August 5, 2011

Frogs, Lanterns and a Canon in Macro Mode


I am fond of this photo of a little frog I ran into at Tsugawa Nursery some weeks ago. This small creature, roughly the size of a thumbnail, was sitting inside a granite lantern's window. The lantern was nestled up against the koi house. It was just the thing I was looking for but I had passed by it several times without seeing it as it was shaded and among other unrelated statuary near the back of the nursery.

Looking over the lantern I saw this bright spot of green. It was still and a few steps away. I thought it was plastic until a garden rep told me, "No! He rests there every morning soaking in the sun until he gets warm and slips away for the rest of the day."

Intrigued by his size and his story I amused myself trying to capture his image while waiting for responses to the text messages I was sending to my husband about our impending purchase.

In this situation it is unlikely I would ever be carrying my DSLR. I was at Tsugawa's to buy a lantern and my photographic tool of choice was text mode on my iPhone where I was taking pictures of prospective purchases, sending them to my husband, and waiting for his response.

It did so happen, however, that I had my Canon point and shoot in my purse. It is a camera that has been well used and well loved for years. By no means the most current model, it has been a staple in my food photography since acquisition and while I have since enlisted a Nikon D5000 in my arsenal of photo equipment I still reach for the little Canon when I want to use the camera instinctively, with little thought or care. It is easy to carry and doesn't get in the way. I also find that I often have it buried in my purse when I didn't make a plan to have photo equipment with me at all.

To capture an image of this small creature I needed to push my camera into a spot I could not get down and look into clearly myself. I could angle the camera to see the view screen but the brightness of the sun kept me from seeing that clearly to check the focus. So I shot blind. In macro mode the camera found my intended subject perhaps 75% of the time. I took multiple shots for insurance. This is my favorite and I think it is as good in every way as anything I would have gotten with my DSLR had there been space to slip it into in the first place.