Year of Grace, Day 152. The eye and the camera: divergent blues

By now it’s fairly obvious that I am quite partial to blue flowers. I never tire of trying — and oftentimes failing — to capture their intrinsic colour with my camera. I have yet to replace the two cameras that I have been using over the past few years – the first, with a built-in telephoto lens, lost to a Barcelona brigand; the second, to old age – its lens stubbornly refuses to fully open. These two, both by Canon, gave me a range of picture-taking flexibility without the weight (and the price as well) of digital single lens reflex cameras. And I was fairly happy with the images they have provided over the years. But there is one thing that has eluded both cameras and this temporary replacement, also a Canon, that I have borrowed from M — and that is, that dark hues of blueultramarine, cobalt, navy, and similar richly saturated blues – often come out purple or even, astonishingly, deep pink bordering on magenta. It amazes me and intrigues me why this should be so – that there is a huge divergence between what the eye perceives and what the camera registers. Nevertheless, the results, while not always true to their colour as my eyes perceived them at the moment of photographing, are still pleasing. Please click each photo for a larger view.

Of the three photos below, the left and middle ones register the closest to their perceived colours. The one on the right is actually more saturated — cobalt blue — in real life.

The columbine and irises below have the same hue — an ultramarine — in real life. These photos do not reflect the depth of their original perceived colours.

These clematis flowers, from the same plant, were taken with two different cameras, although taken one year apart. The one on the right comes closest to the perceived original ultramarine. I should add that the lens of the camera used on the left was made in China; that on the right, made in Japan.