Picture This!
Backlight: Stained Glass To Fall Foliage And More

Our Picture This! assignment this month was “Backlight,” and readers responded with images that spoke of the wonders of light in this, perhaps the most challenging but many times the most rewarding, lighting condition. Many of the images brought back the words of the filmmaker Werner Herzog, who I will paraphrase here, when he said that images are our way of bearing witness to the miracles of life and the wonders of nature. While most of the images were of natural forms, others caught our attention by the use of glass and other translucent objects. When light passes through any medium it changes, but when it passes through transparent, colorful forms it creates a most amazing display. I’d also like to note that we received hundreds of images for this month’s assignment and choosing among them was no easy task. Thanks to all for their efforts and for opening our eyes once again to the beauty around us on what otherwise would have been a drab, overcast day.

Leaf Design
Robert Brinker made this shot at the Norfolk Botanical Garden (Virginia) with an Olympus EVOLT E-300 with a Zuiko 35mm macro lens. Exposure at ISO 200 was f/7.1 at 1⁄30 sec.
© 2009, Robert Brinker, All Rights Reserved

Water Droplets
These droplets on backlit glass were photographed by Bill Boswell with a Nikon D2X and a 105mm macro lens.
© 2009, Bill Boswell, All Rights Reserved

Nature’s Art
Frost patterns were the subject of Rick Mason’s Canon EOS 20D with a Canon 24-105mm lens.
© 2009, Rick Mason, All Rights Reserved

Glass Vases
This still life using vases against tungsten photo lights shining on white matte board was made by Diane Schroeder with a Nikon D200 and a Micro Nikkor 105mm f/2.8 lens. Exposure at f/32 was 1.5 seconds.
© 2009, Diane Schroeder, All Rights Reserved

Sunrise At The Old Mill Dam
This glorious spread of light was photographed by Charles Rehm with a Pentax K10D and a Pentax 18-250mm lens. Exposure was f/5.6 at 1/250 sec.
© 2009, Charles Rehm, All Rights Reserved

Spooner Lake, Nevada
Neal Parker came across this glorious fall scene while hiking and worked with a Nikon D200 camera and a 17-35mm lens. Exposure at ISO 200 was f/6.3 at 1/160 sec.
© 2009, Neal Parker, All Rights Reserved

Grandfather Mountain
Jeffrey Stoner caught this ethereal scene with a Canon EOS-1D Mark II with an exposure of f/8 at 1⁄40 sec at ISO 200.
© 2009, Jeffrey Stoner, All Rights Reserved

View From Tower Bridge
Debbie Bice caught this evocative time of day in London with a Nikon D70 and a Nikkor 18-200mm lens. Exposure was f/11 at 1⁄60 sec.
© 2009, Debbie Bice, All Rights Reserved

Sunset Silhouette
While in Hawaii Michael J. Brown caught this interplay of light and form with a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT and a Sigma 28-300mm lens. Exposure at ISO 200 was f/13 at 1/400 sec.
© 2009, Michael J. Brown, All Rights Reserved

Cactus Plant
The ability of backlight to bring out texture was captured by Irwin H. Segel with a Nikon D70 and a Tamron 28-200mm lens. Exposure at f/8 was 1⁄40 sec.
© 2009, Irwin H. Segel, All Rights Reserved

Flower Afire
Scott Hauch set his Nikon D200 and AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm lens atop a Manfrotto Carbon One 441 tripod and used a Mini Maglite flashlight to provide the glow. Exposure at f/16 was 0.3 seconds.
© 2009, Scott Hauch, All Rights Reserved

Morning Peacefulness
This pastoral scene was photographed by Katherine Plessner with a Sony A100; exposure was f/6.3 at 1/160 sec.
© 2009, Katherine Plessner, All Rights Reserved

Sunrise Flight
Photographed on Singer Island, Florida, Robert K. Bailey caught the glint of sunlight at dawn through these birds’ feathers. He worked with a Canon EOS 10D and a 28-105mm lens; exposure at ISO 400 was f/6.7 at 1/4000 sec.
© 2009, Robert K. Bailey, All Rights Reserved

Streaming Light
Fog dispersed the light through the trees in this photo by Don Ostroski. He photographed with a Canon PowerShot G2 with an exposure of f/4 at 1/250 sec.
© 2009, Don Ostroski, All Rights Reserved

Seltzer And Lime
Jack Lagomarsino caught the morning light coming through his glass with a Nikon COOLPIX 8700 with an exposure of f/4.1 at 1/177 sec.
© 2009, Jack Lagomarsino, All Rights Reserved