I’ve been talking a lot about my Fuji X100F on the blog lately, but for this week’s photo I wanted to take things in kind of the opposite direction. I didn’t shoot this with my Fuji or even a 50mm lens. Instead instead I used my 70-200 lens on my D7100, and even though that combination is overkill for getting pictures of flowers it’s so much fun to go out and shoot with I figured…well, why not?

When I checked the forecast on this particular morning and saw that it would be in the low 70’s I decided to bring out the big guns, photographically speaking, just for the fun of it and see if I could get any interesting pictures during the day. As sometimes happens I ended up going for a short walk around campus in the early afternoon and soon came upon the dogwood trees just to the west of Low Library. These flowers only appear for a couple days during the year and it’s fun to get pictures of them while they last, and even though it was quite windy I thought I would give it a try.

As much as I like prime lenses (and you know I like prime lenses!) there is something nice about having a zoom lens sometimes, and because this flower was pretty high up from the ground there was no way I could have gotten this shot with my usual 50mm. I stood back about ten feet, zooming in and out until I had the composition I was looking for, and snapped a couple pictures before the wind started whipped the flower back and forth again. I ended up shooting at 165mm, f/2.8, using a 1/250 second shutter and I think the end result worked out fairly well, though from a compositional standpoint I do wish I would have been able to get the purple flower just a bit to the right so it was not encroaching on the visual space occupied by the branch behind it. I do like the image as a whole though, and even though I tried a couple shots with a brick background I much prefer the purple standing out like a splash of color against a sea of green.


  1. This is NOT a dogwood. It’s a tulip tree (or magnolia.)

    • Thanks for the clarification. We have both magnolia trees and dogwood trees on campus and I was certain this was a dogwood, but I guess not.

  2. Very nice!

  3. I was just about to tell you that you better check your plant tags…. Bill beat me to it.
    I wish I could share photos here. I walked around my yard with my own 7100 and 70-200 F2.8 last week. I snapped some photos that really made me happy that I went outside. Which lens are you using? Nikon? Tamron?

    • Where do you have your photos online, Rebecca? Are you on Instagram? I’d love to see more of your work :) I have the Nikon 70-200 VRII lens and oh my goodness…it’s so nice. I’ve heard the Sigma and Tamrons are really good too!

      • I would love to “show off” my photos to you. I post them on Facebook at RR Burlingham Photography.
        I have the newer Tamron 70-200. It is my current go to lens. I bought it to use for Marching Band photos, specifically in low light situations. I’m finding it works well for portraits as well as macro type shots of flowers.

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