Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Monday Mystery Photo: Answer & Image Recipe

The Answer to Monday's Mystery Photo: A drop of water on a peacock feather.

I'm pleased to report that someone anonymously guessed correctly. Thanks for playing along! Here's the original image before it was altered for my little game.

Here's the Recipe for how I created the image:

I used a medicine dropper to position a drop of water on the peacock feather - which I set on top of a black piece of scrapbook paper. The shot was set-up nearby a window sill to take advantage of available light.

Next, I mounted my camera on top of my tripod. The camera's light meter indicated a correct exposure at f/2.8, 1/60th of a second, and ISO 640. The shot was created using my new Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM lens. This is the same lens I used to create Baby Evan's portraits. I love how versatile this lens is!

I chose to shoot wide open in order to blur the majority of the feather - hopefully making it a little less obvious what the image was for our little Monday Mystery Photo game. I then adjusted the Temperature slider in Camera Raw Bridge - sliding it left toward the blue end of the spectrum - hoping to further disguise the subject.

One of my goals this year is to explore other types of photography. I never want to settle for what I know now. There's a world of lessons to learn in this industry, and my goal is to learn something new every year. Macro photography was at the top of my list.

One of the benefits of a macro lens is that you can focus much closer to your subject. To get full detail on the feather (from corner to corner), I shot at a much higher f-stop. The resulting detail is amazing. Check out the image below.

Image #3 Recipe: f/22 at a shutter speed of 8.0 seconds and ISO 200.

Shooting at such a high f-stop means I had to adjust the shutter speed in order to maintain a proper exposure. At a shutter speed of 8.0 seconds, using a tripod is a MUST in order to protect against camera shake. Though I used a tripod for these shots, a remote shutter release would have made the shot even sharper.

I can't wait for the weather to warm up. There's a whole other world waiting to be explored through the eyes of my new macro lens wonder.

Check back tomorrow to vote for your favorite Beautiful People in our Model Search Contest. I'll be posting the winners on February 16th. I've also got another Monday Mystery Photo planned for this coming Monday. It will be much harder next time around. Included will be another photo tip to help you in your own road of photography discovery.

See you tomorrow, and thanks for stopping by!

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