Hungry, Hungry… Danaus plexippus

Despite the failed alliteration on my part, one thing I have noticed in my butterfly chasings is that these delicate creatures seem to always be hungry. They are far from lazy and I suppose this perpetual peckishness may be a carry-over from their even more ravenous past lives as gnawing caterpillars.

Monarch of the Monarchs
Monarch of the Monarchs

Over the months I’ve taken lots of butterfly photos and this one stands out for me not because of any particular genius on my part but simply because of the background. The vast majority of the time when you see photos of butterflies they’re against a green or flower-background. The blue sky makes this photo really pop for me though I could have done with some white fluffy clouds rather than the trees which share the backdrop.  Shooting UP rather than shooting down on things almost always seems to make them better.


  1. Shooting up seems to work very well when you have a bright blue sky for a background, but I’ve never had much luck if the sky is overcast, but that may be me and my equipment. Love the photo, and I’m still trying to place where Zionsville is. I thought I knew every little burg in the midwest from my job as a truck driver, but I can’t recall having ever been through Zionsville.

  2. Agreed concerning the angle for shooting live creatures. When shooting down at them, they appear as prey animals or captives. When shot upward, they appear free and in their natural environment. I’ve noticed that when “shooting” kids and lambs… will try to remember it more for bugs and flowers. Thanks!

  3. Rob…I nominated your photography blog for the Versatile Blogger Award! I also mentioned your awesome writing blog: The Tattered Thread. Come to my blog to check out the post. Congratulations!!

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