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The Things I've Seen

The Things I've Seen
Photo Information
Copyright: Jim White (jmirah) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 509 W: 5 N: 1141] (4687)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-08-10
Categories: Insects
Camera: KODAK Z612, 35-420mm Schneider Kreuznach Variogon
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Odonata: Dragonflies and Damselflies, Odonata: Dragonflies and Damselflies 2, Butterfly & Dragonfly, Dragonflies of the World, Dragonflies - Damselflies [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-08-12 2:41
Viewed: 3121
Points: 46
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Dragonfly

Living fossils, dragonflies are part of the most ancient group of insects on this planet. They have soared through the air and lived on the Earth for a staggering 300,000,000 years. Compared to humans, they are very old indeed. We have only been around for about 2,000,000 years. Insects were the first creatures in the World to fly. Dragonflies were flying in steamy prehistoric forests long before the dinosaurs appeared. We know about these ancient dragonflies through fossils. Back then, dragonflies were much larger and had wingspans of 31.5 inches(80 cm) and were the largest insects known. Today, dragonflies are smaller, with wingspans up to 5.5 inches(14 cm).

Over the centuries, people thought about dragonflies in many ways. In ancient times, Japanese farmers believed the dragonfly was the spirit of the rice plant. Dragonflies were a welcome sign of a good rice harvest. Dragonflies were also believed to bring good luck in battle. About 1,600 years ago, the dragonfly was a symbol of a great Japanese warrior clan*. The dragonfly later became one of the emblems of the emperor. An old name for Japan, Akitsu-shimu, means Dragonfly Island. The dragonfly is praised in many Japanese poems and songs.

The Mimbres people of the American southwest painted dragonflies on ceremonial pottery as a symbol of life.

The Zuni** tell an ancient story of a dragonfly made from corn and straw. It came to life in a time of drought and famine, became a messenger to the gods, and helped save the people. But not everyone has liked dragonflies.

In Great Britain, they were considered evil and dangerous. Because people saw them darting at horses, the dragonflies were called "Horse-Stingers." They didn't realize the dragonflies were snatching horseflies, the real "horse-stingers."

Written by: Amanda T., Lindsay T., Chelsea E., and Ben R. & compiled by the Twin Groves Virtual Wetlands Preserve Team.

* Legend tells of the first Japanese emperor-Jimmu Tenno-who, after climbing the highest peak overlooking Japan, looked out at his empire and thought the island resembled a dragonfly that liked it's tail. The dragonfly soon became the national emblem of Japan. The Japanese believed the dragonfly to be a messenger to and from another world. They believed that the Shoryo Tombo, the Dragonfly of the Dead, brought the spirits of their anscestors back to the family during the Festival of Bon.

** The Zuni are a Native American tribe of New Mexico. The tale is a long rendition of the plight of two children lost in the forest who construct a dragonfly out of corn and straw which comes to life and watches over them.

In ancient Tahiti, the dragonfly was regarded less favorably. It was believed to be the shadow of Hiro, the god of thieves. A thief would loose a dragonfly into the house he was about to rob and it would so mesmerize the inhabitants, he could take what he wanted unnoticed.

To the Navajo of New Mexico and Arizona, the dragonfly symbolized pure water. To the Chinese, perhaps because of it's unpredictable flight pattern and lack of clear direction, it symbolized instability and weakness.

Source: http://www.chevroncars.com/learn/arts-culture/dragonflies

For the past few days it has been near 100F(37.8C) with a heat index of 104F(40C) and 98% humidity in Galveston. The beach water temperature is 87F(30.5C). Sooo, for the past few days I have pretty much stayed in the shade of the patio with the company of the dragonflies, the Banana spider, a feral white female cat that only comes around to be fed or sleep inside during the winter and a new resident possum that has taken a liking to the cat's food. The lazy days(daze) of summer :)

thiv56, go2stones, haraprasan, angybone, eqshannon, lawhill, jaycee, ridvan, SelenE, mlines, deblink, pierrefonds, uleko, SkyF has marked this note useful
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To eqshannon: Hi Bob,jmirah 2 08-12 18:02
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Jim!

Very nice shot, very well lit, with marvellous colour and BG! TFS.

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2007-08-12 2:57]

Hi Jim,
a great shot of this fabulous dragonfly.
Very sharp with brilliant colours.
Well done,

Excellent information about the dragonfly. They're great photo subjects. Yours today is from a great POV with the sky above. Well done.


Hi Jim,
Good sharpness. Good colours. Well composed.
Excellent moment.

Great one...yet again. :)
Wonderful details -great sharpness...and the camera didn't melt in the heat. ha ha

I know well of the Zuni. My cousin was the head health officer on the N Mexico Reservation for 30 years. I have some "trinkets" she left when she passed 5 years ago. And so you have tied a piece of my life into this picture in a round about way thru story and picture, making a complete presentation well worthy of praise.


Hello Jim,
Very colourful picture with good POV, sharpness and details.Good lighting.

Hi Jim,
This dragonfly you capture with great colors
and sharpness, it can be see clear the wings with super details, well done TFS. Best regards/Lawhill

hi jim,
nice pose of the dragonfly and very well framed.
perfect focus and great details.
the electric blue BG is very eye-catching.
TFS - carole

This is outstanding! Colors are very impressive and so are details, exposure, POV and composition. Congratulations!

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-08-12 8:29]

Hi Jim,

This is marvelous! The colors are so deep and rich showing off the dragonfly so well. The pose is wonderful with that wing span. Excellent details and a lovely composition.


Hello Jim,
Les couleurs et la luminosité sont superbes.
La netteté sur les ailes, et les détails sont remaquables.

  • Great 
  • mlines Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 556 W: 26 N: 668] (3116)
  • [2007-08-12 18:49]

Hi Jim. This is a superb macro. One of the clearest dragon flies seen on this site. Excellent sharpness and good colours. TFS. Murray.

Hi Jim,
I am always at the talent people have in capturing images of Dragonfly's and you are no exception. The colours, detail, sharpness and the overall quality of this image superb. Wow.

Hi Jim,
A lovely capture with lovely informative notes of dragonflies. Very nice POV, details and a beautiful background. Very nice. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2007-08-13 0:47]

Hi Jim,
Focus, sharpness, POV and composition are very nice. TFS
Best wishes,

selam jim , excellent shot and very good composition of this dragonfly nice pov and bg with splendid colours.good details presented
Well done !
Regards ridvan

Hi Jim,

A nice image of the dragonfly, the photo has a good composition, sharpness and nice colors. Thanks for sharing.


  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-08-13 4:30]

Hello Jim,
A very fine capture of this dragonfly from below. Excellent focus on the eyes and sharp details. Personally I think there is too much contrast, too strong a blue colour but otherwise a great shot.
TFS and regards, Ulla

  • Great 
  • Max31 Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 14 W: 0 N: 39] (201)
  • [2007-08-13 6:08]

Hi Jim,
Nice shot with great colours and details;
Thanks for the share.

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-08-13 14:28]

Hi Jim,
Splendid shot of the dragonfly and the BG presents a fantastic effect. Very sharp imge with neat focus and perfect lighting. I like your POV to portray it and the superb composition. Kudos.

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2007-08-14 6:15]

Hello Jim,
great macro, the colors and sharpness are wonderfulVery nice how the colorful BG contrasts the neutral colors of the dragonfly.

Hi Jim,
fantastic brilliant colours and a nice moment from your low POV, I love it, thanks
Sabine - wishnugaruda

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