Fun with the Closeup “Filter”

Dame's Rocket BudsIn addition to finding my Yellow Clintonia, and learning a couple of new flowers, I also had quite a bit of fun yesterday with my new 10X Closeup “Filter” – a lens that screws on to the end of my 18-55mm lens like a filter does.  It was pretty easy to remove it and slip it into my shirt pocket when I didn’t want a closeup, then reattach quickly when I did.

Closeup shots are not usually good for flower ID.  But they make for some interesting textures and colors, I think.

Red Osier DogwoodMost of the time, I left the lens at 55mm, but for a couple of shots, I went down to 18.  When using the shorter focal length, the inside of the tube becomes part of the picture… giving you a round framing for your shot… kinda cool.

It was another one of those amazing, full-sensory days.  The sights I can attempt to capture for you with my camera.  The sounds and the smells are more difficult to convey!  The birds were going crazy. Yellow Warbler: “Sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet! I’m so sweet!”  Chestnut-sided Warbler: “Pleased, pleased, pleased to meet you!”  Common Yellowthroat: “Witchity witchity witchity!” And then there were the Crow, Blue Jay, Catbird, Red-bellied Woodpecker, and others.

Honeysuckle - PinkIt seemed like the Autumn Olive and the Honeysuckle were having a competition to see who could have the stronger perfume.  I think the Autumn Olive won in the scent department.  The picture of the Honeysuckle came out better, though, so that’s what you see here.  (I wonder if these pink honeysuckles are the ones that made the orange berries I photographed last fall… Hmmm… I’ll have to keep an eye on that.)

The little Common Fleabane is only half an inch in diameter.  I love the way the closeup lens allows me to fill up my screen with a fairly sharp image of this small beauty.  You have to be patient, though.  The slightest breeze and you are out of focus!  (I tried getting a closeup of the Saxifage blooms which are one-quarter of an inch wide and either the breeze foiled me, or the too-many-cups-of-coffee made my hands too unsteady.)Fleabane

I am particularly pleased with the depth of field and the smooth backgrounds I can get using this lens.  And is it possible that the colors are more intense?  I wouldn’t think so… but being new to photography, I have a lot to learn.

Once upon a time, I attended a marketing class for artists.  The presenter talked at length about something she called “mature style”.  When an artist has it, you can recognize her work from that style.  For example, when I say Monet – you get a picture in your head of a particular impressionist style.  Or if I say Georgia O’Keefe – you might get two separate styles in your head – because she has her New Mexico work and her floral work that suggest two separate styles.

Wild GeraniumI don’t have a mature style yet.  I don’t know what my mature style will look like.  I know this:  I love macro photography…  I love revealing things to you that you might not notice as you walk by…  I’ll keep working on it.

Someday, I hope you will be able to look at my pictures and say:  “That’s a Jennifer Schlick… no doubt about it.”  And you’ll be able to say, “Gosh… I used to read her blog when she was first getting started…”

Swamp Buttercup

I can dream, can’t I?…

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