(This article was published in the Wisconsin Natural Resources Magazine August 2013 issue.)

On the night of July 2, 2012, Mark Hirsch used his iPhone™ and captured this deep indigo sky at dusk gilded with fireflies in a cornfield in southwestern Wisconsin.

Aiming at a bur oak centered by these twinkling insects, Hirsch gasped and anxiously waited for the image to develop on his iPhone™. The result was amazing: the bright yellow brushstrokes that marked the fireflies’ flight paths appeared on the screen, making the image a dramatic scene.

“I stood up and ran around the valley herding fireflies towards my iPhone™, giggling like a little kid,” Hirsch said, “I love that photo and the memory.” This photo was the 101st from his “That Tree” project, a year-long photo diary of the same bur oak tree. A professional photojournalist, Hirsch never before had much thought about taking a picture of this ordinary tree, which he drove past for 19 years. Nor did he believe his iPhone’s™ camera could ever be used for anything more than a passing snapshot…

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