Macros of Bougainvillea, a Tropical Vine with Bright Papery Flowers

Just back from Huatalco in Mexico where I was taking macros of one of my favourite tropical flowers, Bougainvillea, and running into an old problem which I call ‘red flare’.

These shots were from 2010. My old camera had a lot of trouble focussing on ‘hot’ colours: red and hot pink, resulting in a lot of heavy-duty photoshopping in order to capture the essence of these Bougainvillea.
Hot pink bougainvilleaHot pink bougainvilleaFast forward to 2017 and I have a new version of the same waterproof Nikon camera. There was still some focussing issues doing a macro of these double red/hot pink flowers.Red Double Bougainvillea FlowerRed remains a problem but I don’t feel the need to photoshop them to death in order to show the flower.Red Bougainvillea FlowerThis one was almost in focus! I used a radial fill mask to sharpen the flower only, and added blue and cyan in the colour balance to bring out the detail in the shadows. The only thing I don’t like is that I have lost the warm yellow tones that suffuse the photo above with tropical light. More precise editing such as isolating the flower would have fixed that but I was feeling lazy.Red Bougainvillea FlowerDitto the editing on this hot pink number, again with the loss of warmth.Hot Pink Bougainvillea FlowerPulling back slightly made the focus was substantially better, although I notice that I still upped the blues substantially to bring out the detail.Hot Pink Bougainvillea FlowerOnce the flowers begin to fade they lose their ‘hotness’ and I could get in super close on these beauties.
Hot Pink Bougainvillea FlowerI love the detailed veining on this papery flower.Hot Pink Bougainvillea FlowerMore of Jennifer Nichole Wells’ One Word Challenge: Macro.

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