Yellow Rose in Autumn

October gets over today, and cold rain and winds lash Cambridge. The nights come early. In the midst of all this, a single rose valiantly blooms for the last time in 2012.

Technical Details:

Nikon D80 with external Speedlight SB-600 flash
Tamron 18-250 f/3.6-6.3 Lens
1/60 at f/6.0 130mm
ISO200
Post-processed using Adobe Lightroom 4.1

 

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Darth Vader Rock Formation

Darth Vader Rock Formation

 

At the Borra caves near Visakhapatham, a stalactite formation looks uncannily like Darth Vader, maybe even Emperor Palpatine. What do you think? Click on the picture for a large version.

 

Star Wars - Darth Vader

 

 

Ian McDiarmid as Emperor Palpatine

 

 

 

Technical Details:

 

Nikon D80
Tamron 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 Lens at 32mm
1/60 f/5.6 ISO1600

 

A tangled web!

Autumn mornings offer a great chance to see myriad spider webs drenched in the early morning dew making a million natural necklaces of tiny pearly dew drops. I took these pictures on just one such day. The industrious spider had built this web on the clothesline overnight.

1/60 f/5.0 ISO200 with flash
1/60 f/5.0 ISO200 with flash
1/60 f/5.0 ISO200 with flash

I am constantly amazed at the persistence of the spider to continually attempt to make a web in the most unlikely of places, day after day. Maybe there is a lesson in it for us all….
Technical details

Nikon D80
Sigma 105mm f/2.8 macro lens
Nikon Speedlight SB-600 flash
Processed in Adobe Lightroom 4.1

Common Blue Butterfly – Female

I seem to have forgotten to post this photograph of a British butterfly to go with the other two I have posted before. The picture is that of a common blue butterfly. The males are bluish in colour but the females have varying amounts of blue.

Common blue – female

Seems like a good way to remember the summer gone by and the dreary winters yet to come!

 

Photographing Roses

Last week I had this really nice bunch of gold-coloured roses and I wanted to try out my photography skills using a remote flash on commander mode. I placed the flash on the tripod and right angles to the photograph with some interesting results. One of two of these are with the flash on the camera, but can  you tell the difference?

head-on flash
external flash behind roses
external flash behind rose to the right
external flash at right angles to the camera. Light coming from the left.
External flash right angles to camera from left. Longer exposure.
external flash about 45 degrees to camera in a V arrangement

The main advantage I found to having an external remote flash was to be able to play with the colours and backgrounds. No post-processing carried out for any of these pictures. The roses too look different depending on the light source.

What do you think? Click on any image to see a full-size view.

Technical Details:

Nikon D-80 with remote SB-600 speedlight flash in commander mode
105mm f/2.8 Sigma macro lens

 

Autumn on the iPhone

The last two days I’ve strolled out at lunch time with just my iPhone. This, of course, is not the best camera in the world but it is handy. Here are a few pictures from the iPhone.

The skies in the picture below were dramatically darker than seen here. I did try to post-process this picture to enhance the black but not too successfully.

The common ivy – possibly the best signal that autumn has arrived. The vibrant reds and oranges highlight and make even the most drab of buildings come to life!!

Ivy adorns a brick garage in the village of Ickleton, Cambridgeshire
Ivy leaf

Other leaves are also changing colour at this time of the year. Soon everything will be barren.

But there is always light at the end of the tunnel 🙂

Footpath between Ickleton and Hinxton villages in Cambridgeshire

All these images were touched-up in the iPhone Snapseed app.

 

Hip, Hip…. Rose..

Rose hip – funny name for the fruit of the rose flower.. As autumn sets in the dog roses are now fruiting in their bright reds and oranges.

I believe rose hips make good herbal tea and have a myriad of medicinal benefits. But I’d rather see them on the plant instead!

Picture taken with an iPhone 4s using camera! app. Edited in the app to add drama and increase contrast. Click on the picture for a larger version.