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Old 2008-04-26, 17:14   Link #15
Love Yourself
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Northeast USA
Age: 28
Macro Photography: Flowers

Thanks for the kind words thus far! I'm going to start posting images that don't come out so nicely (not that the others have been perfect), so don't be shy about criticism. kayos, I think that photography samples are quite good! The things that seem to catch your eye are the things that I often take note of and want to capture as well. Geometry, reflections, and shadows - it's not quite conventional photography but I have quite a number of those too. If you ever feel like your current camera isn't letting you get the shots that you want, consider going for a DSLR later on - a camera like mine can probably be picked up for $300-400 these days (not that it's cheap, but cheaper than what I picked it up for a few months ago). It gets expensive because a large part of what you can do is based around what lens you're using, and you may want to pick up some specialized lenses. The realization that there are lenses that cost as much or more than your camera is a bit frightening At least you can use lenses with different camera bodies (assuming they use the same connection type), so it's more or less an investment.

I wanted to mention it before, but Marina I'm envious of your location - Alaska must have such great scenery and wildlife for pictures! I'll have to visit some day.
I found a way to automate the watermarking process in Photoshop and to copy the technical details, so it's easier for me to post more pictures at a time now. This set comes from the Lake Shrine, a very large meditation garden in Southern California that caters to all religions. I had the pleasure of going there with my girlfriend for an extra credit assignment from a class that she was taking. It was a nice opportunity to try what is known as "macro photography," or close-range photography. I don't have a specialized macro lens, but that didn't stop me from leaning and using the zoom! Note: to fully appreciate the flowers, view the image it its full resolution!

Yellow Trail
Spoiler for Technical Details:

I don't particularly like these flowers as they're a bit plain, but they're a nice example of macro photography that I've seen in calendars and such.

White Dew
Spoiler for Technical Details:

To any botonists viewing these, please don't be offended by the fact that I'm calling a ton of these flowers "roses" - my flower terminology is rather limited

This is a nicer shot in my opinion. Not only is there a clearly blurred background (as opposed to the dark space of the yellow flowers above), but there are water droplets on this flower! Whether they're on a can of soda or on a flower, water droplets make things seem more refreshing and alive. Perhaps it needs to be seen at the full resolution to appreciate them - unfortunately, that also reveals a bit of brown on part of the petals. Perhaps this was an older flower by the time I got to it.

Purple Nova
Spoiler for Technical Details:

It's a nice flower, but the white of the petals makes it difficult to see that there are some water droplets here, as well.

Perfect Rose
Spoiler for Technical Details:

Visible water droplets and what seems to be a flower in its prime. The only thing that makes it better (in my opinion) are the spots of blue in the background contributed by some out-of-focus flowers.

Spoiler for Technical Details:

Google Images doesn't seem to confirm that this is a nighshade, but I'm fairly confident that they had this labeled as a nightshade. Water droplets came out nicely on this one and the colors of the flower are great (especially compared to the yellows and reds that I was seeing), but upon viewing the full image it would seem that the flower was in relatively poor shape...

Prissy Rose - the Retina Burner
Spoiler for Technical Details:

This flower doesn't look appealing to me, but that's one vivid red! It's so vivid that I can't really tell if all of the details of the petals came out because it's hard to distinguish the folds on my screen. Once again, water droplets are visible, and there's the added benefit of a few blurred foreground bits, further enhancing artistic effect and making the flower stand out even more. Don't stare at it for too long.

Modest Purple
Spoiler for Technical Details:

This is geometrically a terribly boring flower, but the color was refreshing. This angle was taken straight-on as compared to from the side. As a result, there isn't much in the background. I see this style relatively often, but I think it's more interesting to see blurred objects and colors in the background as well... any thoughts on that?

Bored with flowers already?! You may find this experiment refreshing:

Flowing Water Capture Experiment
Spoiler for Technical Details for the left image:

Spoiler for Technical Details for the right image:

The difference between these two is largely in the shutter speed. The left image was captured as quickly as was possible, given the cloudy conditions. For the image on the right I braced against a hand rail and kept the shutter open longer, resulting in water that looks like it's flowing. While it's neat to capture dropping water or waves without any blur, for regular flowing water that is part of a scene (streams, rivers, and fountains) many seem to prefer seeing the "motion" of blurred water. Please let me know your opinions on this technique.

And now, back to some more flowers:

Melting Witch
Spoiler for Technical Details:

Interesting colors on this flower, although the upper part of it seems to be wilting. Dew drops are present and the interesting background is actually a lake and some reflections, if I remember right. It makes the flower stand out nicely, but overall the picture isn't anything terribly special (largely because the flower is wilting).

Tree Fuzzies and Dancing Light
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I'd imagine that this shows the male and female parts of the tree, but I can't be certain. What I really love about this is the background - the blurred white dots of light are a great effect.

That wraps up the cases of some of my first efforts at macro photography that I wanted to share. This last one isn't of a flower (even if he is a bit of a pansy), but I figured I'd throw it in for Marina:

Phoenix Down
Spoiler for Technical Details:

Taken with my 150mm lens at its maximum focal length, I caught Mercury while he was napping in the sunlight (apparently this activity is not limited to cats). The bright light overpowered the surroundings, causing pretty much anything that wasn't illuminated to appear dark. I thought it made him look a bit angelic, given that his regular fur color is visible, but it seems almost too bright to behold where the sun hits it directly.

I hope that what I've captured will allow you to view the world in a slightly different way and appreciate its subtle beauties. Thanks for viewing; as always, comments and critique are appreciated.
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