Exploring Long Island's Farmland at F1.8
I love road trips! Gas up, pack some PB&J, the GPS, camera gear, and set off for new territory. For this adventure, I explored Long Island's North Fork where the towns have Indian names like Aquebogue, Cutchogue, and Mattituck. There are no mega-malls, or concrete jungles. Out here, it's only vast farmland owned by friendly families. Business operates at a different pace with most accepting cash but not credit cards. You slow down, taste wine, and enjoy the view. To document the experience, I brought along my Canon 40D with an Canon 85mm f1.8 lens.
I happily wandered through acres of peaceful lavender while enjoying the heavenly aroma. I wondered how one can capture "scent" in a photo. Normally when shooting landscapes, I use f16 or even f22 to render everything sharp from near to far. Yet here, I wanted to capture the softer, ethereal quality of the flowers. I decided to shoot wide open at f1.8 so only part of the image would be sharp. I composed the shot above to show the symetry and patterns of the sprawling farmland.
When shooting a type of photo story, it's also important to remember to take a few detail shots. For the image below, I used the 85mm again, and focused on one flower stem. At f1.8, everything else turned into a wash of lavender. I could have stayed here all day, but alas, there was more country to explore.
What would a visit to the East End be without sampling some wine? This view is from the second floor balcony of Raphael's Winery. Perhaps I fell under the spell of their 2004 Merlot Estate, or the samples of Riesling, but I decided to keep shooting at f1.8! Here, the neatly arranged rows of grapes stretch into the horizon with a little barn in the distance.
Back inside, I took this photo of the processing area through a window.
We also stopped at a local fruit stand where the berries were ripe for picking. Continuing at f1.8, I photographed the local produce, and a sunflower before making thr long journey home.
A colorful Rooster signals the end of this day's farm adventure
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