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  • Yellow Hibiscus

    A beautiful yellow Hibiscus flower found on the Big Island of Hawaii.

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    Picked from one of the Hibiscus bushes we have out in our front yard. I selected this flower because of how the style curved right at the end so that I could photograph the profile of the flower and have all of the 5 stigma balls visual instead of overlapping each other.

    I don’t have much of a studio, so I have to improvise. I was able to float the flower away from its background by pinning it to the bottom of my kitchen cabinets with a safety pin. With natural light I needed a longer than desired shutter speed, so I had to close all windows and stop the fans to keep the flower from wavering. Then with a timer set to 2 seconds on the camera I quickly and carefully pressed the shutter and gently fluttered a white towel in the background to blur any shadow or detail that might be picked up by the camera. The depth of field wasn’t enough to pick up all the details of the flower, so I focus stacked 2 images for the final piece.

    © Christopher Johnson

  • Golden Leaf Trees

    Golden leaves look like autumn trees on a grassy hill.

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    I wanted to try something new. Being stuck creatively because of the VOG filled sky left me to play with macro compositions.

    I had been walking by golden leaves that had fallen on the stained concrete for a few months now. I always thought leaves look like small trees and wanted to play with this idea. With the moss ground covering along the edges of the concrete pathway I lined some leaves along it to play with a tree on a hill concept. I took two different focal shots and stacked them in Photoshop for sharpness and then began working on darkening the background for depth.

    It was a lot of fun trying to create a concept photograph. This exercise opened up my mind to a new way of photographing nature.

    © Christopher Johnson

  • Purple Drama

    Macro photograph of the beautiful dyed purple and turquoise petals of a Chrysanthemum flower as they curl around each other.

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    © Christopher Johnson

  • Oil Colors

    Close up of the colorful wet oil on the pavement of a Waimea parking lot.

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    I have been wanting to photograph the colorful oil streaks on wet pavement for a while, but never wanted to take the time to capture it properly. Instead I would take a few shots only to notice edges are out of focus, or there was a small amount of blur from shaking the camera. I would always get back to the computer just to kick myself for not spending the time to get the shot properly. In this situation, in public, I always have trouble taking pictures. I would rather be in the comfort of my home or out in the wild away from people to work on perfecting images. When I saw this colorful oil slick in the middle of a busy parking lot I thought of all the times I had failed, so this time I made sure I got the shot right.

    I didn’t pull out the tripod and reflector shield, although maybe I should have. Instead I boosted the ISO to eliminate shake and crouched down on the parking block and bobbed around until I was able to get all 4 corners in focus. It must look pretty funny for some people that don’t know much about macro photography to witness.

    “What is that man doing?” a young child might say.

    “He’s taking pictures of the ground honey. Now hurry up and don’t look.” the parent replies as they glare with a concerned look… Like I’m on drugs or something.

    Who is crazy enough to photograph really close to the dirty parking lot in the rain? They must be on drugs. Well I’m not. I’m just trying to capture the beauty of the world. Even if it’s pollution.

    © Christopher Johnson

    www.fromhereonin.com

  • Cactus Lines

    A macro photograph of the lines and thorns of a budding blue agave cactus.

    In the center of the agave is a tall spine which is made up of a bunch of newer leaves bundled together. As they mature they begin to fall away from each other, spanning out like wings, until eventually they find the ground to decay. The coolest part of this process is that during the time the leaves are bound together they imprint their spines and designs on to each other which never goes away. How symbolic of life. When we grow up we are imprinted with the people we grow with and that imprint never really goes away. It may fade, but if we look carefully we can see these imprints on others whether good or bad… Hopefully good.

    © Christopher Johnson

  • Single Stone on a Black Sand Beach

    Photograph of a stone nestled in the black sand beach of Pololu Valley on the Big Island of Hawaii.

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    After the waves wash over the stones along the black sand they recess into the sand and leave a beautiful golden silky trail that contrasts with the black sand. I don’t know what the golden sand is or where it comes from, but it seems to only occur when a wave violently crashes across the stones and recedes back with the same ferocity. However, the golden color doesn’t develop immediately. The sand needs to dry a little for the golden color to present itself. With this said, I had to wait for quite a while before I was able to capture an image that would accent this occurrence. Needless to say this is one of the reasons I love photography.

    If I were to hike into Pololu Valley without a camera I wouldn’t catch the subtleties of the valley. I am not knocking anyone that just wants to enjoy the beauty of the Hawaiian Islands without a camera because I would be fascinated with the enormous cliffs, the amazing trees, the beautiful reflection on the river, and the enjoyment of the awesome hike. Photography makes me concentrate on the subtleties in order to capture a piece of art that I would be proud to hang on my wall.

    With that said… I took a photograph a while ago in Pololu Valley of the same nature; stones with the golden sand streaking off them, but the only thing was most of the image was out of focus. When I took the photo I didn’t bring a tripod and was just taking snap shots. Mainly because I was learning the new Sony camera I had just purchased. It wasn’t from that moment, but a year later when I was reviewing images taken from then, that I wanted to return to capture this image properly. This time I had my tripod and a few extra lenses to choose from to get the image. It was then that I realized how difficult it was to capture the golden streaking sand which made me slow down to realized when it occurs. Without my camera I would never even care to know about it.

    Then we come to processing the image.

    Originally I overlooked this image because there wasn’t much going on with it. A single stone with a washed out golden streak… great… I had more interesting images that I shot that day. So I thought. I started to process images with multiple stones that had a lot going on. They looked nice, but it wasn’t what I wanted. I few days later I selected this image to work on and was immediately satisfied. This is the shot I came back for. It took a while to process. I darkened the edges to give more focus to the stone and trail and to create a lot more drama while maintaining the stones character. After I completed the image it seemed almost celestial with the small highlighted specks in the dark shining through while the stone felt like a meteorite flying through space.  It took a while, but I finally have the image I set out for.

    © Christopher Johnson

    If you would like to buy a print I have this available on my FineArtAmerica page.

  • Macro

    Photograph of the details of a vibrant purple flower

    I was surprised with some beautiful flowers from my wife, so of course I set up to photograph them. What I love about macro is the new world that is seen within such a close up view of the subject. I didn’t notice all the amazing yellows in the center of the flower without the help of the camera. Then I began noticing all the tiny water drops that speckled the flower.

    Enjoy!

    © Christopher Johnson

    Available backlit from Big Naked Wall. Check out the website and see the cool things they are doing for artwork with their interchangeable prints on backlit frames.

  • Marble

    This macro image of a marble, backlit with a table lamp, looks like a planet in our solar system.

    I bought some marbles this weekend to experiment with exposure and composition. The shot I had in mind hasn’t been realized yet, but by accident I came up with this planet looking shot.

    © Christopher Johnson

     

  • Leaf Detail

    Photograph of a backlit leaf that shows all the amazing interconnected lines that makes up the amazing detail of a leaf.

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    © Christopher Johnson

  • Red Carnation Flower

    A macro view of the beautiful delicate petals of a red carnation.

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    © Christopher Johnson

    Purchase a print by visiting my RedBubble page

  • Ice Crystals

    A study of the intricate details of ice crystals that formed on a window in Lake Tahoe.

  • Succulent

    Close up of a beautiful turquoise Chick and Hen

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    Macro shot of a succulent that I was inspired to photograph this morning while drinking coffee on my lanai.

    © Christopher Johnson

  • Monstera Leaf

    Monstera Leaf

    Macro of a Monstera Leaf with rain drops.
    © Christopher Johnson

  • Macro Expression

    [title color=”dark” size=”h3″] Artistic expression in a macro world. [/title]

     

    These flowers are small. They are probably no larger than a 1/4 inch at the largest flower. However, you would never think they were small when viewing these images. That is what makes macro photography so amazing. The ability to create a scene from something so incredibly small.

  • Smoke From A Flame

    [title color=”dark” size=”h3″] Smoke Trails Captured Using A Flash [/title]

    [title color=”dark” size=”h5″] –  A new challenge  – [/title]

    It was about two weeks ago that I was watching the smoke rise off of a candle I had on the back deck. Completely relaxed and in meditation a spark of inspiration arose in me. I wanted to capture the black smoke rising off of the flame. Thus it began. I was shooting against the bright overcast clouds of the day, giving the smoke a dark look. Shooting about 200 images, I didn’t really know what to expect until I viewed them on the computer. It was then that I was awestruck.

    Much like water, smoke is completely organic and unpredictable. Ever changing as it moves and plays with the elements around it, so to capture it as an image is the challenge. Unlike landscape and floral shots, with every press of the shutter is a mystery and is completely unique.

    Since that first shooting I have been trying to capture a series of images that portrays the way smoke plays.

    by Christopher Johnson