The Snowflake

Okay, It’s freezing outside.  The temperature is colder than a pawnbroker’s heart.  Snow falling all over the ground, God’s holy dandruff coating the neighborhoods.

Good.  Just what I want to happen today.

Let me explain.

Earlier this year, I tested out some macro photography to capture snowflakes as they landed on a fence post.  I wasn’t happy with the pictures, but it was a start.

Yesterday, after returning home, I saw the snow flurries drifting down from the skies.  Sweet.  I’m going to try this snowflake photography one more time.

I know full well that snowflakes are frozen little ornate hexagons.  I’m sure there’s some sort of science to this procedure – but I’m not looking to write a thesis.

I want to spend today capturing snowflakes.  You know, just like in the Peanuts cartoons.

Okay, maybe not catching them on my tongue…

I put a bath towel outside, and after the fabric dropped to the same ambient temperature as outside, I took my Nikon Df camera, attached my 55mm F 1:3.5 macro lens – and this time, in addition to the macro lens, I added three extension tubes.  This should bring the snowflakes up to a good viewing size.  I also added a ring flash to my photos, so as to light up the snowflakes as much as possible.

The towel’s plenty cold now.  Let’s see if it can capture some snowflakes without the snowflakes melting on the fibers.

First try.

We’re close.

The focus plane on this is as thin as a thought.   I almost have to rock back and forth and hit the rapid fire shutter speed at the same time.

I don’t like the blue bath towel in the background.  Must try again.

I went back in the house.  I grabbed a black T-shirt.  Outside it goes.  Okay, T-shirt, time to freeze up.

Mental note.  Must buy some black fleece fabric at Jo-Ann Fabrics this week.

Okay, black T-shirt’s ready for some shots.

And …

Oh my God.

Did I capture that??

All by myself???

One more try… there’s a few more snowflakes on this fabric, let’s get ’em.


Okay, some things to work out.  T-shirts are great for emergencies, but I can’t enter these photos in competition.  I barely hit the focus on one of these pictures, for starters.  And when you magnify T-shirt fabric, you can see all the fibers and strands right there, clear as day.

But … if Mother Nature gives me one more snowstorm this year…

I will be so ready for it.

So ready.

I promise.