Tag Archives: macro photography

Surviving the cold!

If you live pretty much anywhere in the world, I hope you are surviving the cold. It’s bitter, and frightening. The bright winter sunlight deceives you into thinking it’s nice “out there”, but trust me, it isn’t. One step outside the door and your nostrils freeze shut and your eyes water. It is not fit for man (in the generic sense) nor beast. Even our dog, Harley, who normally LOVES the cool weather is unwilling to venture out for very long. I can’t blame him. It’s cold on his feet for sure.

For a photographer, this extreme cold (unless you are into arctic adventures) is just plain brutal. It’s too cold for gear to function well. Batteries last about a nano-second. Forget fill flash and those other fancy techniques. Oh, and your tripod or monopod legs either won’t open or will take eons to extend to their full length. Yesterday it was colder here than in the Arctic! With windchill we reached a balmy -40ºC. It’s slightly better today. A delightful -32ºC ‘they’ say.

So, what’s one to do? Find something to shoot from inside your home, of course. 

macro shot of ice on a window in winter

Reminiscent of sea foam on the beach, this is, in fact, a macro shot of the ice that formed on the inside of my office window, and every other window in the house, overnight. Every day we’ve had to melt it, chip it out, and wipe up the ensuing mess. But, we are fortunate. At least we are warm. And the ice crystals are rather pretty to look at, aren’t they?

The Weather Network has claimed that this brutal cold airmass situation will come to an end tomorrow. That’s good news. Of course, once it warms up some we can look forward to a week-long snowfall. But hey, that’s winter here in the “Merry Times” of eastern Canada. We’ve all grown up with it and learned to, if not like it, at least live with it.

It’s a new year and I wish you all a wonderful one. May the sun shine on your life and your troubles be few and far between.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with another tip for surviving the cold – let your imagination soar. Write something. Photograph something. Read something. Exercise your mind and, if you’re brave, your body. Happy New Year!

macro photograph of ice on a window in winter

Footprints in the sand? Or not?

Footprints on the beach? Look closely. If the illusion makes you feel warm all over, so much the better!

Posted in BLOG, photography, seasons, winter Also tagged , , , , |

Life long learning

I’m a life long learning addict. I firmly believe that the moment we stop learning new things, having new thoughts, we begin to experience a slow and agonizing death. So, I make an effort every day to try and learn something new, develop a new skill or enhance an existing one.

Today’s lesson involved practicing my macro photography. I’ve had a lovely lens and complementary ring flash for a couple of years now, but really hadn’t spent a lot of time trying to improve my skills with this fascinating tool. This morning I decided to remedy that situation and placed the lens and flash on my camera and headed out into the garden to see what I could do.

I’ll spare you the many images that were blurry, over- or under-exposed (and there were many of each), but eventually I did get a collection of some that aren’t too bad. I’ll most definitely want to keep on learning this most fascinating of photography topics.

For those getting into it – do realize that your focal plane is razor thin. In other words, if you move your camera a teensy fraction of an inch closer or further away from your subject, focus is totally lost. Patience is definitely a key factor in this genre of photography – something I most definitely need to keep on learning.

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The nice thing about macro photography is that you can do it any time and any where. If the weather is dismal, find objects in your home or studio and capture wee bits of it. I did that when I first got my lens, and promptly got rid of a set of steak knives that I suddenly discovered were dreadfully rusted and disgusting to see. Ewwww.

Flowers, insects or any object with texture make terrific subjects for the macro photographer. So, grab your lens and have some fun. For lens recommendations just google your camera + macro lenses and you’ll find an array from which to choose. Many people really like the (approx) 100mm macro lenses.

So, go on learning throughout your life – and have fun!

Posted in BLOG, learning, photography, Photography techniques Also tagged , , |