Nature's Place

Macro Meet in SE Brisbane? + The Three Hombres …

Anyone interested in a regular or irregular macro meet in SE Brisbane or surrounds?

Everybody is welcome to participate, beginner to expert, old or young – no discrimination. Anybody, basically, with a respect for nature and interested in meeting up for macro in the garden, a cup of tea/?, chat and/or walk in the local bush. *No Money is involved.

The idea isn’t specifically for me to teach macro, or anything else, but if anybody wants or needs that I’ll be glad to show a few things. It just takes practise of the right stuff to get good results. The idea is to meet at different places, peoples gardens or favourite shooting spots, at different times. It can be my garden one week, and maybe my local shooting places if nothing shows up in the garden. The next week/month it can be another’s garden or shooting places. It’s one way for people with a common interest to meet on occasion. How and when it works is up to the people who take part.

I’m in Victoria Point, 4165 – The Redlands in SE Brisbane – and if anybody wants to meet up let me know. Everything posted on this site is from my garden or local shooting spots.

Comment here or Contact me here …

*If anybody wants to come along just email me from https://beingmark.com/contact/ and we’ll arrange it. It’s up to you, I’m available.

There won’t be any large groups.

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The Three Hombres … A post here wouldn’t be complete without pictures.

Some of the latest visitors to the garden, a trio of beetles on the pink Crucifix Orchid. They aren’t found anywhere else in the garden, that I can reach.

It just shows, there is a place and time for everything. In the garden, or the field, there are tides of things, living and dead, the coming and the going of the forms of life.

Within the tides there are eddies and currents, splashes and sprays. It’s a wonderful thing, not knowing what’s coming on the next wave.

Out of the mystery she flows …

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© Mark Berkery ……. Click those pictures for a closer look
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Gypsy Spider …

She’s back … At the beginning of September this year I went out into the garden to have a look around, it was near enough 1.00am. There hadn’t been much to shoot and it occurred to me to take the camera with me, not unusual that.

And there she was, the first place I looked, sitting in meditative pose atop a small daisy bud. A tiny ghost spider, bright against the dark of the night.

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Since then she has come and gone across the garden, from daisy to butterfly bush to sunflower, chia, coneflower and round again. Through torrential rain, baking sun and howling winds …

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Every time I see her she has grown, and every now and then I come across pockets of young crab spiders, some hers I suspect. Some numbers dead in a tray under one of the bee hotels.

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Currently she is resident on the yellow butterfly bush, one leg missing and bolder than ever – age and experience showing. She lets me get very close now without much sign of alarm or resistance.

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I trust she lives a while longer, fulfilling her purpose of nature’s intelligent instinctive desire, albeit unconsciously, and we will meet again in the garden.

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All the good is in the garden, or the garden is all the good, an other time and place … inside.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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What A Feast …

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… the garden is. In more ways than one, I know.

To the senses a delight, of colour and form, scent and texture. Then just a little closer and …

… nature knows no pity, no sentimentality, just survival and reproduction. Only the fittest, the fastest, the craftiest endure.

And the wild formless intelligence behind it cannot be denied, while no thing, no body, lasts longer than its time.

I had a dream … that turned out to be a nightmare.

Now I don’t dream any more.

And the dream goes on.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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Noble Visitors …

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It’s another record year, never been 2015 before, as far as we are aware.

And in the garden it’s been another record, but who’s counting … I can’t help noticing the increase in variety and numbers of insect visitors, especially now the butterfly bushes are flowering and a few years work with the soil is bearing fruit.

It is said the Stag is a noble beast – I remember that from somewhere. Maybe it comes from the old English kings practise of hunting them, they had to be noble for kings to hunt them …

But really, kings are just ordinary men dressed up. Every body is of noble blood, all god – whatever that is – made. And the antlered beetle is no exception.

All god made things, and all things god made. To exclude one is to invite conflict to the mind.

Try maintaining a prejudice, a psychological position, without some conflict appearing.

As within, so without. And nothing is absolute, both ways …

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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Raiders On The Tom’s …

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They’re back, the dreaded fruit fly – dreaded by some because they destroy the harvest. I see them as a photo opportunity, since I don’t expect so am not disappointed.

I have a few tomato plants at different locations in the garden and at just one site something has been taking big bites out of some growing fruit and opening the way for so many others to feast.

This years garden is burgeoning beyond bounds. Plants overgrowing others to their apparent detriment. I just do a little pruning, dead-heading, and trust it works out for the best. The insects are loving it.

And oddly – not for me but against the usual thinking, I see the insects as a good sign, all is well in my garden. Because that’s nature and my garden is me ‘out there’. As within so …

I find if I let what must be alone ‘enough’, inside and out, it doesn’t take more than its share of the available space and things are in balance, not too much or too little of anything.

Equilibrium, who could ask for more?

I know, I know …

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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She …

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She lies in wait, unmoving … threads on the blue to tell and trap or trip.

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Capture … seen first from below, or upside down.

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From above … after a little manipulation, careful not to alarm her.

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A bountiful day … for the spider queen.

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The discarded husk, falls from the blue, form without much life, emptied of nourishment.

waits by the flower for her love, a need of food to sustain her, in this time of reproduction, instinctively without self-conscious calculation.

The blue flower embroidered with her silk, the better to do her job of capture and eat, to feed the young, potential in her.

Red Nasturtium papers the walls of her minds eye, bees and flies the action in her unoccupied space.

Perpetual nature, incomplete in mortal form, knowledge to the seeing eye.

Thank you for the perfect little things.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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Ambush …

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Everything needs to eat, it’s fundamental to existence. Things die so other things can live, that’s the way it is in the closed system of energy the earth is. It’s basically an exchange of energy from one form to another. That’s just nature the way it is, no problem.

Spiders have various methods of capture, too many to go into here and I am disinclined to too many words these days anyway, words without purpose – why write again what someone has already done well enough.

Right now though there is this ambush spider active in the garden, a few in fact, and though they are known to take on the colourings of their particular hunting environment, for camouflage no doubt, this one stands in stark contrast.

It can get away with this because of the structure of the flowers, it can slip in between and beneath so as to almost disappear to the unwary eye. It must be effective since the spider, let’s call it he, he is still alive after a week or so and growing bigger all the time.

I have also recently seen a starkly white spider sitting on purple flowers catch a blue green fly as it came within reach, focus for a short time on immobilising the prey before pulling it into the comfortable shelter of the flowers. An amazing display of speed and dexterity in colour, clearly intelligent, to me.

At another time I saw it miss its prey and slip back into hiding, without a sign of emotion, disappointment, sullenness or regret. Most creatures have no discernible emotion, behaving primarily from instinct, but nevertheless are as clever as any person – it is our nature after all, clever, cunning, savage. Not what we like to believe, I know.

There is nothing we are that isn’t already in nature, as much as we like to think we are special. What makes us special is the potential to transcend all that in the clarity of being – our ‘other’ nature, a place of stillness inside uncluttered by thought or emotion, imagery and its genesis. But it’s not for everyone, apparently.

Relative to what I know people can be, in my own experience, nature, for all its manifest savagery, is at least honest. Not imagining it is something it is not, it can be itself without the problem of emotion imagining generates, you can’t have the up without the down – that’s not something I made up, and the delusional complications that arise from it. A problem to which the solution is so simple, to love – not as easy as it sounds.

But, just as the spider has little to no self awareness beyond it’s immediate needs, so is the person but with an expanded cognizance of what those needs are – is what makes us think we’re special. And that’s all right, for the person – every thing has its time, and the spider – who can be no other way.

He still hasn’t caught a bee as far as I know, loved it in her way. I don’t think he’s big or strong enough, perhaps not venomous enough. And he knows it, so he only goes for the certain kill.

Or the bees are just too fast for that form of love, of a spider. Remember how quick you got out of the way of that ‘danger’, bees are quicker, more intelligent, having no ‘minding’ in the way.

Can we get back to that state before mind as random thinking and emotion, with all its accumulated experience.

Can we love that clarity enough to do what is necessary and what is essential to make it incorruptible.

That’s the only question, what matters, for me. Everything else is noise.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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Golden Head

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The big bods are arriving to the garden now, about 5” long this one, and there is plenty to eat this year so no need to evict them to the neighbours, yet. :-)

A Locust I believe, perched on the veranda, cautious but unafraid. She backed up from the lens so I manoeuvred her and eventually got some nice background in the frame – employing behaviour that appears undesirable to the inexperienced.

But no need to push it. At the angle she was and with what I had with me at the time there were only a few shots available. The upper body/thorax and head portrait is most expressive, for a Locust, and I thought the foot especially interesting.

Armoured, both for gripping and striking. Those sprung legs are strong enough to propel the heavy beast into the air, and those spurs are capable of penetrating and damaging the strongest of attackers.

It’s wild out there …

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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Spring Time

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Plants in the garden are reaching for the sky, and in every other direction. Small creatures are reaching for the plants, from every direction. And spring has only just begun.

Ride that falling leaf and see the earth … from one perspective anyway.

It’s time for the new.

© Mark Berkery ……. Click a picture for a closer look
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