Soft Pink Gerbera

A work colleague helped me organise an event a while ago and I promised her some photos as a thankyou.  Her favorite flower is gerbera and favourite colour is pink.

So spotting a bunch of quite pink gerberas in the supermarket meant I finally got the chance to shoot those images.

Started with my 100mm F2.8 IS L Canon Macro lens, switched over to the Nifty Fifty Canon 1.8 50mm lens and back to the Macro.

Gerbera are a large flat flower so difficult to capture all of it with the macro lens.  So I decided to do a variety of different images to get all different aspects of the flower.

Setup a still life set with a drape of white fabric as the background, using window light filtered through a net curtain as the light source.  It was dull and overcast outside so these are shot at around ISO 400, using a tripod as the shutter speed was too slow for handheld.

This was a good learning exercise for me.  Still Life in general I have found to be an excellent way to make myself slow down, to think and breathe, be in the moment.  To stop and see and think, to compose the image with thought and impact.

Dressing the set I have found to be quite challenging, it is easier now I have props like swathes of white fabric, old books, vases and other useful and decorative things.

Still Life has taught me even more about learning to see and use light better and also not to be afraid to shoot in poor light, because it has also taught me much about post processing too.

pinkgerbera-unedited-3314This is a completely unedited RAW file of the second image – the difference is all the other images were edited in Lightroom using some of Kim Klassen’s Studio presets (I love them for this kind of work)

for-the-blog

EDIT:  As requested – this is the Develop Basic panel in Lightroom – showing the settings for the second image on the page AFTER the preset had been applied – I edited the image to a normal exposure and then applied the preset.   I did bump the exposure up even more than the original to get the really washed out dreamy look.

Such a difference!  Who would have thought you could get a soft dreamy delicate floral portrait from the above image?  I started doing two of Kim’s still life online courses and this is one of the things she has taught me.

All the edited images were originally processed in LR6 – some have had a very soft texture added on top in Photoshop.

This is a very new style for me and I am liking it quite a lot.  Setting the scene is a challenge for me, I strive to keep it clean and simple yet still tell a story.

I cannot decide on my favourite of these images – each one has appeal.

Which one do you like? Why?

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About lensaddiction

Mad keen photographer figuring it out as she goes!
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19 Responses to Soft Pink Gerbera

  1. Wow… soft colours with a pronounced white background, the result is worth the efforts 🙂

    I like the last one most, for it’s composition and use of depth 🙂

    It’s up for different interpretations too 🙂

  2. loisajay says:

    I hope your colleague loves these. They are all quite stunning!

  3. green_knight says:

    Can you say more about what those presets actually do? I think the result is very impressive and makes a good case for post-processing; even under perfect conditions the sheer soft pastel-ness would be hard to achieve, but I have no idea what one would do to achieve this effect.

    • I will take a screenshot of the LR settings and post when I get home, its probably easiest way

    • OK I have edited the original post and dropped in a pic of the Develop panel on LR so you can see the settings – there are some other ones affecting colour slightly but thats where the action is happening.

      • green_knight says:

        Oooh, thanks. Will play when I have the chance.

      • Look forward to seeing what you get – noting that each preset applies itself over top of whatever edits you originally make and so each image will react in different ways.

      • green_knight says:

        (ran out of nesting)
        I’ve finally had a chance to play with this, and recreated the settings – as well as possible – in Luminar (hey, new app, gotta play with it). I think the takeaway (I did play with the image previously, and didn’t get anywhere near the result) is that I was too timid in applying adjustments: exposure, highlights, whites, and desaturation are just *so* extreme. (I’ve saved this as a preset, and on every other image I’ve tried it so far, that just blows the highlights and just completely unbalances it; but for this image, it was just right.
        But I’m almost thinking that this was a photo _designed_ for post-processing, and maybe that’s part of the secret: it’s much more minimalist than any I’ve taken.

      • Yes I was specifically taking these with the intention of post processing them in a lighter style – my original intention for editing was not what I ended up with, and a very different style from what I normally do, but I liked it a lot and went with it.

        The key thing here is that there was a LOT of backlight and that changes the way its processed a lot.

  4. larry says:

    I like the first one and the last one. The last one puts it into our surroundings, where we would use it in our day. The first one shows the beauty of the flower. Great job!! thank you.

  5. leecleland says:

    Very impressive. Love what you were able to do with the pre-sets. I like the second one because of the shadowy flowers in the background and the last because it tells a story. But all are lovely.

  6. My comment is going to be similar to Larry’s above, but I like the first as a portrait of the flower and a showcase of color. I like the last one as a storytelling image.

Love to hear your thoughts on my post!

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