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Old Dec 4, 2007, 11:34 PM   #1
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I haven't really read through the Strobist site yet, but being the impatient person I am, I had to try my luck with the new flash unit at the Botanical Gardens. It's quite shady there and I've often had trouble with camera shake or too small a DOF. I'm really pleased with the results! I know, it's just another flower but I thought it was one of the nicer ones I've taken recently, especially considering that its red.



K10, DA*50-135, 540 flash mounted on the camera.

I wasn't going to add any more pictures (I know, flowers can be boring), but wanted some reaction on these also.



K10, Vivitar Series One 105mm macro.

This is a water plant. It grows in a large pot of some sort in a hollowed out tree trunk, and is very small. The leaves look furry from a distance. This shot has been cropped significantly, tomorrow I'll try to re-take it at 1:1 (this isn't anywhere close to that, probably 1:4 or so).



K10, Viv macro, flash off camera, wireless mode with the in-camera flash acting as control only.



K10, DA*50-135, flash off-camera, in-camera flash control only. The leaf is quite waxy - yesterday when it was in bright sunshine I got too much glare, so I was really pleased with this one. I should get a polarizer to get this leaf without glare.

Other than the first hibiscus, I have no idea what any of these are.
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 12:14 AM   #2
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Well, that is nice - worked out quite well. How much pp was necessary (if any)? A diffuser might have toned down the excessive highlights (which are a bit glary) a bit, butI like it as it is.

Edit:

Comments above were for no.1 - the others were added while I was posting. The others are more even, but still a bit contrasty - try a diffuser to soften the harsh light (especially useful on closeups with a flash more poserful than the built-in one)
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 12:31 AM   #3
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I agree that I need to get a diffuser, but I rather liked the sharpness I got with the first one. Here's the original, the only thing I did to it was resize it (it was taken jpg, not raw for once). As you can see, I did little pp - a bit of cropping, curves adjustmentand a little bit of USM - probably over-did the USM, too.

p.s. helps to use the right file...
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 12:52 AM   #4
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The flash obviously works well, but IMO it's in #3 (the water plant) you lift the level to something spectacular. Thanks to the flash angle and perfect exposure this picture get my imagination going. Is it a plant, or some aliens preparing to take a chunk of my nose or...? I like it a lot!

Kjell
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 1:07 AM   #5
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#3 got my attention, too, Kjell. It might be some sort of carnivorous plant, although I don't recognize it. Maybe it just looks like one. :?

Is that the UCLA botanic garden, Harriet? I haven't been there in some years, but I think they labelled at least some of their plantings (most botanic gardens do).
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 6:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
I wasn't going to add any more pictures (I know, flowers can be boring), but wanted some reaction on these also.

On the contrary! These are quite eye pleasing images

#1 and #3 especially grabbed my attention!

As for #1, though I'm not much in favour of pp, IMO, some cropping out, clonning out and a little burn tool could work for healing or eliminating the distracting parts or elements (Oh, for my taste : )

Below is a sketchdepicting my opinion. Hope you don't mind..

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Old Dec 5, 2007, 6:38 AM   #7
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mtngal wrote:
Quote:
I haven't really read through the Strobist site yet, but being the impatient person I am, I had to try my luck with the new flash unit at the Botanical Gardens.* It's quite shady there and I've often had trouble with camera shake or too small a DOF.* I'm really pleased with the results!* I know, it's just another flower but I thought it was one of the nicer ones I've taken recently, especially considering that its red.
Harriet,

Great shots and the water plant #4 pops out. I think your DA* is a formidable mid tele at 100mm . Macro or no macro is just degree of magnification. The lens stands out.

Daniel
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 7:55 AM   #8
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I really like #2 with the limited depth of field and the way the light from the flash seems to fall off to nothing just past the plant. Very nice.


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Old Dec 5, 2007, 9:03 AM   #9
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I very much like your version, bahadir - I'll have to see if I can duplicate the burn tool effect (and clone out the branch on the left).

Penolta - Yes, it's UCLA's gardens. They are rather hit-and-miss when it comes to labeling. Usually trees are labeled, but I didn't see one for the bush that the leaf came from. And I've never seen any label on the water plant, which has fascinated me for a long time, but I've had very little success photographing it. I'll try to spend some more time with it today. Many flowers aren't marked, and the second one is growing along the stream, where little is labeled.
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Old Dec 5, 2007, 12:02 PM   #10
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mtngal wrote:
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I very much like your version, bahadir - I'll have to see if I can duplicate the burn tool effect (and clone out the branch on the left).
Glad you liked it! It's so easy and I'm sure you'll do betterrelying onyour good taste and yourlike for the subject : )

For a while I have been also experimenting withflash on different items as well as spaces...but with the on bord flash! I can say I quite liked the natural look of the slow sync. about 1/10''. When I want todiscard the background, 1/60''to 1/80'' looks quite decent. Well, the more Igo over an exposure time of 1/80 the more 'flashy' the images start to look,if not whitewashed!
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