Some animals in this world are so perfectly beautiful that one can only assume that an artist was at play that week that the world was created. Stripy zebras, haphazardly spotted dalmatians, elegantly aesthetic peacocks, rich blood orange butterflies and multicoloured parrots – all bear the hallmark of the creative touch; a natural beauty worthy of the Paris catwalks rather than an African pasture or worse, a cage.
Symmetrical beauty, coupled with rich contrasting colours are two things that nature does best, no more so than in the ladybird, surely the most beautiful insect of the lot. For in its black and red spotted back, the ladybird recalls both the joyful dance of a flamenco polka, while exuding the contemporary style of a fine sports car or high gloss handbag. It is this innate beauty, and the feeling that these creatures somehow represent luckyness, that I have always been attracted to ladybirds, finding that their appearance somehow enhances my life, no matter how short the duration of our encounter.
One such discovery is captured on my Daily Norm photo of the week today, an instance which occurred in the Chelsea Physic garden upon the spongey bark of an old cork tree. The resulting photo is a fusion not just of the spotted retro ladybird, but also of the rippling irregular forms of the cork around it. Another wonder of nature, and one that is growing rarer by the day. Surely it’s worth settling for a screw cap wine bottle when this beautiful tree is saved as a result?
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