An Ants Home
Updated: Dec 7, 2018
The English Rosa
Genus Rosa or more commonly known as the ‘Rose’, could be argued as the most recognized flower in the world. There are over 100 hundred species of Rose and all beautiful in their own way, I think these ants agree. The Rose is not just clearly appreciated by humans but also other various insects. These little ants have a good taste for home and must be a pleasant place to reside. Flowers vary in size and shape and are usually large and showy, in colours ranging from white through yellows and reds. Most species are native to Asia, with smaller numbers native to Europe, North America, and northwestern Africa. Rose plants range in size from compact, miniature roses, to climbers that can reach seven meters in height. Different species hybridize easily, and this has been used in the development of the wide range of garden roses. — Wikipedia
Roses are best known as ornamental plants grown for their flowers in the garden and sometimes indoors. They have been also used for commercial perfumery and commercial cut flower crops. Some are used as landscape plants, for hedging and for other utilitarian purposes such as game cover and slope stabilization. They also have minor medicinal uses and make a great home for ants.
Ornamental roses have been cultivated for millennia, with the earliest known cultivation known to date from at least 500 BC in Mediterranean countries, Persia, and China. Many thousands of rose hybrids and cultivars have been bred and selected for garden use as flowering plants. Most are double-flowered with many or all of the stamens having mutated into additional petals.
Roses are generally regarded as the national icon for Valentines day and a symbol of love. These flowers are also common in weddings and even funerals. Rose’s are generally available to purchase at many local florists and supermarkets in the United Kingdom.
To create an image like this requires patience, decent natural light, a beautiful garden and of course photography equipment. The best type of lens to use for flower photography is a specialist macro lens or a telephoto lens with a large aperture. A dedicated macro lens is built for capturing your subject using the smallest of focal distances and typically have a medium focal length of around 70-100mm. Optical stabilization is handy should you encounter any wind on the day, however, if it is too windy I personally would wait until the weather improves. If you can obtain a macro lens with an f-stop of around 2.8 and diaphragm blades, this will provide you with beautiful bokeh (blur) which will help isolate the subject placing emphasis on the desired target.
Decent macro lenses I recommend are as follows (depending on your camera model):
With regards to lighting, if you can use natural sun light then great, however, you can use external lighting whether they are portable flash units, such as the PIKA200 TTL or a ring light, such as the PIXAPRO RICO240 attached to your lens. If your external light source can be altered to represent a warm tone, such as 3500k this will provide your image with the appearance of sunlight, should you be in a position where there is a lack of light or the light quality is not very good. If you have the time try and spend a whole day in the garden and watch how the light changes your subject when the sun moves. This will provide you with different viewpoints and unique alterations to your subject. Don't forget you can also change the light settings in your camera, such as sunny, cloudy, ambient, etc. Finally, think about your metering, how is the camera detecting the light source? Are you using a wide setting for which the sensor will capture an 'average' light based on the entire scene, or, are you setting the metering as 'spot', which will record the amount of light at the centre of the image? Again, experiment with both settings (or more if your camera supports them) and see how this affects your overall image.
Image content, or in other words 'action', what are you shooting, are you waiting for anything to happen? When I captured 'An Ants Home', I initially noticed the amount of insects scurrying around this rose and wanted to capture this in my final image. This is where patience is required, when you have setup your camera sometimes you just have to wait. It is not unusual for wild life photographers to spend hours or even days on end for that perfect shot. Wildlife never works for the photographer, you are always battling the elements. re-composing, re-positioning etc. Shooting flowers cannot be compared to animals etc. however, the same rules apply if you want to capture more than flowers, such as bees etc.