In Case You Haven’t Noticed

“I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn’t photograph them.”

– Diane Arbus


Almost a year ago I read a quote by author and filmmaker Michael Crichton. He said, “The more you watch, the more mysterious the natural world becomes, and the more you realize how little you know.” I read this quote on the heels of our first full spring with a pollinator garden and had seen, first hand, the truth of his statement. “Amazing” is not even an appropriate word to describe our natural world. There were things going on in my own back yard, a year ago, that dumbfounded me every day. I remember telling J., “Just think about all of the things people are missing because they simply don’t watch for them.” In all fairness, though, some of the amazement happens on such a microscopic level that it is virtually impossible to catch without the right equipment. Hello macro lens…my new love.

I found myself pulled in many directions, yet again, last week (hence this Week in Review post on a Monday, instead of the weekend), but I did at least have time to get out on a few breaks in my own garden and immerse myself in the small. The small, you guys, is astounding! When I am privy to witness something like individual hairs on a dragonfly, it is almost as if I am in sacramental communion with nature. I have no doubt that it is highly unlikely that anyone else on the planet will experience exactly what I have captured in exactly the very same way. In that sense, the camera lens creates snowflakes, and, within that individuality, I feel special, the moment is prized, the world has meaning. But, at the same time, I am truly humbled by just how vast that world is and, in its vastness, how little I do know.

Being the giver in nature that I am, though, I really don’t want to keep those moments bottled up all to myself. I want to be a part of weaving something incredible into the everyday life of those around me. The needle is not meant to remain in the pincushion, you know. Just like the images I share today, we are all conceived, we develop, we work, we consume, we show our own personal flair here and there, but eventually we all do die, going back to the natural earth from whence we emerged. It’s the small threads that we weave throughout all of those basic “life components” that make this life a beautiful fabric worth wrapping around ourselves. It’s honestly the “small” that makes life big and rich and fulfilling.

So, I encourage you to notice the small, to do the small, to even sometimes BE the small. But, in case you’ve got big things planned and you can’t get to that today, I’m bringing the small to you. I’d wager a bet that most of you have never seen many of the occurrences below. Well, we’re about to change that. Welcome to the confoundingly mysterious world in which you live. I’m thrilled to help you see it!


All the best,

A. J.


“Hanging on by a Thread” (Lacewing eggs dangle in the breeze)


“Attaboy, Clarence” (Eastern Black Swallowtail, in chrysalis, gets his wings)


“Sure Could Use a Shovel” (Lasioglossum Bee peeks out while drilling his tunnel)


“Sippin’ Lemonade” (Cocklebur Weevil drains the juice of a Coreopsis stem)


“Shake Your Tail Feathers” (Gray Hairstreak butterfly goes bottoms-up)


“Afternoon Snack” (Paper Wasp consumes the remaining beetle flesh)


“Steak Dinner” (Dragonfly shows his carnivorous side)




5 thoughts on “In Case You Haven’t Noticed

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  1. WOW!! Thank you for sharing the little things happening in your world. These pictures are stunning. It makes me wonder what else I’m missing.

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