Friday, May 31, 2013

Spring is in the Air

After the snow from last week had melted away, I really wanted it to be is time for more color now here in the Rockies!

Luckily nature agrees with me and starts to show it's colors.

Here some picks from a recent outing, click on the images to see an enlarged version:

 A species of Larkspur?
Unfortunately, I don't know my wildflowers here yet. Even with the help of the Audubon Field Guide I could not determine the exact name of most flowers....
Any help in identifying them would be really appreciated!

Bad hair day? Seed state of a kind of Dandelion?

 White Locoweed?

I know that one...;-)

A Daisy!

As I went on that hike, I took the dogs, just as usual, hoping to maybe get a nice image of them with the flowers. After I was about a half mile from home I heard a familiar miau behind me and was quite surprised to see that one of our cats had decided to follow us, too.
And go figure, Zippo posed nicely for me,

while the dogs were just too busy chasing after each other...


Dandelion seeds rappelling down a spider thread...

And my favorite:


Hopefully there will be more wildflowers coming as it rains right now and the days are getting significantly warmer.

Here some easy and effective tips for photographing flowers:

If the sun is out, morning or late afternoon will be the best time to go since the light will be warm and you will get some nice shadows that accentuate the texture of the flower, as seen for example in the Daisy image above. Overcast days work just fine, too.

Keep in mind, that some flowers, as for example the poppies, are not open in the early morning or on overcast days and close long before sunset. In this case try to back light the flowers or use a reflector.

Try to go on "eye level" with the flower, yes, that means you have to go down on your knees and you might get dirty, but it's worth it.

I usually use a shallow depth of field, the AV being something between 2.8 and 4, to isolate the flower from the background. Although it's not pure macro photography, a macro lens can help a lot. All these images are shot with the Canon Macro 100mm/2.8.

Using a tripod will help you setting up a nice composition and it makes it much easier to focus. If you don't want to carry one around, set your ISO higher and/or put your camera on continuous shooting. That will give you a little more speed and hence a better chance for a sharp image.

Focus on the flowers, but don't forget your surroundings...;-)

Twisted tree stump in a meadow
...does anyone know what kind of tree that was and why it is so twisted?

Happy Spring to all
and please let me know if you know the names of any of the wildflowers above

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