Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Shy hopper

Shy hopper

Now that we've made the turn into September, it will only be a matter of a couple of months before we say goodbye to our exoskeletoned friends. So I thought I'd close out a summer's worth of insect macro photography (and get to a backlog of archived photos) by posting some of my favorites.

It took a while to get a photo of this guy. Grasshoppers like to split whenever something large, like, say, a photographer with a large camera, lens and flash setup strolls through the meadow. Mr. Hopper hid from me behind a blade of grass. As I moved into position, he would peek at me and move back behind the blade.

After a few rounds of peek-a-boo, he showed his entire face to me and I got the shot. What I love about it, besides the even lighting on Mr. Hopper and the focus on his face and foreleg, is what appears to be sunlight falling on the blade of grass. It's not. It's the flash. The blade of grass was angled in such a way as to catch the light from the flash on both sides. The shadow of Mr. Hopper is actually on the other side of the blade -- being somewhat translucent, you can see the shadow.

I also got the anntenae in fairly sharp focus. I've found that one of the bugaboos of insect photography is that you tend to lose one of the anntenae no matter what you do. Depending on the angle from which you are shooting, it will appear as a blurry line across the head or body of the insect. I hate that.

It's always nice when everything comes together just right.

Photograph © 2009 James Jordan.