Sunday, February 26, 2012

Photography Scavenger Hunt Information

Round 1 will begin on March 1st. Please see the information page or click the logo for the details.

Stay tuned for the official release of the categories! Categories will be posted on the blog (subscribe to blog emails on the left if you are not on Facebook much) and then posted on Facebook.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

How do you feel about Pinterest?

Yes, I am opening a can of worms, I know that. But go ahead, please discuss (with civility) why or why not you may agree with these blog posts about Pinterest and if you use Pinterest yourself.

by Trey Ratcliff:

by Thomas Hawk:

by ddk portraits:
Why I Tearfully Deleted My Pinterest Inspiration Boards

Are you on Pinterest? Post a link below so others can follow you! Here is mine.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Getting Focused Again

The past few weeks I have felt like I was in a slump. It's been cold, the days are short, and I am plugging away at the routine of life. Yes, I am getting my normal work done. Yes, I am getting the kids chauffeured to their activities. Yes, I still enjoyed the basketball games, trying to get the perfect action shot in low light without a flash or too much grain and cheering for my boys. But everything still felt so "off" and unfocused and just plain frustrating - do you know what I mean?

I knew I had to get outside and create some photographs.

Yesterday, with the temps reaching the low 70's when they should have been closer to the 30's, I made a decision. I was going out. I was leaving the house and the routine. I was going to shoot a sunset, and it was going to be an awesome sunset. The night before was pretty spectacular - my boys even pointed it out to me  before I could mention it to them. Usually they act as "Okay, Mom, we see it, too." But that night, they kept talking about it.

I made my decision to go, I selected a location, and I invited others to go with me. Slava Peteva-Bowman accepted the challenge, and I picked her up on our way out of town.

The beaver did it... by Marcink Designs

We had quite the walk to find an area we liked for the sunset, and we both began our creative process. We then waited for the sunset...and waited...and watched the clouds gather directly under the sinking sun...and waited...

And the sun disappeared...the dense clouds swallowing all light and nearly all color.


The perfect sunset shot will come another night. That means another jaunt to the other side of the river, right?

On the other side by Slava Bowman Photography
We left 20 minutes before the actual sunset and headed back into Washington. But neither of us wanted to go home just yet. The night was young, and the blue hour was just setting in. So we walked, and talked, and captured more frames.

And later that night, when I should have been in bed, I was processing a few of the photographs already. I felt energized, focused, and happy. My husband Mike was eagerly looking over my different shots, picking out his favorites and complimenting the work I had already processed.

And then I funk was gone.

I was relieved.

What being a photographer means to me is being lucky enough to have the understanding of a medium which allows me to create. What I learned is within me, a little inner revolution. I learned things about myself, about the world, about the people I know, about people I don’t know, about the most familiar and unfamiliar places. I most importantly learned that with dedication and perseverance, I, and anyone, can do anything. - Yasemin, Imagemakers

Thank you, Slava, for the quote!

Now more about the photographs:

Notice that although Slava and I were in the same area, our creations are completely different. We focused on different compositions and then processed them differently as well.

She used Lightroom and created a more vintage feel to hers. I used Photoshop and went with a dramatic black and white for mine.

Be sure to head over to Slava Bowman Photography and Marcink Designs Facebook pages to see the other creations from that night.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Location of the Sun and Moon

Ever wondered where exactly the sunrise would be? Or where the full moon will rise and at what time? The Photographer's Ephemeris (TPE) tells you exactly that!

Just type in the location, zoom in on the map, drop the pin to where you want, and you will see the exact paths of the sun and moon. You can easily research and scout locations from home to give you a good idea of where to go before you head out to capture photos.

In addition, you have the rise and set times, as well as the civil, nautical, and astronomical twilight times. These times are important to know if you plan to shoot during the fleeting blue hour.

So today I want to shoot the sunset over Downtown Washington. Knowing that there are tall trees all along the river, I used the satellite map to pinpoint the ideal spot to be tonight for the sunset. In reality, I will get as close as possible to this spot, but may not make it, depending on the terrain and accessibility. I will let you know!

Have you ever used TPE? Will you use it now that you know about it?