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In focus, Photography blog

Currant sage — a bit of Mexico in Ticino

Macro photography of currant sage
ISO 800
100 mm
f/ 6.3
1/100 s

Macro photography often plays with complementary colors to create a colorful and exciting subject, like this picture of a currant sage, taken in summer 2020 in Ticino.

A summer image of a currant sage (Salvia Microphylla), taken in the Blenio Valley in Ticino: the complementary colors of the plant with the diffuse green background present a soothing overall image. Originally from Arizona and Mexico, the currant sage is popular as an ornamental in Mediterranean regions like Ticino.

For the photo, I used Focus Stacking with the camera mounted on the tripod with a 100mm macro lens. By taking about 20 individual images, I was able to photograph all the relevant areas of the foremost currant sage plant with the necessary sharpness and then stitch the individual macro photos together using Affinity Photo. I was lucky that day that it was completely windless: in macro photography (and especially when using focus stacking as a technique) almost nothing is more unwelcome than wind – and there even the lightest breeze is enough to create the impression of a small hurricane over the subject due to the long focal lengths. On the one hand, this naturally increases the risk of blurred images, and on the other hand, the exact position of the subject will not be identical in any of the individual images, which would pose some challenges for the focus stacking software.

The Ticino Blenio Valley, where this macro photo was taken, is located in the north of Ticino and leads over the Lukmanier Pass into the canton of Grisons. Especially for photographers who like to do macro photography, Ticino offers in spring and summer a diverse flora, which is very different from many other, especially more northern Alpine regions. But there is also enough space in Ticino for long hikes and lonely peaks, especially away from the many frequented tourist regions.

By the way: on my Instagram account @falko.burghausen you can regularly find more posts with new photos or videos.

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