Pines and Dust
Pinecones… and dust. These images were taken when the pine trees were producing their many millions of spores, and an accidental knock as I walked past one set off the inspiration for whole set of images.
"Pinecones… and dust. These images were taken when the pine trees were producing their many millions of spores, and an accidentally knock of one set off the inspiration for whole set of images…."
I had my 105 mm Nikkor micro on anyway as a prerequisite for the small flowers I’d intended to shoot; it was once again Ramson season in Serpentine Wood, and I make an annual pilgrimage to see them. It’s my favourite time of year in the Wood, with the air absolutely heady with the scent of Wild Garlic.
Anyway, as I said, I brushed past a pine tree as we worked our way back home, and my wife pointed out the spores flying everywhere (mostly, I think, in relation to her hayfever).
And that was it. The inspiration for this series of shots. My wife gave the branches a flick, and I hammered away at 11 fps to get a series of quick captures – I’m afraid hammering the shutter is sometimes the only way, particularly when your perfect shot is so transient. I don’t normally do this, but this situation merited it.
The lighting was fairly easy – pick a spot with the sun backlighting, or near backlighting to avoid lens flare, the spores as they’re released. Get in close with the micro lens. Use a high shutter speed to try to gain a still capture, effectively freezing the spores in motion (and, as much as possible, the pine cone’s movement from being flicked).
Enjoy the mini-gallery of my efforts. I particularly liked the couple of ‘vortex’-type shots with the spores flying out in a kind of spiral.
All the best,
Chasing Rays Photography.