Flower Photography: Why I (respectfully) disagree with my husband

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Last week Peter wrote a compelling argument on why you need a macro lens for flower photography……he made several points, a couple of which I completely disagree with.  I guess it is a wife’s prerogative to disagree, respectfully of course, on rare occasions.  For those of you who know me, you can stop laughing now.  So in this episode of He Said/She Said (or our version “He Saw/She Saw”), I’ll be providing a point-by-point counterpoint to Peter’s last blog.

For the images in this post, I used Canon’s 180mm lens on my Fuji XT2 body.  I attached the two with a converter, which allowed me to manually adjust the aperture.  Unfortunately, I could not stop down more than 2 stops before significant vignetting occurred, which you will notice in the photos.  It also made it difficult for me to get appropriate depth of field.  Going forward, I will use this 180mm lens on my Canon body to get a full range of depth of field (until Fuji comes out with an equivalent – hint, hint).

Point 1:  Flowers that are too tight or too open are not good subjects……disagree.  One of my favorite subjects is a single rose bud.  Personally I like the sculptural element that comes with the shape of open leaves, or closed buds.  I focus on line and curve, and often that is with flowers at the extremes of their life cycles.

 

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Point 2:  Processing is fairly straightforward….disagree.  I am currently applying a technique that Harold Davis described in his Topaz Labs video, you add a pinch of detail in some places, a pinch of softness in others, to create a contrast in texture.  I used this technique on the red Dahlia and the sunflower.   For these images I used Nik’s Color Effects Pro (Pro Contrast + Brilliance/Warmth + Foliage) – then “pinched” Detail Extractor for the center and Glamour Glow for the petals if necessary.

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I did agree with Peter’s points on using a tripod and cloudy days make flower photography easier – so maybe the dinner conversation tonight won’t be as tense.

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