On Assignment: Awesome Reflection

by | Sep 3, 2021 | Assignments | 0 comments

Have you ever gone to the same location multiple times in the same day, simply to observe what the place looked like at those different times of day? You would think that I, of all people, would have done this many, many times since I love landscape photography. But getting to a location isn’t always the easiest thing to do. (That’s probably why you haven’t done it either, right?) So for this assignment, I was determined to do it intentionally for the first time! And here’s what happened….

I have to say, arriving at that little lake early in the morning, with the mist and pink clouds off in the distance, it was quite the thrilling experience. I was kinda amazed something so pretty was so close to home. It felt like I was way out in the middle of nowhere exploring an epic place. But I guess “epic” can be close to home if you’re looking for it.

210824_James Staddon_1383 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 75 mm, 1-60 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

Of course the scenery was beautiful. But the assignment wasn’t for beautiful scenery. It was for a reflection of a tree or house or mountain. This was more a reflection of a hillside. So I tried to single out one tree and photograph that in such a way that the tree’s reflection would stand out.

210824_James Staddon_1380 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 105 mm, 1-50 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

And….I guess, not really the kind of tree I want to look at. So I went wide. Maybe showcasing the feeling of a reflection would do.

210824_James Staddon_1387 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 45 mm, 1-60 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

Better, but still not what Suzanne was looking for, I don’t think.

There were no stand alone trees around. And the one house that I could see, was in the shadow and I didn’t like the look of it. I was going to have to get creative. And I was going to have to see what the rest of the day would provide too.

At noon, I discovered that “epic” had vanished with the mist.

210824_James Staddon_1399 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 65 mm, 1-80 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

The lighting was just so harsh and blah. So normal-looking. Seriously, the above photo is heavily edited.

But at least top-lighting was setting trees apart from each other.

I scanned the opposite side of the pond to find a shapely tree that I could use.

210824_James Staddon_1402 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 50 mm, 1-80 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

And photographed it with it’s “reflection”.

210824_James Staddon_1401 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 67 mm, 1-80 sec at f - 8.0, ISO 100

The wind was really destroying all my efforts to make this thing happen.

So I tried with as slow a shutter speed as I could get with the amount of ambient light that I was working with. 0.3sec.

210824_James Staddon_1414 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 84 mm, 0.3 sec at f - 22, ISO 50

Really didn’t help anything.

Then the wind died down for a bit!

210824_James Staddon_1420 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 58 mm, 1-320 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 100

I really don’t think this works for the “awesome reflection” that she was looking for. So, I packed up, hoping that the evening would offer something better. I really wasn’t feeling like the middle of the day was giving me much opportunity.

And boy was I surprised that evening! I think if I had arrived earlier, I would have had maybe some side-lighting to work with. But one thing was for sure, the water was very calm and the reflections were the best I’d seen all day.

210824_James Staddon_1441 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-50 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 400

So I photographed the house this time. A pebble (or was it a little wad of mud?) in the water added a special touch.

210824_James Staddon_1455 Canon EOS 5D Mark III, 24 mm, 1-25 sec at f - 4.0, ISO 800

Though I don’t think I have any assignment-winning photos from the day of shooting, I feel like it was a fun day with the Creator and Redeemer and I had learned a lot.

How to Photograph Tack Sharp Reflections

Finding a good place to photograph this assignment is one thing.

How to photograph your subject once you find it is quite another. This month’s exclusive Premium Training will help you know How to Photograph Tack Sharp Reflections.

Reflections (play)

Now It’s Your Turn!

Even the smallest puddle can create some stunning reflections. See what you can find near you, and take Step 2 by getting the details for the next assignment, Awesome Reflection!

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