Must See DC

If you’re like me and many other DC residents, you love the idea of having a plethora of amazing museums within walking or Metro distance from your house, but you just never seem to find time to go or you end up doing something else instead. Many of us only make it to museums when we have visitors in town because “that’s what you do” when people visit DC.

All of that changed today, as I was motivated by word of mouth to go check out a nature photography exhibit at the Natural History Museum titled “Nature’s Best”. When I arrived at the museum I was informed that there were actually three photo exhibits on display, one not worth mentioning, the other being a collection of amazing photos by Robert Creamer. He has mastered the art of capturing plant life as it’s decomposing, not with a camera, but with a high resolution flatbed scanner. In the exhibit’s video, he shows how he dries the plants and flowers, waiting for the right moment to capture their dying beauty by suspending them over his scanner with pieces of string. He even sets a bunch of dried petals on fire while scanning them (please don’t try this at home).

I really can’t say enough about Creamer’s photos, so definitely pay his exhibit a visit if you’re a fan of photography and especially if you’re into macro photography. I am tempted to go back again to view his truly unique shots and style, and also tempted to buy a flatbed scanner!

The “Nature’s Best” exhibit was in itself inspiring, displaying nature photos ranging from pro photographers to eight year old kids. I found it to be very educational as well, as each photo lists the make and model of camera, lens used, focal length, aperture, ISO speed, and type of film if it wasn’t digital. These two shows combined were some of the best I’ve ever seen. And best of all they’re housed in our beloved Smithsonian, where you just walk in the door and make yourself at home.

Photo by Robert Creamer, “Fairchild Jade”, 2005

4 Comments so far

  1. Mike (unregistered) on March 11th, 2007 @ 10:56 pm

    I want to check this out now. The image here is mesmerizing … though I wouldn’t want to do a jigsaw puzzle of it.


  2. Doug (unregistered) on March 12th, 2007 @ 10:20 am

    I thought this was a painting until read your article. Fascinating!


  3. Joshua (unregistered) on March 12th, 2007 @ 4:41 pm

    This looks very interesting, I definitely want to check it out. At first glance, I thought the photo was of cloth or string or something woven. Now looking again it looks like squid.


  4. sa-ra (unregistered) on March 12th, 2007 @ 11:12 pm

    cool “stuff.” thanks for the weekend idea.



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