Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘IA’ Category

When shooting in Iowa this last weekend, I was surrounded by black and white photographic opportunities. There was enough snow to create harsh contrast, but not enough to create excessive contrast. The snow accentuates the textures and shapes in a landscape and especially a close up shot. A great characteristic of black and white photography is its innate ability to exhibit detail. Eliminating color is one less step our neural network must process when viewing an image.

BW Triptych

If you look closely at the image to the left, you can see every granule of snow and every speck of dirt. The middle image has excellent contrast between the shadows and the highlights, characteristic of black and white. The image to the right has examples of the previously mentioned traits of black and white. Why am I discussing this? I am pointing out in a round about way that snow is an excellent element for photographers, especially combined with black and white processing. The thing to remember with snow is that it is not easy to photograph in. When done right, it is great. But when done incorrectly, it can wreak havoc on our memories of how we saw the scene. Here are a few guidelines to follow.

1) Overexpose: You must remember that with any camera whether it be a piont and shoot or a DSLR, the internal meter attempts to create an overall equal exposure. In a more technical explanation, the camera tries to create an 18% grey exposure. We all know that snow is white, therefore grey is unnatural. In your menu settings there is a setting usually labled “EV compensation”. When shooting snow I would set this to +1.0 to start. Many modern point and shoots have built in modes including a snow mode. I would experiment with both.

2) Work the angles: With water in any form, there will be angles that display more or less relfectance. Use this to your advantage. You might be able to get some refraction images if you are lucky. In other words, colors refract all the time and its up to you to find them. Here is a little info on getting rainbow shots. Fun fact: rainbows are located 42 degrees off the axis of the sun.

3) Minimalism: Many of the best shots we see are ones that have a single subject and minimal distractions. Look for the single twig, or the lone tree on the horizon. Remember, with black and white the details really “pop”. Keep it simple and intimate and I know you will get some winners. This applies to any camera and any photographer.

Well, I hope this has helped at least one person. I will say one last thing: This last weekend in Iowa was a successful photographic trip for me. The main reason being that I was out searching for images for hours every day. Light is changing every second and therfore creating new opportunities constantly.

MT

P.S. Sorry that this not dicuss my Iowa trip in great detail, I had some things on my mind and now they are in words. Thanks.

Read Full Post »

Good afternoon to all. I had an excellent weekend in Iowa as many might who have been following along with my posts might have seen. I am almost completely finished editing the 576 images from Friday to today brought me. Obviously many of the images were thrown out, but I feel my success rate was very good this weekend. I believe that the confidence I have in my Canon 5D may have a play in my success. Using the camera has allowed myself to focus on capturing images and less on worrying that I might miss the shot before me.

Starting in chronological order once more; the first image is a prime example of keeping compositions simple. This was taken in extremely overcast conditions with a Canon 70-200mm f/4L telephoto. I picked my shots wisely with such a bland sky, and sometimes eliminating the sky from view completely. I enjoy minimalistic subjects because they enable the viewer to really focus on the detail present. Many landscapes I photograph are sometimes overwhelming I am sure. Further reducing the distractions, I converted this image to black and white in Photoshop CS3. I always shoot color and if need be, convert to B&W in PS.

Looking up to the Future

 The next image is a landscape captured on top of Murray Hill, near Pisgah, IA. Murray Hill is a steep hill with numerous draws and spurs along both sides. The view from the top is outstanding and very peaceful. I was dumbfounded at times by the steepness of the Loess Hills. It was an excellent surprise to visit these hills as well as photograph them. I am told that the Loess Hills are rare in that there is only one other place in the world with these type of geographic features. I will research more on this and get back to you.

Murray Hill, Pisgah, Iowa

 

This next image was a must in showing the sites in Iowa. Windmills have long been used for generating power as well as for pumping water. If you feel so inclined, more information can be found here. I personally find the most use out of a windmill by photographing it, but I know that thousands of individuals use these still to this day.

Slowly Turning

 

The final image is one that I am quite proud of. I spotted this 65 foot tall building on Friday afternoon in Rock Port, Missouri. Due to the weather conditions and my “photographer’s instinct” I chose to wait on this photographic opportunity. Today however, the stars (or in my case, the clouds) aligned for a great image. Shelton Fireworks are seen in many states and consistently claim to be the largest warehouse fireworks provider. I believe them with a building this size. Using my tripod and my 17-40mm lens, I bracketed for an High Dynamic Range image. I was fortunate enough to be the only vehicle present, therefore adding to the ominous size of this geometrically appealing building. I hope you like it as much as I do. I must mention another photographer who captured a photograph of this same building. One of my photography professors, Wilson Hurst, has a great site that I check regularly and you should too. Here is his site. Search “Shelton Fireworks” to see his interpretation.

Shelton Fireworks

I hope you have enjoyed this installation of images. Rest assured, more will soon be on the way. Now I must go play secretary for Photo Society here at UCM.

MT

Read Full Post »