Photography Project: Creating a painterly photo effect with textures

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I just completed my first online video course from CreativeLive Online Course.  The subject was creating painterly effects, and the instructor is Kathleen Clemons.  Kathleen inspired me to push past my comfortable habits, get reacquainted with my Lensbaby gear (yes, I’m going to try again), and find new ways to use software that I left behind.  This week, I’m focusing on that last item.  I purchased Topaz Texture Effects a couple of years ago, did not understand how to take advantage of the software, did not like the preloaded textures, and quickly went back to my old way of importing textures into Photoshop.  I have no realized that I have made my post-processing harder than it needed to be. Continue reading

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Other things to see on the Big Island after you visit Volcanoes National Park

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Tree Tunnel on Pohoiki Road near Hule Beach Park

Our last blog post was about Volcanoes National Park which is making all of the news right now.  We stayed on the Big Island for almost a week and were able to do several other things besides Volcanoes.  The Big Island is hurting for tourists.  You can get a really great deal right now.  Here are a few other interesting places to see. Continue reading

Revisiting an Old Friend at Catalina State Park, Tucson, AZ

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“Mr. Akimbo” January of 2011

One of the joys of photography is going to the same beautiful place multiple times over many years and in different seasons and weather.  I was reminded of this when we were in Tucson in December and visited my favorite saguaro.  Here is what we saw. Continue reading

What a mess. Isolating flowers at Lake Tekapo, New Zealand.

We read that Lake Tekapo had some beautiful flowers on its shores.  So after a long drive, we thought we would take it easy and have a leisurely sunset shoot.  When we showed up to a full parking lot, we knew we were in for some “combat” photography.  Here’s what we did. Continue reading

Photography Tip: Photographing in morning light

I hate mornings.  Let me clarify, I hate early mornings.  Which is an issue for a nature photographer.  Peter tries every persuasion technique to get me out of bed on cold, dark mornings, hours before the sun comes up (and it is usually 1 1/2 -2 hours because the best light is around 30 minutes before sunrise and it seems to take us an hour to get to wherever it is we need to go).  So we get there (in plenty of time in my opinion), I’m ready, and the amazing light is over in minutes.  Now what?  Its usually too early for breakfast, I’m awake so going back to sleep is not going to happen…. Continue reading

Playing with the Canon G7X MII

Sometimes you just need a play day, no serious photography, no pressure, no early or late hours.  Just good old fashioned snapshots with a little creative interpretation thrown in.  I had been looking for a great point and shoot I could throw in my purse and just have when easily available when I wanted to capture the moment.  I finally found it with the Canon G7X MII, and stumbled on a photography playground with their creative modes. Continue reading

Photography Project: Adding Texture to Photographs

Bike with basket

Texturing an image is something that requires not only time, but heavy creative mental space.  Its not easy to do, especially with hundreds of interesting textures, and a lot of “what-if” thoughts running through your mind. Continue reading

Photographing with one lens

Flowers and old building in Oxford England

If you’ve been following us here long enough, you know that I love my toys.  I get excited about using different lenses, filters (yes Jack I still use my blue/gold filter), and gizmos (like a child’s prism).  You can probably imagine how I felt, when I found myself only being able to take one camera and one lens for a week in Oxford, England.  I was there for work, and had to limit my photography to the transition time to walk between buildings.  So here is what I learned, when I pushed out of my comfort zone of nature photography…..one camera, one lens, and the street.

Continue reading

Another weekend in Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park

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Our trusty red Jeep in front of the Parker Group

Mary and I spent the long July 4th weekend in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park.  We were looking for bears and flowers in Sequoia and we made our first trip through Kings Canyon to see the waterfalls.  Here is what you might see. Continue reading

Stages of my photographic journey

I thought I would take a departure this week from my typical post.  I’ve spent some time cleaning up my image library and have reflected on my own photographic journey.  I remember starting 8 years ago with my first Jack Graham workshop.  We witnessed the must beautiful sunrise I have ever seen, it was at Rooster Rock.  But my image… well…it sucked. The image you see below is Peter’s.  Mine were not salvageable.  I was very much at the bottom of this curve, struggling with my own technical proficiency – learning to use my camera, filters, cards, remote, Photoshop……  It was all so new.

I have been helping some of my friends on their journeys and it occurred to me that they were moving through similar stages.  I think many people start at the bottom of this chart and work their way up.  There are a fortunate group of people that have a vision and can communicate it in a compelling art form right from the start.  I’m still working my way up. Continue reading