Monday Missive — August 15, 2022

Quotes

Close the door. Write with no one looking over your shoulder. Don’t try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say. It’s the one and only thing you have to offer.” -— Barbara Kingsolver

I will not follow where the path may lead, but I will go where there is no path, and I will leave a trail.” — Muriel Strode

Your biggest challenges, the ones that stand in the way of your best photographs, are not technical; they are creative. . . . Once you’ve learned the fundamentals, the challenges you have won’t be solved with your tools so much as by your thinking.” — David DuChemin

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Parents and children and vice versa
— How Lee Miller out-surrealed the surrealists

Post-Processing
— PhotoshopCAFE: Multi-image content aware fill New feature available in beta.
— Photoshop Cafe: How to combine photos in PS for beginners
— How to avoid cropping when the aspect ratios that you need and have don’t match

Field and Studio
— Annie Liebovitz and portrait photography

Miscellaneous
— Writing poems in images
— Is the DSLR going extinct? but it is about recent trends in photographic technology
— Sean Tucker: Advice for the shy street photographer
— Simon Baxter and Joe Cornish discuss their “Woodland Sanctuary exhibit

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Monday Missive — August 8, 2022

Quotes

People can like what I do or not like what I do, but Jesus, there’s a body of work there, and I’m really proud of it.” — Conan O’Brien

Dawn is the time when nothing breathes, the hour of silence. Everything is transfixed, only the light moves.” -— Leonora Carrington

The gratification comes in the doing, not in the results.” — James Dean

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Peter Lindbergh
— Koreatown
— Unseen photographs from Africa

Post-Processing
— Add colors to boring skies

Field and Studio
— Lindsay Adler: Thrift store fashion shoot

Miscellaneous
— Interesting outcome
— f/8 and be there.
— Barbara Bordnick’s iconic images
— Ted Forbes: Amazing photo books
— How Kodak makes film

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Monday Missive — July 25, 2022

Quotes

Stop making excuses; you’re the only one stopping you.” — Issa Rae

A creator needs only one enthusiast to justify him.” -– Man Ray

There’s power in looking silly and not caring that you do.” -— Amy Poehler

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Marna Clarke: Time as we know it
— Mushroom people This is kind of neat.
— Candace Biggerstaff: The Circus

Post-Processing
— Create realistic puddles in PS
— Get help from the “Discover” facility in PS

Field and Studio
— One tip on how to improve your insect macrophotography

Miscellaneous
— Lessons from Robert Maplethorpe
— Ted Forbes remembers Lourdes Grobet
— Self-quarantining exhibition
— Why we struggle with creativity

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Monday Missive — July 11, 2022

Quotes

If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.” — Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Success is the process itself.” — Matt Damon

I’m deeply interested in the photograph as a record of an encounter and enjoy putting myself in a timeline of image-makers, alongside other travelers, such as anthropologists, colonists, missionaries, even tourists. I do that to emphasize subjectivity, rather than privilege any single perspective—I see myself as only one of many storytellers.” — Susan Meiselas via Kent Winchester, ABQ Gallery

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Lee Miller: model, photographer, war reporter

Field and Studio
— Nigel Danson: Compositional tips Nigel judged a competition and uses submissions that didn’t quite make it to illustrate how to improve your compositional skills.

Miscellaneous
— Roman Urhausen: bending reality
— Blind spots in Christ’s iconography This was really interesting.
— Sean Tucker: Making the art you really believe in
— Subversive dream logic of Emila Medkovas After the Supreme Court is done taking about our freedoms, will they tell us what art is acceptable and what is not?
— Some good surrealistic images
— A film interview of Berenice Abbott.
And this is an interview with the filmmakers

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Monday Missive — July 4, 2022

Quotes

If you wrote something for which someone sent you a check, if you cashed the check and it didn’t bounce, and if you then paid the light bill with the money, I consider you talented.” — Stephen King

Let us temper our criticism with kindness. None of us comes fully equipped.” — Carl Sagan

Don’t try to lessen yourself for the world; let the world catch up to you.” — Beyoncé Knowles

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Inland: Haunted by the dessert
— Don’t look up Interesting abstract architectural photography

Post-Processing
— The utility of locks I noticed these, on my photoshop panel but never took the time to understand what they did.
— Straighten without cropping
— How to refine AI masks in LR and ACR This really helps to eliminate halos from your masks
— Use real shadows for more realistic composites

Field and StudioS on my photoshop panel
— Wildlife opportunities for older folks

Miscellaneous
— NFTs Part 4 Note Yamashita’s comment: “if you are not posting video, you’re not getting any new followers”
— Birds
— Images from women

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Monday Missive — June 27, 2022

Quotes

It is important to me that the text is not a caption but integral to the image.” — Hal Fischer

I do not photograph nature. I photograph my visions.” — Man Ray

Optimism is a perfectly legitimate response to failure.” — Stephen King

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Arista Slater-Sandval: Unusual self-portraits
— One, 1 thousand Well-done and moving story of caring for an autistic young man. The addition of text to the images in my opinion really enhances the project.
— Hannah Altman: A permanent home in the mouth of the sun Exploring time, ritual and ancestry through Jewish identity and culture
— Amanda Diaz portraits
— Unhoused in San Francisco

Post-Processing
— Using the smudge tool to improve selections
— MattK: New AI preset capabilities in LR LR is getting really powerful

Miscellaneous
— Sean Tucker: Are we the best judge of our own work?
— Semiotics revisited Interesting subject. You should definitely read the article, not just look at the pictures.
— Alan Schaller: Monochrome photography He doesn’t follow the rules, but his work is exceptional

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Monday Missive — June 20, 2022

Quotes

    A little something extra for Father’s Day

I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.” — Umberto Eco, medievalist and philosopher

No matter what drama I deal with at work, when I get home and hear them scream, ‘Daddy!’ I forget whatever it was I was stressed about.” — Mario Lopez, actor

Being a great father is like shaving. No matter how good you shaved today, you have to do it again tomorrow.” — Reed Markham, author

And now, back to our regularly scheduled program

We put the thought of all that we love into all that we make.” — Galadriel, The Fellowship of the Ring, JRR Tolkien

I sometimes think of photographs as a diving board into a pool of imagination.” — Alec Soth

Creativity is an energy. It’s a precious energy, and it’s something to be protected. A lot of people take for granted that they’re a creative person, but I know from experience, feeling it in myself, it is a magic; it is an energy. And it can’t be taken for granted.” — Ava DuVernay

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— British Industry: When things could only get better Good images
— Hands
— Black power and pride in NY
— Glasgow 1870

Post-Processing
— John Paul Caponigro details what to look for in great prints
— Blake Rudis: Using rulers to assure symmetry

Field and Studio
— Lindsay Adler: Burlesque style portrait with 5 lights

Miscellaneous
— Exploring gender identity
— A dozen of the best nature images I have ever seen Also excellent text explaining what you are seeing and why it is signficant.
— Photography lessons from Robert Frank

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Monday Missive — June 13, 2022

Quotes

They powerfully reflect her conviction that she has something to say and her own way of saying it.” — Roberta Smith in the NY Times about sculptor Louise Bourgeois who now has a show of paintings at NY’s Metropolitan Museum of Art

Step out of the history that is holding you back. Step into the new story you are willing to create.” — Oprah Winfrey

Show up, show up, show up, and after a while the muse shows up, too. If she doesn’t show up invited, eventually she just shows up.” — Isabel Allende

Links

Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— August Sander Well known for his portraits.
— The spirit of black Egypt
— Strange Future About our impact on earth, especially climate change. The images do a good job of illustrating the issue.

Post-Processing
— 3 Photoshop editing mistakes Halos from excessive sharpening, saturation/vibrance and resolution issues
— How to make eyes pop in portraits Not pop out! Just attract your gaze.

Miscellaneous
— Photo conversations This is a long list of conversations with photographers of all kinds and a more moderately sized list of tutorials. You will want to keep this list handy for those hot or rainy days when you just don’t want to go out. Thanks to Dave M.
— Photo Festivals are a good way to get your work seen by people who are recognized in photography and get comments that can help you improve your work.
— Pitcairn Island An interesting project in the way the book is structured and the stories about living on an isolated island in the Pacific. Worth the read.
— Ralph Gibson

— The Maryland Department of Natural Resources has opened submissions for its annual photo contest Thanks to Steve O.

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Monday Missive — June 6, 2022

Quotes

It is only by selection, by elimination, by emphasis, that we get at the real meaning of things.” — Georgia O’Keeffe

That’s the way I work: I try to imagine what I would like to see.” -— Sofia Coppola

I think doing something creative is the most important thing to me, and I think it’s probably just good for the soul for anyone, whatever it is … I think everyone needs to create something.” -— Ricky Gervais

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Interesting urban twilight images
— Festival for documentary photography
— Italian psychiatric hospitals The images are not particularly striking, but the story is interesting and the photojournalism is good.

Post-Processing
— Colin Smith of PhotoshopCAFE: How to create and use textures I always wondered how textures were different from just a single layer file. It’s a pattern!
— Dealing with difficult selections
— Sean Tucker: Creating dramatic BW images

Field and Studio
— Abstract nature photography

Miscellaneous
— Ted Forbes talks about the earliest Leicas and how they changed photography
— A fun ramble If you are reasonably fit!
— Is moving from Instagram to Twitter more productive for photographers?

Blue dasher dragonfly, female. Pachydiplax longipennis. Black Marsh Trail, North Point State Park. Very common at this location.

Blue Dasher male.

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Monday Missive — May 30, 2022

Quotes

I always get to where I am going by walking away from where I have been.” -— Winnie the Pooh in the film “Christopher Robin” (written by Alex Ross Perry, Tom McCarthy, and Allison Schroeder)

I believe that the (distorting) mirror which is photography holds an intrinsic, even elemental, relation to writing.” — Tod Papageorge

We have an insatiable appetite for what is new, but it’s not new subjects for which we hunger, but rather new experiences. New combinations of old things. New perspectives. New voices. . . . Voice is about your taste, not theirs—though that doesn’t mean we need to be contrary about it. Voice is not found when we try to be unlike others, but when we get closer and closer to being most like ourselves.” — David DuChemin

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work

— Jin Lee: Three projects One on prairies, one on weeds and the photograms
— Jeanloup Sieff
— Arkansas: Heartbeat of the land
— Lynn Saville: The El at Twilight Images from and of the NYC elevated train system at twilight. Interesting concept, well-done.

Field and Studio

— On location fashion photography in an old hotel
— How to select your best images

Miscellaneous

— The Polaroids of Linda McCartney
— American Silence with Robert Adams hour long discussion with Sarah Meister head of Aperture and Sarah Greenough, senior curator at the National Gallery of Art who lead the current Robert Adams exhibit and book
— Alec Soth: On filmmaking and photography A bit different for this blog, but Soth does a good job of pointing out differences and similarities using several relevant books. Worth the 20 minutes.
— A very different take on Putin

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Monday Missive — May 23, 2022

Quotes

Just because you haven’t found your talent yet, doesn’t mean you don’t have one.” -— Kermit the Frog

Some artists have an idea in mind, and make the art to fit the vision.
Others shoot whatever they see, over months or years, then build a jigsaw puzzle out of the resulting edit.
Neither way is “better,” but in my copious experience, I’ve come to believe groups of images that are pre-conceived, or made to cohere to a concept or structure, often have a slightly enhanced sense of intent.
” — Jonathan Blaustein, May 13, 2022

The biggest changes you will ever experience as a photographer will happen as a movement toward more independent thinking.” — David DuChemin

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Images from the breakup of the Soviet Union taken in the 1990s by Shepard Sherbells. Exhibit/sale of prints goes to independent photojournalism in Ukraine.
— Black and white abstract photography Neat images, some are a bit spooky
— Edouard Boubat: A Velvet Gaze

Field and Studio
— Drone photography tips

Miscellaneous
— Sean Tucker: Accomplishing life’s goals The story behind a project to photograph the Royal National Lifeboat Institute with collodion wet plates
— George Tice

Images from a club trip to Starlight Lake, PA, in the northeast corner of the state.

Clearly bear country.

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Monday Missive — May 16, 2022

Quotes

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” -— Maya Angelou

I always like to have another story, another introduction, another work, and I’ll just go and work on that, while somewhere in the back of my mind I’m churning over why I’m stuck and what went wrong and figuring out how to go forward.” -— Neil Gaiman

With a camera and computer, I create worlds that don’t exist.” — Carol Erb

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Carol Erb: Small wonders A very interesting collection reflecting Erb’s thoughts and emotions in response to isolation during the pandemic. I found that the text and titles were critical to comprehending the images.
— War photography
— Jennifer Thoreson I found the story of how she came to art interesting. The images are unique.
— Judith Joy Ross: Portraits She has a fairly unique approach using an 8 x 10 Deardoff in the field.
— Elemental Forms

Post-Processing
— Sean Tucker: Finishing an image with color, contrast and sharpening Very nice subtle improvements. Demonstrated on a portrait, but generally applicable to all sorts of pictures.
— Lightroom: Intersection is great tool to improve your images

Field and Studio
— VMHT: A strategy for better images

Miscellaneous
— Daido Moriyama
— Janis Joplin

Testing out a new project called Drips & Drops.

Columbine

Iris

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Monday Missive — May 9, 2022

Quotes

It is important that the musician just lets the music be written.Björk

Bare attention, no distractions, pure awareness, noticing only what is in the moment.” — Natalie Goldberg in “Three Simple Lines.”

The gratification comes in the doing, not in the results.” — James Dean

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Interesting architectural work in Japan Both the color and graphics/structure are interesting
— George Hoyningen-Huene: Fashion

Post-Processing
— MattK: New edge lighting in sky replacement Helps get rid of halos.
— Simon Baxter edits a snowy forest scene.
— Colin Smith: Build a collage in photoshop Shows the basics at a good pace with good explanations. Great place to start if you would like to start doing collages and composites.

Field and Studio
— 5 tips for better pet portraits

Miscellaneous
— An olive tree epidemic The idea of this type of project is appealing.
— A bear in the lowlands This photostory is about a circus animal trainer, but more broadly it is about how changing social conscience can leave some relationships stranded.
— NFTs: Step two
— Courage in photojournalism award Some amazing images from some very brave and skilled women.

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Monday Missive — May 2, 2022

Quotes

Nobody knows what you have in you until you’ve done it, so I just keep pushing those boundaries, and I figure it will all come out in the wash.” -— Greta Gerwig

What you have to make secure and guard with your life — because it is your life — is the same pure creativity that brought you here, and that brought me here too.” -— Martin Scorsese

Creativity is an energy. It’s a precious energy, and it’s something to be protected. A lot of people take for granted that they’re a creative person, but I know from experience, feeling it in myself, it is a magic; it is an energy. And it can’t be taken for granted.” -— Ava DuVernay

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Exceptional composite images by Nick Brandt of the impact of climate change on people Great story-telling too.
— Puglia
— Hip Hop
— Luminous visions of landscapes
— David DuChemin asks: Is a body of work your next step?

Field and Studio
— Sean Tucker: Overcoming fears about street photography
— Alan Walls: Macro photography First in a series about the basics of macrophotography
— Meaning in street photography

Miscellaneous
— Portfolio Reviews: PhotoNOLA
— Marcus Leatherdale dies: New York art scene in the 1980s

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Monday Missive — April 25

Quotes

It is not enough to know your craft — you have to have feeling.” — Édouard Manet

. . . considering how we commodify the visual identity of strangers is a tricky topic.” — Jonathan Blaustein

I can’t give you a recipe for success, but I can give you a recipe for failure: try to please everybody.” — Frank Langella

I couldn’t resist: “I quote others only in order the better to express myself.” — Michel de Montaigne, philosopher

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
— Raymond Depardon landscapes
— Letizia Battaglia photographed the Mafia

Post-Processing
— Blake Rudis: Sky replacement with Blend-If compared to PS Replace Sky
— Black and white conversions in LR
— Banding, editing and resolution in Photoshop Good explanations and illustration of why you want to edit 16-bit files rather than 8-bit.

Field and Studio
— Lindsay Adler: Using mylar for creative effects
— Compelling compositional tools Illustrated with excellent examples

Miscellaneous
— The coming coast A great example of using photography for a social cause.
— Supporting photographers with NFTs
— Best settings for IPhone photography

View my Adobe Portfolio site

Tulip, stacked focus, Sherwood Gardens.

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