I am so pleased with this image of a red mum in a pot on our front steps.
Plan A today was to spend a couple of hours at the botanic garden, about a 30 minute drive from home. I had my bag packed with two mFT bodies. One with the 60mm F2.8 macro and one with the 12-100 F4 zoom.
According the the weather apps on my iPhone I expected about 50% cloud cover mostly from high altitude clouds. I thought that would be perfect for providing diffused light on little flowery subjects.
As it turned out the weather improved more quickly than I expected, so that when I was ready to leave the house I was seeing blue sky with just a few remaining clouds. I decided to abort the mission and instead go fishing.
However, before switching gears I still wanted to press the shutter a few times. That always makes me feel good!
Laurie had just bought two mum pots at our local Market Basket grocery story for $3.79 each. I’m really not much of a mum fan because they always look a bit synthetic and plasticky to me, though the pot of red flowers and pot of yellow flowers do make out front steps look nice.
When a large cloud briefly blocked the sun I took this image. The sun was behind the flower, but with the cloud diffusing the light, this composition does not look backlit. There was plenty of indirect light hitting the flower. I like the collection of rainwater in the lower leaves, and what appears to be dust or pollen sprinkled on the red petals around the center.
"Mum's the Word"
Panasonic GX85 with Olympus 60mm macro lens and CPL
1/125 sec, F8, ISO 640
Processed with Lightroom
The main thing I did in Lightroom was to use the radial tool to create a vignette in the corners. In this way I could reduce the brightness of the green background, which helps direct one's attention to the center flower without being distracted (as much) by the background.
A circular polarizer was also used, though my angle to the sun was not optimal. I think it nevertheless helped cut down the shine of the petals and enhanced the colors. The light cutting characteristic of a polarizer explains the ISO of 640, which otherwise would have been closer to the native base ISO of 200.