Jacksonville, Oregon, USA by Richard Handler

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Picture Story

While "sheltering at home" in Jacksonville, Oregon during the Covid-19 pandemic I'm compiling an album of spring flowers and foliage on that portion of our small 0.21 acres not covered with the house.

This Japanese maple has leave which reflect sunlight as dark red, but what caught my attention on the morning of May 1 was the their intense crimson beauty when transilluminated by bright sunlight.

To capture the photo I waded into the small jungle behind house and tried various angles at different branches. Settled on this view with pair of like sized leaves against simple background of cloudless sky. Used a B+W CPL filter between lens and hood to increase contrast of sky vs. leaves (alternatively considered doing this in post processing but the more we get right in the camera, the better the results. Needed patience waiting for still air.

Processing included a pass through Topaz DeNoise for sharpening, then in Lr cropping off unwanted branches an in Ps healing over a few stray leaf tips intruding on edges. Final adjustment of white balance and texture was in Lr. Coatings on some lenses can give a slight blue cast so with important red subjects I customize the WB.

A good photo should show viewers perspective and details they may miss with their naked eyes. Think I succeeded, and I had fun capturing it.

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