Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Pounding of My Head

I am generally okay with last minute blog postings, though I do prefer to think them out in advance. This one crept up on me after I spent yesterday evening with a tremendous headache. Hence the title of this posting! Currently "it" is sitting behind my eyes just waiting to come back out.

My other topic of choice for today would be our really crappy weather. Tropical Storm Fay decided to meander across Florida and drop tremendous amounts of rain. The estimate for Melbourne, Florida (which is east of me) is up to almost 30"! Fortunately for us, we have been on the outskirts of it from every direction. But the results of this has been several days of wind, clouds, and rain.

So I am out looking for the sunshine and finding it only in photographs. When trying to visually represent sunshine in a photograph, I often prefer to allow some of the highlights to "blow out" more than normal. It is a fine line to walk because I still like to have a little more contrast between the shadow areas and the highlights.

In this image taken in 2002 with my previous digital camera, I chose to focus my exposure on the fern frond and let the background fall where it may.



You can also create the feel of sunlight by using it to backlight your subject. In this more recent photograph, I used the sunlight to enhance the colors of this tiny spider. Spiderwebs are themselves great subjects for this type of image.

Orchard Orbweaver

Charlotte, Orchard Orbweaver

This final example is one of my favorite photographs. I took this early one morning at a local game reserve. To capture the streaming sunlight, I had to spot meter on the brighter areas and allow the surrounding trees to expose a bit darker. In this case, I did not want to allow the highlights to "blow out" too much. If I had metered instead on the darker areas, the bands of sunshine would have been lost entirely in this image.

Morning Sunlight in the Oak Hammock

Morning Sunlight In The Oak Hammock

Often it is a matter of trial and error. It never hurts to take more than one photograph at different exposures, perhaps even using exposure bracketing. The more experience you have working this type of image, the better you will become at knowing how to meter for the effect you are trying to create.

Suzanne Williams Photography
Florida, USA

Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.


Tracy Ruckman said...

I'm sorry about your headache - I'll be praying.

Some gorgeous photos here. I can FEEL the air in that last shot. Great job!!

scw1217 said...

Thanks so much for the prayer. The headache is better tonight. They come from eye strain.

Thanks also on the photo comment!

Jessica said...

I've had a headache trying to creep up on me too. Wonder if it's the weather?
Anywas, those are gorgeous photos.
I love them!

scw1217 said...

Thanks, Jessica. I started getting them when I was much younger. Typically they last for a few days and make it impossible to read or watch anything. Glad you liked the pictures!