Spring Hyacinth

And now for something completely useless: a flower! A hyacinth, to be exact. Why is this hyacinth useless? Because, by posting it on my blog, I’m not going to generate anymore clients for my photography business. Nor is the image itself going to be purchased by anyone. And the time spent writing this blog entry for you is not going to pay off in any measurable sort of way. And yet. And yet to be useless is to be valuable. For example, this hyacinth grows in my own front yard, at the foot of the mailbox, where I planted its bulb last fall. I rejoiced as its first little tip emerged from the ground, and I’ve watched it grow since then. As the first bloom opened, I began to see the potential for a photograph. So, I began to check the flower multiple times each day, watching its progress, gauging how the weather would affect it, trying to estimate when the bloom in the background and the buds in the foreground would each be at their peak. Then, when that moment arrived, I threw my morning schedule out the window, spent the better part of an hour sprawled¬† on my stomach to get just the right angle, set up diffusers and flashes and a host of other¬† photography paraphernalia, and recorded the image which now is on display in this post. Is it the most spectacular flower portrait you have ever seen? Not hardly. But it was a joy to anticipate its creation. And I trust that it will be a joy for you to look at it for yourself. As a fringe benefit for me, by spending so much time up close with the hyacinth, I got to fall under the spell of its heady fragrance. How delicate! How exotic! Now if only there was a way to convey the aroma in a photograph…now that would be something!

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography