LO 1,2: Aperture priority, manual focus

LO 1,2

This term I’ll be focussing (literally) on Kew Gardens with a view to the final project. Kew Gardens fits the location requirements defined in the course documents.

This week we were asked to explore aperture priority and depth of field with auto ISO. (I set my max to 3200.) I like photos to have a narrative. I chose one spot with a good view just to see what the camera exposed. And there were plenty of surprises! Here, with the view from the Palm House over the Pond at Kew Gardens, near Victoria Gate, at first shot all  looks peaceful. But then you look closer, and so much is going on.

After three shots with 50mm prime lens to illustrate depth of field – one showing the main building in focus, one with the geraniums with long depth of field and narrow aperture and then one with shallow depth of field and wide aperture – I switched to micro Nikkor 105mm 1:2.8 to have a closer look at the flowers. I had looked first at the petals but the camera saw something I had failed to notice, a little fly with gorgeous colouring that perfectly matched the flower. It stayed perfectly still while I tried to get the best close-up.

I managed to stop taking photos of the fly, and attached a zoom Nikkor 70-300mm, set the focus to single shot.

Next, I raised the lens to the sky. There were some Canada Geese flying over, clearly coming into land. I zoomed in max, but again forgot to set a wide aperture to maximise shutter speed. I put the camera on repeat exposure with cotinuous focus.

After that, not to be outdone, the gulls started circling and generally showing off. I liked how they perched on the statuary, as if they are showing who’s in charge. Back home, I edited the photos in Camera Raw, enhancing with contrast, colour to bring out the freshly autumnal colours against the morning light.

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