Cake
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    • The flowers from succulents, when photographed in
      ultraviolet light, become magical. Another one of my South African succulents
      has decided to bloom for the first time since planting them last year, and the
      results? Well worth the wait.

      Probably another variation on Polyxena ensifolia, this one
      with light pink/purple petals and white stalks, erupting in a cascade of
      blooms. The base of some flowers – including many irises – can glow green, but
      the long tubes of emerald and aquamarine on these exotic flowers really
      impresses. For anyone that has experimented in this kind of photography, you
      quickly realize that it’s a constant hunt for subjects that fluoresce in
      beautiful and interesting ways.

      If you haven’t thought about exploring this kind of
      photography before, I wrote a nice article on PetaPixel about it: https://petapixel.com/2017/09/21/using-ultraviolet-light-make-nature-fluoresce-photos/
      - the hardest part is getting the two filters to put over a modified flash. Thankfully,
      this image was shot with a commercially available UV light system designed
      exactly for this type of photography. Shot with an Adaptalux Control Pod 2.0
      and two ultraviolet lighting arms that I’m testing, it’s much more accessible!

      You can check out the system here: https://adaptalux.com/product/control-pod-2-0/
      . The lights don’t output as much as my custom built flashes, but with the “boost”
      feature on the new control pods they work just fine. Might have to get more of
      these UV arms, but even with two of them I can shoot at ISO 200 and F/20 with a
      60-second exposure. Shot on my favourite macro setup, the Lumix GX9 and Leica
      45mm F/2.8 macro lens, just a single frame was needed. Keep in mind that this
      is shot in complete darkness other than the UV lighting arms!

      Images like this get pushed a lot in post-processing, though
      not to falsify anything. These plants had been growing in my house, and were
      covered with a thin layer of dust. Dust fluoresces bright blue, and thankfully
      a lot of it can be removed with a bulb blower; some always remains, so I get
      friendly with my cloning and healing tools. If I want to brighten or darken
      part of the image, I almost always do this on a local level – those greens and
      blues can so easily become over-exposed even if all the data is in the RAW
      file. I’ve found ON1 Photo RAW to handle highlights better than Photoshop, but
      I still like manual control over how the light shapes the image.

      Oh, and where do you I get these bulbs? http://www.massonia.com/ sells a bunch of
      different varieties! I think I might have to order more. :)

    • one of the links set of my works firewall for drug abuse. UV lights are not cool for work :)

      wonderful images!

    • See how you go over here, different to some of the other platforms, but so far everyone’s friendly and some good conversations get started. Good to see you giving it a go, not that I doubted it would get your interest, have fun here.

    • I should post more, then! Thanks Chris - my upcoming snowflake series starting December 1st will be here as well. Let's see how many people gravitate towards it!

    You've been invited!