Purple Hyacinth

Here’s another flower from my backyard: a purple hyacinth (somebody correct me if I’m wrong). I just got out and shot by hand because it’s a short plant — so I got on my stomach and rested my hands on the ground. Once again, we’re overcast today so no harsh shadows. With spring coming so quickly, I wanted to get some shots of these flowers before they opened up all the way. I took most of my shots with a fairly wide aperture because I wanted to try for a blurred shot that was a little more abstract. Plus it wasn’t that light out and I didn’t have much of a choice.

Purple Hyacinth

I did my basic editing in Adobe Camera RAW to get the exposures and colors pretty close. Then I applied a curves adjustment layer to the entire image (no mask) to brighten it up a little bit. Then I created two duplicate layers of the merged image. The first layer (2nd down on the stack) I blurred using a Gaussian blur at 25 pixels to completely soften the image. Then I blended the 2nd duplicate layer (top of the stack) using a Lighten blend at 70% opacity. This helped to lighten up some of the darker spots and give the rest of the image a bit of a glow. That’s it, no sharpening on this photo!

I was trying to get the Michael Brown look in this photo, but I don’t think I completely succeeded. He’s too darn good at this macro stuff, check out his blog if you haven’t seen his work yet — the guy is truly an artist.

Purple Hyacinth

Photo by Brian Auer
04/06/07 Flemington, NJ
Purple Hyacinth
Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D
Sigma MACRO 105mm f/2.8 EX DG
158mm equiv * f/3.5 * 1/45s * ISO100