Posts tagged “Black and White Photography

Unexpected (Two Photographs)

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I took this thinking the subject was a bent vent. It was only when I got into my digital darkroom that R2-D2 showed up. It’s always possible I stumbled on some new dimension/episode of Star Wars – who knows it was just there.


Another Take on the Museum (Two Photographs)

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Most museums that permit photography do so with some caveats (no tripods, avoid photos of modern works etc.). I would note that many museums are themselves architectural works of art worthy of study.


Light and Shadow (Two Photographs)

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A photographer once told me given the right lighting anything can be made to look great. There have been many instances where I would agree that lighting has made all the difference, but frankly I kind of like a pleasant subject as well as good light. But it is worth remembering what he said when you are faced with a challenge.


Pets (Two Photographs)

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These photographs were taken the same day going for a walk in a new district. Just things I stumbled over on my walkabout. I tend to stay close to home with my photography and there always seems something new to shoot. Marvels never cease.


Working (Three Photographs)

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“They call them works of art for a reason.” This is my umpteenth time trying to get shots of this unique doorway and in these three photos I may have succeeded. My point, however, is that photography is seen by many as simply pressing a button, while in reality many photographers put considerable effort into every shot they take.


Vignetting, Framing and Blurring (Two Photographs)

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It is often helpful to point your audience’s eyes on the subject using some post-processing techniques, e.g. by vignetting (darkening the area around the subject), framing your subject, or as in this case blurring some of the background. Some of the oldest and most useful tools to make your photos stand out.


Minimalism (Two Photographs)

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I have seen more than one article recently, on minimalism in Photography. It is an interesting approach to photography and like many genres has its place and includes brilliant pieces of art. If you haven’t tried it, give it a go, it can’t hurt.


Dali-esque (Two Photographs)

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I mentioned earlier my criteria for the legitimacy of taking photos of the works of other artists (signed or unsigned). Here I took a piece of the whole that reminded me of Dali’s work. Photographers can learn a lot from other art forms and mimic the light, general ideas, and moods. It’s almost a must in one’s photographic education. 


It is it legitimate? (Two Photographs)

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Is it legitimate to photograph the work of others and take credit for the resulting photograph? This question applies here and to another set of photos later this week. In my view, if the approach taken in the photograph is distinctive then the taking of photographs of graffiti and outdoor art is legitimate.  Equally true if more than one artist has been involved in the final product. Finally, if there is context or only a portion of the art is visible, I believe the photographer has the right to call the work his own.


Distortion (Two Photographs)

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There are three types of distortion in photography that I think are of interest: lenses often have distortion (there is usually an in camera or post-processing fix that can easily be made); whenever we photograph glass there is a high incidence of distortion; and finally there is creative distortion in where you position yourself. You can take advantage of these distortions. These photos, while the focus is on the reflection, also benefit from other distortions of the glass and lens position.


Old is New (Two Photographs)

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I have photographed this window before and it has appeared on my blog before. Sometimes an urban subject is such that I return to it again and again, hoping to get just a touch better result that better illustrates my fascination.


Abstraction (Two Photographs)

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Often when I am walking about with a camera, I am looking for something that stands out in and of itself, because of the light, the way the shadows fall. In this case it’s the corrugated wall of a church. Personally I think this works best in Black and White.


Time of Day (Two Photographs)

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I often read that one should shoot at dawn or dusk as the light is beautiful. I agree that light at that time of day is great. However, I can also think of a number reasons that other times of the day are just as good, or why dawn and dusk are sometimes impractical. By all means shoot in beautiful light, but let us not be constrained and rather learn about light in general and how it translates to our photography.


Rural (Two Photographs)

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There is something about farms and rural land and cultivated fields, that remind me of a calmer past. Of course that is pure fiction, farms are busy places with a lot of hard working people. But there is no harm in a calm rural photo or two. I am hoping to find more farm scenes this summer, they make for great photography.


Perfect (Two Photographs)

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Nothing is ever perfect. But sometimes in photography we come close enough. In my experience, meddling too much with something that looks good never works. In a perfect world most photos wouldn’t need editing, but the reality is a bit of sharpening, some contrast always help in putting life into a photo.

P.S. It’s the anniversary of my Blog, this year will be my ninth year on WordPress and SmugMug.


Too Much or Too Little (Two Photographs)

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One conundrum with some photographs in both colour and black and white is that one version can be over the top and the other focused on detail, making it hard to choose. For myself I will always err on the side of black and white as it seems to capture ideas better.


Objets Trouve´ (Two Photographs)

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I often think of a collection I once saw in a museum of found items (objets trouve´). The exhibit was of photos, drawings and paintings of objects found in the streets. The idea behind the show has stuck with me and that’s the best thing you can say about any exhibit.


Stoops (Two Photographs)

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I often wish I had a stoop to sit on. A place where I could sit and watch the world go by. When I was abroad I used to find places I could stand or sit a while and get great shots. Staying in one place long enough you could become almost invisible. But not in our more modern cities where everyone is suspicious, cautious and wary, the guy on the stoop stands out.


Museums (Three Photographs)

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Museums are a gift to photographers:

  1. Sometimes they inadvertently do comedy (note first photograph entitled Sculpture in Box – its been boxed for shipment)
  2. They usually have amazing architecture
  3. You can learn lighting from the Old Masters, e.g. the Dutch Masters


Half a Window (Two Photographs)

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From a distance I saw this tattered, flaky old window and the shapes of things inside. If it drew my attention, I thought that perhaps it might equally engage the interest of others. (Isn’t that what photography is all about?)


Modern Perspectives (Two Photographs)

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These were taken in the National Gallery of Canada, a magnificent building. The first is done with a dutch tilt. Like the rule of thirds it is one of many standards taught in some photography schools and highly rated in some photography clubs. I believe there is a time and a place for these techniques but they are infrequent. The second photograph tries a textured layered approach to what is a gallery and staircase. Another approach I would use sparingly.


Fall (Two Photographs)

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These are some photos I took in the fall intending to do high contrast abstract work with them. But nature has one-upped me and I think these trees look great just the way they were. For the vast majority of my photography I try to stay as faithful to reality as I can.


Brick (Three Photographs)

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I find patterns in brick interesting and I have shot a few series showing off some of these more intimate bits of the urban environment. In this case all three are in black and white ensuring the detail of the designs are front and centre. The colour versions will follow as they are part of the series, but they convey an entirely different story.


Flowers in Black and White (Two Photographs)

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I read that flowers in black and white, specifically wild flowers can pose a challenge. I can see why monochrome editing for flowers may not be a common approach. Opinions like rules can be limiting and testing the limits of what is possible in photographic processing never hurt anyone.