After years of talking about bringing the Macro Boot Camp to the Northwest, I finally set a date and place.  I am only able to do one location and decided to go to the tri-city area of Washington which is located in the middle between Portland, Seattle, and Spokane.  Hope you can make it.
Macro Boot Camp
Red Lion Hotel Columbia Center – Kennewick, Washington
September 18,19,20, 2015
Cost $199
sign up at http://www.macrostoreonline.com

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Fun Shooting Plants

Posted: March 2, 2015 in Uncategorized
Had a great group in Ocala Florida for my Macro Boot Camp.  Also got some nice images from the plant life around the hotel we were at.

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Liquidfy 1

 

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The idea of new photographers working a job for free or low pay is not uncommon, and many that are new to the business of photography feel in some cases the exposure and the word of mouth could bring them more business in the future. Depending on the situation it may work out well, or may not.
I know pro photographers complain when they see a new photographer trying to get into the business and charging lower rates then all the other established pros.  I guess they shouldn’t be charging the same rates if they are new and inexperienced.
A pro athlete doesn’t start out at the highest pay unless they are an exceptional talent and they play for less money until they start to improve and their pay goes up.
A new wedding photographer shouldn’t be charging the same rates as a well know established photographer charges as the client will not be getting the same quality images.
Many moons ago when I was in the music business and playing in a rock band, it wasn’t all that unusual for young bands to take on gigs working for free or for low pay to get exposure. So for me this idea of photographers working for free or less pay for exposure and experience is much as it was in the music business.
If you read the book by rock legend Sammy Hagar who was best known as the lead singer for Van Halen, Montrose, and his own bands, he talks about when in the band Montrose and their first album was released, they went out on tour as an opening act for major groups in arenas all over the country to help promote sales for the new album. He said they toured for about a year and all they got paid was enough to cover their hotel expenses and a little food money. The idea of all opening acts that are unknown is to get in front of an audience and play for exposure. These bands go out play their set night after night for basically no money, in hopes of gathering a following that will pay off down the road.
So I guess when I hear photographers talk about working for free or low pay for exposure, it’s not just in the photography business that this goes on.
I’m not saying it’s right or wrong, just saying it happens and sometimes the exposure pay off and sometimes it doesn’t. Some rock bands went on to become huge from those early gigs they played for the exposure with little to no pay. So again not in support of working for free and not totally against it under the right circumstance.

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So You Thought Those Were Tulips

Posted: February 28, 2015 in Uncategorized
If you have seen this image of mine with the Tulips in the tree trunk, you weren’t alone if you thought they were Tulips.

I found this stump in a swamp and I liked the design in the wood and the hole offered a nice place to put some flowers. It’s a natural flower vase. I have a few images with tree stumps that have holes that I filled with flowers, and I call them “stump art”.
These flowers are actually not Tulips, but a tiny flower called an Orange Star. The Orange Star flower comes from Ecuador in South America and these little guys are less than an inch tall. So this whole area of the tree trunk is quite small.
I found them in a bouquet of flowers my wife had at home. I had only seen them this one time until about a year later at our local Meijer store. They were in little pots so I bought one to shoot at home.
Here I am in my photo studio (kitchen counter) and using my LED light to light the Orange Stars.
I used a printed gray background.

Here is the image out of the Nikon D7000. I used the Tamron 90mm macro, f/stop at f/32.

Next I loaded the image in Photoshop Elements and then into Nik Softwares Viveza 2 to make my adjustments. I lightened and tweak the color in the background with a little blue. I worked on the Orange Stars and the green in the stem and buds. I then did some cloning on some of the hot spots and little imperfections in the flowers and added some sharpening. Cleaned up all the little spots in the background.

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Different Flavors

Posted: February 27, 2015 in Uncategorized
I found this interesting subject growing from a tree in Colorado and not sure what it is, but I liked it. I went to Nik Software Color Efex Pro, and Topaz Simplify for some different looks. Here is the original with just some basic processing in Photoshop.

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Nik Color Efex Program – Film Efex Faded Filter

Nik Film Efex Faded

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Nik Color Efex Pro – Film Efex Faded plus Monday Morning filters.

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Topaz Simplify – Oil Painting 2 filter.

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Lots of fun creating different artistic looks with post processing.

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Think Outside The Box

Posted: February 26, 2015 in Uncategorized
You have all heard the commonly used term Thinking Outside the Box, where we try and create something different from what everyone else is doing. Because flowers are so popular as subjects for macro photographers, it becomes hard to come up with a composition of a flower that hasn’t been done to death. We tend to see the same tired old compositions, and it becomes a challenge to find a new way to compose. I was studying some tulips and as I was moving the pot around the petals on the flowers started to fall off. After all the petals fell off except one on this flower, it created something outside of the box for me, so set it up with a white background and came up with a little different look.

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Before and After

Posted: February 25, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Here is the original out of the camera.

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Here it is processed with Dark Contrast and Solorization in Nik Software’s Color Efex Pro and cropped a little.

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Website, Workshops and E-Books
Macro Photo Conference 2015 click here
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