High-Key Orchid, IOW and Flickr – updated

21 01 2010

If you liked my previous post I hope that you will like this one as well. As the name suggests I decided to continue in the High-Key (sometimes called also Hi-Key or Hi Key) series. Unfortunately, the Cyclamen flower died since last session, as many times in past 😦 Fortunately, we plant orchids at home, mostly of genus Phalaenopsis, and one of them, white variety what a coincidence :), started to bloom a week ago.

If you ever tried to take photos of orchids, you will probably agree with me that it’s not an easy task to get an appealing image of them. I found out that there are 2 ways which can lead to satisfiable results: 1.  take a close-up/macro photo of blossom centre or 2.  take a photo of whole branch/stem with blossoms. I tried both of these and converted them into images you can see below.

[Update:] The left image seemed to have too low contrast and looked like covered with a white/grey veil so I increased contrast a bit and darkened those central spots. The updated image is on the right. Which do you prefer?

1/4 sec. @ 100 mm, f/14, ISO 100

This is a classical composition for this kind of orchid. I like the dreamy snowy feeling of it. For the next image I shot a single blossom on a branch/stem and cloned out the rest of the stem which went to the left from the blossom and left the frame there.

1/10 sec. @ 100 mm, f/6.3, ISO 100

I think that this kind of images, as this 2nd one and the Cyclamen couple from previous post, might be suitable for additional adjustments, e.g. applying texture overlays or simple colour overlays. What do you think?

Now I wonder what kind of flower I will try to capture next because we don’t have any other white flowers at home. I think that I could try some blossom groups of this orchid. Let’s see.

One more information I’d like to share with you. This photo of a Cyclamen from previous post is current IOW on NatureScapes.net in Photo and Digital Art forum.

And finally, I created a Flickr account so from now on you can find my images also there. The link is also on the right side in section My other pages.

That’s all for today, let me know what you think about these images and enjoy the snow and freezy weather  where you have it!

Technical information: both images were taken with Canon EOS 450D camera and Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM macro lens upon a tripod in a dim winter light during cloudy day, indoors, with a glossy white sheet as a background.




10 responses

23 01 2010
Barbara K

I love your close up on the right with more contrast. I would have done the same thing. Those little spots have personality! Your portrait image is very nicely composed. I would like a tad more depth of field to avoid the blurry stem, but that’s just MO. all are beautifully composed and captured. You’re starting a great collection of these images.

24 01 2010
Tomas Turecek

Thank you, Barbara! I want to play a bit more with the second image. I’d like to try some overlay textures. Let’s see how it will come up.

24 01 2010
Jules K

Very nice work, Thomas! You did an excellent job with the white-on-white look.

24 01 2010
Tomas Turecek

Thank you, Jules! I appreciate your kind words.

25 01 2010

klidne jeste toho kontrastu pridej. Nic se tomu nestane. jinak to vypada slibne.

25 01 2010
Tomas Turecek

Cau, no prave, ze s vyssim kontrastem se mi to uz nelibi. Ztmavi se tim stiny a ty tecky uprostred a zmeni to celkovy ton fotky tak, ze to prilis pritahuje pozornost. V tehle serii dost bojuju s tim, co se libi mne a co se libi ostatnim. Snazim se najit nejaky kompromis. Kazdopadne dik za nazor 😉

26 01 2010
Bernie Kasper

Great shots Tomas..I like the second much better, just enough contrast to give it a little depth but not too much to take away from the hi-key.

The third one is just a bit too hi-key for me, but a few adjustments should bring it around !!

26 01 2010
Tomas Turecek

Thank you Bernie. I was told to go for higher contrast many also by other in case of my high-keys so I guess I’ll have to think about it an try what yet works and what not.

29 01 2010
Anita Bower

I like them! I prefer the one on the right. I’ve mixed feelings about the out of focus stem–bothered me at first, but then, not. I am enjoying these whit-on=-white photos and, againg, I thank you for inspiring me to do the same!

Curious that you can grow an orchid but not a cyclamen. For me, it is the reverse, though I haven’t tried an orchid.

29 01 2010
Tomas Turecek

Thank you , Anita, I also enjoy your Cyclamen wows. It is really strange with growing different plants at our home. We had Cyclamen several times and it always died very quickly. I have found out that it needs lower temperature, around 16 degrees centigrade but even though we moved it to cooler room it died. My wife suspects supplier from overfilling flowers with water and therefore they die soon. I don’t know. With orchids it is really interesting. We have them on windowsills with windows towards south-west and they grow just perfectly. We have 6 orchids, mostly of genus Phalaenopsis but also 2 other and they all bloom during year. Some of them even 3 or 4 times a year and blossoms last even a month. My father, on the other had, also tried to grow them on the same side (southwest) and they always died.

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