There is no better designer than natureAlexander McQueen
I am sure Alexander McQueen is not the first person to suggest that nature is the best designer. Indeed, as far back as the Ancient Greeks similar things were being said:
Art takes nature as its modelAristotle
For this week’s Lens Artist Challenge Patti proposes that we take a closer look at shapes and designs. I’m choosing to highlight the wonderful designs to be found in the natural world. Most are plant details; I am often intrigued by the shapes and patterns created by stamen, petals, leaves and seed heads. But there are a few animals and geological shapes too.
And to make the design element more apparent, I’ve opted for monochrome edits. That may also compensate for the fact that I’ve used some of these images in previous posts! Most were shot originally in colour and edited in Silver Efex Pro 2.
Plant and animal designs
Rushes in the Okavango Delta, Botswana
Grass seeds and Bear Grass in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State
Dandelion clock near my home in Ealing, west London
A trio of teasels at Druridge Bay in Northumberland, UK
Close-up of a banana leaf in Kerala, India
A poppy growing in Adlestrop, a Cotswold village in England
Taken at Kew Gardens, west London; I’m unsure what flower this is but the design is just perfect!
A cactus at Kew Gardens, west London
A fallen tree in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State
Seaweed on a groyne in Whitstable, England
Raindrops on a spider’s web near Craster, Northumberland, UK (we can’t talk about designs in nature without mentioning spiders’ webs!)
Elephant’s trunk detail, taken in Chobe National Park, Botswana
Zebra’s mane detail, also taken in Chobe National Park, Botswana
A Grey Owl at a birds of prey rescue centre in England
The work of water
So far I have focused on shapes that can be discovered in the details of plants and animals. I want to finish with a few examples of interesting shapes created instead by water, soil and rock.
Above the Okavango Delta in Botswana
Looking down on the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe, from a helicopter; I was struck by how much the shape of the promontory in the river resembled the crocodile resting on it!
On the Gambia River just before sunset; another ‘crocodile’ ready to pounce on an unsuspecting fisherman?
Rock erosion at Wadi Bani Khalid in Oman
Rock formations at Mount Paektu, North Korea, reflected in the crater lake