Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Photographing the 2011 Wisconsin Orchid Show

The 2011 Wisconsin Orchid Show at the Mitchell Park Conservatory in Milwaukee was awesome! The Wisconsin Orchid Society hosted a wonderful set of vendors and exhibitors, and the MidAmerican Orchid Congress ran a fabulous Fall meeting program. And, of course, I didn't take enough pictures.

I've attended a handful of orchid shows and I always try to take a lot of pictures. No matter how thorough my efforts appear to me at the time, I typically regret not taking better photos and more photos. The Wisconsin Orchid Show at the Mitchell Park Conservatory in Milwaukee presented special challenges. The exhibits were fantastic and well-lit by natural sunlight coming in from the glass space-age dome. Unlike most shows I've attended, the exhibits were set off against a natural background of trees and rock. It was a beautiful setting, but too challenging for my meager photography skills (I'm more comfortable with a black fabric background).

A couple of my friends are photography pros, so I have a sense of what quality photography is supposed to look like and its far distance from my point-and-click universe. I've never taken a class or read a book about photography so I lean on editing software. Photoshop bewilders me. I love Photoscape because it's free, easy to use, does almost everything I want, and takes up very little space on my computer. I also use an old Microsoft program called Picture It! which has a feature that superimposes the Rule of Thirds on the photo to allow for precise cropping.

My basic photographic strategy entails taking a lot of photos and letting only the very best see the light of day. I hope you enjoyed these five. I left a lot in the reject pile.   

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