Cattleya-Light Play


 Cattleya Orchid Outside in Morning Light

Before letting the lovely Cattleya plant just passively grace my house with beauty, I wanted to offer two additional images with different lighting than the Easter Orchid image. Whether a plant or some other subject, varying the lighting can produce completely different kinds of works. It is similar to being outside taking a landscape picture. Easy to become so vested in the scene in front of you, that you might forget to turn around and find there is something utterly gorgeous there too. I remember a dawn shooting effort of Alligator Lighthouse, floating around on our boat waiting for the lights to get turned on. I focused on the sun coming up behind the lighthouse but the real beauty for me was shooting the light facing south with glorious side lit clouds courtesy of the rays from the east.

The Easter Orchid image was taken indoors with the plant simply placed in front of a dark area with morning light coming through the sliding glass doors. In that image the greens are dark, rich with a bit more yellow and the purples dark with great detail. The top image here is not so different in idea except that the plant was placed on a table outside also in the morning a distance in front of my bougainvillea hedge.  The direct early light produced a softer result. The flowers are softer lavender and the leaves more a sagey, muted green. The hedge off in the background adds a nice field of dark green color with highlights and hints of red blossoms instead of the deep black.

Another effort in morning light is the backlit image below. While orchid flowers seem heavy and textured front lit, the opposite reveals the petals to be highly translucent and airy. For this image the plant was inside on a table in front of the sliding glass doors with light from the east coming through. This and the Easter orchid picture are opposites in the same room.

Always remember with photography to look the other way and to see what things look like from different positions as subjects take on new life.

Backlit Cattleya with Artistic Textures

As Ever,


PS: I did put in links to Alligator light pictures in the text if one was curious.

~ by Judy on April 11, 2015.

8 Responses to “Cattleya-Light Play”

  1. Stunning photos. Thank you for sharing the beauty.

  2. Great shots ~ the contrast and colors are fantastic. I like your take on shooting from opposite extremes 🙂

    • Yeah, I think the first time it hit me that you’d better look around when photographing was a sunset shoot. I had no clue of the beauty of the reflected light on the clouds behind me until just turned around. I think we loose awareness when looking through a viewfinder…the whole world is in there at that moment.

  3. The backlit picture is quite startling after the others.

    • I think it is a surprise to see something so delicate when the other shots are of a heavy, textured flower. In many ways orchids are not delicate blooms…depending on species.

  4. I especially like the backlit photo. It shows the flower’s details so beautifully. And you’re right: it seems airy and light. It’s a very unusual and attractive view!

    • It is good to take advantage of light and even when you have a particular vision in mind, to go ahead and experiment while you have the chance.

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