Black Swallowtail Butterfly angle ©Kim Smith 2011Please join me tomorrow night in Nashua, New Hampshire for a screening of my film Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly. For more information visit the Events page of my website. I hope to see you there!

Next week I am giving programs in Brockton and Nauset however in early November I’ll be home, with a screening of the Black Swallowtail film for the Seaside Garden Club at the Manchester Community Center on the 10th, and on the 12th of November I am the guest speaker at the Sawyer Free Library!

Black swallowtail Caterpillar ©Kim Smith 2011 copyBlack Swallowtail Caterpillar

Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly is a 45-minute narrated film that takes place in a garden and at the sea’s edge. Every stage of the butterfly’s life cycle is experienced in vibrant close-up, from conception to pupation to metamorphosis. The film is suitable for all ages so all can gain a deeper understanding of the symbiotic relationship between wildflowers and pollinators and the vital role they play in our ecosystem. Filmed in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Discussion and Q & A with the filmmaker to follow screening.

Queen Annes's Lace -4 ©Kim smith 2015Queen Anne’s Lace, Black Swallowtail Caterpillar food Plant

NEW FILM: Luminescent Sea Salps

The salps were filmed in Gloucester’s inner harbor and had a luminous appearance in the blue lights of the fishing boat Hot Tuna, the largest boat in the Wicked Tuna fleet. I think the song “La Luna” by Lucy Schwartz adds to the magical movement of the salps and other creatures in the glowing blue. (So sorry to Captain Ott for startling him while hanging over the edge of the dock to film the salps at the rear of his boat, and Hey to Nicky Avelis!)

Sea salps are warm ocean water creatures, exploding in population during algae blooms. With beating heart, notochcord, and gills they are more closely evolutionarily linked to humans than to jellyfish. Sea salps are individual creatures that through asexual reproduction, can form linear chains up to fifteen feet long!

Salps are planktonic (free floating) members of the subphylum Tunicata. Tunicates get their name from the unique outer covering or “tunic,” which acts as an exoskeleton. The sea salp’s tunic is translucent and gelatinous; in some species it is tough and thick.

butterfly dream series

Silver-bordered Fritillary Butterfly dreams ©Kim Smith 2015Silver-bordered Fritillary

Silver-bordered Fritillary Pearl Crescent ©Kim Smith 2015Silver-bordered Fritillary and Pearl Crescent

Female Eastern Tailed-blue ©Kim Smith 2015One of our tiniest of butterflies, a female Eastern Tailed-blue. Continue reading


Spider's Webs ©Kim Smith 2015Clark Pond duck fog ©Kim Smith 2015Snapshots from a recent foggy morning wood’s walk at Coolidge Reservation with daughter Liv. Nature walk at a tortoise pace as she enjoys stopping to take photos as much as do I.

Spider web Clark Pond ©Kim Smith 2015Cormorant Clark Pond ©Kim Smith 2015Spider web Clark Pond ©Kim Smith 2015.JPGSpider web -2Clark Pond ©Kim Smith 2015xx


Kendall Hotel Dalmation -2 ©Kim Smith 2015.jpgKendall Hotel -4 ©Kim Smith 2015.jpgLocated adjacent to MIT and with Google offices across the street, the Kendall Hotel is one of the few remaining historical buildings in technology-driven Kendall Square. Built in 1874, The Engine 7 Firehouse has been renovated with modern conveniences while beautifully preserving its authenticity and is replete with 19th-century inspired furnishings, American folk art, and complimentary breakfast “fit for a fireman.”

Thursday at the Kendall Hotel we installed custom-made planters with treillage to create a partially enclosed courtyard. We planted gorgeous mums in an array of fall colors; next to come is holiday decor (with lights!); and in the spring we’ll really make it sing. Stop by the whimsical and welcoming Kendall Hotel and have a look!

Kendall Hotel ©Kim Smith 2015Or better even, plan to have lunch at the Hotel’s restaurant, the Black Sheep, where you’ll find delicious home-style classic American cuisine (with choices for meat-eaters and vegetarians) and all made from fresh, locally sourced organic ingredients.

Continue reading


Furtive creatures that peer at you, while you are filming and photographing them!

White-tailed deer -2 ©Kim Smith 2015

While recording audio for my Monarch film at the same field over a several week period, occasionally I came upon a deer family. Not quick enough to get more than a fleeting snapshot however, these two deer were spotted peering at me while I waited in vain for their return, so that I could peer back at them!

Wild Turkey ©Kim Smith 2015Surprise Turkey-in-a-Tree Encounter

Rabbit ©Kim Smith 2015Ubiquitous bunny, abundantly present on every film shoot. 

Chipmunk ©Kim Smith 2015Chipmunk

White-tailed Deer ©Kim Smith 2015The wrong end of the deer I am most likely to capture.