Well Happy Mother’s Day (or belated Mother’s Day if you’re reading this in the email) to all the mamas out there! I wanted to take a little break from travel photography and share some images I’ve gotten around here in East Tennessee, and in honor of our mothers, I thought I’d kick it off with some spring flowers!
Above is a blossom from a quince shrub in my neighbor’s yard… in fact, all these were taken in my neighbor’s yard! Thanks Tim and Mitzi!

It’s been a while since I’ve posted any macro (close up) photos here on Picture of the Week, since 2015 in fact (!), so here’s three to get back in the swing of things. Generally speaking, I like doing macro shots where there is just one aspect of the image that’s really sharp, and the rest just blurs out. However, I’ve been wanting to mess with the focus stacking technique for a while, so here are my first fruits from those efforts.

I’ll spare you too much technical information, but essentially because of limitations of how lenses work, and the extreme closeness of a macro shot, you simply can’t get the entire “scene” in focus with one shot. So to get around this, and thanks to modern software this is really easy now, you take a bunch of photos, each focused on a different area of the subject, and then you “add” them all together in a process known as focus stacking. The net result is an extreme closeup, that has way more in focus than would normally be possible. It’s a whole lot of fun, and very challenging to get all the images right, and I have to say, I’m pretty pleased with the end result of these.

I hope you enjoy!

–Dan Thompson

Maryville, TN

Unknown wildflower – late winter, East Tennessee

Grape Hyacinth

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