This time of year often sees me down on my knees in other people’s gardens, leaning agains walls and fences while out for a walk, or standing on low walls to gain extra height. And all to try and get that one perfect picture of an aquilegia flower.
Despite years of trying and probably hundreds of photos, I haven’t worked out yet what the best angle is, nor yet what setting offers the best background.
The delicate flowers contrast marvellously with the uncompromising strength of a concrete wall.
But well-aged red brick also offers an interesting background.
Also known as granny’s bonnets or columbine, aquliegia are often to be found on waste ground, peeping between the slats of fences. The longevity of metal offers another potentially interesting contrast with the ephemeral blooms.
But perhaps the rough grain of old wood is more suited to the traditional cottage garden nature of the plant.
Even if the right setting could be decided on, should the photo be taken from below, with the light shining through the wing-like petals?
Or perhaps from the side to give a better idea of the complex topology of these lovely flowers?
But we all have a preferred profile, so, if from the side, then which side shows to best advantage?
The view from above definitely sets the flower off well against green and gives quite a different take on the spurs.
I don’t think I’ll ever find the answers and I don’t think I’ll ever take a perfect photo of an aquilegia. But I’ll keep on trying. And doing so will no doubt offer me more opportunities to celebrate this marvel of natural beauty.