Nature Photography with marysejansenart
Discovering a new world, lowering stress and improving mood
Exactly one year ago today, I went through the following thought process: “We already know that going out in nature is good for us. But did you know that even looking at an image depicting a natural scene lowers your stress levels? It literally calms your nervous system and helps you relax and recover from stress!” This very fact led me to create my daily Nature-bites project! I began posting a nature-bite every day in the form of a nature-image on Linked-In, created with my mobile phone. A lot has happened since!
Flowers, Insects and Spiders
I began to explore the possibilities of the camera on my mobile phone. Apart from being able to share beautiful landscapes, trees and plants, and occasionally an animal, I discovered I had a pretty good macro option on my phone. So I began to take close-ups from flowers. These are quite interesting, because you begin to notice things you normally easily overlook with the naked eye unless you take the time to look really closely.
Another subject that popped up for me were insects and spiders. This was something I didn’t pay an awful lot of attention to in the past. I had some images of spiders, butterflies and caterpillars. And I had started to take an interest in dragonflies, but for these I definitely needed my proper camera as they would never allow me close enough to take an image with my phone! But while searching for nature-bites each day I began to notice all the different types of small spiders in my yard and beyond, as well as opening up to a whole new world of bugs, beetles and other insects!
Check out my favourite spider that I have found so far, right in my own yard!! This tiny Sparkling Northern Jumping Spider is so incredibly colourful! I don’t know if you think spiders can be cute, but this one is definitely a candidate!
And how exciting it was to be able to share all my discoveries with many others, as my following on LinkedIn had begun to grow due to my posts of daily nature-bites. You may recall the Red Velvet Mite, which appeared in my recent post about ‘7 Wonders of the Rainforest’. That is just one of the many incredible, often colourful little creatures that walk around in Australia! And sometimes I even managed to capture a flying insect, like a fly or a bee and even a damselfly!
What do you think about this fascinating looking creature? Not cute or pretty, but definitely interesting! It is called the Assassin Bug, as it hunts for bees and other soft insects on plants!
Or what about this pretty little thing below? I am not really sure what it is…. it looks like some kind of moth or maybe a plant hopper? But it’s tiny and I am so intrigued by it being all white, even the eye, except for that teeny-tiny little orange dot on its wing! I would never have noticed it if it wasn’t for taking this macro photo.
If you do know what it is, please send me a message or post it in the comments! I would appreciate that! I always try my very best to identify my subjects, but I don’t always get a satisfying result.
The positive effect of being mindful of your natural environment
Instead of just walking mindlessly through my garden or neighbourhood, the nature-bite has led me to always be mindful of nature around me, looking for interesting images to share! My partner noticed it has rubbed off on him as well! It definitely increased my appreciation of my environment even more. And, as stated in the first paragraph, it does have a positive influence on the nervous system. When I stop and look at something beautiful and/or awe-inspiring, I momentarily forget time and everything else I might be worrying about.
My own experience tells me the research is right! Connecting with nature, even for a brief moment like this, is absolutely very helpful in lowering stress and improving mood! So I feel inspired to keep going and share these images with you and many others who appreciate them. And possibly inspire you and them, to also take time to admire your own natural environment in the process! And maybe you even feel inspired to share your experiences with others too!
The photos I shared in this post were all taken in 2023. Below is a video I created with the Top 50 Nature-bites of 2022 as voted by my audience on LindkedIn to complete the overview of the whole year!
Find my LinkedIn Profile here and follow me and ring my bell if you’d like to receive my daily Nature-bites in your feed!