Monday Missive — August 5, 2019

Quotes

If the white herons had no voice, they would be lost in the snow.” — Chivo

I am attracted to seemingly “unfinished” works, that are not so full of information that there’s little or no room for the viewer, for audience participation. When I’m not invited to participate I begin to feel disconnected, no matter how awesome the artwork or the artist’s genius might be.” — Michael Kenna

I write in order to express what the photo itself cannot say. A photograph of my father doesn’t tell me what I thought of him, which for me is much more important than what the man looked like.” – Duane Michals

Links

Photoessays/Bodies of Work
– Books where photos and text complement and enhance each other
– Photographs that defined 1969

Post-processing
– Reducing noise by getting the mean of multiple images Doesn’t work if there is movement in the subject
– Two ways to access content aware fill to remove distractions
– Get rich skin tones in PS
– Simple ways to color grade 30 minute video that covers muliple ways to adjust color and tonal values including HSL, curves, gradients, dodging and burning and more.

Field/Studio
– Valley of the Gods Sounds like an interesting location
– Why little birds attack big birds Not strictly photography, but any nature photographer has probably seen this happen. Here’s the explanation.

Miscellany
– The state of the camera/film industry From Tom F. Only Sony posted gains in profit and growth this year. The SLR/Pro camera market is rapidly becoming a niche industry.
– Why are camera lenses so expensive Includes two short, but fascinating videos, one on making a Nikon lens and the second Fuji.

Male goldfinch eating coneflower seeds. They are such a glorious yellow!

Egret. Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge[/caption]

Monday Missive — July 15, 2019

Quotes

The biggest misconception in photography is still this: that better cameras and more knowledge make better photographs.” — David DuChemin

If limitation spawns creativity, is the limitless resource of the Internet a good thing?” — Alec Soth

I prefer to photograph people and try to capture an emotion which can be universally understood. Photography is the language I use to translate other cultures.” — Tina Manley

Links

Photoessays/Bodies of Work
– Lewis Hine: Photos that ended child labor
– Family secrets
– Excellent street photography from Melbourne, AU

Post-Processing
– Using and modifying duotones in Photoshop
– Saving color grades
– Using the selection tools effectively

Field/Studio
– Candid photography

Miscellany

The B & H newsletter had the three articles below on “historical processes” that preceded film. I found them to be very interesting. Artistically, the different processes have distinctive appearance. From an historical perspective they were critical to the development of photography.

– The Salted Print Invented by Henry Fox Talbot. Part of the history of photography
– Collodion and albumen prints John Nelson of Actinic Studio gave a presentation to the Baltimore Camera club earlier this year on how to make collodian prints; the collodion process is still actively being used by some photographers for its distinct character.
– Daguerrotype

Juvenile yellow-crowned night heron. Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, Washington, DC.

Panorama near the intersection of the Black Marsh and Observation Trails.

Slaty skimmer (male). Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.

Monday Missive — May 20, 2019

Quotes

My work is inviting, hopefully, it’s also evocative and tells a story.  Ultimately, the goal in my work is to elicit emotion, be it wonderment, joy, silliness, happiness, solitude.  I think because I shoot for feeling rather than just for a scene, perhaps that makes my vision of the world and thus my photography, different.” — Marianne Drenthe

If you are really listening, if you’re awake to the poignant beauty of the world, your heart breaks regularly.” – Andrew Harvey

When you photograph a face . . .you photograph the soul behind it.” — Jean-Luc Godard

Links

Photoessays/Bodies of Work
– Surreal beauty out of the everyday
– Andre Kertesz
– Striking landscape images

Post-Processing
– Luminosity Mask This video explains a lot about masks in general, selections, color grading and how to use them and how to use color range for similar results.
– Color adjustment with curves
– All of the blend modes explained
– Editing photos in LR Great basic LR course in 17 minutes
– Fine art architectural editing
– Adjusting the colors of your highlights, midtones and shadows i.e., color grading

Field/Studio
– 15 Tips for better train and railway images

Snapping turtle, taken this weekend at Huntley Meadows in Alexandria, VA. Sigma 150-600 handheld but prone on the boardwalk.
Great Blue Heron. Taken at Huntley Meadows Park, 5/18/19; Sigma 150-600; f/8; 1/640; ISO 1250.

Monday Missive — April 8, 2019

Quotes

One of the greatest barriers to creativity and to life is fear. That fear manifests itself in many ways but one of the more destructive is the perfectionism so many of us are paralyzed by.” — David DuChemin

Being a photographer is making people look at what I want them to look at. – Ruth Orkin

One very important difference between color and monochromatic photography is this: in black and white you suggest; in color you state. Much can be implied by suggestion, but statement demands certainty… absolute certainty. – Paul Outerbridge 

Links

Photo essays/Bodies of Work
– Exploration of the urban landscape With emphasis on Vietnam
– Messy studio –> creativity?
– “Inverse panoramas” and x-rays
– Van Der Zee and the Harlem renaissance
– Very dark, moody street photography

PhotoshopTechniques
– Equalize skin tones
– Workflow for a difficult image
– Basics of layer masks Really good 15 minute video that gives you all the basics of masks in a very straight forward way

From Steve Oney:
– How to safely use smoke bombs
– “Other worldly” images from White Sands, NM

Team effort on the Pride of Baltimore.
Neatly coiled rope on the Pride of Baltimore.

Monday Missive — December 31, 2018

Quotes

…follow the quiet nudges of your intuition.” — Ursula von Rydingsvard

“...I can doubt pieces before making them, but I have to jump into the unknown to get somewhere. I have to dare to make them.” — Paola Pivi

But most [photo] books will then use end text, or some form of additional context to answer those questions. To make the cause of the tension, or the roots of the intention, known.” — Jonathan Blaustein on Dec 21, 2018

Links

– San Juan Mountain image and story Very short story on the making of a particular image
– Color correction and compensaton 20 minute video
– Fixing edges of cutouts in Photoshop This was very helpful for a common problem.
– Cutting out complex subjects 15 minute video
– Color grading in camera raw 6 minute video
– How to build confidence as an artist
– Portrait approaches
– Wildlife Photography: How to get better and better
– Adjusting luminosity without effecting color
– Best National Parks for landscape photography

 

A small boat on the beach with the Bay Bridge in the background.
Stranded by the Bridge. Taken at Sandy Point State Park.
Boat on a beach with Chesapeake Bay Bridge in the background.
Sandy Point State Park. Would like to get comments on which you perfer.

Monday Missive — June 4, 2018

Quotes

Becoming “more creative,” whatever that means to you, doesn’t often happen by accident. And it’s not something you either are or are not, so you can check that excuse at the door right now. It’s a choice. It’s something you do. If you’re longing to do more creative work, then stop taking it all so damn seriously; stop thinking about the work you’ve already done and get excited about reinventing it, exploring new ideas, new techniques, and challenge yourself with more interesting problems.”David duChemin

It was the Rainbow gave thee birth,
And left thee all her lovely hues.
W. H. Davies

Great art is the outward expression of an inner life of the artist, and this inner life will result in his personal vision of the world.” – Edward Hopper

Links

– Using images to message about PTSD If you don’t read anything else in today’s blog, please read this.

– Bird photography
– Wildlife rescue photography
– Landscape light — Part 2
– Counterfeit memory cards from Amazon
– Does sensor size still make a difference?
– International image theft lawsuit – interesting video story
– Interesting group photos
– Color grading in PS
– Using “apply image” layer masks

Composite of 2 images taken at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. The background trees were taken across an embayment. The “fence” was duplicated and reversed. Red and yellow color layers were used with a circular gradient for the yellow. The judge didn’t like it, but I do. Let me know what you think.

I had some fun with this one. Judges didn’t like it either.