The deer ate my picture........but that's ok!

Making a photograph of nature is not always as easy as one would think.

Searching for the right spot to create an image can be time consuming in its self, then you need mother nature to cooperate.

Years ago I had an idea for an image of Saguaro cacti in spring bloom.

The idea is of an arm coming off the main trunk and growing towards the ground before turning skyward. The end of the arm is in full bloom, the arm and main trunk would be the framing with the blooms at the bottom of the image and in the background there would be another Saguaro with multiple arms reaching to the sky.

One day about a year ago I was out scouting locations when I came across the perfect setting for this image and there were some buds that were close to opening. So for the next week or so I would make regular trips to check the status of the buds.

Then one day I could not make the trip out due to a Doctors appointment, the next day when I went to check it became evident that I was a day late as most of the buds had flowers and were now turning brown. While I was disappointed I thought I will get them next year.

A few weeks ago I noticed that the Saguaros were starting to bloom and we had a trip planned for a four night getaway, so I went out to visit this location to see if I might have a chance to get the image this year. Much to my delight the buds on this Cacti were very small and would need several more days or longer before they were ready to bloom.

After returning from our trip my day began before first light as would the next 6 or 7 mornings. The saguaro blooms at night and does not last 24 hours thus requiring early morning visits for the freshest flowers. Each day the buds seemed to be bigger and bigger I was sure that within the next 48 hours I would finally have the photo that I had envision several years ago. I was so excited.

The next morning I was up and on my way by 5am I was about half way to the location when I had this thought  “something has eaten all the buds”. I chalked it up to over-imagination and exhaustion. About a half a mile out I came across a doe and two yearling fawns grazing along the road. I stopped and watched them for a few minutes before they move off the road. As I passed them I told them to stay safe and I hoped they had plenty to eat.

As I came up on the subject saguaro, I notice that there were no buds left on the arm, I thought someone had a good meal. I looked for tracks all around and did not see deer,  javelina or any other tracks. I was pretty sure that it would have been the deer that ate the buds as they would have been out of reach of most javelina and the ground was undisturbed.

While I was disappointed that I would go another bloom cycle (another whole year) without getting the image I had sought, I was relieved that the buds had supplied the deer with a good meal. I will keep trying to get the image from that cacti if Mother Nature will allow me to.

Speaking of Mother Nature she did smile on me about fifteen minutes later with another cacti with a swooping arm and several fresh flowers and many buds. I made several images at this location. It is important to keep an open mind and stay focused even when the plan goes way of track and never give up.