Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.


During my April trip to Georgia, the group I was with went to visit the Callaway Gardens Chapel In The Woods, a very peaceful location.  A few purple irises were growing at the edge of the water just in front of the chapel. I spent a good deal of time working on the camera position to try to get a background that didn't detract from the beautiful simplicity of the flower.

Working to get a good composition and a clean background can really make or break a photograph. I like the results I got in this composition.  I positioned the camera relatively high so that the water behind and in the distance from the flower would serve as a clean background. The focal length of the lens was 300mm (using my 100-400 zoom) which was able to blur any details in the water because of the limited depth of field at 300mm, even at f8. The sky was blue and thus the water itself had a bluish tonality, complementing the flower.



Trout Lily

One of the wildflowers that I seem to have missed in years past is the trout lily. They are quite small, which is one reason I may have missed them, but they also have beautiful speckled leaves.  This year I was a bit early, as they were out, but the flowers had not yet fully opened.  However, even closed they possess a very dainty beauty.  They are a bit tough to photograph on their long stalks with the flowers drooped downwards, as the slightlest breeze makes them bounce all over. It was this constant movement that made me want to make a photo with a shallow depth of field, which I felt would impart that feeling of motion by blurring most of the flower but still show the delicateness by leaving a small area of the plant sharp.  The connection of the stalk to the flower seemed to me to be the best area to focus on.

Trout Lily