Friday, December 23, 2011
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Thursday, November 17, 2011
I found every photo crisp and clear and representative of the its natural environment.
The photos are taken as found and therefore the lighting is natural and not staged. Nor are the images manipulated to give extra punch as I am prone to do. All are color prints with no B&W.
Since most of the animals by nature's design want to blend in with their surrounding there is not always a lot of high contrast, but they all stand out in the photos. The photos are all of the caliber that you would find in the National Geographic magazine.
The front cover image is representative of the quality of images whether they are up close or distant landscapes contained within the book.
Friday, November 11, 2011
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
After leaving her position as pastry chef Helen launched the award-winning blog Tartelette, where she dedicates herself to the art of food, photography and styling. Her food photography and styling work has been praised online and in prints by publications such as Elle magazine. Forbes magazine, The Times Online, Caveur magazine, CNN, Martha Steward and more
Link to Amazon store below.
Friday, September 30, 2011
In the northern hemisphere at this time of year there is a great transformation going on with our deciduous trees. Over a 2 week period beginning around the last week of September and then into the first 2 weeks of October the leaves start to loose their green photosynthesis properties and with the inherent nutrients left in the leaves, they come forward in brilliant hues of yellow, orange and red.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
On some of the images and even the version above, I found slight fringing (light lines) that followed the shape. This was really noticeable with black backgrounds as even a little colour shows up.
In the next image I used a little Photoshop processing to bring out some of the hidden colors in the black cloth as I wanted analogous color, here reddish blue, to support the magenta (blueish red) in the image.
The software does have 3 settings: Methods A &B; smoothing; and radius, which at this time I don't know their functions. I think this will be a useful tool and therefore I should learn more about this program to better understand its limitations and how to use it correctly.
I believe those lines are caused when the software shrinks some of the further back images, as changing focus further back makes the images larger and software needs to align all parts so they overlap perfectly. This may leave residual edge not fully covered with its mask. Just a guess.
This is one of my favourites as intense yellow and purples work well with little darkened and de-saturated green in the stems.
This was a home studio setup with window side-lighting using a tripod and set to time delay to ensure no shake. While I didn't notice any overexposed shots, the software told me the variance (sometimes 20-30%) in lightness for each run. This brightness variance was caused by slight changes, not really noticeable, as the intensity of the clouds changed.
There is a 30 day trial usage and I do suggest that you try this out.
In a future article I will perform an in depth review of this software and even try those full DOF landscape photographs.
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Clutter, it hangs off me like Christmas tree ornaments. Each is different and pretty in their own right. Some are old and a bit tarnished like my parent's words. Not actually their words but my attempt to follow their advice. Some are newer and seem better built, like the advice of photographic and artistic experts, but you don't want all of it hanging around 24/7. Except for the choice moral items.
The gist of all this is that we all have a lot of people, some we know others that we never met, telling us which way is the right path to follow. It may be good advice but sometimes we do need to break free.
I don't have a perfect map for my life and there's no way I would know where you should go. I do believe though that if you do what feels right for you and let your own voice guide, you great improvements will happen.
Below are some photographs that for some reason have compelled me to look longer. They might break some composition rules but we all have our own tastes.
While you're supposed to watch out for things at the edges, for me here this adds some intrigue to a well textured wall and canal edge in Paris.
You may ask 'What is the next photo' and I don't have an answer. It came about because I was playing around with Helicon focus and the photo with a black background didn't stand out well enough.
With some judicious use of Photoshop layers, various blend modes and even a little LAB mode, I found one version that intrigued me. It's still a bit crude but I see how I could take this further.
Therefore, silence some of these voices. Use them only when needed in order to make time for things that you enjoy and this includes doing photos that only interest you. After all it your creativity.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
The world is in color so we don't have a natural tendency to see in B&W but with practice, some inner vision, we can all create good black and white photos.
Black and White Digital Photography (photo workshop) book wants people to be better at this genre of photography.
Black and White Digital Photography (the book)
The book has 10 chapters and I will explain what is basically covered in each and at the end of the article I will give the overall summary for this book.
This is a workbook of sorts and each chapter has an assignment to help you explore some of the material covered in the chapter.
Chapter 1 – Black and White Vision
This chapter is more of a compendium of general information on importance of Black and White photography, why it is a different art from color. It covers how in the color world seeing in B&W involves more of the creative process. The importance of being able to previsualize, understand the timing in 'the moment' and knowing how to wait. Where to find photographic material and subjects.
Chapter 2 – Photography Fundamentals
Chapter 3 – Getting the Most out of your Camera
This chapter covers handling the buttons and menu settings on your camera. How white balance affects B&W. Glass filters and suggested settings and lens for portraits, landscape, still life and street photography.
Chapter 4 – Working with Light
This chapter covers metering and exposure, basic zone system, the metering modes of your camera. Light quality and direction as well as reflectors and balancing and mixing sources. Light at dusk and after dark.
Chapter 5 – Tools and Toys
This chapter covers add-ons and supporting equipment for your camera that will allow to take more creative images and includes; Infrared photography, lens baby, smaller point and shoot and speciality DSLR camera, strobes, tripods
Chapter 6 – Tonal Quality in Black and White
This chapter covers converting color to B&W, discussing tones and contrast in B&W images, working with shadows and contrast. Also covers understanding how light quality affects tones and looking for highlights and building depth in the shadows.
Chapter 7 – The Black and White Digital file
The process of converting image to B&W, the use of film filters and the debate on raw or jepg file formats
Chapter 8 – Working in the Digital Darkroom
The chapter discusses the process of enhancing your image to bring out more by use of local and global contrast, multiple raw processing, adjustment layers, masks, shadows and highlight tools, additional filters, selective effects, film situations, workflow. The major emphasis is about using photoshop and digital editing tools.
Chapter 9- Toning, Coloring and Special Effects
The chapter explains the old film processing techniques and how they can be achieved in digital editing such as; old process effects, split toning, coloring to monochrome, infrared effects, high dynamic range, compositing
10 Output Printing and Presentation
Film was about chemical processes, paper, developing and in this chapter the new equivalents of inject printers and paper, calibrating, creating B&W prints, output options
Conclusion and Recommended Audience
This is a How To book about creating B&W images digitally. It broadly covers all aspects from start to finish about creating this genre of photography as evidenced by the material cover under the chapters. I don't think little was missed except some freeware program. The author used higher end equipment, and computer components and information is geared towards this end.
The book contains a lot of photos and all taken by the author. I like the fact that these are ordinary but good images that we would all take as opposed to those over the top studio shots.
The book does contain assignments at the end and these are general in approach. I am a firm believer that assignments should be precise and more definitive to help focus people clearly in the direction of guidance. Too much ambiguity for beginners causes confusion in their approach.
There is a web site to post your assignment but at this time (new book) there was nothing posted under the B&W book. This site contains the other workbooks from Wiley press about photography. Some useful information but a little hard to find since its a Bulletin Board system.
This is, in my opinion, a beginners book for someone who mainly uses Point&Shoot camera or mid level SLR type only in auto mode and needs to understand photography, equipment and tools from beginning to end. Each item is well explained but only at a level to get you started and with photography, lots of practice is the key to really getting better.
From my own perspective there are so many books about using cameras I think it's better to leave some of the basic materiel out and focus more on taking B&W and then digital editing.
A bike has so much detail at times its best to focus on particular elements only. In this image you get the feeling of power form the large exhaust pipes.
Disclaimer: Other than receiving a book to review, which will be given away, I did not or will not receive any remunerations, gifts or any considerations for this review from the publisher, author or anyone affiliated with this book.
Saturday, August 27, 2011
Thursday, August 18, 2011
- Bridge railings
- Top of roof (top right)
- Rippling water starting bottom right. The water just to the left was darkened a little to make contrast greater.
- The darker 'V' portion of the tree that splits above girls head. This was also darkened slightly to increase effect.
- There is a dark patch just to the left of man's head that forms a 'C'. This was also slightly darkened.