This morning I went for my first drive since my surgery, and the first in the MX-5 since it was broad-sided up in Yorkshire. I was surprised and not very pleased to find initially that I was driving quite tentatively - I have no intention of turning into someone who's scared to drive a car, and I gave myself a fairly severe talking to. I only went as far as Waitrose, to collect some odds and ends that couldn't wait until tomorrow's supermarket delivery, but on the way back home I chose a scenic route and concentrated on enjoying myself. When I found myself reaching for seventh gear - the MX-5 has six - I knew that I'd got over my nervousness.
Part way back I had to stop to put the roof up, because a nice morning had deteriorated into a drizzly afternoon, so back at home I decided to get out the light pad for some more high-key fartnarklery, and after some rummaging around in the borders looking for potential subjects I chose to play with a bloom from my Wild Edric rose, brought in fresh from the rainy garden. For this complex structure I found that I needed to use a single soft box, angled to light the centre of the flower, because otherwise the shadows were too pronounced for Lightroom to deal with effectively. I also found that shooting at f/22 did give me a crisper result than f/32: the loss of depth of field with the wider aperture wasn't really noticeable, but the extra sharpness was. I should have taken exposure notes, because I tried quite a few and now I'm struggling to remember exactly what went into each of my images, but this is an HDR blend of (I think) a +2 and a +3 stop exposure. If you'd like to see what Wild Edric looks like in normal light, I posted him here.
Before I go, may I thank everyone who was so charming about yesterday's Banded Demoiselle, sending her to the top of page 2 of Pops. I'm very happy that you liked her!