Well, I went and did it again. I just had to go and revisit a beautiful place because it was so special this season. After my photography class at Longwood, I wanted to return and capture some images that I saw while helping others.
It’s one of those mysterious things that you can have five people stand in the same place, looking at the same thing and each one of them come back with a completely different perspective than the others. This is what makes us unique as a photographer and an individual in our human experience.
Even though I had my full macro kit with me, I relied on the Canon 100mm Macro lens and a diffuser to reduce bright spots on the flowers. I took my time framing each image with my Canon 5D Mark IV installed on a steady tripod. Using a tripod takes more time to capture the image but the advantage of a higher quality image as a result of a low ISO setting is well worth the effort. The disadvantage though could be that there are subjects that you just can’t reach due to how the flower beds are set up.
When I arrived at Longwood, they were in the process of hanging a small photography exhibit of orchid images. Each of them were full-frame of the flower, and tack sharp throughout the flower. They were beautiful as the orchids are beautiful. Renegade as I am, I felt that they lacked a creative soul. Beautiful yes, superb for orchid flower identification yes, well executed by the photographer achieving tack sharp through the flower absolutely !
And here is where it is the artist’s choice. How will you want to express your experience with such an unusual flower. To me, they are like Fairies. Unique, rare, whimsical with a shade of clandestine nature. Their little faces show expression and spirit.
With each section of orchids I was working with, I took my time to study my subject from many different angles before I began framing my shot. It’s easier to look right, left, up, down, in between, etc. without using a camera in hand. I then use Live View to help frame my shot, adjusting as I needed to for the composition.
Using the “Shooting through” technique, I used f/2.8 to create a more ethereal look to the images. Soft, mystical, curious. That’s what me think of these orchids.