Thrifty Thursday

Given the positive response to last month’s post on digicams for insect photography, I’ve decided to implement a new weekly feature: Thrifty Thursdays.

Thursdays will highlight photographs I’ve taken with consumer-level equipment with a price tag under $500. I might use a digicam, a cell phone, a web cam, or anything else improvised from affordable components. Why? I have long felt that the $4000 pro-level SLR gear is overkill if the goal is simply to make attractive images for the internet or for powerpoint presentations. I’d like to demonstrate that it isn’t the cost of the gear that makes for great images. Instead, great images emerge from proper use of composition, light, and creativity.

This week, a scene from the prairie garden not 1/2 hour ago:

A hover fly forages on spiderwort, captured with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS3.

[Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS3]

Two elements contribute to the success of this image. First, the smooth lighting of a cloudy day does not overwhelm the limited dynamic range of the small sensor, so the colors remain beautiful without missing highlights and shadows. Second, the color contrast between the purple backdrop and the yellow insect immediately draws attention to the subject. The pleasing raindrops on the petals are a bonus.

7 thoughts on “Thrifty Thursday”

  1. I’ve got a new camera and a lot of time on my hands soon, I’ll see if I can match this! On my last excursion I almost stepped on a tarantula hawk, but it flew under a bush before I could get my camera on it. No way was I about to try to flush it out!

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