The Colors of Weather

Nature has shown such amazing color in the last day. A big spring storm was projected for the day, and indeed the prediction was right.

Bands of heavy rains interchanged with sunny skies and finally finished late in the afternoon. While watching Esperanza on her nest preening after the rain, I watched the moon rise in the light clouds painting in sky blue.

The saying usually goes “Red sky in the morning, sailor take warning” but last night, for a few brief minutes the light turned into a rosy pink. A color that I rarely see.


Luckily my habit of keeping a charged camera on the table ready to grab helped and I rushed out to try to capture the incredible light. Thinking as quickly as I could, I used some trees to create an attractive composition.

I have recently acquired an Olympus OMD-EM1 Mark II to use for an upcoming international trip. My decision to get this micro-four-thirds mirrorless camera was for the incredible image stabilization it offers. With their new Olympus 24-100mm f4.0 pro lens with it’s own image stabilization, I can go up to 6-stops of image stabilization which is absolutely amazing.

I’m testing the kit and my own ability to create sharp images hand holding at super low shutter speeds. Alas, I was a little overly ambitious and at 1/10 of a second with a light breeze I’d be out of my mind thinking I’d get a sharp image. And indeed it was so as the dogwood flowers were just slightly off focus.

But I loved the light and I wasn’t ready to just toss the image away. After some vibrance and saturation adjustments in Lightroom, I brought the image below into Topaz Impressions and added a painterly filter and reduced opacity. I think I salvaged the out of focus image rather nicely. What do you think?


18 replies »

  1. I love your images. During these storms I often think about the wildlife. So Esperanza’s nest survived! I watched trees blowing down behind my house.

    E-M1 II is a great choice and you can’t beat the 1.5cm close focusing distance of the 12-100mm.

    Robin Wang has posted images that he took with the 300mm f4.0 handheld at 1/10 second. My own experience leads me to believe that it takes practice.

    • Thank you Mark ! Yes ! Esperanza and Zorro survived quite well. In fact, I noticed some afternoon delight in the light drizzle. And the winds today and the nest is strong and sturdy. They’re amazing builders.

      I was amazed with how close I focused with playing with the E-M1 II. Crazy close – macro close. Super cool ! I’ll have to check out what Robin Wang has done. I know Denise Ippolito did some great bird stuff with it. Super fast AF.

      The features of this camera are unbelievable. I think I’ll need an engineering degree to understand it all.

    • So far I love it Joanne ! But it is a quite advanced camera with incredible features. It’s heavier and heftier than I expected but it also is completely weather sealed which is another feature I really wanted.

      I was really tempted with the Canon M5 (now M6) with walkabout lens, but that weather sealed is what made me spend more $$$. πŸ™‚

      • Being completely weather-sealed sounds like a deal-breaker to me. It’s something I really need to consider in this part of the world!

  2. Hi Em, the OMD EM1 MkII is my main camera. I made the jump to m43 (from a Canon DSLR) a few years ago and haven’t regretted it. I’ve also got their trio of F2.8 pro lenses 7-14mm; 12-40mm and 40-150mm. I’ve been thinking about the 12-100 F4 pro lens for travel, so I’d be interested in your thoughts. What I’d really like though is the 300 F4 pro for wildlife.

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