Thistle Down

These pictures all have one thing in common – thistle-down. On a walk this weekend we came across a large patch of thistles with their down in clumps and mats like exploded cotton pillows.

The white backgrounds for this subject were inspired by Karen McRae’s (drawandshoot) recent series of fantastic photos (see also this link and this one too). I come nowhere near what she has achieved (all that simplicity) nor am I trying to. However, it was fun to try a white background when my tendency has been to find a dark one to contrast against this kind of subject. Most of the processing for these has been with minor adjustments of levels in Lightroom with occasional light cropping. However, a few images were bracketed and processed as an exploration for me in macro HDR. The captions indicate which of them were done that way.

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To open the gallery view below click on any  thumbnail, use the arrows to navigate and escape to return to this page.

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Canon 5Dii, Canon 100mm/f2.8 macro,  ISO100, f 2.8 and 3.2 for all shots, wide range of shutter speeds.

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18 thoughts on “Thistle Down

  1. I love how you mix in your HDR pieces with conventional, and so seamlessly! This really tells me that you are really mastering the HDR process, Ehpem. I do admit, I stared at quite of few of these shots really taking in all the details you’ve so perfectly captured.

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  2. Very beautiful images. (I would love to come over to your blog more often to see your wonderful images but your site grinds my laptop to a halt (I think it might be the size of your images!).

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    • Hi Meanderer,
      I miss your visits. If the problem occurs when you are going to my home page then that might occur because I allow a lot of previous posts to display on one page. I will change that since I set it when I was doing a long series and wanted them all to display together.
      If you experience the problem coming directly in to a particular post, then it could be the image size (though they tend to run in the 800kb range), it could be the number of images, or if there is a gallery it will be downloading the image information for a while. I am shifting to a lower image size just this week, mostly because I am hoping that if I match what WP wants for its display, that they might not be transformed so much, losing a lot of subtlety. I hope that these changes will make it a more friendly place to visit for you, and probably others who have the problem too.
      Please keep me posted, I would appreciate that.

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      • Everything works much quicker now, Ehpem – my computer hasn’t locked up at all. Even your homepage with several posts only took a couple of seconds to download. Thank you for that – it means I can now come and have a good look at your work. I hope you are happy with any lower image sizes you may have introduced.

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      • Hi Meanderer – thank you for testing it again. Today’s images are the usual size as I am still working through versions I prepared a week ago for the blog. The last few posts have seen a mix of sizes. So, in a week or so when I have fully moved to the smaller sized image, it should be even quicker. It seems to me that it must have been the home page as a problem. Perhaps the occasional post with 10 or 12 images too. Anyway, this is very encouraging, and it will be nice to have you back, and if there have been others put off by slow loading, I hope they find their way back too. Thanks again for mentioning the problem, it is always good to know.

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    • Thanks! I think the first one is a bee and the second one is a fly in disguise (it has short antennae and only one full pair of wings). More of this subject matter coming up soon.

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    • I have been admiring some high key photos for quite a while, though I did not know the name, nor even how they were done. I guess that is something else to work on at some time.

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