Saturday, 16 June 2012

Cottongrass aftermath

It is now more than a month ago since I started photographing ‘my’ fen with Common Cottongrass (Eriophorum angustifolium/Veenpluis). I have made many pictures. Now the flowers are on their return and the seeds are taken by the wind. I wanted to capture this final process, and I had such a photo in my mind for quite some time. Yesterday late afternoon the circumstances were perfect.
I had to do everything I could to obtain reasonable long exposure times out in the open field with sunshine. First of all I lowered the ISO value as much as I could on the camera (50). By the way it is a pity that the camera manufactures are only interested to extend the ISO range at the high value end; there is also a need in creative photography to go to ISO 25, ISO 10, or may be even lower. How nice would that be! Next I used a very small aperture (f18). Usually I do not want to go much beyond f16 because in my view the image quality gets less if you use so little glass. But the big trick to obtain a shutter time of 13 seconds is the fader (@ 7 stops) in combination with a 3 stops gradient ND filter (3 stops). With this photo I close my Cottongrass project for this year.
Targets for next year: Cottongrass with a rainbow in the sky or with some thunder and lightning ... ahum, keep on dreaming Gerard, but on the other hand ... dreams are always the starting point for new things, isn't it? But first of all it is time to take a small break and work out a few ideas for new project.

* Canon EOS 5D Mark II with 17-40mm/f4 @ 17mm; ISO-50, f18, 13s; fader @ 7 stops, 3 stop ND soft gradient filter; from tripod.

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