Gloria Grandolini  

Crimson collector by Gloria Grandolini

November 2023 - Crimson collector

November 2023 - Gloria Grandolini


About the Image(s)

I love Hibiscus flowers, and would like to create a tryptic to print and hang that combines the full flower with the anther and the stigma.
I include a photo of what the tryptic would look like. I already presented to this group the first 2 images for comments:
Almost there in August 2022 and Yellow Puzzle in June 2023.
This is the stigma of the Hibiscus. I shot this in Mexico with a tripod - but there was a bit of air. And at that time I did not have the
focus stacking capability in the camera. Is this good enough or should I try to shoot it again with the R5 and focus stacking?

I used Lightroom enhancement feature and some dehazing.

Shot with Canon EOS 80D
100 mmm with Canon lens EF 100 mm f/2.8 L Macro IS USM
1/100 sec at f/8.0
ISO 100 using Tripod

This round’s discussion is now closed!
7 comments posted

Stuart Ord   Stuart Ord
Well, I think it all depends on what satisfies you at the end of the day. Your current image does look a bit soft to me. I can't see any plane of sharp focus here, which could be enlarged by focus stacking were you to do that. So if it were my picture, I would re-take it to get it sharper. There are nice hairs around the stigma ends which I would like to jump out at me.

As I've mentioned, I now routinely take focus brackets, and decide in post whether any one hits the focus I want on its own. If not, I can then stack appropriate images. If one is fine, I delete the rest. (Nothing is better at eating hard disk space than focus brackets!)

The light is nice I think, I would just darken down a bit the top and bottom right corners to make the stigma stand out more.

Turning to your tryptic, I've got to say I'm increasingly interested in multi-image mini portfolios. The US company Lenswork ran a challenge called "Seeing in sixes", which is a project to form portfolios of 6 images on any subject. Some portfolios are shown in their magazines, and some were published in books. I've recently managed to get one of those books, and some of the contents are quite amazing to me. These are not macros, just "ordinary" photos, but they are far better "art" than I can do. These books are not cheap, but I could live with that, but the postage to the UK is daylight robbery! I managed to find this book on ebay, and whilst it took a few weeks to arrive, it was a reasonable cost. I'm looking for a second one!

I guess such portfolios start at tryptics (although there's no reason not to have duets, people just seem to like odd numbers) and run all the way up to portfolios like the PDA's portfolio distinctions. I entered for the bronze level (10 images) a few years ago but made some silly mistakes and it was rejected. I'll have to try again! I made another to the Welsh Photographic Federation (12 images) a couple of years ago, and it was accepted. The PSA also does silver and gold levels with 15 and 20 images needed. Doing these is a sizeable project, but tryptics and sets of 6 are much easier. Yet they tell such a great deal more about many subjects - I love them! So go for your tryptic!! They don't all have to be macro images, but the balance and flow aspects that are much emphasised in the larger portfolio "rules" are just as important here. So, I'd suggest for example that whilst your current images are well arranged in being landscape, portrait, landscape, they are not well arranged in being red, red, yellow. You can't have both with these 3 images, so when re-taking them, I'd think about the balance of the final tryptic.

I'm really looking forwards to your result!!   Posted: 11/05/2023 04:38:06

Gloria Grandolini   Gloria Grandolini
Thank you Stuart, very useful and encouraging feedback   Posted: 11/08/2023 13:40:25

Pat Glenn   Pat Glenn
I love your project idea of the tryptic.
this stigma is too out of focus for me since I cannot find an in focus area to draw me in with. I love little hairs on things and even if they were in focus that might possibly be enough but they don't look in focus either. I would retake.   Posted: 11/12/2023 22:45:54
Gloria Grandolini   Gloria Grandolini
Thanks will do   Posted: 11/20/2023 18:25:37

Carol Sheppard   Carol Sheppard
I personally would shoot again with focus stacking. Your center is so nice and sharp; with the large out-of-focus area right up front, it spoils all the work you've done to obtain that great center piece. The triptych is a lovely idea, though, once you have all three pieces.   Posted: 11/19/2023 22:12:03
Gloria Grandolini   Gloria Grandolini
Thank you Carol, I agree this is a good test for my newly acquired focus stacking capabilities.   Posted: 11/20/2023 18:26:37

Fran Nunn   Fran Nunn
Gloria- I agree with some other comments that the image would benefit from better focus on the stamens and anthers. Triptychs are a lot of fun and I think the 3 images that you are using go together nicely to capture the essence of the hibiscus.

And a comment about Lenswork- it is a great publication to which I have subscribed for years. There are a variety of genres in the different issues and portfolios from landscape to macro. And if it is cost prohibitive to ship across the pond, Stuart, you can get an online subscription to Lenswork. Try this link.   Posted: 11/21/2023 12:51:11