Creating something you LOVE

Hello and welcome to this weeks blog!

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday I want to wish you all a good holiday. I know we are in some very difficult times and our holidays will not be the same. I do hope we can all, myself included, find a way of making this the best that it can be. My hope is that if you have some extra time off during the holiday, you will practice. You will pick up your camera, and practice with whatever you have. Create some joy. Buy a plant, use something you have around the house you find interesting. It could be anything.

The image above was created doing exactly what I'm suggesting you do. I was practicing, or as I like to call it, playing. Because it is just that to me.

To this day I remember what I felt when I saw this image come into view. It was a feeling of total excitement. I let out a squeal, sat back for a moment then took another look. I am so in love with this image. Why you may wonder. For me it's the blending of colors, the movement and just the feeling I get when I look at it.

Here's how I did it

  • The equipment - My camera Nikon D700, lens Nikkor F2.8mm Macro lens, extension tubes and possibly a teleconverter. I say possibly a teleconverter because I was using so many different things I had and the metadata for the image does not capture everything.

  • My process - I purchased this plant and set up in front of a large window facing Northeast. The room overall had lots of light. I used a round coffee table so I was not set up high and I pushed the table close to the window so I could get as much light as possible. This image was taken in late Winter so the skys were most likely gray, which is why I would have pushed the table closer to the window. I only used natured light. I pushed light into my subject with a diffuser.

  • Building my background - I believe this is the most important part of the image. This flower was in a pot with a lot of other flowers, the foliage a darker green. The walls in my home were a kind of butternut color and not something that lended itself well with this image. As I was composing my image, I noticed color leaks in the back. I started to find things to cover the holes, something the would compliment the image. I used fabric, pictures, stain glass, other plants and anything else I could find. Ultimately it was a picture and some other plants that made the image pop!

  • Processing - Initially I processed this image with more purple than what the flower actually had. I reprocessed it recently and brought it to more of the actual colors. I used Lightroom and this last version I used Luminar as well. I believe you can be as creative as you want when photographing flowers. It's art. It's your art. Create what you love, what you're drawn too and don't be disappointed if others don't share your vision. They don't have too, do it for you and keep doing it for you.

None of this is rocket science, but I hope to give you something to think about. Something you can take with you when you're out photographing whether it's landscape, macro or city scape. All that matters is you think about what you want to achieve. Friends and followers, tell me when they are out photographing the first thing they think is...."what would Sally do" that is the highest form of flattery I could ever get. Now you know what Sally did for this image.

Metadata for this image is 1.3 seconds at F5.6, lens 105MM focal length 105MM. Note I used my macro 105, I personally did not change the Fstop from 2.8 to 5.6, this is done automatically and here is why, the F stop or aperture is mathematically a fraction based on focal length over diameter. As you increased the focal length by zooming, the diameter has a larger number to be divided by. So the F stop number increase as you get closer to your subject.

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