So, here’s something a little bit out of the ordinary from my collection. I took this shot on a beach in Florida a few years ago. It’s nothing more than a bit of a branch that I found in the sand, but I loved it’s smooth form and the cracked patterns that covered it. I wanted a clean and simple portrait.
I took the stick and pushed one end into a little hole in a log nearby and set up my camera so that I could shoot the stick straight on. I used a 180mm macro lens to get nice and close, so I could bring attention to the interesting cracks and details. And I chose a shutter speed carefully – making sure that the background was completely blown out and that the stick was exposed correctly. I wanted it to look as though I had placed the stick in front of a white background… but of course, I didn’t have one out there on the beach… so I just set the stick in front of the bright sky. It’s a really simple technique, and the finished image looks as though it was photographed in studio.
Obviously, this look won’t work for every photo – but in this case, I like it. :) The stick seems to be reaching for something just out of the frame. Or maybe it’s doing T’ai Chi.