Here is a challenge to all of you photographers out there. Yes, this includes all of you with an iphone camera! After the next big rain storm, take a walk and look for reflections in the puddles. Maybe you will see your surroundings in a whole new light!
Coconino sandstone does not absorb water quickly. The bad news is you need to be wary of a flash flood while hiking a low lying canyon. The good news, is the rain will erode the soft sandstone over time and in the short term leave some puddles for your visual enjoyment.
If you have ever visited the Grand Canyon, you know that BEING THERE is far more meaningful and thrilling than looking at a picture of it. And being there, it is hard to describe the emotions you feel, but one thing is for sure — you are humbled by the grand scale of it.
Experiencing Totality of a Solar Eclipse is like that. As darkness falls quickly in midday, you feel the grand scale of Nature. It is peaceful and leaves you in awe.
In the age of iPhone photography, most people seem to think that shooting a photo is all there is to it. Well, first you have to see the image, that is pre-visualize it as an interesting two dimensional image. Next, you have to have a camera or iPhone with you. Third, you need to compose the image and click. Then, many will share the image instantly on social media. Done.
Often you will get pretty cool results with that workflow, but professionals know there is much more to image making. Much expertise goes into lens choice, camera settings for depth of field, selective focus, and then processing. My workflow includes processing first in Adobe Lightroom, then Photoshop, and sometimes even a third application such as Topaz or Nik/Google applications. The impact of this tulip image is the result of my experience with shooting choices as well as processing choices.
A non-photographer will often ask the question, “Is that photoshopped?” as if the question were really, “is it real?” I like to explain that processing a digital photo with image editing software like Lightroom and Photoshop is an essential part of the creative process. I MAKE an image. I don’t just TAKE and image. Using Photoshop to process images is, in fact, my job.
Nature never ceases to surprise me. Glad I aways have my iPhone with me, even when I go out to mail a letter.
This week I discovered a brand new species in South Florida, one I had never seen before. It’s the basilisk lizard, nicknamed the Jesus Christ Lizard, because it can walk (that is, run) on water. If you want to see, just google it or watch here on you tube.
It’s body is rather large like a snake, and this one on the tree outside my condominium was bright green. It can run five feet per second, but luckily this one held still until I could snap a few iPhotos. You can see it is very long.
I think it’s pretty funny, as long as it stays outside my condo. When you come in, please close the door quickly!
I bet you have often seen a spectacular sky, but the foreground is terrible and besides, you don’t have your camera with you. I’m with you. Last night the spectacular sunset met the perfect foreground (two parts of the trinity), but alas, my camera was sitting at home. So, I did my best with the iPhone.
While waiting for the fireworks to begin around a friend’s swimming pool, the setting sun lit up the clouds and reflected in the infinity pool. Lying down beside the pool, I captured this colorful image.
It would be really cool if I were this good with watercolor painting. In truth, I make images that start as photographs, then apply my creativity with digital tools, and sometimes the end result looks very much like a watercolor. As a photographer, I look for dynamic compositions in nature. Walking on the Naples beach recently, I found this one.
The tidal pool formed a leading line to the horizon. Then, it seemed to bisect the horizon, revealing a green wedge on the land side and a blue wedge on the water side. A few interesting details offset the symmetry: the palm tree on the left side, and the tiny bird on the right. The watercolor effect smudged most of the detail in the image, and emphasized the compositional lines and soft colors. I added some finishing touches with dodging and burning in Photoshop — the digital equivalent of the old darkroom technique. I cropped the image square to eliminate what seemed like too much foreground.
“Et voila!” An iPhone photo transformed. Do you like it?