This article features some images of tulip blossoms in the rain, captured handheld using in-camera focus stacking during a recent visit to the Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG) in Burlington Ontario.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
The objective of my visit to the RBG that day was to photograph blossoms using the M.Zuiko PRO 12-100 mm f/4 IS zoom and the M.Zuiko 60 mm f/2.8 macro, so I could compare the results.
The M.Zuiko PRO 12-100 mm f/4 IS zoom lens has a reasonably short minimum focusing distance of between 0.15 metres (~5.9 inches) on the wide end, and 0.45 metres (~17.7 inches) on the telephoto end.
This results in maximum image magnification of 0.3 on the wide end and 0.21 on the telephoto end… and qualifies as close up photography, rather than true 1:1 macro.
I brought my Kenko extension tubes with me to see how much added flexibility using them would create when using my M.Zuiko PRO 12-100 mm f/4 IS for flower photography. Towards the end of my RBG visit I decided to photograph these blossoms in the rain.
I started out in a very light, misty rain. Unfortunately I hadn’t captured very many images when the rain intensified and I had to switch back to my 60 mm f/2.8 macro lens. My Kenko extension tubes are not weather sealed and I didn’t want to put my camera body and 12-100 mm lens at risk.
Some photographers enjoy close up photography but can’t justify the cost of adding a dedicated macro lens to their kit. Extension tubes can be a good solution for many folks.
I have used my M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 zoom with extension tubes quite often. This was the first time I used extension tubes with my M.Zuiko PRO 12-100 mm f/4 IS zoom for flower photography. A future article may share more of my test images.
Photographing blossoms in the rain adds some interest as well as some risk to flower photography. On one hand water droplets provide some fascinating details. This is counterbalanced by the risk of water damage to camera gear if it is not properly weather sealed.
As is the case with all genres of photographing, looking for the right combination of light, background and shooting angle are critical considerations with flower photography.
I am aware of some flower photographers who carry a spray bottle of water with them so they can add water droplets to subject blossoms whenever desired. Thus far I’ve relied on Mother Nature to create blossoms in the rain for me.
I used my usual in-camera focus stacking settings for all of the images in this article… 10 photographs to be combined in camera, utilizing a focus differential of 4.
Almost all of my photographs of blossoms in the rain were vertical compositions done using the rear screen of my E-M1X. The dual grip design, articulating rear screen, and IBIS performance of the E-M1X made capturing these handheld vertical images a breeze.
If your camera gear is not weather sealed it is prudent to wait for a fresh rain to end before capturing these types of images… or use a rain sleeve if you are thusly inclined. The presence of water droplets and diffused light can be ideal for flower photography.
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. In-camera focusing stacking was set to 10 images with a focus differential of 4. A single, small auto-focus point was used. All images were produced from out-of-camera jpegs that were slightly adjusted in post. This is the 1,280 article published on this website since its original inception in 2015.
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2 thoughts on “Blossoms in the Rain”
Thanks Bill… glad you enjoyed the images.