Tuesday, February 23, 2010
A Certain Color of Blue
Desert bluebells are blooming in my front yard now, gracing the landscape with a certain color blue that I've found impossible to capture on film, digital media or in print. There must be a certain wavelength of light that just can't be translated by technology, probably leaning towards the ultraviolet, that gives these flowers a certain pizzazz only perceptible to the naked eye. The color blue is often associated with calm or sadness, but this brilliant hue does quite the opposite for me; I find it energizing and joyful. And so, this time of year, part of my morning ritual is to take a few moment to admire this perfect cerulean, this pure indigo light splashing across the rocks.
Here are a few other attempts to bring this azure to the web via my digital camera. But the best and only real way to experience this transformative color is to find these wildflowers blooming somewhere.
This species is Phacelia campanularia, and is related to forget-me-nots. You can find them in the wild, especially in desert canyons in the Mojave and Sonoran deserts in southern Arizona and California. The seeds are used in commercial desert wildflower mixes along with other showy annuals like owl clover, lupines, Mexican poppy and fiddlenecks.