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Spring Beauty

Spring Beauty
Photo Information
Copyright: Ivan Kruys (Argus) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-04-04
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon 400D, Canon EF 300 f4L + Canon 1.4 converter
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/2500 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2009-04-06 12:38
Viewed: 4072
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 62
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I’m back from a 600km trip to see my son and grand-daughter in Uppsala to show you my first butterfly picture of the year!
We saw a couple of these beauties flying in the sunshine between the patches of melting snow at the edge of an old-forest nature reserve some 20km west of the university town of Uppsala.

Camberwell beauty /Mourning Cloak Nymphalis antiopa
Swedish name: Sorgmantel. This means the same as the N. American name, mourning cloak.
The English name is owing to its discovery in a suburb of London in the early nineteenth century. In the UK it is a rare arrival from the continent.

This striking species occurs in most of Sweden, though it is rare in the very South where I live and it is not particularly common anywhere. It occurs in most of N and C. Europe, as well as N. America, especially Canada

It emerges in August to over winter in piles of logs or hollow trees, but never in buildings like Peacock or tortoiseshell butterflies. After hibernation the borders to the creamy yellow wings pale to almost white, as seen here. The larval host plant is mainly willow and its numbers fluctuate partly because of parasitizing of the caterpillars.

Notice how the blue spots vary in colour from blue to lilac according to the angle viewed.

The typical habitat is at the edge of conifer woodlands where there are willow and birch trees. They are not attracted to flowers but suck the sap of damaged deciduous trees like birch.

This was taken on a typical rock of Swedish granite at a distance of about 2 meters (6ft 6in). After moderate cropping and size reduction the image was selectively sharpened.
I would like to have used a smaller aperture but as this species is hard to approach and likely to fly off I decided to use a high shutter-speed instead with my long-lens camera hand-held.

siggi, CeltickRanger, rousettus, valy67, Ozgur70, Noisette, maurydv, jaycee, crs, ellis49, eqshannon, nglen, Silvio2006, flashpoint, fiyo, albert, cataclysta, zulfu, jpdenk, peter_stoeckl, Hormon_Manyer has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To Hormon_Manyer: ThanksArgus 2 08-11 07:59
To peter_stoeckl: ThanksArgus 1 05-15 22:38
To nagraj: ThanksArgus 1 04-07 01:21
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2009-04-06 12:41]

Hello Ivan,
very well captured. The sharpness, colors, details are wonderful. Good POV and and nice neutral background which show off the colors quite nice.
Best regards Siggi

hello Ivan
SUPER picture
great composition
good light and very beautiful colours
greeting lou

hello Ivan

today we are neighbors, very beautiful photo of this
butterfly shot with a very fine POV, DOF and
specially i love the way it is framed on the image,
beautiful luminosity and clour tones,
excellent sharpness and details, TFS


  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2009-04-06 12:49]

Hello Ivan,
Great photo of this butterfly. Excellent sharpness and details and beautiful natural colours. Good DOF and diagonal composition.

Hej Ivan
amazing beautiful nymphalid species. I'd like to see it in nature. you are lucky to see and capture it with a great macro shot. dorso-lateral POV ise great and all details visible niely. exposure, focus, coloration and composition great. thanks for sharing this beauty. god nat, my friend.

  • Great 
  • valy67 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1727 W: 59 N: 3060] (9219)
  • [2009-04-06 13:20]

Hello Ivan !
Congratulations for your first butterfly of 2009 ! And it's such a beautiful one ! I love his pose, his colors, and I also like the details, the composition, the POV. The BG is nice, too, I like the lovely colors of the stone. Very well done !

So beautiful and fresh...
Very well capture.

Hello Ivan
a very fine capture of this butterfly taken in a nicely way
great pose on this rock, nice details, colors and lighting
very well done

Hello Ivan,
a great view of Nymphalis antiopa, you have captured this first butterfly in a lovely pose on the rock, excellent details and colours in a pleasant composition.
Best regards

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2009-04-06 15:33]

Hi Ivan,finally the springtime! And what a great beauty,this is a nice gift to a butterflies lover like me! Very nice point of view and great details and colors! Thanks for share,have a nice day,luciano

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2009-04-06 17:12]

Hi Ivan,

You are introducing me to another beautiful butterfly. This Mourning Cloak reminds me of velvet and lace. The deep, rich colors and fine details add to its elegance.


  • Great 
  • crs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 922] (3551)
  • [2009-04-06 21:14]

Hello Ivan,

This is a beautiful butterfly and you have shownit so well in your photo. Despite the darck color of the wings you have rendered a reachness of color tones so thate the teture and pattern of the wings can be well observed. The note you have writen about is excelent too.

Thank you for sharing,

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2009-04-06 21:57]

Hello Ivan
Good work! You capture this butterfly with wonderful colors.

fine composition and very unique background, yes the blue takes different hues with the angle of the light, is the main color of wings, brown. tfs.

  • Great 
  • Tabib Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 160 W: 5 N: 167] (859)
  • [2009-04-07 1:35]

Hello Ivan,

Beautiful butterfly that very well composed and sharp with natural lighting.
Great macro work here!.


Hi Ivan !

A beautiful picture.
With some well-defined colors that I like.
Have a good day,

Hi Ivan,
A nice capture of this beautiful butterfly. Very well composed with sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hej Ivan,
this year I was a couple of days before you with the first one;-) Did you have to travel all the way up here to find one. :-)
Well compose with pretty good sharpness, maybe a smaller aperture had improved and very nice natural colours.
Well done, mf.


Your angle caught the small changes in colours in the spots on the wing..or is that it has more than one coloured spot? The sheen is more likely leaving it a good quality use of lighting...I always used to tell people I had a suit that colour...green and blue sharkskin it was called..and I only wore the coat for my "cool effect". I believe they might have gone out in the 70's..Very nice image Ivan and thanks once more for your ID!

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2009-04-07 9:40]

Ivan, beautiful shot. The color is so beautiful and stunning. Excelent sharpness. Ganesh

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2009-04-07 12:05]

Hi Ivan. I hope you had a good trip. all with a bonus of your first butterfly of the year. Camberwell beauty is a buttefly i have never seen before so thanks for posting. I has some unusual marking which yourtop POV shows well. With natural looking colours. well done TFS. Interesting notes too.

PS I hope Ulla is well.

Ciao Ivan, great capture of fantastic butterfly, I see it on sunday but I cannot take a photo:(, splendid colors, fine details and superb sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

ciao Ivan!
I envy you for the capture of this wonderful species that more I have not seen yet ... great pose and perfect composition

best sERGIO

  • Great 
  • fiyo Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1053 W: 5 N: 3475] (15161)
  • [2009-04-07 13:03]

Merhaba Ivan, çok güzel bir türü, çok başarılı bir şekilde fotoğraflamışsın.
Tebrik ederim.

Hello Ivan,
Very nice composition with right DOF and exposure,
Beautiful butterfly on a nice BG

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-04-09 5:27]

Hi Ivan,
yes I totally agree...it is a spring beauty. Excellent colours and superb pose. The colour is unique and i like its diagonal composition.
thanks for the motivating notes for my previous post. Really appreciate it.


Hi Ivan
You are lucky. Almost perfect shot. I dint have the oprtunity to take a good photo of this species ;-) Nice not disturbing background, natural colors and quite good sharpness

  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2009-04-09 21:54]

Hello Ivan, a beautiful butterfly with excellent details and wonderful point of view.
TFS and G's,

Hi Ivan,

A good job of handling a tricky exposure situation. The very pale wing borders combined with the main wing areas that are very dark is hard to get right, but you've managed it well, still detail in both areas. I've seen a couple of these here this Spring too, but they were too active for a photo.


Hello Ivan,
Never see this beauty! Very interesting species, with unusual colours. Very good presentation. Best regards,

Hi Ivan,
a rare sight, well seen and documented from an excellently well chosen angle, nicely composed. Hard light contitions are always making it very difficult to picture this species with enough contrast in the dark parts. There is always the risk of overexposing the wing borders, quite hard to compensate even in postwork.
No doubt, we have to be lucky twice: 1. Meeting Antiopa at all, 2. Meeting her under dim light conditions with wings spread. And that would be very rare. So let us be grateful to be lucky at all. My congratulations to you for this capture.
With thanks and best greetings from Vienna, where an unusually dry and hot April and early May summer - with lots of flowers, insects and other early birds - now ended in cool and soakingly wet rainy weather, a blessing for nature.

Hi Ivan again,

Another very special (for me) image in Your gallery. I saw this beautiful specie a few times in my life (it's rare here in Hungary) and I remember my father said when he was a child, he often saw the caterpillars of this specie on the nut-tree in their garden. So we always called this insect "nut-tree b-fly", although it isn't its official Hungarian name. I also remember capturing a specimen with my butterfly-net in 1980, and I still exactly remember where...

Although I don't remember I saw this specie here on TN. I'm not sure. But I'm sure I'll give a green star to this image within seconds, because it brang nice moments of my childhood back. 1000 thanx MF.

And before forgetting: technically perfect pic, a masterpiece, something to be proud of. Bravo.

Best regards, László

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