Today I have some bluebonnet close-ups that I took in the park near my house. Bluebonnets mean spring and I haven’t seen the huge fields of them yet but there are many around my neighborhood park.
First I went out in the morning to get the bluebonnets on the opposite side of the park from the sunrise. It was a very clear morning and I took this just as the first rays of sun light were coming over the horizon. You can see there is quite a bit of contrast because of the side-lighting from the rising sun. I wanted this light because early morning sunlight on a clear morning is clean and golden helps bring out the blue color in the flowers.
I got down really low to take this trying to get this flower centered between the two in the background. I only brought my short lens in the morning because the camera easily fits in my jacket pocket with this lens. So, the first photo and the next are shot at 50mm. You get much less background blur with a 50mm focal length than you would with a telephoto focal length, but I can shoot 50mm hand-held without much concern. And the Nikon Z50 with 16-50mm lens fits right in my jacket pocket with ease.
The photo below was taken 10 minutes later than the first when the sun had a chance to get up in the sky and the lighting was a little more even. One challenge with these photos was the background. There isn’t much pretty beyond the flowers so I tried to just include some yellow grass behind the flowers when possible.
In the afternoon, it was partly cloudy but I went out again to shoot with a longer lens. I wanted to try a longer focal length because it allows me to really blur out the background better isolating the flower. But the long focal length does usually mean that I need a tripod in lower light conditions like this. Shot with same Nikon Z50 but with 50-250mm lens; still compact but won’t really fit in my pocket.
I managed to wait out a cloud and the setting sun just made it over some trees to light up the flowers for about 5 or 10 minutes before sunset. The below image was captured at 160mm focal length and f/7.1. There is some good background blur, but a wider aperture would have helped.
The setting sun did give me a gold tinge to the greenery as opposed to the grayer look you would get with a midday sun. I think this really helps the blue to pop out.
Well, happy spring. I look forward to finding the Paintbrushes blooming as well soon.