April 29, 2008

Photo of the Week: April 22, 2008

HOW I GOT THE SHOT: Light, form, color, texture, pattern: Take any one of these and you've got the foundation for a great photograph. In my classes, we learn to identify these design elements, single them out, and then advance to images built around two or more of these concepts. The wild irises of Mt. Gilboa are famous enough to merit a trail in their name in Beit Alpha National Park, located along the scenic route that winds from the Beka Valley up to Afula. I finally managed a visit there in the early spring of 2006. While there was plenty of seasonal color, to my dismay I only spotted this single iris which happened to be at the peak of its flowering. When I encounter a subject with potential, I'll often walk full circle around it to study the light, but here it was immediately obvious that a backlit angle would provide the greatest drama. I fiddled a bit more with my camera, mounted on a tripod with a macro lens, to create a background that would both complement the colors in the petals while isolating the flower from anything overly distracting to its form. Back in my digital darkroom, I applied a few quick finishing touches. I cropped the bottom so the stem would appear shooting upward from the lower right corner and I darkened the background just slightly to add emphasis to the backlit petals.

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