Photo of the Week 2021-07-26

When I picked up a new camera body a few weeks ago, the 24-105 lens I ordered had not yet arrived, so I had to use the new mirrorless body with DSLR lenses via an adapter which was no biggie since I already had it and was good to go.
I chose to try out my Sigma 70mm Macro and Sigma 150mm Macro lenses first and have been enjoying my return to close up, shallow depth of field imagery. It should not then be a surprise that my post this week is again a macro / close up image(s).
While readying the BBQ for dinner grilling at the cottage, I noticed an interesting subject on the flower-head of the Curly Dock growing in our pollinator patch.
white webster
I'm always looking at what is growing and living in the patch and noticed this Goldenrod Crab Spider out at the end of the Curly Dock checking things out. At first it was quite still. I used my 150mm macro to capture this image from quite close, then later as it moved around, I re-positioned for a closer shot, near the minimum focus distance of the lens.


It was interesting trying to get sharp images, not only because of the very shallow depth of field, but because the breeze was bouncing the plant around a fair bit. The movement actually caused the spider to fall off the plant ... 

hanging by a thread
... to be saved by a single thread of silk, hang there for a bit, then climb back up.


Photo of the Week 2021-07-19

It might be a bit surprising how new gear with new features can inject new energy into the photographic journey ...

Oh I love new gear just because it is new gear, but my recent return to using macro lenses and wide apertures with shallow depth of focus has been aided by the availability of an articulating LCD screen on the back of my new camera. Previously, I had been required to perform some interesting contortions in order to be able to see through the camera viewfinder or view the rear LCD to accomplish the precise focus I wanted. This resulted in some laughable scenarios where my forehead could be planted in the cedar duff covering the forest floor as I worked to get an upward angle on a wildflower, or where strange grunting and groaning noises could be heard in the vicinity of a low slung tripod set close to the ground for that bug's eye view.

Things are much easier now. Oh, I still need to get down on my knees for a lot of the wildflower images, but other than a bit of additional hunching over to shade the articulated LCD and zoom in for that perfect focus, it's a new day, a new way for my nature macro photography and here is another example of the results ...

colourful viper

Until you stop and take a close look, Viper's Bugloss appears to be just another roadside weed. Actually, it produces very intricate, colourful and interesting flowers that bud pink amongst a hairy green tuft before turning purple and stretching their pink stamens far out where the bees and other insects do their pollination routine.


Photo of the Week 2021-07-12

Initially, I thought this week's post would be "a first", but after a quick review of posts over the years to confirm, I found I was wrong. I have featured images from another photographer before ...
Over the weekend, I'd been working with another photographer to prepare some prints of their images for framing. It's some really great work, and looks fantastic in print (they are resting on my framing table before being installed into frames). When we were done, I asked if I could use the images in my weekly blog post and feature them a guest photographer. With a surprised look, they agreed. The photographer? My son Jordan.

So here they are, from his travels in Malaysia. Malacca scenes ... 

I thoroughly enjoyed the process of review and preparing Jordan's images with him. We had some good discussion about what would work as a print, together with a second or third image hung on the wall(s) at his place. We had some laughs as well and as always, family time is a good thing. I hope you enjoy ...



Photo of the Week 2021-07-05

Wildflower season has shifted from Spring to Summer on 'the Bruce'. The Yellow Lady's Slippers have given way and Wood Lily now dot the shoulders along the road on the drive into the cottage. Too, there are bunches of Perennial Sweat Pea splashing it's bright pink on green.
Not originally from North America, I suspect the roadside specimens have 'escaped' from local gardens on the wind, with help from birds and numerous other distribution mechanisms. Native or not, one cannot help but be intrigued by their colourful uniquely shaped blossoms. I was, enough to head out with macro lens and tripod attached to the camera ...
Sweet Pea
The flowers of the local Sweet Peas range from deep, vibrant pink to near-white, all with those characteristic pea blossom shapes.

Pea Blooming


Photo of the Week 2021-06-28

Hummingbirds of Revolve Farms
On a recent visit to Matt & Claire's Revolve Farms location in Athens ON, we were treated by an appearance of the local Ruby-throated Hummingbirds.
Ruby-throated Male

Ruby-throated Female

These two were in frequent attendance at the feeder outside the tiny-home window and I imagine provide much entertainment when Matt & Claire are taking respite from their daily work regimen.

feeder outside the window

It was challenging to get the sharp images I would prefer without my 'birding' setup of the Canon 7DII with EF100-400 L IS. The EOS M5 and Sigma 18-300 performed acceptably but I look forward to going back to see just how much I can improve my results.

The above images of the birds are crops from the frames below which include the feeder. The Hummers did land on the branches holding the feeder and I would like more time to focus on making better images without being a distracted, disrespectful guest.