Beauty in Decay/8

This is the same flower that appeared in Beauty in Decay/7…. several days on, and the petals have drooped and shrivelled. I like the texture here, and decided to take the image against a black backdrop, lit with natural light from the side, and create a low key image.

Low key dark peony

Low key dark peony



  1. Very dramatic, Sue. I love the fact that you used a black background.

  2. I also enjoy stilling this phase of a flower’s existence. Since I compose, I like to think about this stage as one that is ready to give new life.

  3. Wow, this is truly stunning!

    • Thanks, Angeline, much appreciated! I’m having some fun with these….but the peonies are practically finished, so I hope I find some more subjects!

  4. Beautiful. I really like this project, one I have often thought of doing myself. 🙂

  5. This is my favourite. Love the texture of those petals and I prefer the black background with this dark burgundy colour.

    • Ah, as I said in answer to a previous comment “I decided backlit against a white background was fine for the pale flowers, but black seemed appropriate to set this deeper colour against”… So we’re on the same page! Glad you appreciate the texture 🙂

  6. Makes for great drama! I like this one too 🙂

  7. Laura Bloomsbury

    ahh you’ve frozen the beauty remains in old age – lovely. I am doing a series called ‘best before’ along the same lines though seem to have forgotten all about it of late. Must be my age 😉

  8. Suzanne

    This is an interesting effect – the black background works very well. The petals are so textured they look like they are made from fabric.

    • I had a similar effect with some decaying tulip petals in Beauty in Decay/1 – I think when the petals become really desiccated you get this. I like it…. 🙂

  9. Sue, stunning image – beautiful in all it’s sadness. Excellent work, Sue.

  10. An excellent series Sue. They are all beautiful, but I like the pale pink ones a little bit better 🙂

    • Thanks! I am enjoying setting these up, learning about how to use light to best effect. I must admit I love the pale pink ones, but I did like my latest darker one. More pink to come, then I shall have to see what I can come up with next!

  11. Absolutely amazing. So beautiful.

    • Thanks! I loved the way the petals went all crinkly and shrivelled, and the light from the side helped to bring out the texture

  12. poppytump

    Such a plushness in the petals … Gorgeous .
    Love how you’ve photographed this beauty 🙂

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