Depth of Field in April Woods

Greens mixed with sunshine sprout and grow in the woods, bold grasses, new lichen, fresh leaves move in the breeze. Birdsong accompanies the butterflies dance through this bright palette of growth dotted with purple, lilac and the unmistakable April blue of the tiny bell-shaped flowers covering the forest floor.

To translate all these sensations in a photograph is nay impossible. As the human eye focuses on small details of any scene, near or far, and the brain fills in the gaps to give us the whole image, so a photograph is only a tiny piece of a scene that should tease the other senses to collate the moment’s ingredients. Opening your camera’s aperture to paint an image’s background with guessed-at shapes outside your focal range, may thus do more to evoke a scene than an all clear and crisp landscape can.

If all is revealed in a photograph, there is little space for our own imagination to stimulate our senses. The bluebell is but a smudge of purple-blue in the above image. The initial focus is the almost lime-green leaf of early spring. We are immersed in April’s hues.

Less is more. A tease of a glimpse into a world that can be anything. An open aperture, a narrow depth of field, is a book without a movie, a story that is ours for the visualisation.