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Snow + Sun = Happy Photographer!

The combination of a light snowfall this week, followed by bright blue skies the next day made for some spectacular photo opportunities. I enjoyed a couple of wonderful hours “getting lost” at a local park, immersed in the spectacle of light, refraction and shadow. Who needs Christmas lights with conditions like this?

The trees were breathing! The warm sun, cool air and wet trees created beautiful vapours for my camera.
The closer I got, the better it looked.
water droplets on twig
There was beauty in every corner of the park, often where you’d least expect it. Here the focus is simply a drop of water on an ice-shrouded twig but the light brings it all to life.
glow worm
An ice worm. Or maybe it’s a glow worm!
maple leaf with natural chrisoms lights
A leaf left over from autumn is decorated superbly by the light on the water drops. I’ve never had a Christmas tree that looked this good!
Signs of spring even in the dead of winter.

About the Photography

For all of these photos, I used a 50 mm f/1.4 lens on my camera with a single extension tube. The lens allowed me to have very shallow depth of field which created the out of focus highlights (Christmas lights!)  in the background. These highlights are known as bokeh.

The extension tube is a ring that is placed between the lens and camera body and allows me to get much closer to the subject. Without it, I would need to be about 30 cm from the subject to focus. With the extension tube, I was able to focus from only 10 cm away and this allowed me to fill the frame with the subject. Extension tubes usually come in sets of three and you can use one, two or all three together to get super close.

The combination of 50 mm lens and extension tube(s) is a great set up for macro photography. Instead of buying a dedicated macro lens, the 50 mm provides a versatile alternative, all for less money.

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