Sunflowers at Sunset

Earlier this evening, I was part of a conversation on TWiP about what a great time it is for photographers. On my way home, a visual case in point.

Sunflowers_2048_ P8013148.jpg "Sunflowers at Sunset" Click on image to inspect larger version. Photo by Derrick Story.

There's a field of sunflowers near my house that I've been keeping an eye on. Leaving work late put me there right at sunset as I drove by. I pulled out the Olympus OM-D E-M5 and mounted the 40-150mm f/4.0-5.6 R Lens. The light was low, and I wanted to extend the zoom to tightly frame the shot.

As a result, I captured this image at ISO 1600, 1/8 sec. at f/5.5... handheld. The effective focal length was 276mm. In my mind, to hand hold a shot at this focal length at 1/8 of a second defies photography as I understood it for years. But the image stabilization, great electronics, and sharp lens redefines what we can do with a camera.

Like we were saying earlier: it's a great time to be a photographer.

Take a look at the Olympus Micro Four Thirds Gear Guide for an overview of cameras, lenses, and accessories.


I just recently bought and started using this lens and I'm really liking it. My usual style is to shoot low and wide, but this lens is opening up a whole new look for me. Nothing as nice as your sun flowers yet though.


Hi Ed, I think the 40-150mm Olympus zoom is a remarkable lens, especially for its price (of less than $300). At first, I didn't take it as seriously as I should have. But I kept being impressed by the shots I composed with it. At some point, I had to give some credit to the glass. And how about that IS system in the OM-D. Wow!

Have to agree on that image stabilization on the OM-D! I just never see blurry shots due to camera movement anymore. And I'm the same way with the 40-150. Didn't expect much when I first got it for my EP-3 but was surprised by the image quality.

I agree with the others. The 40-150mm lens is a bargain. I've had it for a few months now and it is very sharp.

I've often thought about your nimble photographer theme Derrick. Perhaps you could take it a stage further. Not just small but a bargain find too - like the 40-150.

That is truly is amazing!
Just to be sure, you didn't shot a hundred of these and find the one that you just happened to be perfectly still? It just blows my mind to shoot that at 276mm and 1/8!

I shot 119 images at sunset, about 110 are in focus, and 33 are rated 3 stars or more :-)

Handheld??? Handheld???? Gear is good, but I think in this case the photographer (YOU) is better!

Hey, just wanted to give you a shoutout for taking the time to notice and feature some of my pix on TDS photo of the day. It's humbling, an honor, and ego-pumping for a simple enthusiast like me. Keep up the good work Derrick. Erno.