Accidentally in Motion

I have always loved the concept of artistically capturing motion in photos, however most often, the movement along with my automatic camera’s shutter speed just came out as a blurry, indistinguishable mess.

I still have some old attempts at motion images and they are so old now that I can’t even remember what the subject was supposed to be.  Was that green blur based on plants or a car?  And the brown photo?  Was that a dog, cat, or some brown leaves blowing in the wind?  I look back and laugh (or cry) at some of the attempts.

It turns out that all I really needed was a better camera and a better understanding of shutter speed and how to use it…and maybe a little luck!

Recently, I caught two really great motion pics – a bit by mistake – if I’m being honest here.  I was playing around with the manual settings on my Nikon and was experimenting with them to see how I could get some great shots.  The first one (below) is the spinning motion of my son twirling a dandelion in between his fingers.  You can see that his arm is mostly in focus but the dandelion is clearly in motion with the dandelion snow blurred a bit from it.  I expected to see the dandelion snow frozen in time, perfectly in focus, but bent over from the motion.   I love this pic even though the end result was not what I was originally going for!

Spinning Dandelion

The second pic was taken this afternoon, while I was taking macro shots without a macro lens of a rose with some daisies in a small vase.  I was trying to focus on the rose while having the daisies blurred in the background just providing color and texture behind the rose.  I did get one pretty decent shot, but that’s not what this post is about.  This post is about capturing motion.  And the picture below is a perfectly, accidentally timed picture of the rose falling out of the vase.   I love that you can still tell it’s a rose and that the colors behind it are so vibrant.  But it is also very clearly in motion.  Had I not already been taking the photo (while I thought it was NOT in motion), I would never have gotten this shot.

Fallen Rose


I love when my photography accidents are beautiful while providing important lessons.  And in this case, I finally proved that with the right camera and some luck, I can get some good motion shots!  Next time I will be trying to get motion pictures on purpose…maybe.


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