Sunday, 29 April 2007

The elusive light

Red & green trees, The Hague, April 2007

Following on from the previous post (but actually preceeding it chronologically) is the struggle I had with getting the posted photo.

There is a period at present, in the mid-morning, when the whole thing glows with back-light. It's a great effect, and one that is nicely visible from my living room window.

I tried briefly to get a shot last week and failed, mainly due to the wind. I tried harder yesterday. Not having the motivation to ride my bike, I decided to capture the photo instead. what a struggle!

The sky just visible through the top branches is several stops birghter than the near trunk and kept saturating regardless of what I tried. Multiple shots for overlay are impossible due to the movement from the wind. I shot dozens trying to get something to no avail.

the, later in the afternoon, the sun moved around and created almost exactly the same effect but rom reflected light rather than filtered light. The sun was lower, so the sky was a little les bright and there was a slight lightling of the mid-gound, reducing the overall dynamic range of the scene just enought to be able to get a good shot. This is the result. prints nicely at 10".

can't say i could have predicted the similarity of the reflected and filtered light effects. Of course, the reduction in relative brightness is obvious. Seems patience and careful observation can get you there in the end. There are, however, limited opportunities to wait for 6h and compare shots in the meanwhile in order to get the perfect shot.

Funny thing is, with a TS-E 90 (I was shooting at 100mm) or the LF camera & a 300mm (none of which I own) this would have been a piece of cake. i could have adjusted the perspectiv, switched to a wider aperture and worked at higher shutter sppeds, giving me more opportunity to avoid the effects of the wind. with the LF 9hence film), I think the dynamic range and top-end saturation problem would have been less of a concern.

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