Blacks Crossing Photography and Writing | patience


July 02, 2017  •  5 Comments

At almost any time or for any reason - large or small - patience in a human being can vary wildly.  For photographers, patience is required at almost all times, but especially when photographing nature.  Photographing butterflies demands both patience and constant movement to keep up with their movement.

During the heat of the day, butterflies are everywhere and they are extremely active, flitting from blossom to blossom, clinging to flowers and gathering nectar. They take their pollination work seriously!  I am not by any means an expert in this area, and I apologize to those of you who have studied these fascinating creatures all your lives.  With luck and the help of my new favorite butterfly identification website "Gardens with Wings" -, I hope my identification is correct.

Here is a series of photographs of the variegated fritillary (Euptoieta claudia).  I originally thought the first butterfly shown here was an American lady or painted lady, but after looking at the website, I think the shot is of the fritillary with closed wings.

American lady or painted lady butterflyAmerican lady or painted lady butterfly

variegated fritilliary butterfly 1variegated fritilliary butterfly 1

variegated fritilliary butterfly 2variegated fritilliary butterfly 2


Of the butterflies I photographed, these clouded sulphur butterflies (Colias philodice) seem to be the most active.  I had one heck of a time catching them, and had no success during three shoots of getting a decent image of one with open wings.  This particular butterfly has seen some action, as evidenced by the layer of wing that is missing.

sulphur butterflysulphur butterfly

The checkered white butterfly (Pontia protodice) is on the move here, but I use the shot to demonstrate the blue body that I would otherwise not have noticed.

cabbage white butterflycabbage white butterfly

 The two-tailed swallowtail (Papilio multicaudata) is always a joy to see and photograph, as it seems to linger on blossoms longer.

swallowtail butterflyswallowtail butterfly

until next Monday,


a passion for the image@


Fred Barraza(non-registered)
Beautiful butterfly images. So excellent! Thanks for those visuals.
Steve Immel(non-registered)
These are among your best ever. Simply glorious. How you got that sharpness and tonal range is a mystery to me. They are perfectly lit. Spectacular! They are worthy of a book or at least a series.

Happy fourth to you and Fred.
Sara Woodburn(non-registered)
These are stunning photos of these beauties. The butterfly colors with the fire wheels are really eye catching.
Dianne James(non-registered)
Wow, amazing photos. So clear, sharp, and colorful. I can just see you out there butterfly hunting, the wheels turning on prospective composition and lighting. How amazing those photos would be, enlarged and hanging on a wall! I love butterflies and bees, and hope that my small stand of butterfly weed will, once again, be found by the Monarchs. We get a few different kinds, here, including the Tiger Swallowtail, but I was most enchanted by the Monarch caterpillars (not sure if that's what they're called) who were munching on the leaves of the Showy Butterfly weed, volunteers in my yard. It grows beneath the canopy of trees loved by birds, so I was hoping they would survive. I managed to get a picture of a Swallowtail feasting on the nectar of a Purple Coneflower, one year, with my little Sure Shot camera. The subject is a fascinating one, which you have managed to capture beautifully.
Wayne Gesterfield(non-registered)
Very nice. And oh yeah, butterflies are very hard to take. Or I should say very hard to get sharp pics of because they move faster than we can focus and shoot.

Are those Firewheel flowers?
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