Dragonfly 1: 0 Photographer (after extra time)

Well it has been a pretty bad week. My brother passed away on Sunday morning aged only 61 and a few other problems arose to compound matters. On Monday however I decided that I would do what I wanted to do – get out and breath fresh(ish) air and just wallow in nature, if you’ll pardon the cliché. Off  I went to LNEC as usual. The heat was enough to ensure I was drenched in minutes so I sought out areas that were at least a little shaded.

One such area is a bridge over two small ponds. Dragonflies hawk around here and sure enough I quickly found a beautiful male Forest chaser. And so began the battle for the photograph. Lyriothemis elegantissima, for it is he, is a pugnacious little blighter and darts around all over the pond seeing off potential and actual intruders. Woe betide any visitor who wishes to bask on LE’s patch. Occasionally however, as if to draw breath, regroup and take in another slug of Popeye’s spinach, he would rest. And each time I tried to get a decent photograph.

The bridge has rails and that means either photographing over the rails, through them or under them. I tried all three. I also discovered that whichever angle I chose I could not get the dragonfly wholly in light or shade. I think the light was what is called dappled. I called it a few other things. In the end I resorted to using fill flash, which is my last resort, more so as I had forgotten my diffuser. And of course with the flash on the camera body certain angles were unworkable. Although the lens poked through the flash was blocked by a rail. So I took about 20 shots in well over an hour and to be honest, none is really good. But here are two to prove I did get something but the biggest frustration was the lack of definition in the wings as you can see. I could not get the wings sharp and the veins clear as well as the body. Which means I shall have to try again tomorrow if the weather is half decent. Wish me luck in the replay.

Lyriothemis elegantissima

Olympic dragonfly, eyeing up the 3m springboard

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3 thoughts on “Dragonfly 1: 0 Photographer (after extra time)

  1. Accept my sympathies for the death of your brother.
    Good luck on your next trip, though I’d be pleased with these myself. It may be worth watching your target for a while to see if there’s a regular perch from which it hunts – let it come to you rather than you chase it round?

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