Saturday, May 7, 2016

Pretty Little Faker

This tiny yellow flower is seen in springtime in the Smoky Mountains. It looks like a wild strawberry bloom, and its leaves look strawberry-like, too. But they are fakers. Real strawberry plants, whether wild or cultivated, generally have white or pale pink flowers.

But all beautiful wildflowers in the mountains are fair game for our cameras. We don't care whether they are what they appear to be, or whether they mimic their cousins, or even if they are weeds as this one is. This little guy is named False Strawberry, or Mock Strawberry, but is technically classified as a weed. No matter. It was a perfectly beautiful little bloom begging to be photographed.

I chose a square composition for this flower because of its rounded symmetrical shape. I also darkened the background a little in order to help the flower pop off the screen.

When photographing any plant or flower, the more perfect the better. Most plants have a slight blemish or perhaps an area that a hungry insect has nibbled, but often small areas can be dealt with in Lightroom or Photoshop. But if the plant looks wilted or has brown edges or other issues, take your time to look for a better specimen. No matter how good your software and your skills, it is hard to breathe life into a fading flower.

I stood directly over this flower, shooting straight down on it. I did some cropping to create the square composition, and punched the color slightly in Lightroom. But essentially this is a very simple image with minimal work done to enhance the final version.

Shutter Speed 1/400 sec.  Aperture f/8.  ISO 800.  Lens: Canon 100mm macro f/2.8L IS.  Camera: Canon 7D Mark II.  Handheld.

TODAY'S QUOTE: "My fake plants died because I did not pretend to water them."  --Mitch Hedberg

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