Dried Grass with Sunset

The colors and shapes and relationships in this photo are delightful.

Some dried tall grass in the foreground, some suckers shooting straight up off of an apple tree branch, and distant conifers. This image snuck up on me after I took it. At the time, it was just a test of a film lens on the digital Sony camera. But then the sinuous lines of the dried grass hit me, and the supple lines of the apple tree branches, and the deeply out of focus background…and it became an image I just kept looking at over and over to see what I might have missed.

Technical info: This was taken with a Mamiya 210mm APO lens (for the RB67 film camera) mounted on a Sony digital camera (A7R IV). It was taken at f/8 or f/11 to get more of the grass in focus; it did not look quite right when entire streamers were not in focus, so I increased the depth of field by reducing the aperture.

This is a crop from the original; I was conscious of proportions when I took the photo but as completely as when I was processing it and could experiment with crop that did not require moving the camera and tripod, re-focusing, adjusting exposure time, etc. After working with it for 20 minutes or so, I realized that the picture I had taken was not the best picture; I cropped to capture only the really important relationships in the result.