Apr 26, 2010

At the Boston Arnold Arboretum

This morning I made another quick stop at the Boston Arnold Arboretum. Due to this year mild February and March the lilacs are about two weeks early and lots of them are already in glorious full spring bloom. Usually they peak around Mother's day and tons of people visit each year for a daylong celebration. Tours of the lilacs, dance performances, picnicking (allowed on this special day only), and family activities make for a remarkable and memorable day at the arboretum. Parking becomes a nightmare that weekend. Today there was no problem finding a parking spot and barely a sole was around; only the usual walkers, runners and bikers. An overcast sky with somewhat diffused sunlight provided me with a wonderful lighting condition for floral photography. The windy conditions were less favorable for flower photography and often tested my patience to the limits. After arrival I immediately made my way down Bussey Hill to the lilacs and found many in bloom. I like when there are still buds right next to the flourishing flowers; it provides the flower photograph with an extra twist. I barely used my polarizing filter today resulting in faster and improved shutter speeds. I also used large apertures settings (small f-stop) for compositional purposes minimizing depth of field and to further enhance shutter speeds. I was consistently shooting at 1/160 through 1/250 second and faster helping a lot with the windy condition and capture some sharper lilac flower images.