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Banana Grove

Just one level up from our home -- the entire village is on a fairly steep slope -- someone has planted a pumpkin patch, or perhaps it's squash. The entire patch is raised three feet off the ground and the vines curl over an elevated canopy-type trellis. The patch is approximately 10x15 feet with a mango tree growing in the middle.

It is a treasure of interesting tendrils and small creatures. Whenever I want to shoot something nearby, I visit the pumpkin patch to see what's happening. One day it was the sudden appearance of hundreds of tiny grasshoppers. A week later they were gone and I was photographing ladybugs. Some days I visit and there's nothing but me and the plants. And if I held still for it, they'd reach out and grab me.

All these images were shot with a Canon G2, using a B+W +5 Close-Up Filter and/or a Hoya +10 Macro Lens. This combination gives me a choice of +5, +10 or +15 diopters -- along with extremely shallow depths-of-field (the greater the diopters, the shallower the depth-of-field). Everything was shot will available light, no flash.

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