Nicki Lautemann

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There's Something in the Water  |  November 2017

Coming from a background in special education, I never gave much thought to a camera as an object of fun. Even as a mom of 2 amazing daughters, a camera simply hadn't caught my attention. About 6 years ago, that all changed when my husband got me a little point and click camera for Christmas. It was pretty nifty, with fun waterproof capabilities and several different "modes" to explore. One mode I quickly grew to love was the "macro" mode, which allowed me to get very close and fairly detailed photos of whatever caught my eye. It was in macro mode, after a rain, where I discovered I could *see stuff* within the raindrops on the hostas. My first glimpse was only rocks beneath the plants, but it was mesmerizing and I was hooked.

 

I eventually got a digital camera and learned how to use it, quickly discovering that there are many lenses and that I'd need a special one to take my macro shots. Not wanting to spend more money, I began playing with taking photos using my existing lens, but in reverse. It took some practice, but again, it was just fascinating. I still use a lens in reverse for macro, as well as the addition of extension tubes, which allow me to get even closer to my subject. I love macro in general, but my favorite subject is water. It reflects and refracts in ways that dazzle the mind; there are tiny worlds within droplets and unthinkable patterns in drips. I began seeking all that this amazing necessity of life was gifting me. I realized there was something awesome to see everywhere I looked. Ice cubes reveal inviting trails, enchanted kingdoms, and faces staring back at me. My coffee mug creates the most amazing condensation on its lid, as does my teapot, so my morning joe can keep me occupied for hours! The way the dew clings to the morning grass...It's these little things--everywhere there's moisture--that distract me in the most unexpected ways. And every time, a different kind of wonderful happens.  

 

When I'm taking macro shots, I often think of a quote I read years ago: "Delightful things are all around, simply waiting to be found." Yes, I think that's pretty accurate! What delight will you find in your water?

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