Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Fish vs Flowers: A Total Surprise

"Water Nymph"

Today's image was a complete surprise. It all started with a trip to the Royal Botanical Gardens located here on Ontario. They had two different features within the main greenhouses. Glass Under Glass and Chocolate: The Exhibition. Both a wonderful way to spend a winter morning to be sure. It's a delightful place anytime of the year! But out of everything I photographed, it was the fish in the Mediterranean Greenhouse that held a challenge and got my creativity going.

I was totally not expecting that. I was there to photograph flowers.

I had to work around extreme reflections, low light, darting fish, and moving water. I kept my camera on continuous shutter mode and just kept taking photos whenever there was a slight possibility the fish would approach me. It wasn't until an employee arrived with fish food that they really began to take notice. The conditions meant I needed my fastest glass, the 50mm prime, the ISO up to 400 to allow the speed I needed at 1/500 of a sec, and in order to keep the noise at a minimum and get the exposure I wanted I also bumped my exposure compensation up another +2.7. The aperture was F/3.2. Any smaller and the shutter speed was an issue, and any bigger and I wasn't sure just how much would be in focus.

This was one of the surprising results. And I love it for the watery patterns and motion it contains. It seems a little fantastical to me, like if you were to look away and then look back, the elegant golden sprite might vanish altogether.

I went for tropical flowers. I wound up with fish.
Who knew so much fun was waiting!

I can't say it enough. Be prepared for the unexpected when you decide to photograph your city and surrounding areas. Surprises are always waiting.


  1. This one is a beauty Christine. I'm such a fan of koi shots. It's fun and rewarding. Another element that makes this one work (for me anyway) is the three tones. Great work.

  2. Christine this is a really lovely and cool shot! I also love how you explained everything. What a great image!

  3. Gosh, thank you so much Bob. While processing this one your photographs of the koi definitely came to mind!!! A whole trial and error process happened that day, lol, that's for sure, but I was so excited to have this one shot. Your feedback is always welcome, thanks again! Am loving your Havana series btw... fabulous!

  4. Rachel, I'm so glad the info comes across okay, sometimes I get blogging and forget to break down the actual process for the readers... thanks for tuning in m'dear! Appreciate it!