|This large white flowers are always|
popular with the grass flies.
Its summer here now and the grass is long and dry and in need of a good mow. Some of its stands a good 1200mm (4 feet) tall. What you dont see when you drive along any of these roads of course is all the little things that live in this environment. Lately I have been endeavoring to record some of this natural activity.
|Another popular resting spot for grass flies|
is the Scottish Thistle's flowers.
The HS20 goes everywhere with me and takes a bit of a thumping as well. Its certainly a robust camera and that bodes well for the type of environment it works in.
I use any and all modes with this camera and may decide completely on the spur of the moment as to what mode I'm going to operate in. One of my favorite tricks however is to flip the macro setting on and use long focal lengths to create images with varying degrees of 'bokeh'. This a very handy technique as the HS20 has a very good range in this configuration and you would be surprised at just what you can shoot before having to switch back to normal focus. Some of my shots of objects are 20 meters away and taken with the camera still in macro mode.
As well as shooting in 16:9 I have been using 3:2 mode as well as some of the images require a larger area to give balance to the shot.
|Swooping down out of the fog, this|
agricultural spray chopper makes a
beeline for us.
Another of the modes I have been using a lot more of late is the Black & White film simulation in camera. Its generally not too dark and contrasty which is very good as I like to adjust the tone of the images in Photoscape to tweak them to what I feel is a good balance.
The beauty of this mode is that it can lend an air of age to some of the older sheds and buildings dotted around the countryside that color really cant convey. It can also take a difficult shot in color and make a more interesting and dramatic shot like you see in the image of the helicopter heading for the tractor with the spray drift trailing behind. This was a early morning image and the sky above the trees is a very plain grey as it is actually fogged in down to the tree line. It was a bit of a scramble to get the shots before the chopper passed overhead.
|Hidden away in valleys and under trees|
many old farm sheds lie slowly decaying.
Time and innovation have long since
rendered these relics of a past era mostly unused.
I generally leave the camera in EXR Resolution Priority mode as its more important I capture the detail and less important in regards dynamic range. I find the the settings I use work well with the HS20 and the sensors natural Dr and tonal range even at DR100% is actually very good. Normally all that is required is an adjustment in Ev to get the shot right. If its more difficult than that I will generally opt for either Aperture Priority or Manual mode.
For shooting some of the little fast moving critters I use a combination of macro mode and burst mode set to top eight. Even with this setup those little beasties can move really fast.
|One of eight frames and the only|
"keeper", these busy bees are not
easy to capture standing still.
In the last two photos shown here I was actually kneeling on the lawn prior to mowing it and the bees didn't mind me being there, which was good as I was able to select super-macro mode and get to within a couple of centimeters of them.
|Fuji HS20EXR @ super macro.|