Arriving in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1917, Imogen left her Seattle life and portrait studio for a new landscape, new responsibilities with 3 young sons and a growing interest in turning her camera to her surroundings – her family and plants in the landscape. She was entranced by the blooms in her California garden and began photographing these flowers at exquisitely close range. Magnolia Blossom, one of her most iconic works from this period, is a close-up of the flower illuminated by glowing natural light.

The Magnolia is a prolific tree in the Bay Area, and Imogen took advantage of this and continued to photograph the blossoms and seed pod of the Magnolia during the 1920s. During this time, Imogen’s approach to photography became increasingly more modernistic with a focus on sharp details, texture, patterns and sometimes, abstraction.