Looks like we're at a stand still so I'm going to jump in again! I enjoy this thread and don't want it to end yet!
I thought the rose was a bit too dark the first time I saw the picture, but now looking at it again I love it. The picture being on the darker side allows the viewer to "see" the velvety texture of the petals. I think if the photo had been brighter it would have added a crispness to the rose taking away from the true feeling. Good shot!
This thread goes quite now and then but picks back up. It's a good thread I think and whoever started it is awesome for doing so....hahaha
Seriously though, on the rose, yeah, it is kinda odd that at quick glance it's just kinda mah....but then it really kinda grows on you. It's almost Valentines Day card kinda stuff. I do like it, the darkness adds in this case more than detracts.