On the Monet?

Posted on March 3, 2013 by Admin under lake, Monet, pastel, reflection, Stourhead

Photographs can inform, challenge, inspire.  They can bring excitement or moments of reflection. And sometimes they just tease. One of the photographic teases I enjoy is to set up the conundrum: is this real?  This shot is one of those.  I am often asked whether it is is photoshopped.  And barring a mild colour / contrast boost, it’s not.  The Monet-esque effect is pretty much straight out of camera.  (And, for those who know I post-process with Aperture 3 not Photoshop, there was no more tweaking there either!)
There is a second tease element here too: what way up should this be displayed.  In fact, what do you think the camera ‘saw’?
Well, the picture was taken in early Autumn at the wonderful Stourhead ( nationaltrust.org.uk/stourhead/ ).   The lakes here often offer the possibility of great reflections. My usual thought would be to capture both image and mirror-image.  But here the height of the trees were challenging from the narrow path and anyway, the real interest was in the reflection on the so-slightly disturbed surface of the water.  So that’s what I framed.  In a way it was an easier shot than to try to include the trees and brighter sky: I was able to concentrate on getting the exposure right – and balancing shutter speed against the movement in the water.

When I saw the final image it was a Monet moment, reminding me of his waterlilies.  So which way up would you hang it?

I was delighted to sell a 16×12 print of this at Christmas.  The gift was for a Monet fan. I understand she hung it the way it was shot.   Available as print, card or canvas over at Redbubble.com/people/colinkemp

Thanks for stopping by – do let me know what you think.