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Showing posts from January, 2013

Just Another Sunset

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What is it about sunsets that keep us coming back for more? Usually we don't give them a second thought most days. They happen every day and yet most of us don't go every day to see one. But when we do see one, and it's a good one, it's plastered on our Facebooks, Twitters, Instagrams, etc. as if it was a once in a lifetime event. I suppose in a way it's true, sunsets are always unique. So here I present another sunset. As a photographer I know why I keep coming back for sunset shots; the colors, the contrast and the feel.

For this shot I was out originally trying to shoot something else that is behind and lower to the ground when looking at this shot. I happened to look up and saw the cotton candy like clouds and the rays coming through the clouds that I had to quickly re-adjust my camera and tripod to capture it before the sun set. This is not an HDR shot, but a single RAW image that got massaged through Aperture, Topaz Labs' Denoise, Adjust, and Detail. It …

Weekly Photo Projects, Week 4

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Week 4's theme for my +Weekly Photo Project 2013 was UP. Had I been a little more thorough in looking through the themes for this year I might have tried harder to get rid of this one. Oh, and next week's also. This was a shot that I almost immediately wrote off after taking it. And to be honest it's still not a favorite of mine, but with the sunlight hitting the way it was it turned out not bad. If nothing else it was better than what I shot last year!

Blue Hour Pier Re-Done

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I don't think I've done this before here, but I'm posting a correction, of sorts. Yesterday's Blue Hour Pier was written on Wednesday. The photo was taken about a month ago and I only yesterday processed the photo. I had posted the straight out of camera JPEG of this shot about a month ago on Google+, but knew I wanted to do a little work to it before I put it on the blog. Well the minute I saw the photo go up yesterday (Thursday) on some of the other photo sites I post to I instantly disliked it, which is kind of embarrassing because I got a fair number of likes on these sites.

So what happened? First, and probably the biggest mistake, was that I used the JPEG version instead of the RAW version to do my edits/processing on. If you can shoot RAW, do so it makes processing so much easier. Then it was a matter of having a light touch in the editing to get a little more detail in the railing and clouds. The grunge look on the pier itself is gone, which is what I really h…

Blue Hour Pier

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One of my first shots with the G3, and one of the reasons I love a flip-out/tilting screen. This camera was on a three inch table top tripod and thanks to the rotating screen I didn't have to lay flat on my stomach to see what the camera was seeing. And, once I liked what I was seeing, I could just tap the screen to snap the photo. I honestly don't think I would want to go back to a camera without a rotating screen, it's just so useful. I am also happily surprised by how much I like the touchscreen on the camera. I originally thought it to be a gimmick feature, but it can come in handy for more than just selecting focus or swiping through photos.

Weekly Photo Projects, Week 3

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Just one photo this week. Why just one? Did I already fall behind on one of my projects? Did I get thrown out of one of them? Was the other photo so bad I couldn't bring myself to posting it? No, I've not fallen behind, I've not yet been thrown out of one, and the second photo is the same as the first.

The theme for my black and white group was frozen, and with temperatures not really cold enough to freeze things I had to come up with my own shot. This was a simple glass with 3 ice cubes illuminated by a handheld flashlight. I also tried to freeze the action of pouring a liquid into the glass, but it didn't turn out as well. I couldn't make the rum really standout.

The theme for my +Weekly Photo Project 2013 was the rule of thirds, you compose your shot with the subject off to a side, or above or below center. Or all of the above. Since my black and white shot matched the rule, and I really liked it, I just used that shot for this project also.

First Pano of 2013

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I've said it before, but I enjoy panoramic photos, even if they are troublesome to put together. I do panos so sparingly that I often forget why I don't do them more often, until I get to doing another pano. Though to be honest it's when I decide to try for an HDR pano where I really get into trouble. This shot is not an HDR panorama, but does include some new for me techniques for shooting. For those keeping track, this was taken on the same day as this. The clouds give it away.

The first of these techniques was to shoot my shots with the camera in the portrait position. This didn't make sense to me at first as my camera covers more area horizontally than vertically so it would take more shots to cover the same area, meaning more chance of my stitching software to mess up. So I tried to take shots with more overlap to help the software out. The main benefit I saw with this is that the I had more excess photo to crop for the final shot. I wasn't cropping out parts…

Weekly Photo Projects, Week 2

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2 down, 50 to go. Huh, when you put it that way there's a long way to go. First up we have my shot for my group, +Weekly Photo Project 2013. This week our theme was winter/summer, depending on what hemisphere you were in.  There isn't really a winter in my area, certainly not the postcard peaceful looking snow scenes most people associate with winter, so I had to make due with frost. And I had to get up early to get the frost before the sun did it's job.

Pewetoll Island

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Barely off the coast of Trinidad State Beach is Pewetoll Island. Actually, I'm not really sure this can be called an island, that's how close it is. I imagine Pewetoll must be a Native American Indian word or name, though the Internet is failing me, or my Googling skills are getting rusty. This is a 7 shot HDR that I initially thought wouldn't be of much use because of it being a generally bright day, but the HDRing brought out details in the deeper shadows that I hadn't expected to notice.

Funny thing about this shot, for me anyway, is that when taking the photos I wasn't even looking at the reflection in the water. So when I got to looking at these photos I had a nice surprise and it instantly improved the photo. Probably shouldn't have mentioned that part and just played it off like it was all part of the plan. Oh well, hope you enjoy it.

Weekly Photo Projects, Week 1

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Week One is done and in the books. Since both of my projects were using the same theme (New Year) I was expecting to recycle a photo for both. I kind of did, but not in the way I thought I would. For my +Weekly Photo Project 2013 group I used this 7 shot HDR sunset. You can read about why I chose this shot here (I don't like repeating myself). But I really did like how this shot turned out.

So as far as my shot for my black & white group goes, it should look very familiar. Yes, it was used just three days ago here in color. Since this shot was due Friday I've had some time to look at it some more, and though I generally like the black & white version better than the color version, I don't like the grain I put in it. I should have gone with my first instinct and gone for a clean look. To see what else I had to say about it check out my post here.


You can view my Weekly Photo Project album here.
My black & white project album here.

Waving in the New Year

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And now you all know why I'm not a comedian. I like the idea of taking wave photos, but in practice I'm rarely ever happy with the shots. I feel a wave has little in the way of context unless you do a burst of photos showing it grow in intensity. I also feel a wave shot needs some sort of an anchor, and I felt like this piece of driftwood did a good job of providing that anchor. As for the technical details this was shot with my new G3, at 28mm, f5.6, ISO 160, Shutter 1/1000.

I don't like doing resolutions for the New Year. I feel we're all pressured to make some big resolution that really isn't doable, and when we inevitably fail them 2 weeks/months later we don't try for the rest of the year. But, I do have some goals for this blog. I want to expand the content so it's not just photography. With that said, I want to make sure I follow through with my two photo projects, +Weekly Photo Project 2013 (of which I'm a curator for) and +Project 52 B&W .…