Purple Crocus

150410_PurpleCrocus_ME by Karl Graf. Canon 5D MkIII, EF 180mm Macro 3.5L – Multiple Exposure

These purple crocuses came out two days after the white ones.  They do so every year.  The white crocuses come out with a few blooms first, followed by the rest a couple days later.  The purple crocuses seem to come out all at once.  I was lucky with a couple of nice warm days when the blooms emerged.  The last couple of days have been cold and rainy.  The crispness of the flowers are now gone.

For Lexie:  The way this image was achieved is different from the white crocus image in my post a few days ago.  Large telephoto lenses have a narrow depth of field.  My target here was to get enough depth of field to capture detail in the nearest petal, the center, and the farthest petal of the nearest bloom.  It took an aperture setting of f/16 to achieve this.  However, using this aperture also pulled in detail from the background flowers.  I then took an image with the widest aperture (f/3.5) of my lens which only captured the center of the nearest flower in focus.  The edges of the bloom and all the background blooms were not in focus.  To make sure the images would line up when I processed them, I used a tripod.

Back on my computer, I combined the f/3.5 and f/16 images into a multiple exposure using Photoshop’s layers.  The background layer was the sharp f/16 image.  The second layer was the f/3.5 image.  I added a layer mask to the second layer and “painted” through the nearest bloom of the f/16 flower.  I then lightened the sharp bloom and darkened the edges to get the final image.

The following is the f/16 SOC image as reference:

150410_PurpleCrocus_SOC by Karl Graf.

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