It's spring for many of us. And what better way to celebrate winter's annual lukewarm death than finding a new wallpaper? Here are some excellent possibilities from this week's Shooting Challenge.

Winner - Sterling Castle

This was shot in Scotland beside Stirling Castle. The hills in the background hold The Wallace Monument. There are daffodils blooming all around, this one in particular stood out for some reason. Scotland has enjoyed a week of unseasonable warmth - unfortunately, while I've been working. I wanted to enjoy my days off in the early Summer sensation before the rain comes back to ruin the fun. Canon T2i Lens Canon EF-S 18-55mm 1/2000 sec F3.5 ISO 100 - Steve Giblin

Peach Tree

Here is my submission for the Spring Shooting Challenge! I took this photo in the garden today because I was testing a lens I borrowed (70-200mm). You can see flowers from a young peach tree. The strong pink-tint on the bottom-right part is caused by another flower which was very close to the lens. In the back you see the yellow flowers of a laburnum bush! Tools: Canon 5D Mk II Canon EF 70-200mm f4 ISO: 3200 Focal: 200mm Aperture: f/4,0 Shutter: 1/200 sec - Christoph Welkovits

A Not-So-Scary Bee

I was at the Queen Wilhelmina Tulip Garden hoping to capture the beauty of some gorgeous tulips, but they were completely damaged from the rain. I found some poppies growing along the sides of the garden and conveniently a bee was gathering pollen in one of them. I am so scared of bees, but I decided to just go for it. I took several angles and decided that this was the best one. Shot using a Nikon D40 with an ISO of 800, f7.1, 1/2000 seconds, @200 mm. - Stacy Repin

Sharp Center

Once the challenge was announced I knew I wanted to take pictures of flowers in my own yard with a Nikon Micro lens I got for my birthday two weeks ago. I went out and shot a few pictures of some pink flowers in our front yard. I wish I could describe the flower more, but as a guy I know very little about flower types. Anyways, I really liked the center of this flower, in particular the orange and silverish accents. The silver portions looked like they were shining back at me, which I really liked. I cropped the photo a bit to keep the center of the flower in the center of the shot.Nikon D3100 AF-S Micro Nikkor 40mm lens f/6.3 Exposure time 1/60 sec ISO 400 - Jerardo Arciniega

The Surveyor

I originally was trying to get a shot of this plant in my front yard unfurling it's new leafs, but it just wasn't working out. Then I saw this little guy hanging out on the end of one of those leafs. He sums up "spring" to me in the worst way. At just over an inch long, the nymph stage of the Eastern Lubber Grasshopper may look cute, but it's nothing but pure evil. When they are full grown, they can reach 6 inches in length and swarms of them will overrun your yard, eating most everything in sight. As adults, they are virtually immune to most insecticides. They hiss and "secrete a foamy spray" that is mildly toxic. At the start of each spring, I am forced to hunt down the nymphs to eradicate as many as possible so that my plants stand a chance of surviving the ravenous onslaught of the full grown ones throughout the summer. As much as I loath them, this one was being very photogenic today. As soon as I took his picture, he met his end via bug spray. Nikon D3100, 1/60 sec, f/16, ISO 200, Focal Length 55mm
- Gabe Loewenberg

Lone Tulip

Thanks for the challenge in finding a symbol of Spring! We have one yellow Tulip in our garden that always sprouts at the first sign of warmer temperatures here in Milton, Ontario, Canada. For us it's the sign that Spring is here. Today the rains came and the colder temperatures came back. The Tulip that was in full bloom the day before was closed all day as a result. This became an opportunity to show what is another symbol of Spring. Spring showers. Camera: Canon 7D Lens: Canon 100mm f2.8 Exposure: 1/160 Aperture: F8 ISO: 500 - Graham Kingma

Backlit Leaf

I found this plant on the ground and must have passed it quite a few times looking for other subjects to photograph. Once the lighting was right however it stopped me in my tracks and really showed some neat patterns back-lit by the sun. I got down low and filled the frame during the golden hours to get this shot. I used extension tubes to allow me to get in close which worked very well after adjusting zoom/manual focus correctly. In photoshop I cropped, adjusted levels, and applied high pass filter for clarity (was RAW). Canon t2i with kit lens and extension tubes, 1/50sec, ISO 100, aperture ~4.0 - Jared Grayden

Daisy Out of Moss

Here's my entry for the Photo Challenge; taken with a Nikon D700, AF-S Micro Nikkor 105 mm f/2.8G ED, ISO 200, stopped down to f/9 to maintain a certain depth of field. There's no big story to this shot: I was looking for a subject, and the one I decided for was all over the lawn of our house: daisies! So I picked one and placed it on a tree covered with moss. I made some Adjustments in Lightroom afterwards, and this is the result. - Stefan Janisch

Deadly Spring

I call this "Deadly Spring". Was out shooting with a friend, when I suddenly found a nice flower with an insect on it. Took some shots, even marveled at how still the moth / butterfly / whatever was. It was later in the day, though, when processing the images I had taken, that I found out why the insect was so still: it was being attacked by an alien spider! The wonders of macro photography, huh? Picture taken with a Canon T2i (550D), with a Sigma 70-300 mm 4-5.6 DG Macro, at ISO 320, f/5.0, 1/400. - Arturo Goga

Spring Breeze

I headed out to the park with some friends on one of the sunniest days of the year to get some shots with a new lens. (Sun in March is extremely rare in England!) When I saw a tree full of blossom I thought that this represented spring perfectly. I changed the lens to a faster focusing one and when I was snapping away when the wind started to blow some petals off the flowers so I took a few quick shots and this was the best. Taken of a Sony A77 with 15-50 f2.8 SSM kit lens @ ISO100, 50mm, f/2.8 and 1/400 shutter. - Matthew Phillips

Magnolia Trees

Around the stairs leading to my house we have about 15 magnolia trees and my mother had been forcing me to take a picture of it. Then the morning I was going to take the pictures I saw the shooting challenge on Gizmodo and made this a project. Using Canon 600D Canon 50mm F1.8 II 1/4000 F1.8 ISO 100 - Joel Hempenius

Grape Hyacinths

I was out shooting in the woods near my house, hoping for a little sun, but the weather wouldn't play nice. I returned home and was getting out of my car when the clouds parted, the sun hitting some grape hyacinths that had taken over my garden. There's a purple heather in the background. I remembered seeing the spring challenge and thought, well, this might work out... Sony SLT-A65V, 1/125 @ f/6.3, ISO 100, Tamron 50-300 lens. - Julian De Puma

A Fine Cheat

I always say shooting flowers is a bit of a cheat: They're colorful, symmetrical, and the camera even has a pre-set mode for them! —But, since Spring = "flowers", "allergies" or "rain", I thought this was fair. Canon T2i, 100mm, f/2.8, ISO 2500 - Diego Jimenez


I call this photo "Frances", after a close family friend who died the day I took this picture. I got the call in the morning, left work, spent time with my family grieving, and then went for a walk to be alone with my thoughts and my camera. Camera: Nikon D3100 Lens: 18-55mm Kit Lens (My walking around lens) ISO: 100 - Justin Beck

Incredible shots this week. I really wanted to feature every one of them. (And obviously, there are countless worthy winners in the group.) The full galleries below. And those wallpapers? You'll find them on flickr.