Nature Photography in Your Own Backyard

Nature Photography in Your Own Backyard
by Kristel Schneider

Nature Photography in your Backyard sounds easy but you still have to walk around and look for the right light, different angles and backgrounds to create an interesting image.
Yesterday afternoon I decided to remove the dust from my Sigma 150mm macro lens. I noticed that lately I was stuck to my 300mm L 4.0 lens for close-up photography so I made myself walk around with the Sigma lens and I looked for a nice insect or a nice flower.

This little Crab Spider (Thomisidae) was waiting for its next pray. I did not see the spider at first because it was white and sitting on a white flower.
For me ‘the white on white’ was interesting  so I looked around for some nice soft background light. I turned and turned to get another  flower  in the upper part of the frame to make the composition complete.

The white little spider has two orange/red stripes and while I was looking for different angles I noticed an orange Lily nearby. In my mind this could be a nice repetition of the two colors and the white from the flower against the orange background would provide a nice color contrast.  While waiting for the little spider to move into the right position on the flower I walked around and tried out different angles and positions.

Both images were taken with a Canon 5DMII -Sigma 150 Macro lens, natural light.

Nature backyard photography tips:

  • Look for an interesting  subject (flowerbeds, insects, different details, water movement, etc.) and study it.
  • Think about different compositions.
  • Look for the right light (natural light or fill flash, reflectors)
  • Look for a nice background color and/or elements.
  • Walk around your subject and try out different angles.

NatureScapes.net: Image of the week selection

Image of the week in category Flora and Macro
by Kristel Schneider

Congratulations – Kristel Schneider IOW 11th May, 2012! by Greg Downing
– NatureScapes.net

I just found out that my image: Wood Sorrel,  has been  selected as ‘Image Of the Week’ at Naturescapes.Net (a photography forum) in the category, Flora and Macro.

Some feedback:

– Very painterly, looks a bit like a fantasy forest.

– Very cool. Excellent use of blurring in both foreground and background in a way that enhances the subject rather than distracting from it.

– I enjoy this very much. A dream-like work of art.

– Delicate, ethereal and just beautiful! This is gorgeous Kristel!
– Very much out of a fairy tale, Kristel. Lovely in all respects.

Click here to see more images from my Wood Sorrel series.

The first Woman Only Nature Photography Tour in Iceland

Iceland – Photography Workshop for Woman Only
Southern Iceland and Highlands in 9 days

Photographers: Kristel Schneider and Marketa Kalvachova
Date: 4 – 12 July 2013

Iceland, an inspiriting and unique popular destination amongst photography tourists. This is one of the reasons why Kristel Schneider and Marketa Kalvachova have chosen this destination for the first women’s only Nature Photography Workshop Tour. To explore top photographic locations in a female only environment participants will reconnect with themselves, develop their creativity and most of all feel free in a group who shares the same interests and creative mindset.

What to expect during this trip
Diverse scenery will take your breath away as well as the different light conditions and untouched nature sceneries. We will explore the South coast of Iceland by car and along walking trails. Although the main focus will be Landscape Photography those of you who like macro or close-up photography will have plenty of opportunities to indulge during the walks. You will get personal field instruction and photo feedback. There will be no competition or lots of technical talks but a great learning experience, and of course a lot of fun with great out-door activities. We will travel in a small group and sleep in guesthouses whose warm and welcoming owners will make you feel at home. In the evening we will share enjoyable nice local food.

Photographic topics
Glaciers, glaciers lagoons with ice rocks, rugged coastlines, waterfalls, meadows with wild flowers, spouting geyser, seals, hot bath and much more.

Term and duration
4 – 12 July 2013  – 9 days and 8 nights

Click here for more information.

Color Transformation

Color Transformation
by Kristel Schneider

This weekend I met, for the first time the members of  Massifs Centraux (a collective from four local Photographers). Together we explored an area nearby the Mont-Dore (Auvergne -France), Col de Guéry. Although the calender tells us we are in Spring, the weather is reacting differently with colder temperatures.  Between rain showers and thunderstorms I  was able  to take some images.

The Col de Guéry , is located in a regional nature park, Volcans d’Auvergne.
Due to the altitude (1268) and the colder Spring temperatures you can see that the tree tops in the Col de Guéry show a different color pallet then in lower parts of the Auvergne, where you already can see the different tints of green.
The leaf buds in the valley are still closed and the colors are gradually transforming from a  nice red pastel color glow to different tints of green. But before we can see the green leafs we still  have to wait a couple more weeks.

Images are taken with Canon 5DMII, 24-105 MM  and Canon 300 L mm.

Reportage – Old Flour Mill

Reportage – Old flour Mill
by Kristel Schneider

Le Moulin de Graveyroux –
Saint-Dier d’Auvergne –
France

A couple of weeks ago I made a photo reportage about an old flour mill, le Moulin de Graveyroux in Saint-Dier d’Auvergne, constructed in 1850. The old owner was very proud to show me around. This mill still provides flour for a many bakers in Livradois-Forez, the regional park in  Auvergne, France. The owner is one of the many ‘artisans’ still working according to the traditional way.

The image below is from a Plansichter, the oldest working machine in France.
The plansichter is a back-and-forth sieve to sift the grounded grain.

Oldest working 'Plansichter' machine in France
The light was poor in the flour mill so I used my flash for some fill light. All images are taken with a Canon 5DMII – 24-105 mm lens.

Click here for the whole photo reportage.

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