Monday Missive — May 25, 2020

Quotes

“. . . creativity is about doing the work rather than waiting for inspiration or talent to kick in.” — David duChemin

“inspiration is for amateurs, the rest of us show up and get to work.” — Chuck Close

“Do you want to be more creative? You’ve got to be willing to fail and start ugly, sometimes really ugly, and figure it out–refine it–as you go. . . . You need to be relentlessly you, to choose courage and persistence, to embrace your constraints and do something astonishing with them, to let those first efforts be ugly on their way to being beautiful. The only way to be more creative is to create more. We can all do that.” — David duChemin

Links
Photoessays/bodies of Work
– Federico Feliciotti – Italy
– Interesting series of single walkers

Links
Post-processing
– Adding sunset color to landscapes
– Montage portraits a la David Hockney Coutesy Steve O.

Links
Field/Studio
– Long lens macro photography
– 1 light beauty setup with graphic make-up
– Night and Astrophotography: A conversation with Rachel Ross

Links
Miscellany
– Three fantastic photography locations
– Sally Mann and the collodion process Thanks to Steve O.
– How to clean your lenses

Great blue heron with an itch.

Great Blue Heron. Over the shoulder “come hither” look.

Monday Missive — November 18, 2019

Quotes

I became wary of simple interpretations that assumed fixed and final meanings.” – John Pfahl

Great photography is always on the edge of failure.” – Garry Winogrand

My photographs are not pure: they are a seething wealth of imperfection.” – Frederick Sommer

Links
Photoessays/Bodiesof Work
– Nocturnal New York
– Urban Nature
– Greek self-portraits
– Julia Fullerton-Batten: Old Father Thames Great story-telling and very natural implementation

Post-processing
– How to fix the glitches in the first release of PS 20202
– Black and white conversions using calculations
– High contrast BW
– Creating a depth map in PS 2020 and blurring the background with lens blur This is a lot of work, but may be worth it for some photos where a blurry background really improves the image.

Field/Studio
– Shooting motocross

Miscellany
– TED talks by 24 famous photographers
– Overcoming creative burnout

Green snake. Black Marsh Trail, North Point State Park.

Monday Missive — November 11, 2019

Quotes

Ideas, bread and books are all the same–they’re better when they’re shared.” — Seth Godin

Staring out the window to me is very constructive time. I bounce off the walls of my imagination and, every once in while an idea gets dreamed up that actually becomes a picture.” — Joe McNally

. . . photography is a craft that requires experimentation, risk and growth, and that getting better at photography is a journey that never ends.” – Chris Orwig

Links
Photoessays/Bodies of Work
– Single tree photos Courtesy Steve O.
– 15 photographers reveal what is hidden in their work
– Interesting color street photography from India

Post-processing
– New selection and gradient tools in PS
– Six new features in Photoshop 2020
– 20 New features in Photoshop 2020

Field/Studio
– Amy Touchette: Developing a career and approach to street photography
– All of the basics for street photography

Miscellany
– How to write your artist’s statment
– How to fine-tune your artist statement

Adirondack Lake in the early morning fog. Oct. 9.

Two boats, early Adirondack morning.

Monday Missive — October 15, 2018

Quotes

The conversations are exasperated, the verdicts swift, conclusive and seemingly absolute. The goal is to protect and condemn work, not for its quality, per se, but for its values. Is this art or artist, this character, this joke bad for women, gays, trans people, nonwhites? Are the casts diverse enough? Is this museum show inclusive of enough different kinds of artists? Does the race of the curators correspond with the subject of the show or collection? Increasingly, these questions stand in for a discussion of the art itself.” — Wesley Morris, in an article titled The Morality Wars in the NY Times Magazine, Oct. 3, 2018

But criticism isn’t about saying what’s bad — well, not only. It’s partly about situating a work in the world, in your feelings, in your collection.” — Wesley Morris, ibid.

There are as many photographs possible from a single negative as the artist can imagine. I can never bear to finish with a negative, to say, ‘This is it.’ Tomorrow I can come and make new pictures from that negative. This is the thing I love most of all: the making of the final picture. No one else can do that for me, nor do I ever completely satisfy myself.” – Nell Dorr

Links

– Extreme, extreme photography
– Milky Way panorama
– Is your agent really your agent?
– Seven important landscape lessons Acquired wisdom
– Fine art still life, setup and lighting
– Street photography with a twist
– Underwater macro: incredible colors and shapes: animals that look like they come from another planet
– Underwater in the the Inside Passage
– Joel Meyerowitz

From Steve Oney:
– Street shooter in NY
– 10 photographers who immortalized city streets

Dew drop in in the morning.

Monday Missive — June 18, 2018

Quotes

But Kandinsky did not intend for his theories to be prescriptive. Artmaking, he insisted, was about freedom.” — From How to Be an Artist, According to Wassily Kandinsky, by Rachel Lebowitz, Jun 12, 2017, Artsy.net

Quitting merely because you’re behind is a trap, a form of hiding that feels safe, but isn’t. The math is simple: whatever you switch to because you quit is another place you’re going to be behind as well. It’s not a race, it’s a journey. And the team that scores first doesn’t always win.” — Seth Godin, June 13,2018

It’s true that you’re not good enough yet. None of us are. But if you commit to trying hard enough and long enough, you’ll get better.” — Seth Godin, June 16, 2018

Links

– 6 Great artists on how to be an artist
– Pumas of Patagonia
– Nighttime landscape photography
– Controlling color and tonal edits with blend modes
– Adding an artistic element in nature photography
– More on photographic intent with McCurry’s “Afgan Girl” as an example
– More background on intent and the iconic “Afgan Girl”
– Seeking color and enhancing creativity 45 minute video from B & H Optic 2018, but definitely worth the time. Many great examples on how light, color, position, shape, repetition impact the emotion and perception of the image.
– Showing a sense of place in your travel photography
– Three tools that are more capable in Photoshop than in Lightroom

My Asian Lilies are finally open and are gorgeous in the early morning light.

Monday Missive — May 21, 2018

Quotes

Every day you play with the light of the universe.” — Pablo Neruda

To those of you who … have a frustrated streak of anarchy within you: f*ck the rules. Colour outside the lines. Fill your canvas with blazing colours and leave the muted browns for Leonardo DaVinci. He had his chance. Find your own way. You have one life: do you really want to spend it imitating others? … It takes courage to point the camera the other way, to trust your own taste, to do more than what is expected. To open yourself up to the world through your art by saying, “Here it is—here I am—take it or leave it,” knowing that far more people than not will choose to leave it.” — David duChemin

A photograph has a soul in its own right, incorporating numerous elements which range from the books one has read, the music one has heard to the people one has loved.” — Kita Etsuko from Adore Noir, Issue 40

Links

– Getting unstuck when the image just isn’t working
– Making masking easier
– Art of Photography video on Fan Ho, a fantastic Chinese street photographer
– Your camera is better than Ansel’s Gear matters but is a small part of your photography.
– Good story on photographing foxes which I occasionally see in my backyard.
– How art auctions work
– Creative white balance
– Part 2: Greenland in winter See April 30 for Part 1
– Informative article on night photography Discusses several different situations
– Very interesting description of a creative process

Iris

Iris

Iris

Iris

Monday Missive — February 19, 2018

Quotes

… creativity is about two things: the way we think, and the way we turn those thoughts into reality.” — David duChemin

We all start in this medium because of the magic and the challenge is to keep it going.” – John Sexton

I like the simple things. I don’t know why. I’m that way. I came from a simple place.” – Harry Callahan

Links

– Stuck in a rut? Use color to rev your engine
– Progress in cell phone image quality over the last 5 years
– Mastering the pen tool If you make selections, this is really helpful.
– Caponigro: Creative process
– Processing night photography
– Creature captures
– What’s new in Lightroom?
– Compositing in “mini-people”
– Color matching when compositing Good on details of compositing.

From George Spicer:
– Creating depth with color

Congaree National Park, SC

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 — June 12, 2017

Quotes

It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin

Your opinion is your opinion, your perception is your perception–do not confuse them with “facts” or “truth”. Wars have been fought and millions have been killed because of the inability of men to understand the idea that EVERYBODY has a different viewpoint.” – John Moore

Don’t cheat the world of your contribution. Give it what you’ve got.” – Steven Pressfield

Links

– Dealing with the airline laptop restrictions
– Photography on skid row If you are in to street photography, this is about as gritty as it gets.
– Fantastical wildlife This is a new approach to wildlife photography
– 7 great tips on the ps interface
– Color Theory
– Getting published in magazines
– The Art of Art Wolfe
– Lightroom best practices
– Does ETTR apply to night photography?
– The value of Critique

June beetle taken at BugShot Delaware held at the St. Jones Reserve and Ted Harvey Beach using the white box.

Monday Missive – March 13, 2017

Quotes

Every photograph is altered, to one degree or another.” – John Paul Caponigro

Sometimes reality is too complex. Stories give it form.” – Jean Luc Goddard

Your photography is a record of your living.” – Paul Strand

Links

– Winter wildlife photography in Yellowstone
– George Lepp tips: focus stacking landscapes, lens focus calibration and sizing images
– Moving multiple exposures
– Submissions from Forbes Photo Assignment 4 and the next assignment
– A conversation with Malin Fezehai, a cultural photographer
– Achieving sharper images
– Shooting stars
– Helpful tip for the PS Patch Tool – Diffusion option
– Telling a story in landscape photography
– Photography by the alphabet part 3
– Doggy pix Too cute.

This week’s images reflect tonight’s forecast. Stay safe on roads!

Dried leaf on snow.

Dried leaf on snow.

Shoveling snow.

Monday Missive – September 5, 2016

Quotes

There’s a world of difference between focusing a lens and focusing attention.” — John Paul Caponigro, in “The Power of Abstraction” on Craft and Vision.

“The paradox of the flawless record

If your work has never been criticized, it’s unlikely you have any work.
Creating work is the point, though, which means that in order to do something that matters, you’re going to be criticized.
If your goal is to be universally liked and respected and understood, then, it must mean your goal is to not do something that matters.
Which requires hiding.
Hiding, of course, isn’t the point.
Hence the paradox. You don’t want to be criticized and you do want to matter.
The solution: Create work that gets criticized. AND, have the discernment to tell the difference between useful criticism (rare and precious) and the stuff worth ignoring (everything else).”
Seth Godin, Sept. 4, 2016

Links

– Creating shadows for photoshop composites
– Long Exposure Photography
– Night Photography
– Adjusting contrast without changing saturation
– Personal Photography Projects
– Capturing emotions and moments
– 19 tips
– Adding background texture
– Trees
– Mushrooms

JohnWBrown_D8E_3459

Visited the Liberty Ship John W Brown off of Keith Ave in south Baltimore. Played with my 14 mm lens

Monday Missive – August 29, 2016

Quotes

The best plans evolve.” – John Paul Caponigro

There’s no correlation between creativity and equipment ownership.” — Hugh MacLeod

Let me, O let me bathe my soul in colors; let me swallow the sunset and drink the rainbow.” — Kahlil Gibran
 

Links
– Layer masks in Photoshop Really good video on layer masks.
– Removing people from you image Healing brushes, clone stamp, patch tool and content aware fill.
– Photographing motion, part 1
– Photographing motion, part 2
– New upcoming National Geographic series New episodes of wild_life With Bertie Gregory will launch every Wednesday through October on NatGeo Wild’s Youtube Page and at www.nationalgeographic.com.
– Multiple videos from the B & H Optic Conference earlier this summer
– Night Photography week on Creative Live September 12 – 16 First show at noon local time and repeat at about 7 are free.
– Good tips and pics on Night Photography
– More night photography
– Split toning

MushroomsSF1_D8E_3348-3355

Monday Missive – August 15, 2016

Quotes

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

It happens a lot. The first frame is the winner.— Gregory Heisler

I wish my artwork could persuade millions of people to join a global conversation about sustainability.” – Edward Burtynsky

Links

– Three filters you should have in your kit
– Night Photography
– Optimizing photos in LR This video is almost an hour and half, but has a lot of good stuff. It is equally about what to do and how. Tim goes through everything in the LR Develop module, most of which is also available in Camera Raw in PS. Will definitely help some in competitions.
– David DuChemin’s new blog Looks good. He is a thoughtful photographer who communicates well.
– Great travel checklist both for before you and enroll and before you leave
– Do you know about your diopter?
– Black and White Conversions Introduces some adjustments I hadn’t heard of before including equalize and selective color.
– Shooting Shooting Stars
– Choosing a Tripod

Dance to the Music. At the Sowebo Festival 2016

Dance to the Music. At the Sowebo Festival 2016