Lectures Two

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Gardens
Gardens

Before I was a photographer, I was a landscape architect. I left that career behind to pursue one in photography, but I carried with me my design training and knowledge along with my great appreciation for beautiful gardens, landscapes and travel. I enjoy sharing my knowledge and experience through a series of lively, informative lectures illustrated of course with my professional photography.

My lectures are available in-person or via Zoom

Please call or email me to learn more about booking a presentation for your organization.

Garden Travel

Gorgeous Gardens of New England  Parts 1-4

Sit back and enjoy these armchair tours of some of the most gorgeous gardens in New England. These lively presentations illustrated with my professional photography each feature 10 -12 gardens in a beautiful and informative slideshow of some of my favorites. As we build from one presentation to the next, we will see patterns emerge in the development of estate gardens from their agrarian beginnings to our times, the establishment of the heavy weights in the field of landscape architecture and inventive and unique designs as seen in a variety of garden landscapes from estate gardens to public and private landscapes. I’ll share insights into their designs and in some of the techniques I use to capture their beauty in my photographs. Many of the images you will see in each presentation have graced the pages of garden calendars and magazines and in books.

A handout with a map and list of the featured gardens will be provided, with a downloadable version available for virtual presentations. These lectures can be booked individually or as a series.

  • Part One

    In Part 1, we will get an introduction to the historical shift from farmland to fashionable estate in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s at the properties at Glen Magna and Stevens-Coolidge Place. Among others on this tour are three rose gardens, two decidedly different Preservation Society of Newport properties and the unique, Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls, Ma.

  • Part Two

    In Part 2, we’ll visit The Mount, the home of Edith Wharton and Naumkeag where the grounds and garden designs at both properties were heavily influenced by their female owners. We’ll journey to four gardens in Connecticut, including Hollister House and two plant nurseries. You’ll be introduced to three gardens of which you’ve probably never heard, one in Connecticut, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

  • Part Three

    Part 3 features among the 10 covered in this trip, the numerous gardens at Smith College, the Rotch-Jones-Duff House in New Bedford, Ma whose three owners over 150 years were all affiliated with the whaling industry and one with the Arnold Arboretum, the Cornish, NH home of sculptor Augustus Saint-Gauden and Colorblends House in Bridgeport, Ct. a springtime must-visit.

  • Part Four

    Part 4 begins with three gardens in Connecticut, one designed by the famous English designer and horticulturist Gertrude Jekyll, Hillstead Museum and Garden with both house and landscape designed by the pioneering female architect Theodate Pope Riddle and Osbourne Homestead whose owner, the young Francis Osbourne at 31, took the helm of all of her father’s business endeavors including the dairy farm on the Homestead and developed the beautiful gardens surrounding the house. We’ll visit gardens in two towns in northern Vermont associated with the von Trapp family and the English inspired gardens at Tarbin Gardens in New Hampshire.

The Hudson River Valley, Long Island and New Jersey

Feast your eyes on 12 magnificent gardens in this sampling of New York and New Jersey gardens where we’ll see a variety of garden styles. Among them are the Olmsted designed colonial garden at George Washington’s headquarters in Wayne, NJ, the luxurious landscapes at Old Westbury Gardens on Long Island, the Beaux-Arts garden at Blithewood in the Hudson River Valley and the 3- tiered Italianate garden at the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park. We’ll learn about the designs and some of the storied past of the gardens, the properties and their owners.

A handout with a map and list of the featured gardens will be provided. A downloadable version will be available for virtual presentations.

England – The Cotswolds, Cornwall and Devon

From the plant bedecked stone cottages in southwestern England through 11 unique gardens in Devon, Cornwall and the Cotswolds, I’ll take you on a visually stunning garden tour of this charming region of the UK. Among our stops are England’s only surviving rococo garden, the wonderfully integrated sculpture garden at the Barbara Hepworth Museum and subtropical gardens in Cornwall. We’ll visit Hidcote, one of the best-known and most influential Arts and Crafts style gardens in the UK and the remarkable Eden Project.

A handout with a map and list of the featured gardens will be provided. A downloadable version will be available for virtual presentations.


Gardens and Landscape

Fragrance in the Garden

Perhaps you have smelled the lovely fragrance of a peony and were immediately transported back to a time long ago in your grandmother’s garden. Have you ever wondered why that is? I’ll explain why in this presentation and much more.

In this lecture we’ll look at the amazing things that scent does for a plant (botanically, it is not there for our pleasure!). We will discuss specific plants, shrubs and trees with fragrant flowers and foliage that can be grown in New England and where to place them in the landscape to maximize our enjoyment of their fragrance throughout the garden.

Garden Design — A Deeper Dive

What makes for a great garden? Illustrated by my photographs of showcase gardens in Europe and across the US as our examples, we will explore and dissect garden design and the hardscape and softscape elements that make a design shine. We will discuss how you can come up with a concept plan for your own yard and ways you can modify and incorporate some of those grand themes seen in showcase gardens into a scale suitable for your own backyard, your pocketbook and your schedule. This presentation is great for both gardeners and for those who want to broaden their appreciation for great landscape design.

 From Just a Snapshot to Art – Creating Beautiful Garden Photographs

People often tell me that my photographs are beautiful, a compliment I always appreciate. I’ve spent years learning and honing my craft. Yes, I own professional camera equipment, but camera gear is but a small part in creating evocative photographs of all subjects, including flowers and gardens. You can take more beautiful photographs if you understand the nuances of natural light and how to work with it, the art of composition and shooting with a vision of the story you want each photograph to tell. Regardless of what camera you use, these are what will lift your garden photography from run-of-the mill to an artistic level.

In this lecture, I will lead you through the art of seeing as an artist does, framing and creating dramatic compositions of overall garden views, plant groupings and flower close ups. You will learn about balance and movement, when the light is best and what you can do to create better photographs when you don’t have it. This is not a tech heavy talk, but I will cover some camera and lens basics, including the one piece of equipment I think everyone who is interested in taking better garden photographs must have in their arsenal.


Travel Destinations

Southwest and South Central England

Join me on an armchair visit to one of England’s most picturesque regions, rich with stunning coastlines, quaint villages, country houses, gardens and ponies roaming the moors. We’ll journey to the Cotswolds with its villages filled with honey-hued stone cottages, rolling hills and pristine landscapes. England’s largest “Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty”, The Cotswolds have been the setting for films and tv shows and is home to many notables, including members of the royal family. You will see the reason why!

Warmed by the Gulf Stream along with its neighboring county Devon, Cornwall is famous for it’s rugged coastline, beautiful beaches, sub tropical plants and it’s history as the mining center of the world during the 18th century. You may be more familiar with this area though as the striking setting for the popular PBS shows, Doc Martin and Poldark and for it’s famed coastal walks.

Our last stop is Devon, known for among it’s many other attributes, Devon Cream Teas. We’ll visit the last castle built in England completed in the 1930s, Rosemoor, the flagship garden of the Royal Horticultural Society’s properties and see ponies and sheep roaming free on the moors.