Having a rare day with absolutely nothing on the calendar, I vowed to get out and enjoy a walk at the Garden despite temps in the mid 20's. I've wanted to "play" with my new Tamron 180 mm macro and get more of a feel for what this new lens is capable of. Its a heavy lens so a tripod is a must but I'm learning to like my tripod and see its benefits to help get sharp, well-composed shots. I have always loved being a free spirit, hand-holding my camera and getting on my hands and knees or whatever position is needed to get the shot I want. Most macro photographers would be gasping right now, saying it can't be done! I have a pretty steady hand so I am able to get good sharp shots if there is enough light for faster shutter speeds. Sooooo...learning to use the old tripod and carrying it around on my nature walks has been a love/hate relationship, but we are becoming better friends with each good shot I get. It does force me to slow down and think about what I'm doing, to check settings and focus more carefully. The other thing I'm getting hooked on using along with the tripod is the Live View function on my camera paired with the use of a remote cable, a great way to achieve super-sharp focus and eliminate camera shake. Today I spent a bit of time in the greenhouses, checking out some new displays. I love the vibrant colors of these bromeliads located in the hallway outside the greenhouses. Their complementary colors are very pleasing to the eye.
Playing with a very shallow depth of field to create an abstraction.
Beautiful catmint in the semi-tropical greenhouse. Again, I was having fun using a very shallow depth of field.
I headed outside for a brisk walk. It felt good to soak up a bit of sunshine, despite the chilly temps. After taking my Abstracts in Nature class this past Fall, I have begun to "see" in a different way. A year ago I might have walked past this photo opportunity without giving it notice, even though I think I have always had very keen eye for patterns in nature. This one just grabbed me and wouldn't let me go until I'd tried many different shots of it. It's a reflection of the bridge in the water/ice. I just love the patterns and colors reflected with the warm tones of the afternoon sun!