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October 2009
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December 2009

November 2009

Autumn Rose Bouquet


















This arrangement greeted concert goers on a console table, outside the auditorium entrance to a choral event. The friend who asked me to make it hoped I'd have a few blooms from my garden. 'Monsieur Tillier' is the star of this show, along with a few pale pinks. It's what the garden had to offer last week. Vitis vinifera 'Pupurea', R. multiflora hips, R. roxburghii branches, 'Kathleen' blooms and hips, 'Heritage' and 'Souvenir de la Malmaison' roses, and lime-scented pelargonium leaves are also included.


But where and how to photograph it?

Rose-Bouquet-Photo-Set-up Not many of you will be making a big ole bouquet like this, but you might find a few useful tips from the set-up, for other subjects.

That 3-part screen in the background came from my other life as a fashion designer. It used to be a dressing room! It's indispensable for background manipulation. I usually use it, free-standing, in the living room in any number of folds, and often with other fabrics or papers pinned to it. But here in the kitchen, I needed to hide the sink. Voila! But it wasn't effortless figuring this out. I had actually ironed a bed sheet and placed it on the counter, to hide the sink. But, no thank you Carolyn, not such a good idea. It's nice to see my trusty screen spread out like this. Large (and it's not that large, less than 3-ft) bouquets take oodles of space to photograph. Usually I have to work very hard to create or fake the space. With our new addition, it's no longer an issue. There's a world of photo-opportunity, now, that I haven't explored.By the way, ALL THE PHOTOS, except for the last one, were taken with a macro lens.

There are perks in shooting a bouquet like this.  After the main shot is done –– I love to move the camera in, out, and all around, from one spot to another –– capturing intimate details –– you know –– zeroing in on flower feelings.As you can see, by the cluttered surfaces, chaos reigns during a photo shoot.


For Flower Arrangers

Everything but the roses, went in first to create nice support and an interesting textural background. I started out with many more of the deep plum grape leaves, but ended up clipping them off, however the grape branches remain part of the support.



Rose Wine



In the bounteous time of roses love is wine,––
   it is food in the famished hour
       when their petals are shed.

~Rabindranath Tagore


Yes, I still have roses, but one of these days they will be gone. There will be a freeze that puts them to sleep, usually some time in December.

This is for my friends (readers) whose roses are already sleeping.



Pink Rose Quilt



Roses are endowed with the ultimate when it comes to color. Originally, I fantasized that a quilt of simple blocks of color might be a fun project. I did a batch process, in Photoshop, turning the rectangles into squares and then stitched a big quilt, in rows of one color each . . . but the image wasn't working for me . . .


. . . so I started cutting it up and ended up with the fragment below.


They might be nice, but I couldn't see it at the time. While shooting I experimented with selective focus, and many blurs (bokeh), and in the end, I decided to show more rose detail, with the camera's rectangular format. As I finish this I want to start over- there are so many possibilities! 



Canon 30D with a macro lens.