A bright, overcast day is a photographer's dream. You can shoot all day with no fear of fighting the harsh contrast and shadows created on a sunny day. Eager to get to one of my favorite places, Brookside Gardens in Wheaton, MD; I loaded my gear into my Jeep and headed out. Traffic is light on a Sunday on Interstate 495, the beltway that circles Washington, DC, so it was a pleasant drive. About an hour later, I arrived at the main conservatory and there wasn't a parking space in sight. Luckily I didn't have to wait long. A space opened up close to the entrance to the conservatory where the annual live Butterfly Exhibit, Flights of Fancy is held. The butterflies and gardens are amazing. There is a space in the conservatory dedicated to host plants, where you can see butterflies in all stages from eggs to adults. Kids and adults love it!
Once inside, you will see local and exotic butterflies floating from flower to flower, or feasting on bananas and other fruit. The butterflies are less active on a cloudy day, which allows a little more time to compose and take the picture I raised my camera to capture a beautiful Red Mormon butterfly. As I zoomed in, the lens made a strange whirling sound and the dreaded "Error" message appeared in my viewfinder. The lens had a problem and so did I! I packed a single camera and lens in my camera bag. That brought my shoot to an abrupt and disappointing shoot. I indeed broke the Cardinal
Rule; always bring a second camera and lens. A compact camera will also come to the rescue in such a situation.
A couple of weeks later I made a return trip and made pictures of butterflies to my heart's content. See some of the results in the Butterfly and Moth Gallery.