Water - Macro Moments Challenge #37

Macro Moments was created by avid macro photographer, Susan Gutterman, to share the beauty of macro photography and learn from others photographers. A new challenge begins on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month. The winner’s photo may be featured on her blog and used as the banner in the announcement for the next challenge. #MacroMoments

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My original vision was to create a macro shot of some object reflected in a water drop. We had a lot of rainfall in May and it seemed fitting to attempt to capture water. However, I soon discovered how difficult it is to shoot water drops. Shooting handheld down at the level of leaves was challenging. I was soon exhausted from bending over leaves and holding my breath to reduce camera shake. The slightest movement and the images are blurred.

I then tried using a tripod. This improved stability but presented a new challenge. Water drops on leaves are delicate things. Positioning the lens in the right spot for optimal focus often meant accidentally disturbing the foliage. In some cases, I lost the drop of water. It would fall off the leaf. Capturing a set of useable images was an exercise in patience with much trial and error.

Macro Moments was created by avid macro photographer, Susan Gutterman, to share the beauty of macro photography and learn from others photographers. A new challenge begins on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month. The winner’s photo may be featured on her blog and used as the banner in the announcement for the next challenge.

Falling Water

I went out in the middle of the cold Spring rain hoping to photograph falling water.

I do almost all my photography on the weekend. It's the only time I have to get outside into the woods at dawn and dusk.

The weather soothsayer had predicted rain for the weekend. Cold rain. All of Saturday and Sunday. The sky was grey, and the weather felt more like fall than spring.

I had several ideas for this challenge. There was the obvious: falling water means waterfalls. I woke up Saturday morning trying to decide if I should make the one-hour drive to Kugler Woods waterfalls or stay close to home and visit the Rock Brook to get an updated photo for the monthly photo challenge.

My daughter was performing in the pit crew for a musical, Seussical, at the high school. I dropped her off and drove to the Rock Book to scope the situation. The last time it rained this much, the brook was filled to the edges after a flash flood warning for the area. The water was gushing, but I could still walk to my favourite spot.

Falling Water · 13 May 2017 · Nikon D5100 · AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8

I could capture some long exposures of the water before the brook filled up. But I had forgotten the Tokina 11-16mm f/4 lens and Hoya ND1000 filter at home. I pulled out my iPhone 7. I could use ProCam in Slow Shutter mode for long exposures. But I'd need a tripod, and I had also forgotten the Manfrotto PIXI. I propped my iPhone 7 against some rocks and snapped two shots before I panicked that the rain might damage my iPhone. I was nearly soaked through when I got back to the car.

13 May 2017 · Nikon D5100 · AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8

I had some other ideas. I attempted to shoot raindrops falling and splashing off the pavement. I tried several shutter speeds. I stepped into the street near my home, put my Nikon D5100 on the PIXI, and fired a few shots. A few cars drove by. It must have seemed strange to have stooped over in the rain, getting soaked, and seemingly taking photos of the asphalt.

I experimented with shutter speed. I wasn't sure what I wanted. Did I want to suspend water drops in the air? Did I want a blur of water drops?

Let me know what you think.

Created by photographer Frank Jansen, the Tuesday Photo Challenge is a weekly theme-based challenge for photographers of all kinds to share both new and old photography.