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The three images in today’s post appeal to me for different reasons. One for texture and detail, one for the questions it asks and the other both for its suggestion of mysterious overtones.

The first picture is in my favourite format of 1:1 or square and monochrome. The plant, is a thistle, with its seeds ready to be blown by the wind to propagate other areas of the countryside. I love the detail that the camera captured and the swirls of tone in the down-like mass of seeds around the thistle heads. It was taken with a Nikon D7100 and a Nikkor 24 – 85mm f/3.5 – 4.5 lens.

 

Thistle Down

 

The second image is a set of steps that have started to be overgrown. The steps and the wall through which they run is obviously old. The steps are worn and uneven and made of odd sized and shaped stone, except the second step from the bottom, which has been repaired by what looks like modern bricks. So at one point in the near past, the steps must have been used enough to require repair, and yet now they are becoming overgrown and are evidently not now used as much if, at all. The movement of the eye through the image is from top to bottom.  The convergence of the steps and the light at the top ensures that the viewer climbs the steps to exit the picture. This image was also taken with a Nikon D7100 and a Nikkor 24 – 85mm f/3.5 – 4.5 lens.

 

To The Light

To the Light

 

The last image was taken at Stowe gardens. Viewing the portico and door of the temple from below gives the picture both an imposing, dominating and mysterious aspect. The darkness of the set of doors looks threatening and its position between the columns ensures that the eye is pulled and drawn to it. What will emerge from behind them? The title is a reference to one of my favourite heavy metal albums from 1977, which the image reminds me of. The photograph was taken with a Nikon D800 and Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 lens.

 

Sin After Sin

Sin after Sin

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After attending the talk by Nicki Gwynn-Jones I decided to have a bash myself at multiple images at Baddesley Clinton.  The last time I did multiple exposures in-camera was when I was using film with Olympus OM-1 and OM-2 cameras many years ago.

I wasn’t expecting any great shakes at the first attempt of multiple exposures, and I was right not to, but I did enjoy doing them.

I used my Nikon D800 and a 50mm f/1.8 lens.  I was in manual exposure mode, the multiple exposure was set to 3 frames and I experimented with average gain set and none.  It’s obvious that this type of photography requires the right scene to work properly, but half the fun is experimenting so why not give it a go.

The image below was taken using two frames for the house and bridge on the left of the frame and then I turned and took one image of the countryside.  No average gain per frame was used and I like the quality that the over-exposure does.  In terms of processing, it was all done in Lightroom CC.  I cropped to a square and left the highlights blown but pulled back the shadows and blacks.  I used a D800 Lightroom profile for the colour, enhancing it slightly with Vibrance.  I then sharpened and applied a little Luminance Smoothing before adding a slight vignette.

I like the ethereal quality of this image and the implied rather than fully stated shape of the house.  There is a feeling of impermanence and intransience about the picture.

 

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I trudged across the fields of Berkswell today in an effort to get some foggy, autumn pictures.

The fog was quite dense and the only noises piercing its sound dampening properties were the cries of the crows in the trees, the seagulls on the lake and the drip, drip of the water on the leaves of the trees as I waked under them. The air was cold and damp and the footpaths muddy, slippy and well-trodden.

Out of the gloom of the fog the trees continually emerged as I walked on.  In the distance the trees faded into an indistinct line on the horizon, all detail and contrast flattened by the fog.

The particular oak tree in the image below stood on the top of a rise in the field.  The orange and yellow leaves barely hanging on to the branches.  I was captivated by the flatness and quietness of the scene, all tones muted to browns and golds.

I took the photograph with my D800 and a 50mm f/1.8 standard lens.  I used the dehaze tool in Photoshop to increase the contrast in the tree and to make it more prominent.

 

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V

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This was just a quick visit to the property today to get one of their sausage batches and to accompany a club member who was trying out a new standard lens on their Olympus OM-D E-M1 (can Olympus camera names get any longer or more complicated)?

The weather was overcast and there was a spot of two of rain. However the light began to pick up, and we had some lovely raindrops on flowers and plants. I used my Nikon D800 and a 50mm f/1.8 standard lens.

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