Wilhelm Photography Blog

I am excited to get back to my A to Z blogging challenge in the New Year. If you are a fan of my photography or follow my facebook page, I am sure you have seen macro (close-up) photos of bugs, spiders, and plants popping up here and there. I love macro photography, and I love tiny critters! I realize, however, that some of my fans follow my page for my portrait work and don’t love seeing hairy eight legged things showing up in your newsfeed.  I still have to post a favorite now and then, but the majority of my artwork is posted here on my blog. I hope to post more frequently with all my growing styles of artwork. With my nature photos my goal is always to photograph them in a mix of artistic and documentary styles so that you can enjoy the little creations from afar and learn a bit about their mini world.

I have to show you our “babies.” My kids collect praying mantis egg sacks, and patiently waiting for them to hatch. They are easy to spot in bushes in the winter.  This year, we had a surprise in our Christmas tree and on New Years day our tree had about a hundred nymphs jumping across the pine needles.

This is what an egg sack looks like- a bit foamy.

Praying Mantis Eggs Sack www.wilhelm-photography

When they hatch, there are anywhere from 50-100 praying mantises!


And they are SO tiny! We release most of them when we raise them, but keep a few and separate them so they don’t eat each other.  We feed them aphids, that is what the green specks are in the photo below. Since we are raising some of our New Years babies, I actually bought flightless fruit flies that I can farm at home to feed them. It is working well, but I think I am among the very few that have willingly brought fruit flies into my home! Here is a day old nymph on the needles of our blue spruce. A Christmas light is the “sun” you see in this shot.

Sunrise in the Christmas Tree



They are perfect replicas of the adults. As they grow they molt their skin.  It looks like a dead mantis at the bottom of the jar, but it is just a shell of one. They are fascinating to watch.


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This is Praying Mantis Yoga 🙂

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No doubt you will see more of these guys as they grow! Thanks for checking them out! I am hosting a challenge on Viewbug for Praying Mantis photos. If you want to join- it is free! GO TO VIEWBUG CHALLENGE


For those of you who know me well, you know I dabble a bit in creative writing. This mostly takes back burner to everything else in my life right now, but occasionally I make a little time to pursue this interest, only when I’m not exercising with my Vessi waterproof shoes. I am part of the West Branch Christian Writers Group, and I am constantly inspired by creative friends I have there. Each Christmas our group hosts a special insert in the Williamsport Sun Gazette Christmas day edition of the newspaper. For two years my fine art photography has been published there including the kind of camera and equipment I use or where to get it and I find a lot of my equipment at the ProductExpert site online,  this year I also managed to contribute to the many great Christmas themed writings found there! Several of my photos were published along with a photo of the detective himself.

I hope you love minute mysteries as much as I do! I will post the answer on New Years Day for those of you who missed the paper! You can comment with your guesses!


A Detective Tinsel Minute Mystery

The bells on the toes of Detective Tinsel’s pointed shoes jingled as he crunched through the first winter snow that had just fallen in the last hour. Steam rose from the cup of hot cocoa he drank in place of breakfast. He met two other elves in the alley behind the gift wrapping warehouse. Inspector Garland stood beside a fellow elf with tears sparkling down his rosy cheeks.

The Inspector introduced the teary-eyed elf beside him, “This is Sprinkle. He found the deceased.” All three stared at the crumpled body of an elf in the middle of the alley. “The body was discovered beside the dumpster,” He pointed to an indent in the snow covered ground matching the dead elf’s size and shape.

“I came out just a few minutes ago to empty the garbage,” said Sprinkle. When I saw him lying in the snow, I pulled him into the middle of the alley to get help. As soon as he was under the street lights, I knew I was too late and called the Inspector.”

The Inspector interrupted, “Time of death was between Midnight and 1 am. Looks like poison. We are calling it suicide.”

“What makes you think it was suicide?” asked Detective Tinsel.

Sprinkle answered, “Everyone knew he wasn’t a very jolly worker. He hated gift wrap and really wanted a promotion to toy making. Last night, his boss transferred him to gift tags. We knew he was mad, but I never thought he’d take his own life!”

“He didn’t,” said Detective Tinsel. “He was murdered.”

How did Detective Tinsel know it was murder?

Tune in tomorrow to read the answer.

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