Madison Indiana Photography

“Calla Lily Portrait”

I thought I might take a break from posting my wildflower images and turn to an old favorite of mine and that is the Calla Lily, according to Wikipedia…..

Zantedeschia aethiopica (common names Lily of the Nile, Calla lily, Easter lily, Arum lily, Varkoor, an Afrikaans name meaning pig’s ear); syn. Calla aethiopica L., Richardia africana Kunth, Richardia aethiopica (L.) Spreng., Colocasia aethiopica (L.) Spreng. ex Link) is a species in the family Araceae, native to southern Africa in Lesotho, South Africa, and Swaziland.[1]

It is a rhizomatous herbaceous perennial plant, evergreen where rainfall and temperatures are adequate, deciduous where there is a dry season. Its preferred habitat is in streams and ponds or on the banks. It grows to 0.6–1 m (2–3 ft) tall, with large clumps of broad, arrow shaped dark green leaves up to 45 cm (18 in) long. The Inflorescences are large, produced in spring, summer and autumn, with a pure white spathe up to 25 cm (10 in) and a yellow spadix up to 90 mm (3½ in) long.[2]

Zantedeschia contains calcium oxalate, and ingestion of the raw plant may cause a severe burning sensation and swelling of lips, tongue, and throat; stomach pain and diarrhea is possible.[3][4]

Zantedeschia aethiopica is native to southern Africa in Lesotho, South Africa, and Swaziland. It has become naturalised in Australia, particularly in Western Australia where it occurs in areas with high periodical water tables and sandy soils and has been classified as a toxic weed and pest.[5][6]

A number of cultivars have been selected for use as ornamental plants. ‘Crowborough’ is a more cold tolerant cultivar growing to 90 cm (36 in) tall, suited to cool climates such as the British Isles and north-western United States. ‘Green Goddess’ has green stripes on the spathes. ‘White Sail’, growing to 90 cm tall, has a very broad spathe.[2] ‘Red Desire’ has a red instead of yellow spadix and appears to be rare. ‘Pink Mist’ has a pinkish base to the spathe.

In order to introduce colours to the large white Calla Lilies just like the many colour varieties available with the dwarf summer Calla Lilies, attempts to hybridise Zantedeschia aeithiopica x Zantedeschia elliotiana have resulted in albino progenies, which are non-viable.

It has been cultivated for the Easter floral trade since the early 20th century; hence the (ambiguous) name ‘Easter lily’, common in Britain and Ireland. It has become an important symbol of Irish Republicanism since the Easter uprising of 1916.

It is the National Flower of St. Helena[1], where it grows widely.

Sorry for the long description but I don’t have the patience to write that much !!

But I do have the patience to photograph these beautiful flowers and I was especially happy with this specimen, I shot this in my portrait studio here in Madison Indiana, and used a light box and floor lamp to achieve this wonderful light. I think the warm yellow light that rose up thru the flower added a great touch to the image, I usually like all my Calla Lilies shot in B&W but this one had to be left in color because of that golden light.

Hope you enjoyed the image as much as I did ans thanks for stopping by and taking a look, as always for best viewing click on the image !!



May 17, 2011 - Posted by | art, calla lily, Clifty Falls, DSLR, flora, floral, flower photography, flowers, image, images, indiana, indiana photographers, life, macro, macro photography, Madison Indiana, madison indiana photographers, madison indiana photography, nature, photographer, photography, portrait, thoughts, West Street Art Center


  1. That’s incredibly beautiful, Bernie! I certainly agree with you about the light!

    Comment by montucky | May 17, 2011 | Reply

  2. nice job on capturing the beauty of the calla.

    Comment by Mama Nene's Garden | May 17, 2011 | Reply

  3. I love the “lit from within” look!

    Comment by Bo Mackison | May 17, 2011 | Reply

  4. This is a fabulous image, Bernie. Simple setups are the best when it comes to lighting, IMO. I also must tip my hat to the flower for being so adaptable.

    Comment by Scott Thomas Photography | May 18, 2011 | Reply

  5. Thanks Scott…It doesn’t hurt to have a studio to shoot in as well !!

    Comment by Bernie Kasper | May 18, 2011 | Reply

  6. Stunning, Bernie! I love everything about it – compositions, light, colours, especially the honey melon yellow. Just perfect.

    Comment by Tomas Turecek | May 19, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks Tomas…I have been trying to comment on your blog but I am not getting thru for some reason. Congrats on the birth of your child BTW !!

      Comment by Bernie Kasper | May 19, 2011 | Reply

      • Thanks Bernie. I’ll investigate the issue with commenting on my blog. You’re the first person who told me about it.

        Comment by Tomas Turecek | May 21, 2011

  7. […] “Calla Lily Portrait” « BFK Photography […]

    Pingback by When should I plant calla lilies? | Style Pandora Beads,Pandora Bracelets,Discount Pandora Charms | May 23, 2011 | Reply

  8. Outstanding! Gorgeous Calla and gorgeous light.

    Comment by Anita Bower | May 24, 2011 | Reply

  9. These are beautiful flowers & your photo is tops! Great light!

    Comment by Lana | May 25, 2011 | Reply

  10. Beautiful work. Love the textures, the light and the colors. Reminiscent of Imogen Cunningham’s beautiful black-and-white images of flowers.

    Comment by Cindy Brown | Atlanta Wedding Photojournalist | May 31, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks Cindy, that is a wonderful compliment coming from somebody with your amazing talent !!

      Comment by Bernie Kasper | June 14, 2011 | Reply

  11. really love this one Bernie!

    Comment by Mark | June 4, 2011 | Reply

  12. A gorgeous result. Beautiful.

    Comment by Joe | June 7, 2011 | Reply

  13. What I could see of the picture was amazing. The colour and lighting was exquisite. Pity I could not download the whole Lily, it would have been a wonderful sight I am sure.

    Comment by Anonymous | April 4, 2012 | Reply

  14. could I buy this i8mage I would like to print a personal copy for my home. 🙂

    Comment by owenfam | April 12, 2016 | Reply

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