Monthly Archives: February 2011


To the Elevators

There are probably times when you look around and think “There is nothing here to shoot.”. Maybe the subject matter around you isn’t that interesting or doesn’t ring your bell. That is a good time to think about abstraction. Try looking at how you can frame just pieces of the subject matter around you – get in tight. Don’t worry if you are losing subject context. Look for graphic patterns (triangles, circles, squares, diagonals, V’s, etc) or interesting textures. See if you can come up with an interesting composition or design. Think about ways you might post process the subject matter to add interest, deal with boring or clashing colors (B&W is good for that) or bring out texture (using contrast or clarity). With strong graphic abstracts, keep other distracting objects/materials out of the image or clone them out later if you have to.

The blog image was taken in a rental car parking garage. The car rental agent said “Follow the yellow lines to the elevator…”. Parking garages can often provide interesting graphic subjects. There wasn’t anything standing out to me in this one so I stopped and composed this diagonal view of the “yellow” line. It not only had strong graphic value, the concrete had a heavy texture. I found that processing the image as a high contrast cool B&W image added the punch the image needed and brought out the texture. I also burned in (darkened) the edges and corners to give it more depth.

Now look closely around you today and see what abstracts you can create.

Posted in Uncategorized



Now and then we just pause and contemplate life. When we do, we often fixate on an object or stare into the distance. Where am I going? Where is life taking me? Is it going where I want? What lens should I buy next?

To me, each of these blog images have a sense of contemplation, each with a different feel. The first image is calming and neutral emotionally. The heron staring in the distance and the overall blue tones support this calm feel.

The second image is a bit more negative emotionally and moody. A hole or dip in the ground, the burned in edges and the black and white processing add to this feel.


And the third image is more warm, optimistic and refreshing. Can’t you feel the balmy air soothing your soul. The strong warm tones and the familiar subject matter of breaking waves give the image a positive energy.


Color, light and subject matter all impact the viewer. Sometimes it will be different than yours, but often a common or shared subject and/or experience like the ocean at sunset is a good way to strike a common emotional chord.

Life as with these images can sometimes be the pits, just flowing along or bright and optimistic. I hope you are getting to experience some of the latter!

Posted in Uncategorized

Doc on the Bay


While staying at the beach recently, there was a nice dock across from the hotel. I spent one morning just exploring and working it from different places and perspectives. On top of it, below it, beside it, under it, etc. The lead image is one of many from that morning. If you remember my summer barn shots, there is a real similarity in look to this image.


This shows how shots you take where you live can help you better capture subjects when you are out at more distant locations.


As always, when you find a good subject, walk around, stick with it and work it. Don’t forget to use your camera both horizontally and vertically. It is so easy to get in the habit of using your camera only one way. If you want to see how strong your horizontal bias is, just look through your catalog of images – you will see what I mean.

Blog Image: These are all HDR images converted with Photomatix 4.0 and then post-processed with Silver Efx Pro.

Posted in HDR Photography, Uncategorized

Anniversary Missed

Eye See Art 

I realized the other day that I have now been writing this blog for over two years as of January. While this blog has meandered around a bit, the overall theme continues to be about creating photographic art wherever you live, work and play – “Photography Along the Way”. With the advent of all the small relatively  high resolution cameras and phones, like the iPhone, this is becoming even more true. Not only can you capture the image, but process it and post it from the field.

The blog image is an example of what you might find on a cold winter’s day; art that jumps out to you in its own unique way. You just need to stop, look and see.

Posted in iPhoneography, Uncategorized