Wednesday, December 2, 2015

webinar on Nov 30

I was asked to do a webinar on landscape by a local professional is where it can be viewed:

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Why I photograph every day....

Here are two photographs taken near my house, in what is remaining of the dense forest that used to surround me until people started moving in and taking it down piece by piece...I walk here every day with my dog and during this time I carry a point and shoot Canon G15 camera...there are mornings or afternoons when it seems there is absolutely nothing to photograph; it is then that I take the camera out of my pocket and start to really look, forcing myself to find something, no matter how insignificant, to photograph.  It may sound ridiculous, but it works..
If you ask any great musician or painter, they will tell you that it takes hours and hours of practice to become proficient...Picasso didn't paint once in a while, he painted constantly, trying different techniques, always learning...Monet spent his older adult life in one place, painting constantly in his garden; Winslow Homer almost his whole adult life painting the ocean and coast...there is a lesson to be learned here, if you want to photograph better and develop an eye for photography and the graphic structure that is important for good images, it must be practiced.
Going on a tour once or twice a year and shooting will not do it!  Wherever you live, take your camera, no matter how boring that area may be, you will find something of value if you look..and if you say, "I don't have time"...then make time.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

self assignments

Self Assignments

What is a self assignment?  Why would you do it?
A self assignment is a way to improve your photography by forcing yourself to shoot an image a day for a week, a month, even a year.  Last year and into this year I gave myself a one year assignment:  shoot an image a day for 365 days…I was very difficult, it probably gave me OCD and lingering effects, but it was a challenge to me as a photographer…some images sucked but others were very good…and it made me really look at the world every day with a unique vision.  Now, I am not suggesting that you try a one year challenge, but an image a day for a week, or an image per week for 52 weeks, or one per day for a month…it will challenge you, and by forcing yourself to photograph, you improve and push toward being a better photographer.
Or you could choose a certain subject and shoot it for a week:  a ball that you carry around and flip into the air in different areas of the state,  your pet at different moments, even kitchen utensils in weird unexpected areas…be a kid again…use your imagination. But remember to always do your best when trying this project.  There were a couple of times I had to take a hiatus from the 365 project before I went crazy because the images were not good. Don’t shoot for the sake of getting an image for that day: shoot until the image is what you wanted to achieve artistically and technically.
A few years ago, on a David Middleton workshop, he challenged us to photograph with a lens that we seldom used.  For me, it was my 24-70mm F2.8:  it was my primary night photography lens; never used during the day…After a meltdown, I was forced to use it all day in Galilee and the results surprised me. Many images were good after I got the hang of moving around closer to my subject and being more creative with that lens…so try a lens you never use often and learn to use it.
Many of us are busy and don’t have time…but sometimes in your life, it is important to make time for what you love…If you enjoy photography, why not make a small effort toward being more creative and having fun, too.

the workshop dilemma

The Workshop Dilemma

If you are a novice photographer, it is important to try to improve as much as possible and if you are a member of PSRI, it means that you want to learn more about photography.  Attending  a workshop can help elevate your images to a better level; however, it is essential to attend the correct workshop for you.  A tour is not a workshop: it implies an intermediate to advanced knowledge of your camera and photography, and usually involves a tour leader getting you to the best places to shoot with minimal personal assistance. A workshop, on the other hand, is ideal for beginning photographers but there are some things you must do before attending a workshop; things that will help it be a success for you.
I have attended many workshops and tours, some of which were amazing, and some that were almost disastrous and everything in between.
These checkpoints may assist you in choosing the correct workshop:
  1. Know the tour leader’s work. Check his/her website. If you don’t like their photography, what’s the point in going with them?
  2. Know your style of photography or your tendencies when you shoot.  If you like landscape, don’t do a portrait workshop unless you want to try that genre.
  3. Read your camera manual. Know the basic operation of your camera..a workshop leader will have other people to help, too and if you monopolize the leader, there may be revenge from others…you want to return home in one piece.
  4. Get a tripod…if you want sharp images, this is a must…
  5. Know your limitations…if the leader lists the itinerary and it requires miles of hiking to an area, be certain you are capable of doing it.  Personally, I love the work of Marc Adamus, but I am too darn old to camp and hike long distances, which is what his tours usually involve, so I don’t go and embarrass myself.
  6. Be prepared with the correct clothing for the conditions…I was on a tour in Canada when it was February with temps -29F and one woman showed up in jeans, tshirt and light cotton jacket…
  7. Find out what camera equipment is necessary…try to bring a spare camera body.  If your camera goes belly up, it will be on the workshop.
  8. If you can talk to others who have been out with the workshop leader, it will give you a realistic idea of what to expect.

using a fisheye

The Amazing Fisheye

These are examples of a fisheye lens image. It can be a lot of fun to use but there are a few caveats that are important when using a specialty lens like the fisheye.  If you position the horizon toward the top of the image, the result is a curved shape like the surface of the earth at a distance…
Here is an example:
If you position the horizon low in an image, the shape will be inverted and give a totally different feeling to an image, such as this example:
If you position the horizon dead center in an image, the distortion is reduced and gives an extreme wide angle effect of about 120 degrees
Here is an image with the horizon almost dead center:
My own fisheye lens is 15mm…
It is also important to note, that if you have an APS-C or smaller sensor, the effects are minimal.  I would recommend a fisheye lens only on a full frame camera.  There are adjustable fisheye lenses available…this lens can give an image great impact; it can also ruin an image.  It must be used with discretion.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Milky Way

This image of the Milky Way, an arm of our spiral galaxy, was taken at the Charlestown Breachway in Rhode is a difficult area to photograph:  light pollution is always an issue here in RI plus there is a trailer park behind me with lights and fishermen with headlamps...however, the lights did serve as fill light for the rocks of the breakwater, so it wasn't all bad.

The Grand Landscape

As anyone who has followed my website or seen my images knows, the grand landscape is my favorite form of seems to me that we all see the world differently; some of us see it on a grand scale taking in a wide view of the environment, and some of us see more intimate detail.   From the moment I began photographing, because I was a painter and lover of landscape painters such as Turner, Constable and the Hudson River school artists, landscapes felt right to me...
If you are a photographer, find what you love and work at it...often I will photograph intimate landscapes, my dog, animals, macro..but my love is for the grand landscape...this is an article written for a friend's blog a few months ago....

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Sunflowers in July

Here are three images from Buttonwoods sunflower farm in Griswold, Conn....the first two images were taken with the Canon f2.8 100mm macro lens, on a tripod, of course!  The third image is a three image panorama using a pano rail and clamp from reallyright stuff...the sky was lacking that night but what choice do you have?  Shoot regardless, that's my motto...I am drawn to the less mature images of sunflowers for some reason; probably because everyone photographs the mature flowers...
the middle image is my favorite because of the movement created by the growing petals...

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Project 365 day 365

a lotus blossom in Wickford

YAY!  This is the last image in my project for the last was one of the hardest challenges I have ever done in photography...but well worth it...

Project 365 day 364

an unusual fern in my yard

Monday, July 13, 2015

Project 365 day 363

Point Judith, Rhode Island

Project 365 day 362

leaf with areas of sunlight...topaz simplify filter

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Project 365 day 361

leaves with raindrops

Project 365 day 360

of course, more mushrooms..this is Nik silver efex pro..underexposed

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Project 365 day 359

clearing after thunderstorms

Project 365 day 358

wild mushroom growing from the side of an oak tree

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Project 365 day 357

wild mushrooms

Project 365 day 356

wild honeysuckle in the woods...the scent of these flowers is delightful

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Project 365 day 355

This image of a brook near my house was taken with the Olympus M-1...I have found that these mirrorless cameras differ quite a bit from my slr...for one thing, F22 or F20 at low iso or 200iso are out of the question..otherwise the image takes minutes to process..F8 is the best option for landscape thus far; it is a challenge using this camera and figuring out what works best...

Friday, July 3, 2015

Project 365 day 354

my dog, Ralph; this was taken with an Olympus OMD E-M1 and kit lens.

Project 365 day 353

dashboard of a junk car...Nik analog plugin

Project 365 day 352

intimate landscape

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Project 365 day 351

my dog, Ralph, playing with his basketball toy

Project 365 day 350

ferns in black and white

Project 365 day 349

grunge effect in Topaz

Project 365 day 348

abstract auto detail

Friday, June 26, 2015

Project 365 day 347

mushroom seen on my travels in woods

Project 365 day 346

ferns using night/day filter

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Project 365 day 345

another infrared image...this one is three images combined into a pano, then processed using the channel mixer and reversing blue and red channels

Project 365 day 344

juvenile barn swallow...there are three in my barn; they have been flying for about a week

Project 365 day 343

infrared oak tree

Monday, June 22, 2015

Project 365 day 342

immature wild blueberries with a zoom twist

Project 365 day 341

leaves after rain...the small hole in the leaf appealed to me

Project 365 day 340

misty day in the woods...

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Project 365 day 339

water droplets on grasses the morning after a heavy rain

Project 365 day 338

foggy morning panorama

Monday, June 15, 2015

Project 365 day 337

along the rocky shore of Beavertail

Project 365 day 336

sunset long exposure on Jamestown shoreline

Project 365 day 335

oak leaves

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Project 365 day 334

some horse play in the paddocks

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Project 365 day 333

What is wrong with me?  I am photographing birds!  This is a female cowbird stalking insects while following one of my horses around the paddock.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Project 365 day 332

5 image panorama of a field and trees using PS6 photomerge

Project 365 day 331

life and death in the forest

Project 365 day 330

the world of ferns

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Project 365 day 328

black and white conversion of young oak leaf with water droplets

Project 365 day 327

rain soaked maple leaf

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Project 365 day 326

the outside of Fenway park; this was to be a photo op at the park but it was cancelled due to rain..the only view was from outside

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Project 365 day 325

this was taken in a Cranston garden

Thursday, May 28, 2015