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Looking a little closer.

Recently I purchased of a pack of close-up filters by Polaroid. I longed to use them but the weather thwarted me. After days of waiting the light was good enough so I rushed to attach them to the standard lens of my trusty Nikon DSLR.

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These are my first attempts, after the worst were deleted. My failures were mostly trouble with focus. It is difficult to get distance to subject right but trial and error resulted in the following shots. Let me know what you think. I need to do some research now and find out a bit more about using them effectively and efficiently. I shall dig into my photography books and copies of the wonderful “Outdoor Photography” magazines.

First a couple of shots of a Hamemelis “Jelena” followed by looking at the spent seed heads of Echinops, Clematis and Eryngium.

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A close shot of this Buddleja illustrates the soft texture of the surface of the leaves. The texture of the Cotoneaster berry with its hard glossy red jacket is in strong contrast with the matt black berries of the Hypericum.

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The leaves of the variegated Osmanthus are in every shade of yellow and bronzed green.   The similarly spiky edged leaves of Eryngium are dry and grey as old bone.

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The next few shots are of the old dessicated flowers of asters. They are so delicate – it makes you wonder how they stand up the strong winter winds.

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Taking close up shots of fennel seeds within their seed heads shows the restricted depth of field of the close up lenses. Look closely at the differences and you will find the subtle changes by altering slightly the central point of focus.

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The flowers of Mahonia japonica are usually seen in long racemes but a close up lens lets us appreciate them as individuals. I had not realised until I looked at these pics that each little flower is a double form.

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We grow several trees for their interesting bark and in winter the low angle of the sun allows us to see golden light brightening it up.

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Tansy is such a common flower we rarely take time to have a close look and appreciate its beauty. I tried to show them at their best here but sadly not too well.

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Looking at the light playing on sticks and stems brings out their beautiful structure and delicate colours.

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Grasses look stunning in any bright light and when studied close up their beauty increases further.

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These little shaving brush flower heads expose their softness of texture when viewed in close up with each fine thread catching the light.

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I shall finish this selection of my close up photos with the soft pink blooms of our Prunus subhirtella autumnalis. I shall keep trying and play around with the close ups and post again when I get more of a handle on them.

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By greenbenchramblings

A retired primary school head teacher, I now spend much of my time gardening in our quarter acre plot in rural Shropshire south of Shrewsbury. I share my garden with Jude my wife a newly retired teacher , eight assorted chickens and a plethora of wildlife. Jude does all the heavy work as I have a damaged spine and right leg. We also garden on an allotment nearby. We are interested in all things related to gardens, green issues and wildlife.

6 replies on “Looking a little closer.”

Love seeing all your photos, and the Mahonia japonica is absolutely beautiful. Thank you for sharing especially today. We are in the midst of a major snowstorm with over a foot coming our way. Morning chores are done and hot coffee is in hand. 🙂

I think you will be needing lots of coffee at the moment. We have trouble with rain and wind but no sign of snow yet. Our veg plot is under water and our over wintering crops are rotting away. Still we can try again can’t we! Stay warm. Malc


Hmmm, I don’t know anything about them. I always thought you had wonderful macro type shots, but all I use is a Lumix that fits in my pocket so… They look lovely Malc . Happy 2014! Margie

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