Thursday, April 1, 2010

Chasing Bees (90 of 365)

Chasing Bees (90 of 365), originally uploaded by lighthack.

Ava and I spent a bunch of time watching bees buzz around the deck today (she still loves everything bees). When she took her nap, I got out the camera and went out to see if I could catch one buzzing around. This is what I ended up with. The pattern in the background is the built-in bench on our deck. I thought that it made for a kind of cool background shape. If my neighbors saw me trying to get this shot, they probably would have thought that I had lost my mind.

Here is how I approached this shot:

First, I made the decision that I wanted to completely freeze the bee in flight (as opposed to showing some wing motion), so I knew that I wanted a very fast shutter speed. With this in mind, I put the camera in Shutter Priority Mode (S Mode) and bumped up the shutter to 1/2500 sec. Also, I put the camera in Auto ISO mode. These choices ensured that my shutter snapped at 1/2500 of a second and they left it up to the camera to chose the aperture and ISO that allowed a correct exposure at 1/2500.

Second, I put the lens (Nikkor 105mm f/2.8) in manual focus mode. I knew that autofocus would probably just focus on the wrong elements and hunt all over the place. This forced me to get in tune with manually focusing the shot as the bee flew around.

Third, I snapped many shots.

In my view, setting things as I referenced above and snapping several shots put me in the best position to get lucky with a shot. After all, you only need one of them to come out. And, digital pictures are cheap to take and delete. Also, the bee helped out. This kind of bee tends to fly around in the same general area for a while at a time. This allowed me to experiment and try several times.

I've seen better bee shots on flickr and elsewhere, but I was happy to get this one and I had fun doing it. Oh yeah, the composition with the bench and the bee being pretty close to center of the bench legs was just a lucky break that I chose to exploit with the crop (and a slight rotate).

1 comment:

  1. wow that's a great shot! i'd be too scared of bugs to even get close to a bee