Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Simple Things

On a day where the news covered how Gaddafi's forces brutally pushed rebels out of Ras Lanouf while Europe stood around dazed and confused, where Wisconsin's Republican governor and his rubber-stamping state house ran rough shod over collective bargaining, and Florida's own Republican jihad against its own citizens has gotten under way, I just needed to walk around and think about something else, anything else, besides politics.

Flowering Shrubbery

Tree Fern

And so I walked about a bit and appreciated the small simple things in life. These were taken near where I work. The day was rainy and overcast most of the day, with the rain finally tapering off around 11am. But the overcast clouds remained, providing a muted, diffused lighting ideal for these subjects. Both of these were taken with the Sigma 30mm regular FourThirds fast 30mm on my E-P2. I opened up the lens to f/1.8 (it's widest aperture is 1:1.4), and used manual focusing.

The soft focusing of the lens accentuated the delicate details of the subjects. I'm sure that a more expensive lens would have provide greater resolution at f/1.8, but that's not so much what I was after. The performance of the Sigma was just fine. For the money, I think it's a damn good lens.

Backyard Clouds Color

This image was actually taken the evening before. As the front began to roll through the area, the sky above my house began to produce yet another remarkable light show as the sun was beginning to truly slip below the horizon. This was taken with the E-P2 and my OM 50mm with adapters, stopped down to f/4.

Ground Fern

And then finally back to this afternoon on the way home. The field on University that was former wooded wetlands, and was stripped clean last year to make way for development that didn't occur, has started to come back, just a little. My ground ferns, which were so thick and magnificent before the destruction, have started to grow again this spring. I don't know how long they'll last, but the area is rapidly filling with rushes and young willow saplings; the saplings are almost as tall as I am.

The ground fern was taken with the same E-P2/30mm setup, but this time I closed down a bit more to f/2.2 because of a gentle breeze that was pushing the frond in and out of the plane of focus. Again, it was manual focusing.

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