A Morning Walk in Owen Conservation Park

Parking Lot Nursery

Bucket Nursery © 2013 Bo Mackison

A picture of many colors proclaims images of many thoughts. ~ Donna Favors

I took the opportunity on a recent sunny morning to walk in Owen Conservation Park, a park only a few minutes from my home. When I began making photographs in a serious way – by that I mean making photos as a daily practice – Madison Wisconsin’s Owen Park was one of my first haunts. I recall those early mornings in an October six or so years ago, when I struggled with light and exposure, aperture settings and shutter speed.

Often, I had no clue what settings I might prefer to use for a certain feel, and so I simply took pictures, hundreds of pictures. Every day. And after many months of making photographs and studying them, I began to l get a feel for my camera and what it could do. It was almost a surprise to me, several years later, when I realized I could work my camera’s settings without much thought. What a glorious discovery that was!

It is my plan to walk this park every week – note the changes as the summer season approaches and the days warm. I’ll post the photos from my weekly explorations, but I’m not going to write much, except to add a few quotes. Mostly, I want to keep a record of my weekly excursions throughout the park, throughout the summer. And see what there is to see.

Bones of Sunflowers

Prairie Bones © 2013 Bo Mackison

“Solvitur ambulando.”

Latin translation — “It is solved by walking.” ~ Diogenes

White Flowering Shrub

White Flowering Shrub © 2013 Bo Mackison

In all things of nature, there is something of the marvelous. ~ Aristotle

Owen Park

Owen Park © 2013 Bo Mackison

Change is inevitable. Accept the old and embrace the new. Blend the two and that is you. ~ Anon


Sumac © 2013 Bo Mackison

Beauty surrounds us. ~ Rumi


Indigo Blossoms © 2013 Bo Mackison

The sun does not shine for a few trees and flowers, but for the wide world’s joy. ~ Henry Ward Beecher

Spring Trees

Spring-Green Trees © 2013 Bo Mackison

I wish the days to not be cheap, but sacred.
I wish the days to be as centuries, loaded, fragrant. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Owen Park

More Prairie Bones © 2013 Bo Mackison

He who wishes to explore Nature must tread her books with his feet. ~ Paracelsus

Spindly Petals, Spring Yellow Flower

Spindly Petals © 2013 Bo Mackison

All of nature begins to whisper its secrets to us through its sounds. Sounds that were previously incomprehensible to our soul now become the meaningful language of nature.
~ Rudolf Steiner


Spirea Blossoms © 2013 Bo Mackison

He who sees into the secret inner life of the plant, into the stirring of its powers, and observes how the flower gradually unfolds itself,  sees the matter with quite different eyes — he knows what he sees. ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

These photographs of Owen Conservation Park on Madison’s Far West Side are from June 7, as the hour approached noon. The days before this day had been rainy and so the park was lush and green. And a bit damp, too. The temperatures were in the mid 70s, and the skies were mostly clear, the most blue the skies had been in many a day.


Bo Mackison is a photographer and owner of Seeded Earth Studio LLC. She explores wherever she goes, with and without her camera.

About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. Susan Vial says:

    We are lucky to have this nice park so close! All of this rain has made the color green have a new meaning!

  2. That was a very pleasant morning walk!

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