I spent the afternoon at Star Fort and took dozens of pictures that I absolutely loved. Star Fort was the Crown Jewel of Ninety Six, SC and was the site of two major American Revolutionary War battles. My friends across the pond will be happy to hear it was a loyalist stronghold and despite a 28 day siege, the longest of the entire war, it was the last Loyalist fort in SC until July 1, 1781 when the British left of their own accord. History lesson aside, the site has beautiful scenery, some beautifully restored buildings, and many opportunities for pictures.
Shooting at the historic site was a lot of fun for me because I’ve brought numerous clients here to use the lush open grass and amazing patterns and textures of the old buildings. I was walking down the path past the restored Black Swan Tavern and the way the sun set behind one of the support beams caught my eye. During a client shoot I never would’ve (and never had) noticed this but the freedom of being out there just shooting for me really opened my eyes to the kind of picture I have grown accustomed to ignoring for sake of time and task.
It’s a shame we pass photo opportunities like this every day but I’m happy to say I’m looking for them again.
The site has an old wood fence around most of the entrance that made for a lot of interesting photos. The texture of the wood is very rugged and photographs really well. I particularly like the splintered pieces jutting off from the main body.
A little further along the fence line I found this leaf resting rather precariously beside one of the splinters. I tried this shot a little more backlit by the sun at first but it completely killed the detail so I reframed it with the sun higher behind the leaf and it turned out pretty well.
I wanted something that got far enough back from the fence to see how it was actually constructed. The interwoven wood strips had a really nice aesthetic so once I got to a nice green patch in the grass beside the fence I got down on my belly and shot the connection between two sections. I put the sun in the background to accent it. I kept a low f/stop, 2.8 and dialed my shutter in for a quick 1/2500th of a second to get crisp detail, short DOF, and a relatively dark image. The green grass really came out well and I couldn’t be happier with the shot.
I immediately recognized the potential for a shot focussing on the grass. I’ve found that a slight change in perspective, even if it’s just tilting the lens a few degrees and focusing somewhere else can really change an image. I like the above image for what it is, but I like the below image because it feels a little more surreal and the detail of the grass is really pleasing to the eye.
I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s post and pictures. This only scratches the surface of what I did at Star Fort so keep your eyes open for more very soon. In my next post I’m going to talk a bit about adjusting the white balance on your camera and how it can help (or hurt) your pictures.
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Thanks for stopping by and God Bless, see you again soon!