Spring arrived right on time in Seattle, as our seasons usually do. While I don’t have a favorite season (I love them all here), I do have favorite things about each season. One of my spring favorites is the arrival of calla lilies in the nurseries.
I’ve been needing a bit of reprieve, some quiet time with my camera. I stopped by the nursery on the way home one day and was happy to see they had arrived. For the record, by happy I in no way mean anything like Steve Martin in “The Jerk” when the new phone books arrive.
Not. Even. Close. Seriously….
There were some new (to me, at least) varieties* in addition to the white, so I left with a few more plants than planned. The single calla in these images was unique among all of the others, even the others of this color: one was emerging from another.
My preferred way to photograph for rejuvenation, to clear my head, is a semi-meditative, free-play improvisational approach. No time limits, no expectations, no specific plan for light or lens. I started with this calla near a window in my studio, and began making images. Any composition or framing in the viewfinder that compels me to press the shutter is fair game. On this day, I started and finished with the same lens, my go-to 105mm macro. I make images from well back and very close. I placed the plant on top of a swivel stool, and occasionally turned it a few degrees to see entirely new angles, light, and shadows.
As the sun set and faded to twilight, I decided to use a continuous LED light on a nearby light-stand, rather than a strobe that was also ready to go. In the moment, keeping the light continuous felt right, less disruptive to the flow than working placement and exposure settings for strobes. This was a similar approach to my Violin image making session.
So I present to you Calla #1, seen in a variety of ways, angles, and lighting.
*another variety was a Black Calla — watch for a future post
all images/content © Bret Doss, all rights reserved