You know it's summer when the macro lens comes out and stays on. Mine has been on my camera for about a month now, and barely comes off. There are just too many things to point it out at this time of year. It is completely different to bird photography, and requires a whole new set of skills and understanding - skills I don't yet have, but I'm working on it. You might think it would be easier, but I'm not so sure. Who cares though, as it is a whole lot of fun with infinite possibilities.
I was wondering about doing a series of articles/posts about the merits of various lenses and photography techniques, as I do at least know a little these days, but felt it might end up a little turgid, and not really suit the style of this blog. Then I got to thinking that this blog doesn't have any style, or at least not one that I can easily describe, so maybe I'll just do what I normally do and babble. You can get your photography tips from far better places than this.
So, today, when I had finished some domestic chores that have already been undone by my children, I headed out onto Wanstead Flats. I took a birding lens, but had no expectation of using it, and that indeed proved to be the case. The macro lens on the other hand was used the entire time. I actually have two, a 180mm, and a 100mm, and on this trip it was the 100mm that came out, mainly as it has an image stabiliser that alleviates at least some mucking about with a tripod. For serious macro photography, a tripod is essential, but it removes a lot of the enjoyment from just walking around with your camera and pointing it at random stuff. You can be a lot more mobile and flexible without one, and that is my preferred style.
There was heaps, I almost didn't know where to point the camera. Everywhere I walked I kicked up grasshoppers of varying sizes. Multitudes of grass moths flitted about, and bees were everywhere. Butterflies were thin on the ground, but I found a few Small Skippers and a Meadow Brown, all of which flew away. A long way away. Far more cooperative was a Five-spot Burnet, a day-flying moth, resting on some bramble. And very useful for getting this blog back on topic.
The real interest was in the plants though. I have no idea what this one is, the flower is long gone, but it was probably some kind of Dandelion. A massive one though, as the seed-head is about four inches across, and extremely intricate. Probably full of fractals or something, or that Fibonacci sequence. Not that I understand either of those things of course, but they sound good. Anyway, assuming they're still there, I'm going to go back tomorrow and give them really good go.