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Old May 9, 2008, 11:21 PM   #1
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Today was another Grey May Day. So far I haven't seen anything yet that grabbed my attention for this month's challenge, except for a couple of pictures I took of a sunset at the end of April. So I tried to create a silhouette on a small scale, using a K20, a Viv 105mm macro lens and a wireless flash. I failed completely to get a silhouette, though I got some effects that are totally different than my usual pictures, along with some others.

I found texture - too bad it isn't April!



I found a lovely red hibiscus (something that's a usual for me).



I really like this picture- it's some type of agave, I think, that I found in the desert/cactus part of the gardens. It didn't come out as a silhouette, but I like the color of the thorns.



This is close to what I was thinking of when I headed out at lunch. I don't think itworks and I only post it because the light side vs. the dark side is sort-of interesting:



I rather like this one, and if I don't take anything better I'll probably submit this one for the challenge. It's still not quite what I had in mind, but think it probably comes closest to being a silhouette. It has some significant blown highlights, and there are those who would say that ruins the picture, but I like it anyway.



I'll keep looking around and experimenting. If nothing else, today's failure gave me some good ideas of what NOT to do.
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Old May 10, 2008, 1:59 AM   #2
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Thanks for sharing these experiments, Harriet. I like #1 a lot, it looks at me with that tiny little eye!

Kjell
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Old May 10, 2008, 2:45 AM   #3
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Hi Harriet,
great pictures, i like #3 and #5:
#3 because of the colors, #5 because of the lightning conditions and those tiny little hairs.

bye alex
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Old May 10, 2008, 5:48 AM   #4
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Like albreca, my favorites are #3 and #5. In number three the red dot near the tip of the agave leaf that is horizontal makes it look like some sort of creature examining the knife tips of the other leaf. I'm not so sure about #5 being a silhouette because of its level of detail, but it is one fine photo. Detail and lighting are sensational.

Paul
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Old May 10, 2008, 9:10 AM   #5
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It's interesting that you brought that up - I've been having trouble deciding what actually constitutes a silhouette. One of the things that I like about Scott's grebe is that it does have some detail on the bird - it's not like a complete cut-out. On the other hand, Ed's solarized entry is more what I think of as a silhouette - even in the original the bird appeared as a flat cut-out. It's really interesting to me also - but I've been trying to see if I could manage something like Scott's picture, where there's some detail in the darker object. Otherwise, I took a couple of pictures of a sunset that I'll post. It's impossible for me to take pictures of sunsets around the house without having silhouetted trees in the foreground.

If nothing else, the pictures I've taken the last couple of days have been interesting, getting me to explore a different type of picture, and I'm getting a better idea of how to get certain effects with the flash (mostly by trying things that don't particularly work). And that's what I love about photography - the experimenting, and the sometimes unexpected results.
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Old May 10, 2008, 8:55 PM   #6
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Harriet,
they'rre all good picts. very interesting efects. question, are highlights really "blown" if that is the part of the pic that makes it what it is?
John
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Old May 10, 2008, 11:20 PM   #7
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A good question, John. I think you'd need to ask the pros that question, because I don't have an answer to it.

By the way, the first one is the withered stems/leaves of some type of agave, and the last one is a small part of a large yellow hibiscus.
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Old May 11, 2008, 8:47 AM   #8
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As I sit idle (not really, but frustrated) waiting for my K20D to return from warranty service I took out my DS to take a sales promotion shot of a new variety of hibiscus I haven't tried to sell before. Can it count as an "inversed silhouette"?

I think the DS can defend itself against newer models, and this shot does prove that there's nothing wrong with my lenses. A*85 mm 1.4 @ f5.6 1/15 sec, tripod)

Kjell
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Old May 11, 2008, 10:01 AM   #9
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bilybianca wrote:
Quote:
As I sit idle (not really, but frustrated) waiting for my K20D to return from warranty service ...
Kjell
What happened to your K20D?
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Old May 11, 2008, 10:29 AM   #10
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These are nice, Harriet. I haven't been successful at anything I've tried yet. Was going to get the newly sprouted Boston ferns coming up in our yard, but the mosquitoes had a different idea.

I really like your hibiscus. I miss them. Don't see any here in New England.

Patty
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