Monday Missive — November 13, 2017

Quotes

The job of the photographer . . . is to be coherent about intuition and hope.” — Robert Adams in Beauty in Photography

“. . . the best photographs rely more on the fact that the photographer saw something the rest of us overlooked” — David duChemin, in The Soul of the Camera

The more experience you have, the more you can close that gap between what you see and what the camera sees.” — Steve McCurry

Links

– Reflections of Italy David duChemin, one of my favorite photography writers, just completed a workshop in Italy. These are his images from that trip.
– Art of Photography assignment on self-portraits
– Adobe’s version of what updates are included in PS CC 2018
– How is “professional” photographer defined?
– Tips – Get best results consistently, Part 1
– Part 2
– Creative Burnout
– Explanation of the best new tools in PS CC 2018 I found this very helpful on some tools I knew about, but didn’t really understand how to use.

From Steve Oney:
– Blog of blogs Some of the best photo blogs
From George Spicer:
– Game farm photography
From Harry Bosk via Facebook:
– Update on the ‘Bible’ of street photography

Evening in SC

Rabbit in the Trees

Monday Missive — October 9, 2017

Quotes

“‘You’re doing it wrong’
But at least you’re doing it.
Once you’re doing it, you have a chance to do it better.
Waiting for perfect means not starting.
” — Posted by Seth Godin on October 02, 2017

I am steadily surprised that there are so many photographers that reject manipulating reality, as if that was wrong. Change reality! If you don’t find it, invent it!” – Pete Turner

You know, I really don’t think you learn from teachers. You learn from work. I think what you learn, really, is how to be- you have to be your own toughest critic, and you only learn that from work, from seeing work.” – Garry Winogrand

Links

– How to use BW photos for creative or social campaigns
– Backlighting wildlife
– An interview with Jach Dykinga
– The Spectrum: Message and Media By Brooks Jensen Interesting hour-long talk by Brooks Jensen, publisher of LensWorks, on the history and future of image presentation. I highly recommend this video for advanced photographers who have been asking themselves “What do I do next?”
– Macro tips for beginners
– Long exposure photography
– Panoramas made easy
– Dealing with creative boredom
– Fast and simple Orton effect
– Feeling anxious about an upcoming photo trip? What is the worst that can happen?

There is a difference of opinion on the two images below. Both were taken at Lake Roland Park with a yellow filter on a 105/2.8 lens. The first may have a greater sense of depth because of the sharp fence, but the out of focus dam in the background creates some room for interpretation. The second has more interesting lighting and perhaps better balance and composition. Which do you prefer and why?


Monday Missive — September 11, 2017

Quotes

Isn’t it amazing how photography has advanced without improving.” – Charles Sheeler

Spend enough time looking through the glass on your tablet and you’ll come to believe that you’re the only one with a less-than-perfect situation. With the right filter, the grass really is greener…
‘Compared to what?’ is not always a great question. It might be better to merely say, ‘this is pretty good.
‘” — Seth Godin, Sept. 7, 2017

Don’t be trapped into accepting shame from someone who is trying to keep you from doing something you have every right to do.

Ignore the mob that would like you to feel badly for not fitting in. Categories are rarely permanent, and most important work is done by people who don’t easily fit in.” — Seth Godin, September 8, 2017

Links

– Techniques for fall color
– FALL FOLIAGE PREDICTION MAP
– 10 National Parks for fall foliage
– Guide to Acadia National Park
– History of photography as fine art
– Focusing in macro photography
– Finicky focus
– Photo assignment: Sub-framing
– Think less literally to be more creative
– Start seeing in more compelling ways Another insightful video from David duChemim

My butterfly garden finally bore fruit. A nice sequence of a Monarch caterpillar feeding, ready to pupate, and a chrysalis.

Monarch ready to pupate.

Monarch ready to pupate.

Monarch chrysalis.

Monarch chrysalis.

Monday Missive — September 4, 2017

Quotes

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Have faith and pursue an unknown end.” — Francis Bacon, as written in Robert F. Kennedy’s daybook

No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.Helen Keller

Links

– Composition
– Why your prints are too dark
– How to make your images more compelling I recommend this 5:30 minute video for every novice.
– 10 predictions for the future of photography
– Composition conventions Part II
– Add sun flare
– Working with the Layers Panel and How to zoom in Photoshop
– Imogen Cunningham
– Breaking a creative block
– Cristina Mittermeier and sacred ecology

Covered bridge.

The re-build of the covered bridge near Jerusalem Mills Village has now been completed. Can be a good subject, but avoid really sunny days.

Covered bridge on Jericho Rd., near Jerusalem Mills Village.

Monday Missive — August 28, 2017

Quotes

When we look at our photographs and find not the slightest reflection of ourselves, it is a good sign that our images have lost their souls.” — David duChemin in “The Soul of the Camera”

Creativity is about two things: the way we think, and the way we turn those thoughts into reality.” — David duChemin in “The Soul of the Camera”

“The more curious we are, the more creative we become.” — David duChemin in “The Soul of the Camera”

Links

– An analysis of Bresson’s composition technique Includes 25 minutes of video
– Sharpening
– Think outside the box
– Photo assignment on negative space Some images are really good; worth watching the slideshow.
– Easily cut out trees in photoshop
– Rainy day images
– Photographing eagles in the Adirondacks
– Create a mist in photoshop
– Making compelling images
– Best eclipse pictures

Extra link:
– How to assemble an eclipse sequence

Single image HDR of Turtlehead flower.

Monday Missive — July 17, 2017

Quotes

Every time you assume that others will be swayed by your logical argument, you’ve most likely made a significant, irrational mistake.
Your actions and your symbols and your tribe dwarf the words you use to make your argument.
” — Posted by Seth Godin on July 07, 2017 | Permalink

Our thoughts create our reality – where we put our focus is the direction we tend to go.” — Peter McWilliams

Don’t be afraid to fail. Be afraid to not try.” – Michael Jordan

Links

– Let your creativity evolve Being a bit in the creative doldrums myself, this was helpful
– Keeping your passion fresh
– Fixing wide angle lens distortion
– Rafting the source of the Amazon
– Boudoir photography
– 12 photographs celebrated by Sean Kernan
– Red River Palo Duro Etching paper Very reasonably priced for a rag, fine art paper. Etching papers have more surface texture than regular matte papers.
– Storm chaser images
– Better pictures as simple as ABC
– Intro to Theodore Roosevelt NP in N. Dakota

Skipper on lavender.

Monday Missive — July 3, 2017

Quotes

You’re better than you think you are.” — Seth Godin on June 30, 2017

I will not be just a tourist in the world of images, just watching images passing by which I cannot live in, make love to, possess as permanent sources of joy and ecstasy.” — Anais Nin

Links

– Great wildlife photographer Nick Nichols at the Phila. Museum of Art Courtesy of Steve Oney
– Photo essay: The apple pickers of Yakima County
– Zoom vs prime: a detailed assessment of considerations
– Art of photography assignment on “still life”
– Adding a magical glow in PS Uses some aspects of color select that I never noticed before
– Places to photograph in NYC
– Gradients
– Full frame vs crop sensor
– A dog is his muse Short piece, neat story with Instragram link if you want more. Click on the “Nikita” link if you need a happy dog story.
– Sources of creative inspiration

Several Tibetan monks came to Baltimore in early May. They were hosted at the yoga studio on Falls Road behind the Ivy bookstore. Public was welcome to watch and shoot for a small donation. I went twice, but did not make it back for the destruction of the mandala. Amazing skill and patience, beautiful colors.

Tibetan Monk making a sand mandala.

Making a sand mandala

Monday Missive — June 26, 2017

Quotes

I don’t figure out my vision and my direction so I can make photographs, I make photographs so I can figure out my vision and direction.” — David DuChemin, Vision is Better, Episode 61

That’s how you discover your vision. By doing, by trying and letting the resulting work speak to you. The stuff you love, that points to an aspect of your vision, your opinion, your taste. The stuff that doesn’t light you up — that points to where your vision isn’t. Go the other way.” — David DuChemin, Vision is Better, Episode 61

The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping from old ones.” — John Maynard Keynes

Links

– MacPhun luminar Soon available for PC. Provides layers, non-destructive editing, numerous presets for $69.
– Cuba
– Star trails in Minnesota
– Histograms
– David duChemin on Vision Episode 61
– 7 tips for street photography
– History of photojournalism From Steve Oney
– Window light
– 7 people who changed photography forever Some names I didn’t recognize. A good opportunity to follow up and learn something.
– Useful ways to view masks in Photoshop

Playing in the Garden

Monday Missive — May 22, 2017

Quotes

When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.” – A. A. Milne

I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, It’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. … And that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.” – Dr. Seuss

Often the difference between a successful man and a failure is not one’s better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on his ideas, to take a calculated risk, and to act.” – Maxwell Maltz

Links

– Sparking your creativity
– Four ways to unblock creativity
– Metaphor and creativity Ted Talk. If your pictures tell stories, they are metaphors, therefore it might be helpful to better understand the role of metaphor in communication
– Protest photography
– Selling your photographs
– Finding the right shutter speed to show movement
– Creativity
– Adding a background blur to show motion without getting a halo
– Adding a field blur to the background to highlight your subject
– Using the gradient filter in LR

In the surf at Calvert Cliffs.

Monday Missive – May 15, 2017

Quotes

Dreams and photographs have something in common… ” — Minor White cited in “Manifestations of the Spirit”

Life rarely presents fully finished photographs. An image evolves, often from a single strand of visual interest – a distant horizon, a moment of light, a held expression.” – Sam Abell

The more you look around at things, the more you see. The more you photograph, the more you realize what can be photographed and what can’t be photographed. You just have to keep doing it.” – Eliot Porter

Links

– Lepp: Accessories for nature photographers
– Shooting the Milky Way This article provides explanations I haven’t seen before.
– Noise
– The meaning of color
– Iceland Part 2
– Creativity
– Match color when compositing
– Adjusting colors in landscapes In the first part it shows how to do color selection using the saturation panel
– Taking total control of a high contrast, high dynamic range image
– Taking multiple exposures for compositing
– Using a telephoto for landscapes No surprise to me, I more often use a telephoto for landscapes than a wide angle.

Iris bud. Taken in my front garden.

Monday Missive — March 6, 2017

Quotes

Lazy but talented
That’s most of us.
You can work really hard to get a little more talented.
And you can also work to get a little less lazy.
It turns out that getting less lazy, more brave—more clear about your fears, your work and your mission—are all easier than getting more talented. — Posted by Seth Godin on March 05, 2017

And as we let our own light shine we unconsciously give other people the permission to do the same.” – Marianne Williamson

How did a creative art form end up so bound up in its own rules that we all feel an ingrained need to comply with them? How did we come to value perfectionism above creative expression?” — Janet Broughton, Perfectionism vs Creativity: Letting Go of the Need to Conform

Links

– Photographing the Iditarod
– Climbing Out of a Creativity Rut
– Quality of Light
– Photo-tips Part II
– Don’t get modern art: this may help
– Comparison of Bayer array Fuji X-trans array Didn’t see most of differences discussed, but was interested that Fuji uses a different sensor array.
– Thorough and fair analysis of “working for free”
– Perfectionism vs Creativity
– Noise minimization and reduction

Late afternoon at Assateague

Monday Missive – February 13, 2017

Quotes

We are only trying to tell a story. Let the 17th-century painters worry about the effects. We’ve got to tell it now, let the news in, show the hungry face, the broken land, anything so that those who are comfortable may be moved a little.” — David Seymour (Chim); David Seymour will be the subject of Tom Beck’s presentation on March 9

Anyone can shoot chaos. But the most perceptive photographers can make compelling pictures out of uninteresting moments.” – Alex Tehrani

We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us.” — Ralph Hattersley

Links

– Developing a Portfolio
– Best presentation on color I have seen
– Psychology of color– Using adjustments on a Smart Object preserves future editing Pretty cool – I didn’t know you could do this.
– Quick sky adjustments in LR
– Beating the Creative Rut
– DIY light tent for close-ups and products
– Adding stars to a night sky
– Medium Format Landscape Photography

Ma’kayla Hall; taken at Graffiti Warehouse 2/11/17

Monday Missive — January 30, 2017

Quotes

What we choose not to do matters.” — Seth Godin, 5/20/16

As soon as we say the truth is relative, and shiftable, and a matter of opinion, we lose the power that comes from knowing.” — Seth Godin 4/1/16

Art is the great democrat, calling forth creative genius from every sector of society, disregarding race or religion or wealth or color.” – John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Links

– Interesting assignment and creative solution
– 40 tips for better photos
– Making fog and light beams Also free downloadable fog brush
– Tips for airline travel with photo gear
– Part 2: International Travel
– Animal Portrait Tips
– Post-processing software and plug-ins in 2017 Interesting read
– Selective sharpening in Lightroom
– Black and white street photography
– Arches National Park
– Processing Start to Finish in Lightroom Definitely worth 10 minutes to watch this video
– Using a Wacom tablet effectively

Sunrise at Chincoteague, 2007. Part of my Boundaries series.

Monday Missive – January 9, 2017

Quotes

The tides are in our veins, we still mirror the stars,
life is your child, but there is in me
Older and harder than life and more impartial, the eye
that watched before there was an ocean.
— Robinson Jeffers, “Continent’s End” in Tamar and Other Poems (1924)

We get to the work we seek by passing through imperfection.— Seth Godin on December 16, 2016

When finding the right angle for a shot…’Move your ass.’” – Jay Maisel

Links

– Raw Workflow in Lightroom
– Triptychs
– Incredible use of light, shadow and color at a solar farm
– Two interesting approaches with legos Very creative
– DSLR basics
– Grand Teton
– IR Photography

Monday Missive – September 19, 2016

Quotes

While there is perhaps a province in which the photograph can tell us nothing more than what we see with our own eyes, there is another in which it proves to us how little our eyes permit us to see.” – Dorothea Lange

Dare to declare who you are. It is not far from the shores of silence to the boundaries of speech. The path is not long, but the way is deep. You must not only walk there, you must be prepared to leap.” – Hildegard Von Bingen

The notion of one photographer being better than another doesn’t interest me. You can’t win at art.” — David du Chemin

My gift to you is that I am different.” – Duane Michals

Links

– Beyond IR: Go Full Spectrum
– Fog is cool
– How to make sky replacements look more realistic
– Composition Around the Edges
– Stay Inspired!
– Flowers
– Cleaning your lens and sensor
– The Art of Intuitive Photography A 43 minute video, but you can skip the first 13 minutes.
– Cool stories of photographers almost killing themselves

cicada_d8e_3574cprt

Cicada. 200 mm micro with extension tubes, two flashes in white reflecting box.