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Stephanie Johnson (StephJohnPhoto)'s picture

Evening Shade

"The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see Nature all ridicule and deformity, and some scarce see Nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, Nature is Imagination itself."
~ William Blake

An in-camera, abstract ICM (intentional camera movement) image of evening light on trees in summer (2018), using a hand-held vertical movement to create the effect.

One of my all-time favorite ICM images (and I've taken tens of thousands!), this has also been one that seems to be a favorite of others, as well. :)

This image is set as the cover for this group, but I wanted to share it as a post to provide more details about it.

I actually used an advanced compact point-&-shoot camera for this image. The Canon G7X allows shooting in Manual mode, and I tend to use this compact camera interchangeably with my DSLRs.

I say this to emphasize it is not particularly necessary to use DSLRs to do this type of ICM work well. It's really more a matter of using what you have and learning what works best for you.

When I share my work, I generally tend to pair my images with literary, philosophical, or inspirational quotes. For me, this abstract work is about "seeing" the natural world differently and about bridging connections to other artistic forms that inspire a deeper reflection about what it means to be in this physical world. :)

Technical details are:

Canon G7X Mark II
36.8mm · f/11.0 · 1/13s · ISO 125

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2 Comments

Alan Brown's picture

I have loved this image since first viewing it along with your other work Stephanie.
The movement and speed are spot on, complementing the vertical nature of the trees.The tomes are to die for.

I think the light/yellow area really completes the image, drawing the eye through.

I understand how difficult such a shot is to accomplish as I have tried many times using the same technique but without acceptable results (still I plod on, inspired by such images).

One question - do you typically pan up or down in the images? Unless you are leaving lots or room for cropping I find it difficult to get the placement correct.

Stephanie Johnson (StephJohnPhoto)'s picture

Thanks so much for your kind feedback, Alan. I'm so glad the image resonates with you in such a way. :)

Since I generally shoot many, many frames of the same subject in any given outing (sometimes dozens), I do some panning up and some panning down. BUT, I do feel the ones I find most successful are usually the ones I've panned down on.

I have a particular penchant for creating these kinds of images without the tops of the trees, so that they are more just the trunks and some of the grounds around the trees, and I find panning down helps me achieve that more effectively.

I don't usually crop my images in post-processing at all, so I'm always trying to achieve the result in camera as much as possible, and I will shoot 100 images standing in the same spot if I have to to ensure I get what I'm going for.

Also, I tend to shoot almost all my ICMs at 1/13s, which means my movements are typically very fast.

Hope this helps! :)

Please plod on and keep shooting. My experience has been that the more you do it, the better the images will become, and the more you will find what works best for you. :)