Thursday, May 26, 2011
When I shoot landscapes I can truly devote myself to photography; I don't need to worry about checking over my shoulder for the car that is about to hit me, worry about irritating the model I'm trying to take a portrait of by bumbling along, or be plagued by the fear that my photos won't be good enough. I can just be. I go out, begin to shoot, and I lose my self-consciousness that I normally experience when I'm behind the lens in a matter of minutes when I am surrounded by the good vibes that I get from being outdoors.
I love how diverse landscape photography can be, from an intimate view of a pond from many angles to a dramatic vista of a gully that drops hundreds of feet. This diversity enables me to try out a variety of techniques. For instance, I did a series of layered images of close-up pictures of plants to create deconstructed, then reconstructed landscapes. But I have done more traditional landscape photography. I enjoy taking pictures with a lot of texture in them. I also tend to gravitate towards images with green in them- I love how lush it looks.
Before I began to experiment with landscapes I didn't feel any passion for photography, I had flashes when it felt "right", but for the most part I felt like photography was like having an uncomfortable conversation with someone. But now that I have found a subject that inspires me and allows for so much flexibility there are many thing I want to try. I have a ton of images that I'm hoping to layer over the summer to create more deconstructed, reconstructed landscapes. I've enjoyed the post-processing side of photography and I'm researching artists that use interesting post-processing in landscape photography. I also want to develop my traditional landscape photography skills- which I am doing through more day trips to interesting landscapes in Oregon. Finally, through all of this, I hope that I can begin to develop my own aesthetic, and become a stronger, more focused photographer.
Monday, May 23, 2011
Friday, May 20, 2011
Monday, May 9, 2011
What I love about panoramas is how easy Photoshop makes it to pull them together quickly. I took both images with the intention of framing the focal point (in the first one the Colombia River, and in the second downtown Portland) with trees. In order to take the photos I made sure that I was in manual mode and took each photograph with the same exposure and to overlap each image with the next by at least half. Once I uploaded the pictures to my computer, I opened Photoshop and automated a panorama with each grouping. Afterwards, I stretched the images so that they fit, and then I finished up with some additional editing in Lightroom.
Monday, May 2, 2011
This picture, by Ansel Adams, is titled Roots, Foster Gardens, Honolulu and was taken in 1948 using a gelatin silver processing method. I think it is an amazing representation of beauty in nature because of its abstraction and lovely use of sinuous lines. I also enjoy the texture that the ground cover lends the photograph. My definition of beauty in nature follows these lines: I think that nature is at its most beautiful when color, shade, or shape lends an abstraction to what you see. I also nature's beauty is at its height when there is texture, and slight imperfections to what is seen (like the tuft of grass growing out of the root in this picture) because it adds a realness to what you are looking at, or in other words, it can remind you that while you are looking at something amazingly beautiful, it hasn't been dreamt up by someone with a pencil in their hand, it has been discovered.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
My next two pictures were taken in Washington Park. The first, of the fountain, I especially love because of the dramatic axis leading up to it, the gorgeous ironwork, and the dappled light and trees in the background. I like the water fountain for the lighting as well, and the symmetry that it also displays. But what I really like about this picture is the quirky street art that someone left above the water fountain, It was a really great coincidence. For my fountain I brought up the fill light and blacks just a little bit, and I also brought up the contrast and the brightness. Highlights, brightness and darks were all increased, while shadows were decreased. Luminance, detail and contrast were enhanced, and I added a little bit of dark vignetting which I think helps focus your eye onto the fountain. For the water fountain, I moved towards the blue temperature, increased the blacks a tiny amount, and increased the brightness and contrast. Highlights, lights, darks and shadows were all increased. I increased the yellow saturation and decreased the green saturation. Finally, I increased the sharpening.
My square format photograph was actually really interesting to edit. I initially chose it because I really liked the spaghetti overpasses in contrast with the upright background buildings, but there wasn't enough focus in the original on what I liked so much about the picture. After cropping the original image and attempting to edit it in color, I decided that switching it to black and white it would be more effective. First, I adjusted the temperature to be more yellow. I also increased the recovery, fill light, and blacks, in addition to increasing brightness and contrast. I brought up the highlights, lights, darks and shadows in my curve. I also adjusted the color in the black and white color balance so that the highway overpasses would be lighter than the surrounding buildings and so that the curves of the overpasses are more exaggerated.