There is something arresting and unearthly about a magnolia tree in flower. Something that dances between divinity and dementia. —Pavithra K. Mehta, Magnolia Tree
Louisiana girl that I am, the Southern Magnolia is [naturally] one of my favorite trees. I’ve been trying to “perfectly” capture the magnolia blossom for years. I remember stopping to photograph the blossoms whenever I could before our move from New Orleans because I wanted the perfect magnolia from New Orleans to deck one of our walls.
I managed to capture a few satisfactory shots before we left. They’re far less than perfect, but the expertly composed shots of the flower by my brother [on display in my parents’ home] and other photographers encourage me to keep working on it.
So, here are my meager magnolia offerings for #ThursdayTreeLove. I shot some on campus a week ago just after a rain shower and some at my cousin’s house a couple of weeks ago before my grand color exploration with the tiny one.
I felt the photos needed texture, so I added just a little [hopefully] without compromising the natural beauty of the flowers and tree.
The magnolia leaf, so elegantly formed, remains strong and glossy even after its fall.
These are in various stages of bloom. My photo of a tightly closed bloom is “meh” at best, so I’ll spare you that one.
The tricky thing about photographing magnolias is finding ways around the height of the tree. The campus trees are really tall, but I was able to get nice “beneath the blossoms” shots.
The gorgeous “end” of the flower.
And finally, here’s a quick video I made of one of the magnolias on campus enjoying the company of the other trees. Thanks to Amanda, one of my photographer friends, for the tip about Pixaloop, which gave me the moving clouds and birds.
I quote Pavithra M at the beginning of this post. Her short piece, “Magnolia Tree” powerfully communicates the essence of the magnolia and our attraction to it. Be sure to click over and give it a read. But should you neglect doing so, I leave you with her closing words:
I think about this outlandish tree that races back to Time’s cradle, and its flowers that open alarmingly wide as if to swallow the sun, the way it gives itself madly to the moment. With radical generosity and no reservation. And what would be possible–if we could learn to live like that.
I am joining Parul Thakur for #ThursdayTreeLove every second and fourth Thursday of the month. If you would like to play along, post a picture of a tree on your blog and link it back to her latest #treelove post.