Saturday, May 15, 2010

Low light and a slow lens: what to do?


Very low light yesterday morning and not a fast lens. What to do? Purposely move my camera in a swirling fashion during a longish exposure. A dying pink tulip in my front yard stands out against the brighter colors of dianthus (1.3 seconds at f/22). And rhododendrons look great above a white picket fence (0.4 seconds at f/32).

The key thing is, why "swirl" the camera? Why not do my usual "sweeps" from side to side, or my usual "swipes" up and down? The subject matter dictates my camera movement. A small grove of trees with their repeating vertical trunks lends itself more to an up and down camera "swipe." A beach scene with its wide expanses lends itself more to a side by side "sweep." And the flowers? Well, their shapes aren't vertical nor horizontal, so I figured a circular "swirl" would be more appropriate.

Great photos? Nah. But they're different and fun to create on a morning of low light and a slow lens. ©Carol Leigh

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