pictures, I wanted to be quick to get something.  Despite the underexposing, I kind of like the play of shadows in this one.


I kept clicking and clicking away, just trying to get as many shots as I could before the subject flew away.  I don’t remember how many I ended up taking.  This one has a good view of the top of the wings and the tongue unfurling to taste those little blossoms.


Here’s a side view with a good look at the underside of the wing.  When I first saw orange and black flittering by, my first thought was, “Ooh, monarch!” but as I got close enough to take these pictures, I realized that was not the case.  I’m sure one of you faithful readers will be able to help me in the identification of my subject.  Tracy?  Gerry?


Here’s our friend’s face.  Kinda has a big shnozz for a delicate little creature, doesn’t it?


So what do you think everyone?  What kind is it?  And I hope you enjoyed my happiness with getting some photos of a subject that did not evade my efforts!


  1. Butterflies are JUST awesome!!!
    So are butterfly bushes. Only mine from the nursery bought earlier this year is in bloom. (Nursery plants always bloom early!) Mine shouldn’t bloom for a couple of weeks at least!

    I agree that the first image is really neat! I also like the second image (for that proboscis) and the third image.

    I didn’t know what you had here but a quick check at: http://www.simplybutterflies.com/Backyard%20Butterflies.html and I believe you’ve got yourself a Great Spangled Fritillary!

    (Now, don’t you wish you had saved this post for the Fourth of July…titled “Star Spangled Fritillary!” 😉 )

    Comment by milkayphoto — July 1, 2010 @ 7:10 pm | Reply

    • Thanks for the research, Tracy! I tried looking for it myself, but wasn’t having any luck. That is an awesome butterfly name, and that definitely would have made a cute post title!

      Comment by Karma — July 2, 2010 @ 8:30 am | Reply

  2. Karma I would be thrilled to get just one butterfly photo almost as good as any of these. The whole sequence is just delicious, but I’ll pick a favorite, too. Number three. Wait, two . . . no, wait . . .

    A Great Spangled Fritillary, eh? It’s fun just to say that, let alone be able to see one.

    Comment by Gerry — July 2, 2010 @ 12:12 am | Reply

  3. Oooh, two of my favorite subjects… flowers and butterflies! The second shot is my favorite out of these, although I would crop it a little tighter.
    I’ve only seen a few butterflies in my yard so far, and it’s usually the little yellow ones who do NOT want to sit still!

    Comment by thedailyclick — July 2, 2010 @ 7:46 am | Reply

    • I don’t know if you subscribe to comment replies or not Michaela, but my comment below was meant as a reply to you! Just forgot to click “reply” when I wrote it.

      Comment by Karma — July 2, 2010 @ 7:54 pm | Reply

  4. Me too! I’ve got plenty of flowers, wish I had more butterflies!
    On that 2nd shot, how would you have cropped? Would you have take some of the right side of the shot out where there is just greenery?

    Comment by Karma — July 2, 2010 @ 8:32 am | Reply

    • I would have cropped some of both sides and the bottom, and left a little more room at the top (if possible).
      I snagged the pic so I could show you, but don’t have a good place to upload… I’ll try facebook and post it on your wall.

      Comment by thedailyclick — July 3, 2010 @ 7:45 am | Reply

  5. I love the photos you selected. I haven’t tried my luck with butterflies this year. Been too windy when I’ve been out.

    I would still suggest you find the setting that uses fill flash in sunlight. A little extra light would have popped your Star Spangled Fritillary even more. BTW, I think it’s close enough to the 4th to count. 😉

    Comment by Scott Thomas Photography — July 2, 2010 @ 9:53 am | Reply

    • I found that setting, Scott – burried in a menu as you were saying it might be! In my “shooting guide” menu I found “set particular lighting” where I could then select from 6 different lighting situations. “outdoor in sunny” was #1 on the list! And dang it all if it didn’t say “please pop up the flash” when I selected it. I’ve become such a fan of natural lighting in the past few years I’m often loathe to pop the flash unless I absolutely have to, but now I guess I’ll experiment.

      Comment by Karma — July 2, 2010 @ 7:52 pm | Reply

  6. Great captures! It’s a beautiful butterfly (I love the name too!). I don’t think I’ve ever seen one like it before.

    Isn’t digital photography wonderful? One can take hundreds of shots of the same thing without worrying about running out of film (just memory space and that can be pretty big).

    Comment by Robin — July 2, 2010 @ 10:25 am | Reply

    • Isn’t that a cool name? I’m so glad Tracy found it for me. I think I’ve seen this type of butterfly around in recent years but never knew what it was called.

      Comment by Karma — July 2, 2010 @ 7:53 pm | Reply

  7. These are lovely butterfly photos. You did an excellent job. I never think of pictures as under-exposed or over-exposed. (Probably another sign that I’m not too advanced.) I like to FEEL the photos. That first picture had a shadow-y feel, a mysterious lift of the wings, a pulling us into the shadow-side of the butterfly world. (Hey, is this the butterfly metaphor story? Does it have to do with the shadow side(s) of butterflies?)

    Comment by Kathy — July 4, 2010 @ 2:22 pm | Reply

    • I’m afraid my butterfly metaphor is not nearly that mysterious!
      Thank you for the compliments.

      Comment by Karma — July 5, 2010 @ 8:46 am | Reply

  8. […] a traditional monarch shot, I’ve gotten a few other interesting pictures, starting with the Great Spangled Frillitary a few weeks […]

    Pingback by Visitors « Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog — July 23, 2010 @ 7:51 pm | Reply

  9. […] swallowtails, hummingbird moths and a great spangled frillitary have all made subsequent […]

    Pingback by A Few Firsts of the Summer Season « Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog — July 10, 2012 @ 9:48 am | Reply

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