Friday, November 1, 2013

Pulled Skyward - Autumn Leaves With a Twist (Lumix DMC-GX7)

I've been feeling that I'm at a creative plateau for quite some time. I'm trying some things that are new, if not to the photographic world, at least to my portfolio.
Autumn leaves are not so impressive in my part of the world this year, at least not yet. So, I decided to try adding some motion to those same old fall pictures I take every year. On October 30, I posted a set of five images of leaves with motion, starting with simple lines, then moving on to rotations.
I really enjoyed looking at those images. I could hear the photographic mentor in my head saying:
Good. Nice start. Now go spend some time with it. See how far you can take it.
So, I went out for another session. As I was walking out to the small stand of trees that are my subject, I started thinking about the degrees of freedom I could play with in motion while the shutter is open. I came up with several: f-stop, shutter speed, lateral (x,y) motion, angle (of the sensor, in-plane rotation), and angle of view (zoom). So, I played with them all.
Here are three images that show one theme that came out. I call it "Pulled Skyward." The threads of white (there was no fog; it was a perfectly clear day) remind of a spirit being pulled up through the trees.
Pulled Skyward 1, by Reed A. George
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7, 14-42mm Series II Kit Zoom
iso 200, f22, 0.4s sec.
This first one is very nearly completely abstract. For me, abstract means that you can't really tell what the actual subject was. And, for me, it's a little too abstract to stand on its own. Hopefully the next two will give it some context, and help it to remain in the collection.
Pulled Skyward 2, by Reed A. George
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7, 14-42mm Series II Kit Zoom
iso 200, f20, 0.4s sec.

Number two clearly shows that we're looking up into the treetops. The white streaks show nicely.
Pulled Skyward 3, by Reed A. George
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7, 14-42mm Series II Kit Zoom
iso 200, f20, 0.4s sec.
Number 3 is my favorite of this set. I feel like I am being pulled up through the trees. The white streaks are just prominent enough to connect me to the treetops. However, I do feel that all three go together well.
If you know my photography, hopefully you'll recognize that this is a real departure for me. I'm somewhat of a photographic realist. I enjoy razor sharp images of interesting subjects, or street scenes where you can see multiple things going on. These are much more symbolic than my normal work.
It's good to stretch the mind.
I have a different set of images from this session, with a different color palette. I'm still working on those.
To those of you looking for how technically well the new DMC-GX7 and Series II kit zoom work, how sharp they are, sorry. I feel drawn in this direction at the moment, and the sharp, realistic images will have to come later.