Ansel Adams Quote

Posted: October 1, 2016 in Uncategorized
Yesterday I talked about creating something artistic rather than just documenting, and here is a quote from Ansel Adams that I think follows this line of thinking.
“Most creative photographs are departures from reality and it seems to take a higher order of craft to make this departure than to simulate reality.” ~Ansel Adams

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A few years ago I did a interview for The Candid Frame and the interviewer Ibarionex Perello had made a statement that I found very interesting, and at the same time it was a compliment about my macro work that I was honored by.
Ibarionex Perello said,
“When ever I have viewed macro photography, it always looks like the photographer is just documenting their subjects, and when I view your work, it has an artistic look rather than a documented look”
I have always felt this same feeling when viewing photographer’s work, but never could put in words what I was seeing, until Ibarionex made it clear.
Most macro photographers are documenting subjects.
Documenting subjects is what you see in text books when learning about a subjects, whether it was flowers, plant life, birds, critters, etc. Text book images are not to be artistic, but just to let the viewer know what the subject looks like along with the environment it lives in.
I think most macro photographers are trying to create artistic images when they shoot their subjects, and they may not have thought of the fact that they may be documenting rather than create art.
Take a look at your portfolio of images and be very honest with yourself.
Are you creating artistic images with your subjects or just documenting them.
If you have shot a flower straight on and positioned it in the middle of the frame, then you are pretty much documenting your images. If you take the same flower and view it from some unique angle, or with an interesting depth of field then you have a better chance of creating art.
Here is a Cyclamen flower that has the documented look. Just a simple flower in the middle of the frame.

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And the same flower with a little more artistic pose.

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Using a shallow depth field gives this Trillium a more artistic feel.

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Places to Shoot

Posted: September 29, 2016 in Uncategorized
I was in Minnetonka, MN presenting one of my macro workshops and after the workshop ended on Sunday, I visited a great place to shoot.  It’s the Minnesota Arboretum.  I got some really nice images and if you ever get to the area it offers a lot of opportunities for a macro photographer.

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The Lens Flipper

Posted: September 28, 2016 in Uncategorized
$15 off GoWing Lens Flipper.
Save $15 and Shipping is Free. Available in Canon, Nikon and Sony mounts.
Click here to buy at Hunt’s Photo  –  https://goo.gl/cXHIhg
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Texture Effects 2 will be on sale from September 27th through October 30th and retails for $69.99. However, it can be purchased for only $59.99 ($10 off) until October 30th by using this coupon code: TFX2. You can link directly to the Texture
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*Not compatible with Fusion Express

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Website click here
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Sometimes You Get Lucky

Posted: September 26, 2016 in Uncategorized

I was driving on I-75 to the hotel for my weekend Macro Seminar in the Cincinnati area, and I saw a sign that said Cox Arboretum Gardens. I got off at the next exit and was hoping they might have a little indoor arboretum because it was a bit windy, and I didn’t figure I would have much luck shooting flowers outside.
They didn’t have an indoor garden, but what the heck, I’m here, might as well check out the outdoor gardens. Because it’s late in the season, most of the flowers were past their prime other then the mums, and again, much to windy anyways. The gardens did have some succulents that were not effected by the wind, but most I had seen before and wasn’t interested. I did happen to find one interesting succulent that was low to the ground and all though moving slightly in the wind, I was able to get a few shots. I really liked the look of this plant, but didn’t think that I would end up with anything spectacular. It was the only thing I shot, so thought it was just a waste of time.
When I got to the hotel, I had some time to play with some images I shot earlier at an airplane museum. After finishing with the plane images I decided to check out the interesting succulent I had shot. I ran it through the filters in Nik Software’s Color Efex Pro 4, and when I clicked on the Solarization filter, Bam! Wow! what a look this filter gave this subject. I love what that filter did to this image.
So I got a great image from just one subject shot at the arboretum, when I originally thought I had wasted my time going there, so sometimes you just never know where your next great image will come from.

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Don’t Pass By The Mud Puddle

Posted: September 25, 2016 in Uncategorized
Even mud puddles offer up opportunities.
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Here’s a Cottonwood leaf on the cracked mud next to the water.  I processed with Smart Photo Editor. Love this new program and something I will be teaching in my workshops.

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Second image with a pair of Cottonwood leaves sinking in the mud.  I soften the image down giving the image dreamlike feel.  Also processed with Smart Photo Editor.

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