Getting the Shot You Want

This is just a close-up, indoor shot of a stargazer lily in a vase, but it can be used as a miniature lesson. Getting the shot you want is what can separate you as a photographer from “people who have have DSLRs.” As a photographer, luck is a good thing to have, but it’s not a good thing to rely on. Getting this photo to turn out the way I wanted required a tripod, a remote trigger, and an 8.0s exposure.

I wanted a darker background, so I just set this up on the stove top because both the stove and the microwave are black (black appliances were still cool before the stainless steel trend came along) and and the microwave casts a large shadow on the wall behind the stove. I wanted every portion of it to be in focus from the front to the back. This was the part that required a very high f-number (f/22 in this case) and consequently a very long exposure time–that’s where the tripod and remote trigger comes in. Normally what happens when someone takes a picture like this is either a) the flower pedals themselves are in focus and the protruding parts (stigma, filament, anther) are out of focus or b) just the opposite, where the filament, stigma, and anther of the flower are in focus and the pedals of the flower are out of focus. Both of those can have an impact when used correctly, but that was not what I wanted this time.

November 04, 2011

By the way, these are the flowers I bought Jaime for our tenth anniversary of us dating. Ten years later, we have four years of marriage and two kids under our belt. Look at us go!

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