Sheltering In Place for Photobugs

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  • how cool! British, send me your address and I will send you a 8 1/2 x 11 print of the zebras or lions, your choice. Email me at [email protected] I will sign it, should you like them.

  • edited September 10

    Doug: I actually like the Zebra and the Lion images. Like I said, sometime it works for me, other times not. Thank you for your response and further explanation. You did a super job on the image of your grand niece. I never used Photo Shop, I started with Lightroom and prefer that, however, this does limit me at certain times as not everything can be done in Lightroom. Anyway, I enjoy viewing your photos, they are amazing. You have a good eye.

  • British - loved the gorilla photo
    Quirky Eye - she is adorable

  • Thanks so much. I started with Photoshop Elements back, who knows, 20+ years ago. Took a nightschool course. But PS is like trying to learn major surgery. Problem is, if you really going to learn it, you have to learn to use major surgery, you can't dabble in it.

    So it's quite a committment. But, the new LRC, if you really, really drill down into all the new controls, is extremely powerful. It is a revamping of the old Bridge>Adobe Camera Raw combined in one, which then goes to PS for major surgery.

    But minor surgery is great in LRC. You can do a lot of subtle stuff instead of the gross stuff I did above. You know, get just the right colors, just the right exposures, contrast, white balance, clarity, vibrance, etc., of specific areas.

    In the elephants and jeeps image, I had to isolate each object and change the luminosity, hue, and saturation for each animal and the jeep, then of the sky, the road, the rest of the background. Then put a spotlight on the areas I wanted the viewer's eye to go to.

    But, it's good learning. You can do it when you aren't baby-sitting the grandkids. LOL.

    Doug

  • By the way British, I took a second look at your Betty Fowler pictures -- really interesting, a lot of work.

    I've double matted pics for my own gallery, which adds to them. Below is a picture I took in Japan of a woman in a wedding kimono. You can't see it here, but I printed it on hand-made Japanese rice paper with mulberry fibers strewn in it, which gives the wedding dress oodles of texture and subtlety.

    It was at the pavillion on Itsukushimi Island, and other photographers were on the other side of the pavillion, so I thought it was fun.

    Doug

  • Doug - I took an at-night Photoshop course at a community college 15-20 years ago. I was the only one there who wasn't a graphic designer by profession. Unfortunately, I haven't used it in a number of years and most of the knowledge is now gone. I still have a few PS books warming the shelf :)

  • Well, if you ever, it's good exercise for us aging brains, LOL. Unfortunately, or fortunately, the program has grown so much in that time it's more complex, but at the same time there are more efficient tools so the program does a lot of the tedious stuff, like drawing around an object, or erasing one, for you.

    Doug

  • Hi AshvEd. Your Tetons looks great in B&W -- lots of subtle tonal values, sort of a Ansel Adams look. Did yo print and frame it?

  • Doug. Glad you liked the B&W. Appreciate the feedback. I had it printed at Aluminize (glossy aluminum) and just received it. I haven't made a decision yet about how to frame it. Ed

  • edited September 11

    Say, Travel Maven, here's to add to our discussion about the line, or perhaps area, between original photos vs. degree of changing a photo for artistic effect. Not sure if this is going to show up on computer screen though. Below is a portrait taken in India last year, with a Dickman workshop. The photo was heavily edited this morning, for practice -- but the effects were subtle. I color graded the background, giving it a reddish tinge to bring out the turban; then used a Blend Mode called softlight, to produce a painterly effect called the Orton effect. I also spotlighted the eyeballs to maked them a bit more prominent. But I think the image still looks like a photograph. So, it's really an interesting issue for discussion.

    Unfortunately, the face is too reddish on the Tauck site -- it's more subdued on my screen and in the print.

    When I look back at the images on my own walls, they all have a somewhat painterly look, because I prefer matte paper to luster or glossy, so the ink saturates the paper. So I guess my own developing style is to play that border. I think I manipulate portraits but not cityscapes or landscapes.
    Doug

  • Doug, I agree with your comments that manipulation works well with portraits but not always so much on landscapes. You put alot of work into your photography and it shows. I also like your take on the woman in the wedding kimono with the photographers in the background. Different and quirky. I commend your dedication to your art.

  • AshvEd: Love the image of the Tetons and the fact that you had it printed on glossy aluminum. Well done. It creates a wonderful effect, although you really have to see it in person to appreciate that. I am very partial to black and white prints. I had one of my photos of a rose (black and white) printed in aluminum and it turned out great.

  • Hi Maven,

    Let me propose a different frame of reference. :)

    I looked up the word "dedication", and I guess it means having a purpose. That's sooo American and Western. And that sort of implies one has to push or force oneself. But how about taking a more old-style, Chinese and Taoist frame of reference? What if one's creativity is based on play -- so with an image, one "plays" with it, becomes fascinated with the process, tries different things, and sees what evolves? Or perhaps, you don't even control the process -- you let go and it sort of generates itself? It's more like jazz than classical.

    In that frame, one doesn't tend to be so critical -- it's more seeing if one can discover beauty. In that approach, you can use Lightroom, mess with it, and perhaps produce less frustration in oneself and less dissatisfaction with the result. If this were work, I probably wouldn't bother with it -- I've been retired for quite awhile, :smiley:

    So, shrinks talk about the developmental stages of life. Most of us are at a rather mature stage. LOL.

    And my take on some of the old Chinese culture was that when one becomes old, one is more regarded by the younger generations -- for their experience, knowledge, and -- being able to go back to playing and creating.

    Travel is play. Does one work at it?

    Just my two bits. LOL.

    Doug

  • In a sense, it is taking energy, and discipline to learn Photoshop -- hundreds of hours. But in the end, like learning to play jazz piano, play and improvisation is the reward.

  • Travel Maven. Thanks for your comments. It was the perfect location to take an "Ansel Adams style" photo. Rafting on the Snake River and looking up at the Tetons was a wonderful experience and doing it with Tauck added to the trip.

  • Getting a bit Zen? Ah, little grasshopper, become the scene and the photo will be yours. :D

    Me, I just try to hold the camera still. Lately I've been adjusting and fixing (fighting with) my woodworking machines in what will be likely be a vain attempt to turn out some passable projects.

  • Say, Alan, long time no see. Yep, my wife and I are Buddhists. You probably turn out beautiful stuff -- so what are you making?

  • Alan - Say hi to Ron Swanson for me.

  • Woodworking by AlanS. :D

    A shop in Bethlehem during Israel/Jordan tour.

  • edited September 11

    The base of that Nativity is close to my recent projects- segmented endgrain cutting boards. I'm using the designs of others, starting with simple and working my way up in complexity. As I said, I'm working on my machines a bit first.

    My first two- on top is my first one, just a flat (long grain) cutting board made from maple and walnut. Below it is my first segmented/geometric cutting board. Right now, I'm just working with two woods- hard maple and walnut, both are hard and have tight, dense grain. I have some white oak but its grain is not as tight and I think the finished color will be too close to the maple. (red oak has open pores so not suitable for endgrain cutting boards.) I have not applied any finish (food-safe mineral oil + mineral oil/beeswax mix) to these boards, but once finished, the colors should really pop.

    These are not mine but the first two below are the next (two color) cutting boards I'll be working on:

    Once I get my machines fine tuned and have a chance to pick up some cherry and other woods, I'll attempt a few really elaborate designs:

  • Have you warned your entire family to expect a cutting board for their birthday and Christmas presents for the foreseeable future? :D

  • It could be downright dangerous to use some of those cutting boards after a couple of glasses of wine!

  • edited September 11

    You know, with one exception, about 40+ years ago, I have avoided "making" XMAS presents. Too much pressure on me- both time and quality- that I endeavor to avoid. I built bedroom furniture for my grandkids, but it was on my schedule. In the one pre-birth situation, the request and construction start were early enough.

    I haven't decided what to do with finished cutting boards- most restaurants don't allow you to bring a cutting board and prepare your own meals! :D I may or may not give them to my daughter and daughter-in-law. They ain't cheap- I use rough cut, kiln-dried hardwoods which you can't normally get at your local homecenter or lumberyard. Construction is incredibly labor intensive so I would not even consider going into business and selling them. You can purchase small, thin, long-grain, single wood cutting boards for under $30 on Amazon. I was surprised, however, when looking on the internet for designs to make, I noticed modest sized, single wood, endgrain cutting boards selling for $100-$300+ for something like a John Boos, while the fancy geometric ones, if you can find them, go for crazy! I saw a 15" X 11" with a 3D cube design like the one in my earlier post, listed for $170 on Etsy. A similar one below was listed for $250. Those sellers are gonna go broke!

  • I can't even imagine the equipment one uses for that kind of fine woodwork.

  • ****I haven't decided what to do with finished cutting boards- most restaurants don't allow you to bring a cutting board and prepare your own meals! ****
    Are you saying byob doesn’t mean bring your own board?

  • edited September 12

    Alan, how many hours do you estimate that it takes to produce a board?

    It rather amazes me how much talent there is out there. All the folks that patronize the craft stores, the quilting stores, etc. I have a cousin that produces hand-painted wooden objects and has been doing it for decades, and who travels the world with a study group, looking at different variations of her art. Early on she did a few craft shows, but I guess it really didn't get monetized. And people get into some pretty idiosyncratic past-times -- e.g. the John Deere tractor seat collectors.

    Anyway, as a neophyte, I did Blake Rudis' 30 Day Photoshop course last night -- for the second time, but did it in a week this time. So, Zen aside, the skills are beginnng to transfer from the "left brain" to the "right brain" -- and so I "played" with the following image for two hours. It wasn't that great in it's original form, but playing with color gradation and light, it seemed more satisfying. I liked the counter-point of posturing between the snakes and the charmer, the S curves of the snakes, the leading lines to his face, and the the steps behind him providing a frame for his body. I love the color purple, so I intensified it to draw the eye to the snakes. Oddly, the oranges on the Tauck site are over-emphasized compared to my screen. So, that's how the pic gets critiqued.

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