Red Birds of Paradise

Bird of Paradise

Red Paradise Portrait © 2013 Bo Mackison

I’ve been dreaming of the desert the last two nights — first there was a wild dream of boat rides through canyons surrounded by skyscraper high cacti and then I was on a trek through the desert with a rattlesnake wrapped around my leg the second night! I thought perhaps I would pay homage to the desert with a few photos of one of her prettiest stars, the Red Bird of Paradise, and maybe tonight I can get some sleep.

Bird of Paradise

Red Birds of Paradise © 2013 Bo Mackison

When I visited Arizona in September, I took quite a few photographs of these beauties. These Red Birds of Paradise (or Mexican Birds of Paradise) were in bloom. It was a glorious waving of oranges and reds, caught in a strong desert breeze, while several hummingbirds darted about. Quite the show.

Bird of Paradise

Seeds of Paradise © 2013 Bo Mackison

I was even fascinated by the long seed pods twirling amidst the flowers. There’s always a bounty of glorious botanicals growing at the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum., one of my favorite haunts in the Tucson area.


Bo Mackison is photographer, book-maker, collector of stories, naturalist, curator and owner of Seeded Earth Studio LLC.   Though I am mesmerized by the varied colors of this Wisconsin autumn, thoughts of the Sonoran Desert are often on my mind.

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. Gorgeous colors!

  2. Pretty awesome colors and images. I hope you get some sleep now that you’ve paid homage to The Desert.

  3. They are beautiful! I miss the desert very much, especially during the winter months.

  4. Love the colors!!

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