Monday, March 28, 2011

Flower Closeups

The structures of flowers just amaze me! I never understand how people think beautiful things like these "just happened". The colors, textures and shapes are just mind blowing! Here is a flame azalea and below what the sign called a piedmont azalea. They are obviously related to each other.

This is another place where Joyce and I use different equipment. She is a big tripod user and me a monopod user. That kind of sums up our whole philosophies of photography. I am a fast mover, see all you can see kind of photographer and she is very meticulous and methodical (which is a good thing with photography). I often see the big picture and she sees a smaller picture, but in a much more precise way. I think the styles complement each other and add things to the way we work. I might see a composition that she doesn't see, but when it comes to getting down to the very nitty gritty, best exposure and all that technical stuff, she knows things I don't know. I think we both recognize these differences and that is fine.

Once on our three week trip, she did say to me, Just go ahead and GO!....I know you are dying too! LOL! Of course, I replied, No, I am fine...take your time. She did buy a monopod and I am going to get a tripod, so at least we are both flexible. She says you cannot do macro photography without a tripod and she will look at these and say they are out of focus, but to the naked eye, I am happy with them. It all depends on what you plan on doing with your photos. If you blow up a macro shot, it needs to be precise. If you are putting it on a blog or on a PowerPoint presentation (my minister uses my flower photos on his welcome slide at church) these are fine. Different personalities make the world go round and make it interesting! What is your photography philosophy? I bet it spills into the rest of your life also!

One thing to consider when doing a closeup is the background. Of course, it helps to shoot in aperture so that the background is blurred. Move around the choices of flowers and see what the background is behind the flower. Then you have to decide on which part you want the focus of the flower to be. Did you luck out and get a bumble bee?...perhaps you want that to be the focus point. With auto focus, you have little control of what it focuses on, so you might want to manually focus. Joyce takes it up a notch and puts the camera on live view so she can zoom in and see the precise details of what is in focus. Maybe I will try that on the cherry blossoms in DC next week.

On the photo below, the focus is a little misplaced....I would prefer it be on the actual white bloom rather than that leaf area, but I am using this one to show an example of a mottled background. I do have photos with the bloom in focus. White blooms are sometimes hard to shoot, especially in sunlight, as it washes our the highlights. Anyone know what this bush is called?
A dark background like below presents a strong contrast. Full sunlight is not the best conditions for closeup as you will blow out the highlights and get no details as well as wash out the color. Look for flowers in partial shade.
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Jan Castle said...

These take my breath away Holly!

JANLYNN said...

You give me sooo much inspiration.