Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #147: Gardens

A special thanks to Amy for hosting this week’s LAPC challenge. Her beautiful post highlights some of her favorite gardens in various spots around the world.

Last week, we took a little road trip with friends to Boothbay Harbor, Maine. Given Amy’s theme, our first stop was the Coastal Maine Botanic Gardens. It’s early in the season, but even up north the first blooms were already on display. Here you can see the tulips and daffodils.

    But we were in for a surprise. As we walked along the garden path, we met an astounding creature …

      This giant troll was created by the Danish artist Thomas Dambo, who lives and works in Copenhagen. His massive creatures are made from recycled wood and “live” in various locations around the world. They are designed to delight us and teach us about the forest and its marvelous biodiversity.

      Here, you can see Dambo’s attention to detail in his work and the variety of wood he uses in each troll sculpture. But as it turned out, the best was yet to come….

      A gardener, who was raking the soil nearby, told us that more trolls were hidden in the gardens and invited us to find them. So, we started on our quest. On our way, we passed unusual and beautiful flowers.

      At last we found the next troll with a bushy beard and eyebrows fashioned out of twigs.

      We continued walking past a fountain and more blooms….

      And then, deep in the woods, we found another troll in a playful mood. He was peeking out at us from behind a tree….

      And then, after walking some more, we found another troll, almost hidden in a copse of trees. He was smiling down at us, his arms extended for a hug.

      Thomas Dambo calls himself a “recycled art activist.” In the 7 years since the inception of his giant trolls project, he has created dozens of creatures, which are living in parks, green spaces and woods in Florida, Chicago, South Korea, China, Denmark, and Puerto Rico and other locations around the world. His purpose is clear.

      He tells us that his giant trolls are guardians of ten secret seeds, vital to preserving the forestโ€™s biodiversity for future generations. He invites us to listen to them and learn their secrets– like saving seeds and planting trees and reducing waste. His trolls also teach us (“the little people”) that humans are interconnected and we rely on each other for our survival.

      If you want to read more about Dambo and his fascinating work, click www.trollmap.com.

      Now that we’ve emerged from the forest, I’ll end this post with my heartfelt thanks for your exuberant, creative, and delightful responses to our “Focusing on the Details” challenge. Your posts gave us wonderful glimpses of the intricacies in nature (lichen, flowers, insects, trees, animals), in architecture, in sculpture…Fabulous!

      We hope you join us this week for Amy’s Gardens challenge. Next week, it’s Ann-Christine’s turn, so be sure to visit her site next Saturday at noon. Until then, have a wonderful creative week and please stay safe.

      91 replies »

      1. Hi, Brian. They were wonderful creatures! We were so surprised and delighted to find them. Glad you liked them, too. I wonder if they’re visiting Oz??


        • Hi, Amy. I’m delighted that we could visit the gardens in time for your challenge this week! Thanks so much for your comments. It’s true Dambo’s message is very powerful and important. It was a great experience to see his creative works in the garden. Enjoy the week!


      2. Those trolls are amazing, I’m so glad you found them all and shared them with us ๐Ÿ˜€ I love the idea that he is using recycled wood in such a creative way to produce something that is fun while also carrying an important message.

        Thomas Dambo reminds me of an artist we visited in WA who uses recycled metal and sometimes wood to create sculptures. I have him lined up for a future post – watch this space!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, Sarah. Great! I’d like to see the artist’s works. Glad you’ll be posting about him. And yes, it was a great thing–to see Dambo’s works. It was a great surprise, too! The exhibit doesn’t officially start until the end of May, so we were lucky. Thanks again for your thoughtful comments, as always.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, IJ. Very true! He’s very forward-thinking and his work delivers an important message. I really enjoyed the sculptures. Glad you did, too! Thanks as always for stopping by. Take care and I hope the situation in your area is improving.

          Liked by 1 person

      3. Love the trolls and the artistic way itโ€™s done.
        Still I find difficult to understand the role of trolls in gardening.
        Scandinavian myths talk about trolls being ugly giants dangerous and evil by disposition or do they bring good luck?
        Curious to know.
        Enjoyed your narration
        Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Wow, I didnโ€™t know there were trolls in Maine too. Thereโ€™s one here in Colorado that weโ€™ve seen and we had a similar reaction to yoursโ€ฆ itโ€™s such a neat concept.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, Cee. Very cool creatures, indeed!! I love how each one has a different personality. So creative! Thanks as always for your comments/reaction/visit.๐Ÿ˜€


      5. What fun Patti!!! Loved the trolls and can just imagine you two strolling thru the beautiful flowers looking for them. What perfect timing for Amy’s challenge. I’d venture a guess no one else will be featuring trolls this week ๐Ÿ˜Š. Fantastic!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Your post made me laugh. Yes, I think you’re right. No one else will be posting this week about giant trolls!! We enjoyed the gardens so much. Glad you like them, too! Be on the lookout for them…maybe they’ll turn up in your area, too!!


        • I’m delighted, John. It was so much fun. I loved the artist’s talent and message and the search for the trolls. It was great fun and a great message, too! Thanks so much for your kind words.

          Liked by 1 person

      6. I can see why the trolls were a surprise, Patti, but they really are a lot of fun. The gardens look and sound so enjoyable. We visited the Boyce Thompson Arboretum on Saturday with my brother and his wife. It’s a gem in the desert and we had so much fun.


        Liked by 1 person

        • They are a lot of fun, Janet. We felt like we were on a treasure hunt. The arboretum sounds like a great idea for our next trip to AZ. I loved the desert gardens there. Enjoy the week!

          Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, Sheetal. I’m so happy you enjoyed it!! They are brilliant creations, aren’t they? I am going to read more about Dambo’s work. I took a quick glance at his other trolls. Each one has a completely different look/personality. ๐Ÿ˜€

          Liked by 1 person

      7. Thought only Dwarfs guards the gardens…here in Germany, little dwarfs are common to see.I love the concept behind the creation of these Trolls. Youยดre lucky to be able to see them.I enjoyed your walks and storytelling. Thank you for sharing this.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, JBD. Thank you! I’m delighted you enjoyed this. Yes, dwarfs are more common. We don’t have any local myths about them (as far as I know). Our fairytales come from Europe–like the brother’s Grimm. Thanks again for your kind words and enjoy the week.

          Liked by 1 person

      8. Brilliant, Patti! I’d have so much fun trying to find them all. This time Amy managed to lure me out of my laziness with this lovely theme and I’m taking part in Lens-Artists PC for the first time since last June. Hope you’re well.

        Liked by 1 person

      9. This is awesome! I took my girlfriend, mother, and family there for Sunday’s Mother’s day. It was a great day. We shoot film. ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

        • Hi, Nick. Wasn’t it great?? I’m glad you saw it, too, and can remember it on video! Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts, here. Glad you stopped by!!


        • Hi, chatting! Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. I agree. It was a great balance between art and the gardens. I appreciate hearing from you!


          • I can imagine how much fun you had taking all their pictures. And they posed so nicely. That’s the most statues I think I’ve ever seen in a park like that. We went to the Trees of Mystery around Klamath, in norther California. We saw some cool statues there, but their story wasn’t as compelling as the one you just told. ๐Ÿ™‚


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