songographyYou Can’t Always Get What You Want by, naturally, The Rolling Stones is Kathy’s song at You’ll-shoot-your-eyes-out Song-ography this week. Can I just say, I am not a Stones fan? I hope you don’t mind too much, but somehow I just never liked them or their music, except for the occasional song. Oh well, you can’t like them all either, right? So, back to the prompt: You can’t always get what want. True, but you should sure as hell try. And try hard, after all if it is something you want it is supposed to make you happy. And everybody likes that. Except for when you get what you wanted and then it doesn’t work out.

See, only a couple of weeks back, I got this fancy new lens. And I loved it. I took some fab photos with it and was happy. But then, I wanted to take different photos, raindrop photos. Well, first of all I didn’t get to do that, because the one morning there were a magnitude of raindrops, and no wind, but I had to go to work. By the end of day, the drops had vanished into thin air. No photos. Until Friday afternoon. I had left work early and, having a migraine, I did not want to do anything on the computer. So, I checked our plants out front and, guess what, a few drops of water had gathered. So, inside I went, got my camera and shot happily away – at last, raindrop photos!

When I finally started up my computer and transferred the photos and saw the previews, I was happy. Until I zoomed in to 100 % – fuzzy. What looked good in the preview, was really out of focus.

Slightly out of focus100 % - slightly out of focus

What to do>? You have to know that I have a somewhat difficult relationship with my tripod. It just is never there when I want it, but always in the way when I finally take it with me. But Friday was different. I was at home. So, do you care what the neighbors think – I don’t think so, I don’t either. So, I got my camera, got my tripod and outside I went again. Set up my tripod on an uneven ground, fiddled around, ignored cars driving and people walking past and – shot away happily. A little wary I transferred the photos to my hard drive and opened them up in Lightroom. Surprise! 100 % better! Not all of them, of course. Hey, I am experimenting you know, it has been a while that I owned a macro lens.

It is ‘only’ a 100 mm, but here I shifted the focus, it is a complete manual one, a teensy-weensy little bit, see how much it changes the photo…

Shifting focus by an 1/8 inch Shifting focus by an 1/8 inch

Or here, same thing, I shifted the focus a tiny little bit from being on the drops on the big leaf to the drops on the leaf, which hasn’t opened yet – by the way, I hope this year I am getting to eat one of the strawberries…

Shifting focus by an 1/8 inch Shifting focus by an 1/8 inch

Just in case you were wondering. Here are a couple of tripod photos plus the 100 % crop. See the difference to the photos without a tripod? Scroll up to compare.

Taken WITH a tripod100 % cropTaken WITH a tripod100 % crop

And then I turned around to our neighbors’ house and saw this beauty. A purple iris, loaded with raindrops.

Raindrops on iris

And in the last photo for today, I have done a little more editing, above photos are pretty much SOOC (except for the vignette). Yes, with a texture. But I also combined two photos into one. I just didn’t like the in-focus of the dirt and pot with a closed aperture (f/6.3), which on the other hand worked wonders on the drops and the leaf. So, I took the same photo and frame with aperture 6.3 and with 2.0. The latter at 1/100 of a second I could have hand-held, however, 6.3 at 1/8 of a second – no way. Good thing I was using a tripod, right?! Also, it made overlaying the two photos much easier. Here is the result. And pretty much how I feel about raindrops.

Angels & Raindrops

The lesson is: You can’t always get what you want, but… work towards it, because it will make you happy and if it doesn’t work out the first time, keep on working on it. You’ll never know what you may get. I can say that I am utterly happy about my last raindrop photos and cannot wait to shoot some more. For now I have got Dogwoods planned for tomorrow (if the wind is cooperative). And guess what I’ll be taking: My tripod. See you again next Sunday for another round of Song-ography. Hope to see you there. Have a wonderful rest of the weekend.

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self portrait, Claudia Willison, ImagesByCW

Claudia is founder, owner and soul of ImagesByCW Photography. Born in Germany, traveled though Europe and Australia, she currently lives with her American husband in New Jersey, USA. She blogs about what she loves: Photography, art, internet and computers in general, as well as cooking and windsurfing. When not working she enjoys reading, music, windsurfing and listening to the sound of waves and the wind, preferably together with her husband.

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