Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Rainy Day

It's raining today. Horrible. What happened to the beautiful weather from last week? Oh well, rain provides its own photo opportunities. Today I focused on what I could do with the raindrops that remained on the kitchen window once the shower had passed. This is the most processed photo so far; everything has has been pretty much "out of the camera" with only levels adjustment and minor cropping.

It's a composite of two shots. The first is a photograph of the flowers outside my kitchen window with the raindrops in focus. It's a fairly long telephoto with macro mode turned on, so about 100mm or so. I introduced a key into the scene to get the focus because I was having trouble focussing on the raindrops. Once a solid object was there, the autofocus had no issues getting it just right. The second is the same shot, but with the flowers in focus.

To put the two together, I overlayed them in The Gimp with the raindrops on the bottom. I set the top layer to "overlay" to produce the desired effect, then boosted saturation just a gnat's on the raindrops picture to make the blur of the flowers glow. I think it worked particularly well. It's worth clicking the image to see a larger version to see the detail in the raindrops. The individual drops cause the flower behind to come into sharp focus and remove the blurring and glow, making tiny, focussed images of each flower they obscure.

One thing I'm conscious of is the number of portrait oriented photographs in this project. I'm obviously a very vertically oriented person (being tall and thin might do that?) and find it easier to get the feel I want by holding the camera sideways. I seem to find it difficult to fill a landscape frame with detail, and end up with superfluous bits off the sides. Square cropping helps, but defeats the object of this project, which is to practice fixing my weaknesses. I think this one fills the frame nicely.

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