Necessity is the mother of invention

During the past month of August, spent in Maremma, for personal reasons I couldn't stay away from home for too long. Necessity is the mother of invention, so I gave myself an assignment of shooting from a certain spot in Padule Aperto, a flat made of cultivated fields adjacent to the marshes of Diaccia Botrona; a twenty minutes drive from home.

Padule Aperto is excellent for taking photos of greylag geese from November to February, where fields are fresh, green pastures; but in August it is mostly a deserted land. Still, if you get some clouds in the sky, things might dramatically change at sunset: in fact the wide open space above the fields catches the sun beams and creates interesting combinations of lights, starting from orange, graduating to pink, getting to mauve and various shades of violet, as the Belt of Venus rises from the horizon. For some minutes the various colours co-exist as many layers of clouds, at various heights, catch the sun rays filtered by portions of the atmosphere whose densities are different.

Bagliori lontani.

Nikon D7000 + Samyang 8mm ƒ/3.5 fish-eye II @ 8 mm, 1/80 sec @ ƒ/8, -2.33 EV, ISO 280, hand-held.

Most of the shots were taken with the 18-70mm, which did a good job of capturing patterns of clouds and some hints of the terrain, just to anchor the photo to the bottom edge.

Le nuvole rosee del Padule Aperto.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 18 mm, 1/200 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.00 EV, ISO 100, hand-held.

Le nuvole rosee del Padule Aperto.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 18 mm, 1/200 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.00 EV, ISO 100, hand-held.

Gli ultimi guizzi di luce sul Padule Aperto.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 24 mm, 1/200 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.33 EV, ISO 560, hand-held.

Le ultime luci sull'Isola Clodia.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 48 mm, 1/200 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.33 EV, ISO 560, hand-held.

Le nuvole rosee sono delizie lontane.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 56 mm, 1/200 sec @ ƒ/8, -2.00 EV, ISO 720, hand-held.

Scende la sera sugli assopiti girasoli.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 29 mm, 1/320 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.67 EV, ISO 220, hand-held.

But I'm very keen to use long telephotos, such as the 300mm, for landscape photography and capturing details; such as small villages perched on faraway hills, catching the last light of the day.

Montepescali e Sticciano al tramonto.

Nikon D7000 + Nikkor 300mm ƒ/4D ED-IF AF-S @ 300 mm, 1/320 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.33 EV, ISO 180, tripod.

Montepescali e Sticciano al tramonto.

Nikon D7000 + Nikkor 300mm ƒ/4D ED-IF AF-S @ 300 mm, 1/250 sec @ ƒ/8, -2.00 EV, ISO 400, tripod.

The rising of the full moon is something that shouldn't be missed at Padule Aperto. Of course a good sky should be present: not too clear, and not too cloudy. Since the weather is unpredictable, and sunsets are even more, I went the day before the “official” full moon - it was at 98% and the difference with the actual full moon can't be told - to have two chances instead of one. It was a proper choice, since the day after the sky was filled with uninteresting, dull colours.

La luna emerge da una leggera foschia...

Nikon D7000 + Nikkor 300mm ƒ/4D ED-IF AF-S @ 300 mm, 1/320 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.33 EV, ISO 100, Kirk Enterprises Window Mount from the car.

Ghermita da un artiglio rosa.

Nikon D7000 + Nikkor 300mm ƒ/4D ED-IF AF-S @ 300 mm, 1/250 sec @ ƒ/8, -2.00 EV, ISO 100, Kirk Enterprises Window Mount from the car.

The long telephoto lens is the preferred one for the full moon, but switching to a moderate tele is useful to capture some context. The skyline of the hills was not particularly interesting, but a grove in the middle of the fields made for a different plane of colour - it also hid some farms that I didn't want in the shot.

Dopo il tramonto nel Padule Aperto.

Nikon D5100 + Nikkor 18-70mm ƒ/3.5-4.5G ED DX AF-S @ 70 mm, 1/250 sec @ ƒ/8, -1.33 EV, ISO 280, hand-held.