March 27, 20132 Comments

Seneca Lake, Upstate NY

A few night photographs from this summer I never got around to putting up. Did these in upstate NY at a family get together right before coming back to Richmond.

May 28, 2011No Comments

High Dynamic Range

A semi-recent development in digital photography are HDR photographs. One might think that this stand for High Definition Resolution or something like that, which isn't far considering HDR photographs can feel ultra-realistic. It actually stands for High Dynamic Range (if for some reason you didn't see the title of the post and put two and two together).  In my opinion it's a digital process that can be well done or way overdone, all depending on what the photographer is going for (as you will see with mine I tried to mix it up to give examples of its intensity). I consider it to be somewhat of a photographic fad to be honest with you, but I can't deny it looks really cool, and also has its practical uses. I'll tell you why.

As stated before, High Dynamic Range really means that the photograph has "more" to it that what a single photograph has. It's a process that lets the photograph function more like the human eye than a camera. For example, a single photograph taken a fixed f-stop and shutter speed  will only expose a certain amount of light. Ever taken a photograph of someone outside where they are all dark but the background came out perfect? Or the person is perfect, but the background is all blown out? That's because you camera chose to expose one or the other perfectly. It can't do both. Camera lenses and sensor/film don't perceive light like humans who, to an extent, can see both light and dark area at the same time (and no it's not because we have to eyes).

What HDR does is allow us to take the same photograph taken at different exposure levels and merge them into one. Some are underexposed to bring detail into area that are normally blown out. And some are over exposed to bring detail out of areas that are usually too dark. Thus it allow a more "even" photo across the board with greater detail that may have otherwise been lost in a single photograph. This is the explanation of HDR in it's simplest form, so if there are any Negative Nacies out there, I really don't care if it's "more complicated than that." I'm not writing a book on it, which I'm sure there are.

Either way, I used a program called Photomatrix Pro (you can buy it online) to combine my photographs taken at different exposures. Usually this means you will need a tripod and your subjects need not be moving quickly. This usually mean taken 3-5 bracketed exposures. 5 exposures for example would be:  -2 e.v. , -1 e.v. , 0 , +1 e.v. +2 e.v.

I however, cheat. Most hard-core HDR enthusiast would probably not condone this, but I'm pretty sick of stuck-up photographers saying what is and isn't right.

I take a single photograph shot in RAW (if you have a DSLR, you should definitely always use this as long as you have a program to handle and convert the files i.e. Photoshop or Lightroom. Why you ask? That's another post.) I then create 2 additional copies of it. I brighten one (exposing it more) and darken the other (underexposing it). I then feed the three photographs into Photomatrix and start playing. I use Lightroom 2 for all of that and Photomatrix has a plug-in for Lightroom to export photos right to it. It's awesome.

While the photographs below were really made more for fun and some are very intense, I've been using the process to an extent for some interior and exterior building photographs I've been doing for a client and it works wonders to really showcase the spaces.

That was probably more information than most people reading this wanted. Oh well! If you are interested in it or have any questions about HDR photography then leave a message in the comments or shoot me an email. There are also a billion websites out there that explain it and have cool examples to look at. Enjoy.

 

 

April 12, 2011No Comments

Danaus Plexippus

That's butterfly for the layman.

This warmer weather has gotten me a bit excited for the things to come. Like flowers in the garden and butterflies. Here are some more photos from my vast collection. These were taken during the summer of 2008. Read more

April 7, 20112 Comments

Streetcars

I have thousands upon thousands of photographs on my hardrives. Well more like around 10,000 if you want to be exact. And all most of them ever do is sit on my hardrive. I though I'd share some with you. I'm horrible at updating my blog, so I think the least I could do is post some new photos once a week that you haven't seen yet. Read more

November 5, 20104 Comments

On the Lake

Here are some photos of a deck I did for Bright Ideas by Martinec. It was designed by Alex Martinec, and I have to say, it was a blast to photograph. I was very pleased with how they turned out. Also a shout out to Pure Design on Market Street in Corning, NY- they provided us with the awesome furniture for the shoot. Read more

October 24, 2010No Comments

The Neon Saviors

So last night I got a mysterious call from a band who call themselves The Neon Saviors. As it turns out, they wanted some new official photos for their band. And as it also turned out, they weren't going to let me say no. In fact, I was perfectly content not doing them at all. However, they took matters into their own hands when they kicked down my door. Icy Glamour threatened to sprinkle me with magical ice shavings. And Rick Motherload said he would tear my head off with its spine attached. Read more

October 23, 2010No Comments

Moonlighting

I've been way lame about getting new photos up, but this week I'm making it a goal to get some up. Today I'm starting with some long exposure photographs I took outside last night. It was marvelous outside (although very cold) and the sky was crystal clear. Read more