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Hackberry Emperor

Hackberry Emperor
Photo Information
Copyright: Ken Slade (Ken52) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 636 W: 93 N: 1243] (4195)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-05-12
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon 350D (Digital Rebel XT), Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM, 58mm circular polarizer
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1600 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Butterflies, jmp *1 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-05-16 23:21
Viewed: 3240
Favorites: 2 [view]
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Tonight I decided to give you a more "artistic" presentation of a butterfly. This is the Hackberry Emperor perched on Oakleaf Hydrangea blooms. Photo was taken at a local botanical garden. The butterfly was in bright sun against a light colored brick wall. I was worried about over-exposing the white flowers, so I used manual mode and underexposed by (-1.0).

For a closer view of butterfly, see workshop.

Hackberry Emperor (Asterocampa celtis)

Family: Brush-footed Butterflies (Nymphalidae)

Subfamily: Emperors (Apaturinae)

Identification: Extremely variable geographically. Upperside is reddish brown. Forewing has 1 submarginal eyespot, a jagged row of white spots, and the cell has 1 solid black bar and 2 separate black spots.

Life history: Hackberry Butterflies fly in a fast and erratic manner, and rest upside down on tree trunks. Males perch on tall objects in sunny areas to watch for females. Eggs are laid in clusters, and the young caterpillars feed communally. Caterpillars overwinter in groups gathered inside dead rolled leaves.

Flight: Two broods from May-October.

Wing span: 1 3/8 - 2 1/2 inches (3.5 - 6.3 cm).

Caterpillar hosts: Various hackberries (Celtis species) and sugarberry (Celtis laevigata).

Adult food: Sap, rotting fruit, dung, carrion. Will take moisture at wet spots along roads and streams.

Habitat: Along wooded streams, forest glades and river edges, wooded roadsides, towns.

Range: Resident in most of the eastern United States, central Plains states, and the southwest mountains; northern Mexico.

Source: http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species?l=1830

Aperture = f5.6
Shutter = 1/1600s
ISO = 400
Focal Length = 300mm
Manual Mode
Exposure Compensation (-1.0)
Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM lens

JoseMiguel, deblink, uleko, Debz, angybone, jaycee, anel, jmirah, jwmunro, magal, Maite, Perro, peter_stoeckl, jmp, mikou has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To JoseMiguel: pale backgroundKen52 1 05-16 23:50
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-05-16 23:29]

Hi Ken,
A wonderful shot. Lovely colours and such sharp details. The white flowers lends a serenity to the whole composition. Excellent POV and DOF. Superb BG, very smooth and neat. Veru nicely composed and presented. Kudos.

That certainly is artistic. It's wonderful. You handled all the technical aspects expertly! I love this picture!

Evelynn : )

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-05-16 23:36]

Hello Ken

A real beauty.The composition is wonderful.excellent detail and sharp focus.The butterfly's details and colours show really well.The colour palette is well matched to the photo.Excellent DOF and POV.The OOF BG is superb.I haven't seen many of this species on TN.Congratulations.TFS


Hi Ken,
Magnificent capture!
Definetly a different one. How did you achieve the pale background?
It makes a subtle contrast with the delicate white flowers.
The -1 underexpose relly paid off.
Details on the butterfly are pretty good ones, so sharp and clear.
I love the colour tone on their wings, and think is a very good horizontal composition.
Congratulations and thanks for share it.
My best regards,

  • Great 
  • Seiei Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 21 W: 0 N: 30] (127)
  • [2007-05-16 23:58]

Hi Ken

Really strange, the color of the background :) it give strong at the butterfly, with the contrast. They are a lot of details, really an interessting shot
Regards, Christophe

I have to say that artistically this is one of the best butterfly captures I have seen.
They sure make the garden photogenic. This is sort of like a fairytale image. Good work.

Hi Ken,
The Butterfly stand out well in this image with the light background. Truly beautiful with nice detail.

  • Great 
  • Debz Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 505 W: 0 N: 847] (3307)
  • [2007-05-17 5:08]

Hi Ken, your cerainly did a good job here, the composition is beautiful. Beautiful Butterfly with great light illuminating the wings. All has a good range of colours and detail and sharpness excellent. POV is perfect. Very arty!

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-05-17 6:04]

Hello Ken,
I love your artistic presentation of this beautiful Emperor amongst the white flowers.
Great sharpness and fine colours which stand out against the light background. I like the angle of the flowers and the pink background -it looks very romantic!! Excellent!
TFS and regards, Ulla

Beautiful lighting...and it is very artistic.
Your work is always perfect! :)
This is a new "look" for you but I like it.

Like Mana said, the flowers (and the soft colors) create a sense of serenity.

Hi Ken,
Very beautiful tender picture, I like much this one..!
Very nice composition with the beautiful colours..!
Very good shot..!
Well done,

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-05-17 10:55]

Hi Ken,

This truly is artistic - an absolutley beautiful composition - worthy of framing. A beautiful buttefly with superb colors and gorgeous pattern. The details are excellent. The setting amongst the blossoms is outstanding.


  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2007-05-17 11:32]

Hello ken,
Again such an artistic shot of butterflies. The colours are outstanding beautiful, fine and subtle. Bravo

  • Great 
  • jmirah Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 509 W: 5 N: 1141] (4687)
  • [2007-05-17 11:51]

Beautiful color and details. You take some amazing photos. I love the colors in this one. Great job. TFS

Hello Ken -

I like this image. What I really like is the pastel of the background and how it works with all of the elements of the image. I am not sure where the light source is but the transparent nature of the butterfly is very nice and provides excellent detail in the markings. The exposure is spot on even though there is some OE in portions of the flowers but it really works with the image. Well done!

Thank you for sharing.


  • Great 
  • magal Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 224 W: 0 N: 313] (1251)
  • [2007-05-17 16:05]

Hi Ken,
Very artistic shot - looks almost like a painting. I paticularly like the pastel effect of the BG with soft muted tones of the flowers contrastig well with the dark colours of the subject.
Well taken and well done

Hi Ken, lovely composition with a wonderful butterfly and splendid flowers, nice delicate color and great details, very well done, ciao Silvio

Hello Ken
A very well done shot, with perfect ligth and sharpness, great BG.
TFS/ Lawhill

  • Great 
  • Maite Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 998 W: 65 N: 1270] (5199)
  • [2007-05-17 17:19]

Another wonderful capture, Ken!
I like a lot the composition with those beautiful flowers!
This butterfly is rarely seen and here you show excellent details of its wings.
Congratulations and TFS.

bonjour ken
celui la n'est vraiment pas mal non plus,j'aime ses motifs et couleurs,j'aime aussi beaucoup le BG pastel qui met bien la scene en valeur.

  • Great 
  • Perro Silver Star Critiquer [C: 41 W: 0 N: 59] (553)
  • [2007-05-20 9:15]

Hello Ken,
You are right, it is a very artistic presentation.
Great composition with a perfect exposure.
Colors are soft and beautiful.
Very well done.
Congradulations and thank you for sharing!
My best regards,

Hi Ken,
very beautiful, truly artistic composition.
Excellent handling of light.
That image is both perfectly well describing the blossoms and the species of butterfly as it is aesthetically pleasing for its subtle colours and soft and gentle atmosphere.
With thanks, and best regards,

  • Great 
  • jmp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1659 W: 95 N: 2273] (8415)
  • [2007-05-21 18:20]

Hi Ken,
You have succeeded in your aim of getting an artistic presentation. Congratulations!
TFS, Josť M.

  • Great 
  • mikou Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 869 W: 68 N: 1479] (6093)
  • [2007-08-06 11:14]

Hi Ken.
This is one from many of your amazing pictures of butterfly.Beautiful composition and colors.Looks like picture from book of tale.Wonderful atmosphere.Superb done.Good luck and take care.
TFS and best regards Milos.

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