dellac said:When I think about my own way of viewing the world, I think I am happy with a very small focal target within lots of big picture blur. Most everything is big picture blur until something captures my interest and then I can focus very intently... unless something else demands attention. Naturally, attention is either 100% on a single focus or it's off (completely diffuse). Or maybe 90% on if the background 10% is also pleasant. I wonder if life is like this for most people? I have this image in my mind that others can operate with something like 20% focus on the TV, 20% on a conversation they're having, 20% on a task at hand, 20% on planning something ahead, and 20% on ... I don't know, the kids screaming round the room maybe. Or maybe the switch is off! I can't live like that.
William said:Della, that is a very nice start.
I like pics number 2 and 11 the best. The iris photo has a very pleasing composition and and the seed pod in N.11 has excellent rim lighting and it also has a nice mix of autumnal elements in the background. Only suggestion for N.11 is that a slightly higher shooting angle might have allowed you to eliminate the light area at the top.
Picture N.3 is pretty, but needs a better focal point as it is unclear what it is you want to tell or show with your pic. I'm sure you have an idea here, but it isn't completely obvious to me as a viewer.
You are on the right track, simplifying your images. Remove everything that does not need to be there and you have a very good start. The last version of the Anemone hupehensis seedpod appeals to me the most for those exact reasons.
Remember that if you have a flexible arm such as The Plamp or similar it is easy to both steady your subject in the wind and to position it optimally. As an idea, those seedpods might have made a nice vertical, tighter composition, perhaps by moving the seedpods a bit closer together...
Leftwood said:That is a difference between you and me, Della; you (and I think most, to some degree) have a much more artful mind than me, especially when plants are involved. Regarding the subjects and outcomes you prefer in photographing, I am not surprised at all.
From the "original" you posted, I tried cropping the minimalist photo, and I didn't like any of the results either. I couldn't position the subject in the cropped results to my liking. I think you did it perfectly in the "original" you posted. Additionally, I don't care for any of your reworks, either. I think the more monochrome hues of the "original" is exactly what is called for.
How I wish Anemone hupehensis was hardy here. I've tried a few, including one called "Pretty Lady Emily", which just so happened to be a heart-felt moniker for my Mom when she was alive. But at least I got a hold of an unregistered Aurelian lily name Emily. I'm propagating it for all my sisters.
So as I was writing, when I refresh the screen I see Joshua already addressed this, but a little more encouragement never hurts...
20% this, 20% that..... some people are certainly better "multi-taskers" than others, and I wouldn't be surprised at all that women are generally better than men. But our brains (both male and female) only have one "computer" core, and there is no such thing as focusing on two or more things at the same time. Like a single core computer, attention switches back and forth. In my mind, one of the major things wrong with our "advanced" society is that most everyone wants and tries to do "everything", and consequently nothing is done well. AND they don't even realize it! From my late teens forward, I have purposely led a comparatively simple life that feeds my sanity. Early in life, I came upon a phrase that kinda sums it all up: my thought life is very important to me. And now I realize how I have formed and trained my mind to think and approach problems and tasks the way I do. I have never regretted it. Well, except that it is incredibly easy to see the antithesis of what I strive for.... an example being that so many people have difficulty telling the difference between on the one side - constructive criticism and fact, and on the other - personal degradation and falsehood. Sadly, our U.S.president is one of them.
Well, you are not the only one who digresses.....
You've got a nice camera, and a great lens. With my Minolta film camera I had a Tamron 35-70mm macro lens. Loved it. Perhaps the image stabilization in your lens is enough for good picture taking without a tripod, if you are stable sitting on the stool..... I'd at least give it a try. often I will be bracing my hand(s) against my knee or the ground, etc. to steady the camera. You will find what is best for you. I don't mind using a tripod at all, except that it takes so much more time (and often is just not practical)! As you take more and more photos, you will notice how quickly natural light changes, and if you are as fastidious as me, you'll be lamenting that shot that you weren't ready to take before the "perfect" light was lost. Like this one.... not that it's a great photo, but if I had just been a bit more "johnny on the spot", I could have gotten the sun's rays perfectly on the Jeffersonia.
I have a 60mm 2.8 macro lens for my Olympus, equivalent in focal length to your 90mm, but not equivalent in aperture (even though both are 2.8). So I can't get as much background blur as you can, due to the smaller four-thirds sensor in my smaller camera. A trade off I was willing to take for more portability. Yours can take better detailed photos, too.
I'd say 90% of my photos are taken at or below waist level, and most of those 14 inches from the ground or less. Because I grow so many short alpines, when I bought my camera I knew how I would be using the camera, and a tilt screen was a must for me. I don't even use the viewfinder. In fact I have it turned off to save power.
Della, you're already doing way better than when I first started!
It's a fuzzy idea! I'm not totally cuckoo (promise! ), but it seems to me that plants are having conversations around me, and I'd like to capture moments of that dialogue. Hard to translate.
dellac said:I'm still learning how to look after my mental well-being. What flows naturally in the right environment (nature!) becomes a minefield in the societal context. For starters, simply being born introverted is a social no-no. Hooray for fora! But I think I will tiptoe through a lot of that as I continue to write. I'm glad you've been able to craft a life that fits you. I'm always working on it. Considering we're human I guess we'll keep perfecting our systems. (Even if it looks like unaccountable chaos or perplexing order - or both - from the outside to some!)
Oh, what yourself and Joshua said helped me understand why the multitasking thing has always been so mystifying to me. As it's really a case of focus-switching, and some people are really good at switching back and forth... the trouble for me (and many others!) rests in the fact that we can't switch focus quickly enough (to meet 'modern' demands). We can't just sink into a problem, topic, question, project, etc... process it deeply and follow it through. We're torn away before we can finish the processing task. I get anxious having to act on half-processed data and make increasingly poor decisions until my 'processor' locks up completely.
Would that sound true for you too, Joshua?