Backlight as a Modeling Technique

Backlighting is the method that deprives the objects being shot the light they need to be clearly seen. And yet, in some instances, it can create a compelling result. Here the backlight rakes the rear and surface, providing a textured backdrop. And enough light is bounced from the arch above and to the right to provide a modestContinue reading “Backlight as a Modeling Technique”

The Mirror of Your Soul

…or at least your artistic intent. Mirrors provide a creative opportunity for photographers to make a statement, by allowing them a choice of what secondary subject matter is added to an image. Here the line of Harleys created a nice repeating pattern, but, by capturing the flag in not one, but all three mirrors, itContinue reading “The Mirror of Your Soul”

Enriching Sunset Photography with Clouds

The shots below are both taken from the same vantage point, several months apart.  The first is a typical sunset shot, which gains most of its interest from the Cypress trees silhouetted in the foreground. A few wisps of cloud help add a bit of character to the sky. Satisfying, but very simple. The secondContinue reading “Enriching Sunset Photography with Clouds”

Relating Organic and Geometric Forms

Vineyards offer an excellent opportunity to think abstractly about the organic forms of the landscape, and the geometric forms of the vine rows layered on top of that landscape. The patterns that result from this contract can produce very satisfying photographs. The first image below uses the organic landscape forms as big, powerful curves atContinue reading “Relating Organic and Geometric Forms”

The Challenge of Flag Closeups

Shooting images containing flags is a thankless task; a dozen good compositions may all be rejected because the flag is not in a photogenic pose. Shooting flags by themselves presents other challenges: everyone knows what the subject matter is, and finding a unique way of framing it is important. Macros of just a portion of aContinue reading “The Challenge of Flag Closeups”

Dark Floral Photography

Floral photography is typically about light and brilliant color. But thats not how it has to be. It makes for striking floral images to shoot in dimmer locations with lower key colors. Here all that was required was to stoop under an overhanging tree, and shoot in the deep shade to achieve a notably differentContinue reading “Dark Floral Photography”

All About That Bass

Music Festivals offer photographers an increased level of access to shoot musicians. However, it is often in less than ideal locations, with cluttered stages and backgrounds. One solution to this is to use a long lens, focus on closeups of one or two musicians at a time, and to use a shallow depth of focus; all ofContinue reading “All About That Bass”

Chasing the High Contrast Image

High contrast images are found not made. That is to say, the best of them are not high contrast due to heavy handed image editing, but rather because the content was high contrast when shot. While Ansel Adam’s Zone System may insist that we need components in our images at each of the ten zonesContinue reading “Chasing the High Contrast Image”

Creating Puzzles to Capture the Eye

One way of drawing the viewer into an image is to have a puzzle, or a fill-in-the-blank, that requires solving. This is particularly effective at stopping the eye when used in advertisements or other locations where there is competition and capturing the viewer’s interest is important. The image below contains a bit of British architecture,Continue reading “Creating Puzzles to Capture the Eye”

In Search of Artful Motion Blur

At times, we all shoot with settings too slow for the lighting and motion of our images. And, at times, we find a few of the resulting images to be artistically pleasing. The question that arises from this is: how best to improve the likelihood of getting a pleasing shot, from a somewhat random process?Continue reading “In Search of Artful Motion Blur”