May Challenge: April Showers Bring May Flowers… Entry #9 What a Knock-out

We return to the rose garden as night is approaching.
Now honestly, who would think of shooting a rose in the dark?
I guess we have a lot to learn about Robin… you know… the other Robin!

“The knock-out rose is very prolific this spring. One evening I waited until dusk, to limit the natural light, so that I could use hand-held illumination to search for some dramatic effects in this well behaved little rose bush. I misted the bloom; I think a flower after a rain is most lovely. The 18-270 lens was at full zoom, 1/60 second, and ISO 400. I used f11, trying to get a greater DOF, wanting the whole bloom in focus. It seems to have worked okay, not perfect. This was an LED light, so I just guessed at ‘Cloudy’ white balance and, surprisingly, didn’t need to change it in post processing. In fact, the image required little post processing, just clarification and sharpening, and a touch of increased exposure. Then I cropped it just a little, but I didn’t quite have the drama I wanted. I tried rotating the image and found this at 90 degrees clockwise.”

What a Knock-out (Photo by Robin W.)

What a Knock-out
(Photo by Robin W.)


18 thoughts on “May Challenge: April Showers Bring May Flowers… Entry #9 What a Knock-out

  1. Robin… never in my wildest dreams would I have thought of shooting a rose at night. It sounds like total insanity until I see this “knock-out”! It is dark, it is mysterious and it is beautiful. And I agree, water droplets always seem to be a plus when shooting flowers and they certainly sparkle in the light.

    I love the fact that you have explained how you went about getting your shot as well as your settings. Something that I was beginning to learn when I was doing my food challenge was how to read a photo and I think your example here will lead us in that direction… learning to guess what type of light, from what direction, what is the f-stop, and the angle of view, etc. Amazing how close you can come as you begin to understand more about photography.

    It’s great having you in the club and I will look forward to more of your fine work!

    • Thank you, Fay. I’ve always carried a little two ounce sprayer in my camera bag, but just YESTERDAY I learned of – glycerin. You get it at the drug store, either in the drug department, or on the skin care aisle. You mix it with water and it increases surface tension, so your drops are bigger. I went out last night and played in the same way with my red oleander, and got some more interesting stuff to study. I may learn to shoot flowers after all.

  2. Now when I exercise I’m just gonna tell myself I’m sweating like a rose, a Robin’s rose, that is! It’s such a much nicer thought than the standard cliche’s. Very creative of you to go with a darker image as we normally see the brightness of flower colors. Your richly dark rose glistens gloriously. And thoughtful of you to add the spec details for this. They are helpful.

    • Thank you Rebekah. I’ve heard all kinds of euphemisms for female sweat, so far the biggest groaner was “she’s glistening”. I like “sweating like a rose” better.

    • Thank you Debbie. I actually somehow lost the light I was using that night. Had to buy another. Naturally I went upscale 🙂 the new one is – ya ready for this? – 180 watts!!! I can set flowers on fire (kidding).

  3. Robin,
    What a beautiful and very unique photo!!! The dark rich color and the water droplets really make this a stunning image! Amazing to think you took this beauty at night with a flashlight!!!! Sounds like you are very creative and enjoy experimenting! I really appreciate you sharing all the details on how you captured this shot! Excellent job!!!

    • Lorraine – hmmm, well, not ex-AAACkly a flashlight. This was a bank of LED’s made for photography or videography. But, thinking about it, I’m not certain we couldn’t do similar with a flashlight. I have one of those three-led hand lanterns with a six volt battery, and I might just go out with it to see what happens. We might have to increase the shutter speed and use a tripod, but… hmmm…

  4. This is a breathing taking image your diligence paid off. Thank you for sharing all the techniques, as Fay said I too look forward to more of your photos!

  5. I love the dark, yet vibrant colors in this photo and the contrast of the water droplets. It’s a TKO!

    • Thank you. That’s a fun fun play on words, technical-knock-out rose. I’ll go tell the bush what you said 🙂

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