Sunflowers Are Blooming!

Yesterday, I got up at 2:30 to load the car and get ready to leave for a morning of photographing sunflowers in Maryland. Loading the car included very specific camera gear for the occasion, boots for the mud (rained last night), a ladder to see over and across the sunflowers, and very effective bug spray. I was expecting a lot of mosquitos, and they did not disappoint me.

I left the house at 3:30 and drove north to pick up a friend and fellow photographer–Ceasar Sharper. We were also meeting two other photographers at the field of sunflowers located at Mckee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area in Maryland along the Potomac River.

We arrived at 5:00 AM, before sunrise, to allow time for hiking out to the field and checking out the sunflowers. It was dark, but we could see with our flashlights that the sunflowers had not peaked yet, but that there were plenty of them in full bloom. (I got excited and could not wait for the first light.)

The other photographers we were to meet arrived shortly after us, and we got our gear ready and covered ourselves with insect repellent. As we began to set up our cameras on our tripods, the sun was beginning to light the field of sunflowers. Below is an image of the field after the sun had risen.

I began photographing the sunflowers before the sun rose, but after there was enough light to get a good image. One of those early images is below.

The sunflowers were all pointing in the same direction toward the rising sun and seemed to be waiting for the sun’s beautiful morning light just as we were. The field of flowers was about 50 percent in bloom, but it did not matter. The sight was spectacular. As the sun rose, the sunflowers began to glow in the sun’s golden light.

We stayed until 10:00 AM shooting the flowers at a distance (group shots) and close up and personal. The following are some of the images. If you enjoy seeing these images, you should go to my Website where I have uploaded many more to a gallery devoted to the sunflowers. The gallery is at: http:/stabone.com/p349743458

Click on the above images to see them in more detail. The images were photographed with a Nikon D700 and Nikon lenses (24-70mm f2.8 and 105mm f2.8 macro).

Since the field of sunflowers was not in full bloom, I am planning to return this coming Friday. What a way to start the day and long weekend surrounded by a large field of sunflowers.

About Stephen L Tabone

Executive Consultant and Nature Photographer
This entry was posted in Landscape Photographs, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Sunflowers Are Blooming!

  1. Evelyn says:

    I was amazed to learn your sunflowers are growing in Maryland. I really thought these were from your trip to Italy. The only time I have ever seen fields like this was when I was in Hungary and Czechoslovakia on a bus trip years ago–and here we have the same thing in our own country. A spectacular sight and I always think of those fields when I use ingredients for delicious salads–

    Thank you for sharing–as always.

  2. Anonymous says:

    As with Evelyn’s comment above, I, too, am surprised that we have fields of sunflowers growing here in the US. The first time I had seen such a sight was in Tuscany in the summer. Why am I surprised? Beautiful photos of such a simple flower. Your closeups show how interesting a plant/flower this really is and really quite majestic. Your dedication to your art is amazing … 2:30 AM! and mosquitos, too! Wow!

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