Creating abstract photos is something I enjoy quite a bit. One method that I like to use is to use my macro lens and play with mixing oils with water.
The soft and subtle natural oil hues create very simple monotone images.
More colorful abstract art is created using: colored lights, food coloring, or using patterns in a way that they get reflected on the oils. You never really know what is going to happen and the same thing never happens twice which is something I enjoy immensely about this technique.
Natural and artificial lighting can really play some fun games bouncing off the oils. I find it helpful to not play by any rules when creating abstract designs so it is one of those elements of photography that I just enjoy.
If you like these fun abstract images, shop my Abstract Art Collection at my Gift Shop!
I found these sunglasses while I was out on McDade Trail the other day. I was a bit torn. On one hand I don't like to leave litter if I can remove it. On the other hand we are all in the Covid-19 social distancing era and I kind of didn't want to touch them.
I stood there circling them and pondering things when I noticed my reflection. In the end, I shot the image above and left them there. I'll pick them up and throw them away another day when I'm more secure in the idea that some time has passed and if they have any virons on them they will no longer be infectious.
The resulting image inspired me though. Found objects are a simple means to a creative photo.
They are things that happened to be there when you happened to wander by and see them. How you photograph them depends on: what camera equipment you happen to have with you, and, how you happen to 'see' it in your head. It's all very random and I love that.
Macro photography is a very easy way to get creative with your photos. Certainly you can do all sorts of setup shots, and that's wonderful, but even just walking around looking in the grasses will inspire you. It's a weird little world down there. Walk slowly and you'll see it.
I have kind of a Do No Harm philosophy. I don't cause excess stress to animals and I never kill insects just to photograph them. My results then tend to be often less 'technical' but more unexpected, and I'm OK with that.
Bees do what bees do. Not necessarily what humans think bees should be doing. I think it's more fun to photograph them that way.
Where I roam, dead things are not uncommon. Fish, dogs, deer, muskrats - all sorts of things. My dead animal collection is a blog in itself.
Mostly they are unpleasant to find, but, often they are certainly things that you do not see everyday and usually not things that most people time much to look at.
Is it 'creative' to photograph dead animals? I don't know. I guess it depends on how your photograph it.
Often you can extend the creative limits of your equipment with software.
The image below was shot with a 24mm lens but to get wider I shot two images and stitched them together. Doing this is a great way to get more creative with your landscape photography without the need to buy or rent new lenses.
Let your imagination run wild. Don't be shy. Make mistakes. But most of all, create!
10 Tips To Get More Creative Photos
1. Slow down - look at things a little longer, find the odd things in the scene
2. Take a new angle - go high, go low, look for new ways to look at the subject
3. Get close - get REAL close if you can, and then get real far away
4. Use prime lenses - they make you move your body so it throws you out of your comfort zone
5. Don't use auto settings - learn your camera controls so it sees what you want it to see
6. Be the Bee - let animals/insects be themselves, they will do more interesting things that way
7. Try pinhole photography - it breaks all the rules
8. Use whatever equipment you have - it's not technically right or wrong, it's creative
9. Bokeh - make the blur count, play with the blur, be the blur
10. Use reflections - water and windows are great for this
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Be well my friends.
New Hanover County Arboretum is a gem of a day trip located in Wilmington North Carolina. These spectacular gardens host educational programs, publications, and events.
My visit was in July of 2019. It was a touch warm that day (lol!) but I enjoyed photographing quite a bit of the gardens, sculptures, Japanese Tea House, water gardens, and Children's Garden.
Here is a small gallery of flower photography from the flower gardens there. The variety of pollinators, that are very fond of these gardens, are minimally represented here as well.
I do not know the names of the flowers. If you know any of the names feel free to post them in the comments!
The New Hanover County Arboretum Water Garden's Dragon Sculpture.
New Hanover County Arboretum Water Garden's koi fish.
Tiny forest are essentially miniature landscapes that can be found almost anywhere if you have a lens that sees them. In this case I was exploring some old wooden fence post tops with a Canon 100mm Macro Lens
These little natural fungi and moss forest have quite an array of: colors (especially for February), shapes, and plant life. Here are some top down images of the tops of the posts.
Some side view images. The narrow depth of field is helpful to highlight one particular plant in the forest.
This subject is something I look forward to photographing more in the future. As the seasons change the variety of plant life must change with it so it will be interesting to go back to these same posts and see how they change.
Animal Photography isn't something I have a tremendous amount of patience for so I rarely go out to photograph animals on purpose.
Generally I go on a photo adventure to a specific area to explore nature photography in that area. If there happens to be animals there (alive or dead) I'll photograph them. If not, so be it.
I never realized that I had amassed so many animal photos until I started looking to put things together for this blog post. There are hundreds!
So this will be Animal Photography Blog Part 1 about Animals That Fly. Featuring: birds, ducks, eagles, butterflies, dragonflies, and a variety of insects from the Kingdom Animalia.
The subsequent blogs will feature other animal related themes. I hope you enjoy them!
Macro Photography is photographing subjects that are often quite small in a way that creates a larger than life sized image. Macro can be for scientific purposes, or, simply a tool to explore the tiny little scenes that play out around us every day. It's a wonderful type of photography that opens up all sorts of new areas of interest but it also requires a little more patience and control with the camera. Check out my top 3 tips below!
Macro Photography Tips:
1. You will need more light than you think: If it's not a bright sunny day you may need to add some light. There are a few different types of Macro Flashes on the market but if you're not quite that dedicated to macro then simply get creative with whatever you have. You just need to bounce some extra light into the area immediately in front of your lens. On on camera flash modifier can work to do this as well as a reflector.
2. The DOF can be wickedly shallow: When you are in this tightly to your subject a good amount of background blur is essential in some cases. A sturdy tripod will be a good way to deal with the very shallow depth of field you may elect to use. If you subject is moving then simply move your body back and forth instead of continuously refocusing.
3. Shoot a lot of frames: When you think you may be done shooting your subject, shoot a few more frames. These small subjects and shallow depth of fields make even a half a millimeter off a very big deal.
4. Don't take it to seriously in the beginning: Jump in there, have fun, shoot a lot, and explore the tiny scenes on our planet!
Exploring photography has been a life long passion.