Aperture and Composition

I wanted a specific effect when I took this shot… here’s what I was thinking.

On a bright Autumn morning, I went out and took some photos of the frost and frozen droplets on autumn leaves in my back yard. I used a small clamp to hold the leaf off the ground in front of my camera. I wanted even lighting on the leaf, and a clean background of autumn color behind. I chose to shoot at f16 to get some extra depth of field on the leaf, and to keep some of the subtle bokeh on the leaves behind. A wider aperture would have resulted in the loss of the bokeh effect. (I can hear some of you saying it… “Bokeh at f/16?” Sure. If the brightly lit leaves were far enough from my lens… and they were. I’d guess that they were about 20 meters away.)

As usual, I wanted an extremely simple composition – no distractions. But I also wanted to make sure the image showed the character of the leaf. I looked for a leaf with a nice shape, and a bit of uniqueness. The little twist at the lower left stood out to me – subtle, but beautiful – and I loved the small hole on the right as well… especially since it is ringed with frost.

Autumn in Ohio is incredibly beautiful! It is absolutely gorgeous out there when the sun creeps over the horizon!

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