Posts Tagged ‘phorography’

New Photographs

September 16th, 2012

I just finished posting a batch of new photographs on my website. They are from three different ‘shoots.’  I’d like to tell you a little about each of the shoots and share the photographs with you.

I don’t put anything up on my website until I get prints that I’m satisfied with.  Another way of putting it – a photograph isn’t done until it looks great on paper.  I’ve made large prints of all of these and, I must confess, I’m very pleased.  I’ll be matting and framing them and showing them to the public for the first time this weekend at the Old Monterey Fine Arts Festival in Monterey, California.  If you’re in the area Saturday or Sunday, stop in and say Hi.

Big Sur

I have two photographs to share from last month’s Big Sur photography workshop.  We covered famous Highway 1 from San Simeon to Carmel-by-the-Sea.  The weather was clear, the sun was bright and an on-shore wind made for some great surf. 

I chose two photographs to put on the website.  The first is Bixby Bridge.  I’m not normally into photographing man-made structures.  But this one turned out so well with great light and a sense of its gracefulness and size that I had to include it.  Click on the link to see the photograph and read more about it.

View Bixby Bridge (2012)

The other photograph is China Cove in Point Lobos State Park.  I’ve always been impressed with its rugged serenity and, with the soft light of an overcast day helping out, I think I finally got a photograph that captures it.

View China Cove (2012)

 

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Orange County Fair Photography Judging

June 13th, 2011

Over the years I’ve entered photographs into the Orange County Fair photography competition (with some success).  This year I was thinking about the photographs I wanted to enter when I was contacted by the folks at the fair.  They asked if I would be willing to be a judge.

Now, it’s an honor to have your photographs selected and an even greater honor when some of them receive ribbons.  But I think the greatest honor of all is to be invited to judge the competition.  But when I accepted I had no idea how tough it would be.

(For a followup post, please see

http://ralphnordstromphotography.com/wordpress/journal/orange-county-fair-judges-walkthrough/  )

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Mastering Exposure–Histograms Part 3

March 21st, 2011

This is the third post in a continuing series on the oft misunderstood but oh so important histogram.  In the first two posts we discussed the histogram in general.  If you missed them, click on these links.

Mastering Exposure – Histograms Part 1

Mastering Exposure – Histograms Part 2

Recap

To recap, the histogram displays a graph of the tonal values in the scene you are about to photograph.  It shows how the dynamic range of the scene matches and fits into the dynamic range of your camera’s sensor.  There are two critical pieces of information a histogram tells you:

  1. If your exposure is correct
  2. If you have problems capturing the dynamic range of the scene

To recap, the exposure is displayed by the position of the histogram curve within the boundaries of the graph area.  As you increase the exposure the histogram moves to the right.  As you decrease the exposure it moves to the left.  If the exposure is increased so that the histogram moves all the way up against the right side of the graph area you will have highlight clipping. Likewise, if it moves all the way to the left side you will have shadow clipping.

The dynamic range of the scene is displayed as the breadth of the histogram,  The wider the histogram the greater the dynamic range of the scene.  The narrower the histogram the lower the dynamic range.  When the histogram is so wide that it extends from one end of the graph area to the other you are facing a situation where your camera’s sensor will have a difficult time capturing the full dynamic range of the scene.  The worst case is you will have both highlight and shadow clipping.

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The Backup Saga Continues

March 19th, 2011

Backing up our photos is something we put off doing because it can be a lot of work and expensive.  And we think it’s something we’ll never need.

I got motivated to come up with a backup scheme about a year ago when I thought I had lost all my photograph files from 2010.  I had several days of panic and was able to recover most of them from a hodgepodge of backups scattered randomly here and there.  I didn’t have anything systematic in place and fortunately they weren’t my portfolio files, the ones I sell. (After it was all over I discovered all the files had inadvertently been moved to another folder. They hadn’t been deleted after all.)

It took a while to come up with the backup strategy that I shared with you in a post last month.  Here’s a link to that post.  Check it out.  I received some valuable comments with some good ideas from others.

Link to Backup Your Photos

It Happened – Duh Duh Duh Duuuuuuuuh

 

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A Sad Story

November 9th, 2010

It was a couple of years ago when I was shooting in the Columbia River Gorge up in Oregon when a fellow photographer (a stranger, not a friend) laid this stinging remark on me.  But let me explain.

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Eastern Sierra Workshop – 7/17/2009

July 17th, 2009

The workshop is ‘in the can.’  We finished up yesterday with a Mono Lake South Tufa sunrise followed by the rest of the morning in Bodie. 

There weren’t any clouds but the sunrise was bright red (“Red sky in morning….” but it didn’t pan out).  Still, South Tufa is always fascinating.  We explored some new places and found some new compositions.  We also found a place where an underwater spring was welling up.  The tufa building process continues.  There were clouds of brine shrimp and alkali flies (in their respective environments).  And amazingly, the flies were not a bother.  They swarmed on the tufa right at the water’s edge and only flew when you disturbed them by moving too close.  Discovering an active site was really very thrilling.

Unfortunately, the water level continues to drop as the drought continues.  I’d estimate the water level is down a couple of feet from the time I first started shooting there about two and a half years ago.  But the potentially good news is that yesterday the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center issued a forecast  that an el nino is building and will last through next winter.  We could use five years of el nino in California to replenish our nearly exhausted water reserves.

Bodiewas fascinating as usual.  And although we were photographing in late morning light the subjects are still very interesting and the photography, exciting.  There’s a temptation to rush around in an attempt to cover it all.  But I prefer to slow down and absorb the spirit of the area.  Oh, and we ran into David Muench and his workshop.

We were so busy the last days of the workshop that there wasn’t any time to even review our pictures much less get any ready to post.  But that will come and soon.  So stay tuned for more images.

You can check out my other photos on my website – http://RalphNordstromPhotography.com

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