Rising above the Steppe

These touching pasqueflowers, which appear in abundance above the dry grasses of Yamskaya Steppe, call for an individual approach. No doubt, you are going to photograph them counter-lighted to highlight their fur-like downiness.

Pasqueflowers with trees in the background, highlighted by setting sun in Yamskaya Steppe
Eastern pasqueflower, or prairie crocus (Pulsatilla patens), with trees in the background, highlighted by setting sun in Yamskaya Steppe. Our first Macroclass in Belogorie, 2013. Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM, Macro Twin Lite MT-24EX flash unit, tripod, focusing rails.  f/10 ISO 200 1/60″.

To make the picture more complex and more diverse than made by macro lens on its own, I have put a teleconverter coupled with an extension tube between camera and the lens. That brought more air into the frame and made the bokeh deeper. In addition to that, I have installed a macro flash, which I rarely do. However, its lights were directed not to the flowers, but to grass in the foreground, to highlight a few bright spots there, and therefore add more volume to the scene.

Meet the new style of Macroclass

Анонс Макрокласса в Агрии, февраль 2016
New Macroclass logo

First I used to put my own logo with altered text (namely, Macroclass) over images that were taken during our Macroclass workshops, authored either by me or by Yulia Vtyurina, just because lack of time. In background, however, I continued thinking of the way to develop a dedicated style for our joint project.

I wanted the new logo to be clean, yet more complex than my own one, and ideally to convey what we share in style and approach to nature macro photography.

Macroclass logo sketches
Macroclass logo sketches

I came to an idea that letter elements of the logo should resemble different kinds of close up photography subjects – living creatures, and the logo as a whole to be of irregular shape or, better word, asymmetrical.

Letters of the word Macro (Russian equivalent: Макро) were drafted as: a snail, a dew droplet on a grass, a male beetle antenna, Polytrichum common moss spore holder, and a sundew leaf. Making the final draft, I've rejected sundew leaf for its complexity (hence, low scalability) and just put a general floral pattern.
The word “class” (Russian equivalent: класс) is rendered in a school handwriting style, since our Macroclass workshops are both creative and educative.

Macroclass logo (vector)

The last step was to choose the brand color, and that was the easiest thing to do. Considering that our Macroclass is devoted to nature macro photography, I decided to pick up a natural color from one of our photographs. Green would be too obvious, and its hue was already taken by my logo as well, so color had to be bold, calm, and peculiar. Just as one of our favorite subjects in Belogorie – fluffy pasqueflower, for which some of our participants joined workshop for the second time. After reviewing color samples from several candidate photos, we've ended up with this one:

Pasqueflowers by Yulia Vtyurina
Pasqueflowers by Yulia Vtyurina

And color extracted from the highlighted area is:

#751171

Hex: #751171
sRGB: R 117, G 17, B 113
CMYK: C 63, M 100, Y 22, K 9
Munsell: 7.5P 3/8
Pantone: 3515 C

We like this new style very much, and hope you will too.
And as a kind reminder, check the schedule of our upcoming workshops in the wild nature here.

And one more thing,

Official Macroclass wallpaper

«Little pink cuties on a nowhere lawn», official Macroclass wallpaper for iPad
Little pink cuties on a nowhere lawn“, official Macroclass wallpaper for iPad. Meyer-Optik Görlitz Trioplan 100mm f/2.8,  f/2.8 ISO 100 1/200″. stock 264649646.

Little pink cuties at a nowhere lawn

Розовые чудики
Little Pink cuties. Cyclamen coum subsp. caucasicum. Meyer-Optik Görlitz Trioplan 100mm f/2.8,  f/2.8 ISO 100 1/200″. stock 264649646.

These guys have just appeared at a lawn. Weird propeller shapes on thick stalks, nice pink color and an elusive scent—their features are pretty strange. They dance in early spring, then hide and disappear. I eager to meet them again. Until then, their music is the only thing I retain in my mind.

Jraah Mraah by Dvar, Album Cover
Kroom Kroom – from Jraah Mraah album by Dvar.