"Macro Art In Nature"

Explorations in the artistic world of macro photography.

Blue Series – “Ancient Promenade” – Brazil Agate Rock.

Just finished up the “Blue Series” of images, with a few going to a client up in Minnesota.
Thought I would post this one, showing a cosmic dancer promenading throughout the galaxies.
Can you see the dancer?
This piece is from a Brazil Agate rock created with strong backlighting, the Canon 100mm macro and extension tubes, … and other stuff!

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Ancient Promenade”
Blue Series

I took my sons to the State Fair today, where they promptly took me everywhere there was to go and they did it multiple times.
My chair is calling me now! :)

Everyone take care, and thanks for visiting.
Michael

Michael Brown – Photographer

“Macro Art In Nature”

October 17, 2008 Posted by | abstract, art, blog, canon, composition, Digital, DSLR, Fine Art Nature Photography, gems, landscapes, lapidary, life, macro, Macro Photographer, minerals, nature, Nature Photographer, paintings, Photo Blog, photoblog, photography, photoshop, rock hound, rocks, slabs | , , , , , | 7 Comments

“Eruption” – Ancient Landscapes Series

“The greatest teacher on the use of light in photography, … is the light itself.”
M.B.

Often, I can look through the viewfinder of the camera and become instantly entranced with what I see when looking at certain rocks and minerals.
With some of those cut slabs of rock, it is almost as if I am viewing the world as it existed millions of years ago, and a image of that landscape that was captured within the rock itself.
It can become absolutely intriguing to one’s thoughts!
It is also something that I will always get in the world of macro photography. “Intrigue”

The image below and one included in my “Ancient Landscapes” Series, was created from one of the many “agate” slabs that I have on hand.
It reminds me of an eruption that might have occurred millions of years ago, when the existing land was barren of any vegetation, deadly gases rising into the air, stars twinkling in the sky.
I would imagine, and would like to believe, that during all those millions of years here on earth, there was a scene somewhere that looked just like this.
Possible? Who knows, … but I like dreaming!

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
“Eruption”
“Ancient Landscapes” – Series

Everyone take care, … and thanks for stopping by.
Michael

Michael Brown – Photographer

“Macro Art In Nature” – Website

October 13, 2008 Posted by | abstract, art, blog, botanical, canon, composition, Digital, DSLR, Fine Art Nature Photography, flora, flowers, gems, hiking, horticulture, insects, landscapes, lapidary, life, macro, Macro Photographer, minerals, nature, Nature Photographer, outdoors, paintings, Photo Blog, photoblog, photography, photoshop, rock hound, rocks, slabs, Wildlife | , , , , , | 6 Comments

Photographing Grass, “The Focal Cram”. How I Approach This Subject.

And just how do I approach photographing grass in the field?
It is very easy to do, … and so I created this computer rendering for you to look at which is very close to what I was viewing the other day while out in the field.
This rendering helps to somewhat show the distances between certain areas that I was photographing. (About 20 feet)
I did not spend a great deal of time with this rendering, so of course the grasses, tree, shrubs, etc., are not all that accurate for its texture, size, and so on, … but it is very accurate to the overall layout that I was seeing.
The rendering was created with “Vue 6 Esprit”.

You can click on the image below for a larger view along with the numbered areas.

You can look at the image to see where I have the camera/lens placement.
I simply put down a small tarp to sit on in front of that first layer/row of grass, put out my gear on the tarp, put the small cooler down, got down to ground level to study my surroundings, and then decided to start shooting.
For the images below, I either used the Canon 100-400mm or the older 75-300mm lens, … depending on which lens my youngest son swiped to go off in his hunt for insects.
For these types of images, I prefer the sun to be behind the subject area but still sort of high in the sky, as I am shooting through the grassy areas and that grass will already give me plenty of diffusion.
I normally shoot with the lens wide open, adjusting the setting of the lens for detail when my tastebuds change, … but usually it is only a slight change.
Also, because of shooting wide open and the usual amount of light that is available, I will almost always hand hold the camera which gives me so much freedom while searching for the all important compositions.

Now, the first image below.
This image was created while shooting through the existing grass in area #1, and the subject area is the grassy area located between #2 and #3.
The camera/lens position is low to the ground, shooting through existing grass for diffusion, and allowing a small area in #1 to be more open in front of the lens, which allows more details in the white seed that has been caught up in the blades of grass.
Low to the ground, shooting through the blades of grass for some diffusion, overhead but slightly behind backlighting, gave me a interesting scene to play with.
The very thin blades of grass in the background, along with some golden areas of light from above, is always a hit with me!

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Grass #1

The second image was created by shooting through the grass of area #1, focusing in on the front edge of area #3, and slightly backing off on the focus to create a look with less detail.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Grass #2

The third image was created simply by moving the camera to the right side of area #1 in a area with less grass to shoot through, pointing the lens in the area of #4, and focusing at the front edge of the grass line. It looks very similar to Grass #2, particularly with the light.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Grass #3

The fourth image was created by raising the camera above area #1, pointing the lens in between the areas of #6 and #7 to get a touch of shadow and highlight areas, and then backing off on the focus ever so slightly.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Grass #4

The fifth image was created right from ground level and by shooting up through the grassy area of #1, pointed upwards through the areas of #4 and #5 for even more diffusion, and into the shrub area of #8 with its overhanging branches.
There were absolutely no details that could have been achieved within this image.
The image was flipped horizontally, because my tastebuds wanted it that way!

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
Shrub #1

Then, … when you think that the day is done, … and you have seen everything there is to see, … that is when you see something that has been there all along, … about 4 feet away.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
“Argiope Spider”

The idea of shooting through foliage with a wide open lens in order to obtain that blurred/soft look for your subject is nothing new, … but something that has been ignored by many for awhile.
You can also do this with a smaller lens, and using my now famous “Cram It” method, (you may laugh now), or use a longer focal length like the two lenses mentioned above to do the “Focal Cram”. Another one of my old terms! : )
Finally, I think that the choice of areas to shoot is very important.
Choose areas like you see above in the rendered image with open areas, some shadow and highlighted areas, areas of thick vegetation, some thin areas of vegetation, etc.
You must give yourself a chance!
Give yourself a chance to find the light and interesting subjects and compositions all in one place.
Planning ahead is a good thing!

Okay, ….. enough of my mouth.
Hope that this particular post can give someone some ideas to try.
It is sort of hard to explain it within e-mails, so I thought I would come up with something like this.

Everyone take care,
Michael

Michael Brown – Photographer

“Macro Art In Nature” – Website

October 8, 2008 Posted by | abstract, art, blog, botanical, canon, composition, Digital, DSLR, fauna, Fine Art Nature Photography, flora, flowers, hiking, horticulture, insects, landscapes, life, macro, Macro Photographer, nature, Nature Photographer, outdoors, paintings, Photo Blog, photoblog, photography, photoshop, Wildlife | , , , , , | 15 Comments

“Ancient Avian Migration” – In Macro!

I still continue today to search for those beautiful cut slabs of rocks and minerals which gives me the look of an ancient landscape, a landscape with a artistic appeal to the viewer, one that has never been seen before, one that draws the viewer within to study, and maybe a image which allows that viewer to dream.
Within many of those slabs that do give me the impression of a landscape, some of them will possess what I guess you could call “stress fractures” within certain areas of the rock.
At first, they look like simple cracks in the rock.
But with a closer look and under some high magnification, those lines or stress fractures are often bent into a shape just like those lines we use to draw as kids in our pictures, … a slight bend or dip in the middle of the line which gives the look of a bird or birds that are flying in the distance.
Couple those stress fractures that looks like birds flying in the distance, along with a intriguing, colorful, and ancient looking landscape, … then one can have hours upon hours of creating from just one small area of any size slab of rock.
This allows me to dream, and dreaming is a huge part of my creativity!

The first image here was created from a small piece of agate rock, and reminds me of a desert with scattered plants throughout the landscape, a dust storm brewing over the horizon, and the birds trying to stay ahead of that dust storm during their long and ancient migration.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
“Ancient Avian Migration” – #1
“Ancient Landscapes” – Series

The second image shown here reminds me of a large migration of birds that are flying above a body of water and the waves within. It also was created from a small piece of agate rock.

© 2008 – Michael Brown
* Copying/downloading of images is prohibited.
“Ancient Avian Migration” – #2
“Ancient Landscapes” – Series

It is fairly hard to see exactly how these stress fractures will stand out in a image unless viewed at around 800 pixels, … then they really take on that intriguing appeal.
These images were created using the Canon 100mm macro, one or more extension tubes, reversed 50mm Nikkor lens, strong backlight, reflectors, … and patience!

I hope that everyone has been doing well, … now let me get to some overdue e-mail.
Have been on the road shooting, and now it is time to finally sit down for awhile!

Thanks for stopping by everyone,
Michael

Michael Brown – Photographer

“Macro Art In Nature” – Website

October 1, 2008 Posted by | abstract, art, blog, canon, composition, Digital, DSLR, fauna, Fine Art Nature Photography, flora, flowers, gems, hiking, horticulture, landscapes, lapidary, life, macro, Macro Photographer, minerals, nature, Nature Photographer, outdoors, paintings, Photo Blog, photoblog, photography, photoshop, rock hound, rocks, slabs, Wildlife | , , , , , | 16 Comments

   

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