Sunday, December 2, 2012

After the rain

I was visiting my parents this morning and after the morning's rainfall I stepped outside to explore their front yard with my iPhone's camera with the Phocus handgrip and accessory macro lens.

The Phocus grip is a nifty little molded nylon housing you slide the iPhone into.  It leaves all your buttons and controls with in reach and lets you attach 37mm accessory screw-mount lenses over the iPhone camera lens.  I bought the kit that came with the wide angle/macro lens and telephoto lenses.  Today I would test the macro capabilities of the setup.

The Phocus' handgrip makes it easier to hold the iPhone steady during macro exposures.  There is a palm swell that makes for a nice grip and it even has a three screw threads to mount on a tripod if you want.  I just wanted to explore the rain's aftermath on the plants around the yard so I looked for the biggest collection of raindrops I could find.

The best thing about shooting in the rain is the nice even lighting provided by the clouds.  No weird shadows to navigate around or contrasty lighting.  Just a soft diffused light, light shooting with a softbox.  I switched the camera to HDR mode to try and balance the few shadows against the highlight of the raindrops clinging to the leaves.

The wet sheen gave some of the leaves a near metallic appearance which made for interesting color combinations.  Others leaves had a near monotone appearance punctuated by the highlights in the raindrops.

I worked carefully around the leaves, the last thing I wanted to do was bump a leaf and scatter the raindrops to the ground.  The macro lens made me get the camera almost right on top of the leaves, I was worried about blocking the light bu the clouds provided just the right broad light source.

Overall I was happy with the Phocus ability to capture a macro scene.  Sometimes it's easier to pull out the iPhone than drag around the 40D or the 5D Mak III, especially in the rain.  I look forward to trying this combination on the trail sometime soon.