Seaside, California, USA by Alyce Bender

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Picture Story

I’m sure had any of my neighbors looked out their windows while having their morning cup of coffee they may have been alarmed, as, in order to get the angle on this scene, I was laying flat on my stomach on the sidewalk in the middle of my neighborhood early one morning. Coastal California, especially around Monterey Bay (a few hours south of San Francisco), gets quite a bit of sea fog rolling in and dropping moisture on the surrounding hills, including the area I live in. This means the early morning are a wonderful time to get out and find macro subjects covered in dew.

With Covid-19 and the travel restrictions that were in place this summer, I spent a lot of my days finding the small details in nature around my house. This particular droplet caught my eye due to its perfect shape and the precarious position it found itself, balanced on the blade of grass, seemingly defying the laws of physics. So, naturally, I had to get very low to capture it from this perspective, which meant laying down and getting my face and camera in the grass. Focusing on the droplet was made easier at this level too, while no tripod was used, I was able to rest the camera on the ground. The additional light sphere in the image was a happy coincidence that I did not realize was in the frame until I was reviewing the images on my computer. It was caused by sunlight refracting through another droplet that was pushed out of focus by the shallow depth of field.

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