2020 WEEK 24: Multiple Exposure Nature Photography

This week we’ll be exploring the possibilities of multiple exposure photography in nature. (If you are still limited in your ability to explore the outdoors due to COVID-19, you can accomplish this challenge with a flower/bouquet or some other real or fake plant in your home.) Multiple exposure photography is a technique where two or more photos are combined into one. In the days of film photography, this was accomplished by opening the shutter two or more times without advancing the film. Nowadays many digital cameras provide the ability to capture multiple exposures in-camera – or you can combine two or more photos in post-processing. Either technique is fine for this challenge.

Clematis by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero
Clematis by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero

Depending on how you capture your multiple images, your end result could be very painterly, completely abstract or even fantastical. For the photo above, I used the multiple exposure setting on my camera and put the camera on a tripod. I then took 3 frames (each 1-stop underexposed) with a very shallow depth-of-field. The only difference between each frame was the focus point. I first focused on the nearest petal, then one mid-way into the flower and then one towards the back. The three frames were combined into one in the camera and the blurry areas gave the entire image a painterly look.

Flowers in the Tall Grass by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero

The photo above is an abstract created in-camera by taking two ICM images while in multiple exposure mode. The original scene was of a field of tall grass spotted with purple flowers. In the first exposure I moved my camera up/down and in the second exposure I moved the camera left/right. The combination creates a plaid-like abstract. (I would be remiss if I didn’t point you towards Deborah Hughes Photography (Flickr| Facebook) at this point, since her multiple exposure ICM photos are my inspiration for this challenge.)

For more multiple exposure nature photography inspiration, check out:

So how do you accomplish a multiple exposure photograph? If you have a DSLR or mirrorless, look in your camera manual to see if you have a multiple exposure mode. (Here is short video describing the way Canon, Fuji and Sony create them. You can find other videos with a simple search.)

If you prefer to combine your images in post-processing, here’s a quick tutorial on how to do that using Photoshop. And if you are using your phone for this challenge, take a look at the many tutorials that explain how to combine multiple images in Snapseed.

To recap this week’s challenge:

  • Take or create a multiple (2 or more) exposure photo using nature as your subject.
  • You can capture the multiple exposures in-camera or put them together in post-processing.
  • Post your photo during the week of Sunday, June 7 and Saturday, June 13.
  • Please remember to comment on at least FIVE photo submissions this week. I encourage you to consider how you connect with or respond to the story that the photo tells.

The friendly community guidelines are pretty simple:

  • Take a new photo for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Post your photo each week to our active communities on Facebook or Flickr (or both). Tag the photo:  #2020photochallenge #photochallenge #tempusaura
  • Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2020 Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge is fun and easy.

About thedigitaljeanie

I’m a self-taught photographer and way back when I used to love taking photos, but I allowed a business that I started in 2004 to take over my life and my photographic repertoire was reduced to quick product shots and how-to tutorials. When I joined the PhotoChallenge in December 2015, I was looking to rekindle my creativity and bring some joy back into my photography. I jumped in with both feet and have not looked back. I believe that photography can change the way we see and interact with the world around us. Some people may think that I hide behind the camera, but I feel that I experience the world in a much more intimate way when I am creating a composition in my viewfinder. In those moments distractions disappear, my mind focuses and I am fully present. It is just me and my camera capturing a moment in time that might otherwise go unnoticed. My background is as varied as the photos that I take. I’ve trained and worked as a software engineer, a massage therapist, an English teacher in Vietnam, a photo restoration artist (which is how I learned Photoshop) and for the past twelve years I have run a small software business with my husband where I have been published in numerous books and magazines, appeared on PBS television, created designs for fabric, quilts and machine embroidery and won awards for some of my quilts. It should come as no surprise that I am intensely curious about life and love to learn new things. I am blessed to live in the beautiful state of Colorado, USA in the Rocky Mountain foothills outside of Fort Collins with my husband and cat. You can find me online at: Photos: flickr.com/photos/the-digital-jeanie/ Day job: KaleidoscopeCollections.com Facebook: facebook.com/jeaniesa