Every time we go on a trip out of town I like to keep my eye open for possible photo opportunities beyond just taking snapshots of friends and family. Sometimes they present themselves plain as day, but other times I have to look just a bit harder which was the case here. This is a small wire tree at my in-laws’ house where we spent a few days this summer reading, relaxing, watching the kids play, and solving a communal crossword puzzle too :) We mostly spent time at their house with the exception of going out to eat, attending church, and taking some walks around the neighborhood and after a little while I was starting to wonder if I would be able to spot any potential Weekly Fifty images.

The last evening we were at their house I took note of this little wireframe creation on a table in their living room and wondered if it might make for an interesting photo, so I took a few minutes to play around with the idea. I tried not to alter the scene except for just scooting the glass paperweight over a few inches, lest it come across as blatantly artificial. It would have been fun to shoot this with a 50mm lens but all I had was my X100F so I did what I could to make that work.

I used my Gorillapod tripod with its legs wrapped around the back of a kitchen chair which allowed me to use a slightly longer shutter speed of 1/30 second. Depth of field was an issue because I wanted a bit of foreground and background blur but also wanted as much of the tree branches in focus as possible, and after trying a couple different aperture values I settled on f/2.8 which turned out to be a decent compromise. Focus was entirely manual but the focus peaking on this camera (which is also available on a lot of other cameras–check your manual to see if you have it too) helped mitigate some of the issues I might have had otherwise. ISO was as low as I could get it in order to give me as smooth and noise-free of an image as possible.

I don’t have a grand story to tell about this photo, though perhaps my mother-in-law (who is a frequent reader of this blog) might leave some information in the comments :) I just thought it would be a cool picture given the interesting subject and late-night lighting, and overall I quite like the results.


  1. Just got me a Fujifilm X-T100. It is a learning curve from my Canon 7D (crop sensor). Lots of bells and whistles, but I am loving it so far!

    • Excellent! I’ve heard great things about the X-T100 and I’m sure you will like it. Though that Canon 7D is a fantastic camera too :)

  2. Your Mother-in-law says

    Aha! When I previously saw that you had taken this picture I suspected that someday it might end up on the Weekly Fifty! I am happy to provide some history. This wonderful tree was made by a woman in Conneaut, Ohio, in about the mid-1970’s, and given to my husband as a gift. It is made from a wire cable and a piece of limestone, which has been polished on the bottom. One end of the cable was unwrapped a short distance, spread out, and glued to the rock, forming the visible roots of the tree. The other end was unwrapped to form the branches, which are so fun to play with and to rearrange to suit one’s mood.

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