It took him several weeks to find the perfect nettle-leaved bellflower to photograph for this year’s SEPAC stamps. Photographer Andy Horner spent quite some time in a ditch before he could catch it in ultimate lighting.
Finding the perfect nettle-leaved bellflower was not so easy. This type of bellflower is not very common in Åland and it grows in shady deciduous forests, not exactly the ideal environment to shoot this towering flower without any shadows and against a clean background. Nature photographer Andy Horner was on the lookout for weeks.
Nettle-leaved bellflower belongs to the family Campanulaceae. In Åland, we find some 15 species. Its square stem and serrated leaves resemble those of the nettle, hence the name. The Latin name Campanula trachelium derives from campa meaning bell and trachelium meaning throat. The herb was formerly used to treat sore throat.
Andy Horner’s search for the right bell continued, from the car, when bicycling and walking.
“And I got lucky! On a warm evening walk in high summer my wife spotted a beautiful specimen”, Andy Horner smiles.
And there it was, in a ditch. In the light of the low evening sun, surrounded by buzzing bees. In the following days, Andy returned to the flower several times to catch the various types of light.
“When I later, in the autumn, passed by its black withered stem, it reminded me of summer. I’m very pleased that this specific flower has been immortalized on an Åland stamp”, Andy Horner says.
Date of issue 8 May 2014
Photographer Andy Horner
Edition 150 000
Denomination Europa (€1.10)
Price FDC €1.75
Stamp size 36.5 x 32 mm
Sheet size 2 x 15 stamps
Paper 110 g/m2
Perforation 13 per 2 cm
Printing method 4-colour offset
Printing house The Lowe Martin Group
The stamp is available online in the Åland Post web shop at www.posten.ax/webshop/en