Posts Tagged ‘National’
OK, so this isn’t a very sexy topic but having a strategy for naming your image files can save you a lot of grief down the road. Let me run through what I’ve worked out over the years (and believe me, it’s taken several years to perfect this).
So it starts in Lightroom which gives you the option of renaming your files when you import them. I’m following Scott Kelby’s recommendation here. Let’s start with a file name as it is created in the camera. It’s going to look something like this – _SM35116.CR2. By the way, here’s the photograph that that goes with.
Hidden Valley (2013)
Continue reading “File Naming Strategies” »
Tags: art, black, capture, colorimetric, date, DNG, file, Fine, intent, Joshua, Lightroom, name, National, Park, perceptual, photography, PhotoShop, Point, portfolio, print, Proof, proofing, RAW, relative, rendering, sexy, Tree, workshop
Posted in How To | Comments (0)
There’s so much to learn from studying Ansel Adams’ photographs, especially when you read what he has to say about them in “Examples – The Making of 40 Photographs”. Each narrative seems to have its own distinct lesson. The narrative associated with Nevada Falls is a study in working a composition.
Continue reading “Ansel Adams – The Making of 40 Photographs: Nevada Falls” »
Tags: Adams, Ansel, art, border, cedar, cliff, comment, composition, conversation, defect, down, envision, express, falls, lesson, National, Nevada, Park, patrol, perfection, photograph, photography, power, problems, rainbow, slow, solving, subject, trees, tripod, Valley, vision, waterfall, workshop, Yosemite
Posted in Journal | Comments (0)
Not long ago I was photographing dawn in Joshua Tree National Park. I must confess, dawn is my favorite time of day. And I have thrilled to more spectacular dawns in Joshua Tree than anywhere else. There are ;often clouds that ignite as the sun approaches. And the other morning was no exception.
I’d like to share with you three photographs taken that morning. The alarm went off at 4:30 and we left the motel in Twentynine Palms a 5:30, an hour and a half before sunrise. There were clouds in the morning sky, the first ingredient for a spectacular sunrise but by no means a guarantee. I selected Sheep Pass at the west end of Queen Valley because it offered both Joshua Trees and some impressive granite outcrops for an interesting foreground. We arrived about 45 minutes before sunrise. It was still dark with the barest glimmer of light in the east.
Continue reading “Mastering Light – Dawn” »
Tags: appropriate, atmosphere, atmospheric, baby, blue, California, civil, cloud, composition, dawn, exposure, fantastic, foreground, glow, gold, Golden, granite, hour, Joshua, light, morning, National, nautical, optimum, Park, pass, photograph, pink, queen, red, saturate, separation, sharpness, sheep, silhouette, strong, sunlight, sunrise, Tree, twentynine palms, twilight, underexpose, Valley, white, yellow
Posted in How To, Journal | Comments (2)
As I drive across the Mojave Desert late one Thursday night not long ago, heading north on I-15, I have a sense of harmony, of unity with the night, the highway, my car. The pavement ahead eases into the beam of my headlights, grows brighter as it draws closer and then slips back into darkness as it slides underneath. Nights like this are a joy. I’m in a groove, a state of calm serenity and anticipation. Tomorrow I’ll be returning to Zion National Park, something I always look forward to. I didn’t notice the faint flashes of light.
Powerful thunderstorms were roiling over eastern California and southern Nevada that night, The dark clouds glowed with flickers of light and precious water dropped on the parched desert. it was a huge storm and I was chasing it. Approaching the state line the casino lights of Prim were reflected, bright and shimmering, on what is normally a dry lake bed. A half hour later as Las Vegas finally came into view, the glitz and glamor of the gaudy hotels was dwarfed by the grandeur of bolts of lightning streaking for miles across the turbulent sky.
The following morning workers were cleaning up after the storm but it hadn’t fully passed. Storm clouds still blanketed the sky for the remainder of the journey to Zion. A detour to Kolob Terrace to check the aspens was, I suppose, inevitable. The falling snow up in the high country was a surprise. And a delight. Sunrise the next morning was looking promising.
The best location in Zion that gets the full sunrise treatment is West Temple. I’ve photographed it many times but never got anything that I was excited about. The most popular location to shoot from is the ‘patio’ behind the museum but on this morning I chose a less visited one – the 2nd switchback on Tunnel Road. The expectation of clearing storm clouds, the choice of shooting locations – everything worked out just right.
Continue reading “The Making of a Photograph – Clearing Storm, West Temple 2012” »
Tags: action, adjustment, adjustments, Also, Altar, Another, anticipation, article, attention, background, balance, black, California, Canyon, casino, Click, cliffs, clouds, collaboration, color, comments, conversation, desert, detour, drama, eons, events, excitement, expectation, Facebook, feelings, files, finale, Flickr, foreground, friends, glamor, glory, grandeur, harmony, highway, image, images, imagination, inspirations, Join, Kolob, lake, layer, Level, life, Lightroom, lights, LinkedIn, links, location, locations, masterpiece, midst, Mojave, moment, mood, National, needs, Nevada, paper, Park, patio, perspective, photograph, PhotoShop, Prim, qualities, remainder, result, Road, Sacrifice, selection, shadows, silhouette, silhouettes, storm, strength, subject, Sundial, sunrise, Sure, temperature, Temple, Terrace, times, Tint, treatment, Tunnel, understatement, Vegas, Vibrance, viewer, walls, West, workers, workshop, Zion
Posted in How To Articles, Lightroom, Making a Photograph, Photoshop | Comments (0)
A friend asked me if I’d do a blog on the making of the photograph I took of the Virgin River during the Zion National Park photography workshop in 2011. He’s a good friend and it’s a nice photograph so let’s do it. Here’s the end result. (You can click on each of the photographs to enlarge them and get a better look.)
And here’s what it started from.
The difference is obviously pretty dramatic so there will be a few things to talk about. We’ll start with what I was experiencing in the field and take it all the way through the darkroom to the end product. So let’s get started.
Continue reading “The Making of a Photograph – Virgin River 2011” »
Tags: action, adjustment, adjustments, afternoon, area, areas, attention, balance, Basic, black, Blacks, blues, bottom, Burn, Canyon, Click, cliff, color, comments, comparison, component, composition, computer, conversation, cottonwood, Darkroom, decisions, depth, Develop, difference, distraction, documentation, Dodge, drama, Easy, edges, Edit, energy, expose, exposure, Facebook, feelings, Field, files, fissures, foreground, Four, friend, Global, Here, highlights, Home, image, inspiration, intersection, Join, Just, layer, layers, lens, life, Lightroom, Local, luminance, Many, mixture, mode, module, moment, mood, National, Once, orange, painter, painters, paper, Park, Part, peace, phases, photograph, photographers, photography, PhotoKit, PhotoShop, product, Proof, result, River, saturation, selection, self, sensor, session, shadows, Share, Soft, Start, temperature, three, TIFF, Tiny, tonal, Tool, tools, Tree, tutorial, Tweet, Vibrance, viewer, vignette, Virgin, vision, walls, Whites, word, workshop, Zion
Posted in Composition, Expoure, How To Articles, Light, Lightroom, Making a Photograph, Photography as Art, Photoshop | Comments (2)
There’s no doubt that composition is one of the key elements of a successful image. You can have all the other factors of a great shot – fantastic light, optimum exposure and appropriate sharpness – but with a weak composition you have a weak photograph.
I know photographers that work slowly enough to work out the strongest composition before they press the shutter. I admire these people immensely. But I don’t work that way, especially in an area I’m unfamiliar with.
A short while ago I was driving south through Utah on beautiful highway 89 traveling between Bryce Canyon and Zion National Parks after wrapping up a successful photography workshop. I came upon a stand of cottonwood trees that were in full autumn splendor. I had to pull over.
I grabbed my point and shoot (Canon G11) and started scouting for photographs. I like to use the G11 for that, scouting for compositions that are worth the effort of setting up my big Canon. I found two compositions that were promising.
The second proved to be the most interesting, at least in terms of how the final composition evolved. Behind the cottonwoods was a meadow with a dilapidated shack. It was so Utah! I set up what I thought would be an interesting composition.
(Click on the images to enlarge them.)
I positioned my camera so that there would be a narrow opening to the meadow and the shack. It is a tight composition that draws the viewers eye to the shack which is placed in a very strong position within the frame. It has a feeling of depth with a strong foreground opening up to the shack in the background.
I was feeling good about this composition and then I noticed a glowing cottonwood just outside the frame to the right so I moved the camera a couple of feet to the right and created this image.
The golden cottonwoods on the left are balanced by the single, smaller cottonwood to the right. This arrangement has the effect of placing more emphasis on the autumnal trees. The eye makes three stops, first at the cottonwoods on the left, then to the right and finally works its way back to the shack in the back.
I was pretty pleased with these two compositions and thought I had something to work with when I got home. So I disassembled everything and put it back in my camera bag, collapsed the tripod and started back toward the car. I hadn’t gone 5 steps when I looked back up toward the shack and saw there was another blaze of cottonwoods right next to it. So I swung my backpack back down to the ground and set up again for this shot.
Now there are three sources of golden light for the eye to explore – the cottonwoods to the left, the one a little further back on the right and the ones way in the back by the shack. (Odd numbers of things are always good.) The image is well balanced and every element in it contributes to the entire impression.
There’s a story here, a story of living in this beautiful valley during a time that is gone and will probably never return. It must not have been an easy life but one of honest, hard work and the satisfaction of living in a place of such splendid beauty. We would do it differently today with more conveniences and comforts. And maybe, just maybe, miss out on the more intimate connection with Mother Earth that living in such a simple shack must have provided.
I’d be interested to hear which of the three compositions you like the most. Please leave a comment saying which one you like and why. It will make for a very interesting dialog.
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WordPress Tags: Composition,Shot,image,exposure,area,Utah,highway,Bryce,Canyon,Zion,National,Parks,photography,workshop,trees,splendor,Canon,worth,effort,Behind,shack,Click,images,viewers,depth,foreground,background,arrangement,emphasis,tripod,steps,backpack,numbers,element,valley,life,satisfaction,conveniences,connection,Mother,Earth,factors,compositions,feet,cottonwood,cottonwoods,camera,three
Tags: area, arrangement, background, backpack, Behind, Bryce, camera, Canon, Canyon, Click, composition, compositions, connection, conveniences, cottonwood, cottonwoods, depth, Earth, effort, element, emphasis, exposure, factors, feet, foreground, highway, image, images, life, Mother, National, numbers, Parks, photography, satisfaction, shack, Shot, splendor, steps, three, trees, tripod, Utah, Valley, viewers, workshop, worth, Zion
Posted in Composition, Journal | Comments (8)
I’m busy putting together the 2013 Photography Workshop schedule. We’ll be going back to some of the great places I love taking people to. But I’m also adding a new location that I think you will find very exciting. Here’s a preview of what I’m considering.
February we’re going back to one of my all time favorites – Death Valley. This is one of our largest National Parks and is filled with wonders at every turn. It’s always exciting to be there.
In March we’ll be back in Joshua Tree National Park for the annual Joshua Tree Gathering. This is a weekend of camping, fun, food and photography. This has become quite an affair and it’s something I do to give back to the photography community.
Here’s a hint as to what I have in mind for late May or early June. Bet this hint isn’t difficult to figure out. And this will be the perfect time to be there. I’m still working out the details but will announce it as soon as they are finalized.
Big Sur is such a stunning place, it would be a shame not to hold a workshop there. And we’re going back in 2013. I haven’t finalized the date yet but we’ll be there. You can count on it.
A year of photography would not be complete without returning to Zion National Park in Utah. We’ll be back in mid to late August. Zion is such a peaceful place, I always look forward to it. It’s a place where many people recharge their batteries.
I’ve always felt that if you’ve gone to the trouble of traveling to Zion you owe it to yourself to finish the week in Bryce Canyon National Park. So that’s what we do – two photography workshops back to back. Most students do as I do, take them both. And we have special pricing for those that do.
So 2013 will be another great year of photography, returning to the places I love and adding a new one.
To me, a photography workshop is about more than shooting great locations; it’s also about growing as a photographer and artist. I like to work with each student individually to develop their technical skills. But equally important is developing their expressive skills. Photography is art and through art we as artists share our vision of the world. Becoming an artist is the process of opening yourself up to the world around you and experiencing it more deeply. Then capturing that experience in your photographs. This is our focus in our workshops.
If you know of someone who might be interested in a photography workshop in 2013 please feel free to share this blog post with them or post it on your Facebook page. There are links at the top of the post for this purpose. By the way, I offer a very attractive discount for anyone who brings another student along with them.
So come on out and join us and bring a friend. Click here to check us out.
You can also check out our photography. Click here.
WordPress Tags: Photography,Workshop,Schedule,location,Here,February,favorites,Death,Valley,National,Parks,March,Joshua,Tree,Park,food,affair,June,haven,Zion,Utah,August,batteries,Bryce,Canyon,workshops,Most,students,locations,photographer,artist,student,skills,artists,vision
Tags: affair, artist, artists, August, batteries, Bryce, Canyon, Death, favorites, February, food, haven, Here, Joshua, June, location, locations, March, Most, National, Park, Parks, photographer, photography, Schedule, skills, student, students, Tree, Utah, Valley, vision, workshop, Workshops, Zion
Posted in Calendar, Workshops | Comments (2)
The 2012 Joshua Tree Fine Art Festival is coming up next weekend. The dates are Friday, April 6 to Sunday, April 8. I’m excited to be returning and catching up with old friends. This is the first art festival I ever did and so returning is like a homecoming. The festival is at the Oasis Visitor Center in Twentynine Palms, CA. The hours are 9:00 to 5:00. Come on out and see some great art.
I’ll be showing some old favorites along with some new photographs I’m very excited about. As far as the old favorites go I’m planning on showing Virgin River and the Watchman from Zion National Park.
This has proved to be my most popular photograph and has won awards. It was captured on Thanksgiving day back in 2008. I was in Zion with my wife and daughter for the Thanksgiving weekend. I slipped out for this sunset and caught a beauty. Beginners luck! I’ve returned many times but never with light this good. (By the way, to get a better view of the photographs you can enlarge them by clicking on them.)
To go along with the Watchman is another photograph taken that same weekend along the Riverside Walk to the Gateway to the Narrows. When my family is with me we always do this walk. It’s our favorite – for obvious reasons.
Continue reading “2012 Joshua Tree Annual Fine Art Festival” »
Tags: Again, Alabama, Also, Annual, Another, Antelope, April, Arizona, article, Basin, Bear, Beginners, Canyon, Center, Cholla, Click, Come, conversation, daughter, dawn, Death, depth, desert, Deux, difference, dunes, Eastern, effort, Facebook, favorites, February, festival, festivals, Fine, Flats, From, Garden, Gateway, Hills, hours, interpretation, Joshua, June, Last, layers, location, Lower, luck, March, Mesquite, Mojave, mountains, Narrows, National, Nope, Oasis, Ocotillo, Owens, Palms, Park, Peak, People, Peter, photographers, photography, Pine, Pinto, Point, Post, reflections, River, Riverside, Road, Seems, Side, Sierra, Spirit, sunrise, sunrises, sunset, Tree, Twentynine, Twitter, Upper, Valley, Virgin, Visitor, Walk, Watchman, West, wife, Workshops, worth, Zabriskie, Zion
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