The Easter break has come and gone and between chocolate induced comas, these are some of my finds this week.
Cole Thompson has a portfolio full of black and white inspiration. This are strong graphic images often with large blocks of deep black in them.
I seem to be drawn to people who carefully stage manage what is presented in the final image like Alexia Sinclair, Annie Liebovitz or the many classic photographers that preceded them like Richard Avedon and Cecil Beaton. Gregory Crewdson fits this description very well and this video explains the approach he takes to making an image.
Regular readers will know this image I called “Me in the City” has been a work in progress for some time which presented a number of challenges. Well, I worked through those problems and waited for the right moment.
It arrived last Thursday morning.
The sign was working, it was not raining and a golden red sunrise lit the building for ten minutes before the sign switched off. I got several sets of bracketed images so I could use HDR. I even had time to try different compositions. Everything came together.
These are some of the images straight out of the camera. I have a little bit of post processing to do but all in all I’m happy with how this worked out.
Is it just me or is everyone having issues uploading images to WordPress? I have plenty of space left for new images but I have to recycle old ones instead…
I’m going to the Sue Ford retrospective at Ian Potter next week, so I thought I would share some of her work in advance.
Apart from that here are some other finds.
Eerie night images by Markus Lehr that have me thinking of getting out late.
Ella Schultz has a portfolio of conceptual images and portraiture that has me scratching my head to work out what if any of it was done in post.
Listening to the Games of Thrones theme.
The light, the leaf and all the elements of the image above are real. What is fake is that none of it was as seen here when I first came across it. I made decisions that took these elements and arranged for them to look this way and those decisions extended to changing the light.
Let me explain. Last weekend I was out walking and I saw this bridge railing. The light was pre-dawn and a little overcast, so there was no definition. I liked the curve and I thought about what I could do to bring that out.
I made two decisions straight away. I created some contrast by using an off-camera flash coming from the right hand side and I simplified the composition by going closer and losing the top and bottom rails. I used a wide aperture to isolate a section. It looked better to me but I felt it needed more.
The next decisions resulted in the final series of images. I saw the leaf on the ground nearby and it had the right colour contrast against the steel. There was also the contrast of organic against industrial textures. I needed somewhere to place the leaf so the bottom rail came back into frame. I also shifted the flash to the left hand side to avoid shadows falling across the rail. It made more dramatic shadows as well.
Now if there is a point to this post it’s that you should always give yourself permission to change what is in front of you when it suits. It is no worse than adding a filter or making changes in post. Another point is to always ask yourself what you can add or take away.
This week went rather quickly and I don’t recall anything that jumped out at me so I just dug through my bookmarks and found something that I have not shared previously. I’m not afraid to admit that either…
Alexia Sinclair has a body of work that is full of rich detail and drama.
Listening to Katie Noonan in a vain effort to relax
Don’t keep reading this if you don’t like looking at spiders…
The Orb-weaver is nocturnal and I saw this one setting up in the early evening. I came back before dawn the next day, not expecting much as it had been raining. It was still there with a slightly less impressive web but it had caught a meal and was starting to pack up. As spiders go they are not the most attractive but they do remove their web at the end of each night and hide during the day, so they score points for tidiness. Orb-weavers also don’t get as spooked about being approached or having a torch shone on them, unlike some of the daytime cousins. I was able to work comfortably from a metre away.
Here is a small selection from the session. They tend to use the same places so I will hoping to revisit this.
Now I can tick off the insect theme for this month.