A dozen blooming flowers in a time lapse video

I just watched this mesmerising video of these beautiful flowers opening with my daughter. Great start to a day.

Featured in @VSCO Grid this week

I’m pretty pleased that one of my photos is featured in VSCO Grid this week. This tree grows in my mother’s garden and I was trying to find a perspective on the tree that felt interesting to me and this shot pretty much did that for me. I still haven’t found my ideal perspective on this tree but this photo works well enough.

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow tree
Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow tree

Colours and contrasts with flowers

I went for a walk the other day with my camera in my neighbourhood and came across some beautiful subject matter. I’m not sure whether I really ever do subject matter like this justice when I shoot it but I feel compelled to capture it as best I can regardless.

Two things stood out for me while I was taking these photos and when I edited them afterwards. For starters, the photos I take with my iPhone 5 (edited with the VSCO Cam app – my favourite after the standard photo app which does a better job with HDR for the most part) are pretty comparable to the photos I take with my DSLR for the most part. The iPhone certainly takes great looking photos and each phone takes better images than the previous model. Here are some examples:

The second thing that stood out for me was just how much clean black and white images appeal to me in contrast to a common grainy effect you get when you apply many black and white presets to images. There are times when the grainy effect can add to the image but I tend to prefer minimal grain with stark contrasts in my black and white images if I can achieve that.

Little pink flowers - black and white

I like how most of these images came out. I used a combination of the No. 1 VSCO Film preset collection I have (I’m lusting for No. 4 – slide film) as well as more stylised presets I picked up along the way. I go through phases when I prefer the VSCO Film presets because they are much closer to actual colours and times when the stylised stuff just seems to work better. On a related note I notice that images published on 500px tend to emphasise the heavily edited and stylised images and they look beautiful. I’m just not sure whether I like that approach as a general rule although it is a matter of degrees once you started editing your images beyond some sort of quick auto-tone correction.

Here are some of my highlights from my photoset:

Not so easy shooting Jasmine

I spent some time shooting a Jasmine bush today and I found it tricky taking decent shots. My style seems to be pretty focused when it comes to flowers and Jasmine bushes are really busy plants to shoot.

I think I captured a couple good ones, at least photos I like. I’ll see how they come out when I process them.

Spring in my click

I started Spring with my camera in my hands. We have two plum trees growing in our garden so I started Monday and this morning with an impromptu photo shoot of the blossoms on the trees. Here is a taste of the two albums I published to Flickr:

The albums are:

White flower

One more photo and then I have work to do. I love the depth of field effect, especially for photos like this:

DSC_5883-Edit.jpg by Ben Betz

Peach blossoms

I took these at a peach orchard recently.

Awesome sunflower photo

I love great sunflower photos and always seem to be on the wrong side of the highway when driving past a sunflower field with my camera. I came across this photo after linking to Nick van der Leek’s Flickr photo stream and I love it:

sunflower near ventersdorp

I feel a strong need to take loads of photos this weekend. I have to give my new Lightroom 4 installation a solid run through.