Wednesday is Opposite Day…

Beach Scenes

So I visited my chiropractor this morning and had a few minutes to take some shot at the beach in Belmar (New Jersey). This has become my go to spot for beach pictures this summer.

Just like most shorelines, Belmar has an inlet to get to the marina where boats of all sizes are moored. An active spot usually, yet on this particular day it was quiet from a boat traffic standpoint. Beach goers, on the other hand, were converging at the waters edge to beat the heat.

These shots are showing opposite sides of the inlet and you can see the action pretty clearly, whether it be sunbathers, fisherman, surfers or just sightseers, like me.

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Another scorcher day in store for tomorrow so maybe another trip to Belmar will be needed.

Americana in Bucks County….

Local History

Within an hours drive or so I can step back in time while visiting Bucks County Pa.

Photo ops abound by just driving up and down the miles and miles of roads in and around the small town of New Hope Pa.

We found this gem by driving down a gravel road in the middle of nowhere. And the best part was we nailed the timing for perfect light, the late afternoon sun was illuminating this great piece of Americana.

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Is HDR Photography Dead? (TBT)

HDR

I remember when I couldn’t get enough of Trey Ratcliff and his HDR work. In fact, 80-90% of my own work was tone-mapped and my go-to software was Photomatix or Topaz Adjust.

I can’t even remember the last time I visited sites like HDR Creme or HDR Spotting ( I just had to Google it because I couldn’t remember it). It’s not that I don’t like it anymore. I still bracket shots on occasion. I guess I’ve just moved on….

Well, here’s to moving on…… my first tone-mapped image in many moons.

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I got up @ 4:30 am  to shoot the sunrise and that was a bust but this was my first capture of the day. Nothing great, bracketed the Belmar Fishing Club building for old time sake. Had to decide which software to use… Topaz, Photomatix or Nik. Went with Nik and now I remember why I liked tone-mapping so much. Look at that sky… Wow!

What about you? Are you over the HDR craze? What was your last tone-mapped shot? Would love to see it. Post a link in the comments section for all to see.

What You See Is Not Always What You Get…

Workflow

That can be either a good thing or a bad thing…. in my case it was not a good thing and quite frustrating to say the least.

You see I’ve been in the process of attempting to take full control of my image output, from processing to printing to mounting and display. The biggest problem I’ve been having is my prints coming out of my Canon Pixma Pro 100 were routinely dark. I mean really dark, like I mean no details in the shadows, pure black.

I made small adjustments to my display, I’ve made adjustments in the print module in Lightroom and more adjustments in Canon’s Print Studio Pro. Nothing worked. I finally decided to make drastic adjustments to my LCD screen. I dropped my brightness setting on my Samsung 2233sw monitor from 77 to 29.

With bated breath I hit the print button and waited for the result…….. oh and by the way, for some reason I forgot that a local professional print service suggested that my screen was too bright and the printer could not make the adjustments. I should have listened!!! Really listened!

Suspense, Suspense…..

I’ll let you know the result… in a minute.

Here’s the photo in question….

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See, in this presentation the facade of the pilings are dark but still show details(hopefully on your screen) and this is what my monitor showed as well. But when printed the overall brightness was lower and details were completely lost, totally black. Over and over this was the case in any photo I tried to print.

Well, after simply adjusting my brightness setting from 77 to 29, which I think is quite drastic, I’m…… happy to report that my next test print was almost perfect! Details in the shadows, finally! Yes, a breakthrough. Now as I said it’s not quite perfect but I feel like I’m much closer. Whew, I feel better now………..WYSIWYG.

Play ball…

Sports

It started in the Jackie Robinson rotunda….

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I couldn’t stop looking at this shot of Jackie himself… wow what a picture…

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Our next experience at Citifield, the home of the NY Mets, took us through the concourse…

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And then to the field, our seats were perfect, just out of the rain…

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Unfortunately the game was postponed after 6 innings due to rain but as we were running back to the car I managed to get this shot…..

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The shot I envisioned for years before our visit.

This last shot is for sale in limited quantities so if your interested in a print please comment in the section below.

Who Are You Looking At?

Portraits

A little work with some lighting yesterday for this self-portrait.

I’ve been able to obtain a few lighting accessories that make this self portrait stuff a bit easier. I used 2 Yongnuo 560 III flashes, a Yongnuo YN 560 tx master transmitter and the Yongnuo RF603 II wireless triggers. Not the most elegant equipment available but it gets the job done.

I produced this with a softbox on camera left and a off camera flash aimed at the wall behind me….

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And then used Perfect Photo Suite to produce this…

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Definitely got the look as I envisioned it, Terminator like.