Wordy Wednesday #446 “Toy Camera Effect”
Jun14

Wordy Wednesday #446 “Toy Camera Effect”

“Mechanically the Holga is simplicity itself. The nature of the Holga places emphasis on seeing, thinking, and interacting with the environment at hand.”— Joe Ostraff These days many cameras, especially mirrorless, have a built-in Toy Camera effect. Another ways to add this effect is in the digital darkroom by using a Photoshop-compatible Plug-in or Photoshop Action such as Dave Ward’s “Old Toy Camera” Photoshop...

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Photographing an Autobianchi Bianchina
Jun13

Photographing an Autobianchi Bianchina

On a sunny summer day the Italian car clubs in Colorado gather at an annual show called Automezzi. Lots of exotic, interesting, and beautiful cars are on display including Ferrari’s, Lamborghinis, Lancias, Panteras, Maseratis, Alfa Romeos and Fiats. I’ve had a love affair with Italian cars since the early ’70s and this little red car captured my imagination but there was always a crowd gathered around it. When leaving the show,...

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Shooting In Home Portraits
Jun12

Shooting In Home Portraits

Before I had my current and small (11×15-foot) home studio, my previous home was a studio and one of my favorite places to shoot was the kitchen because it had a North-facing bay window.] This beautiful model was posed and photographed in my kitchen using mostly available light with fill from an EX550 speedlight. Camera was an EOS 50D with EF 28-105mm lens and an exposure of 1/90 sec at f/4.5 and ISO 400. The biggest upside of...

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Exposing For Infrared Light
Jun09

Exposing For Infrared Light

Because of the nearly white reproduction of most vegetation’s chlorophyll, infrared black-and-white photographs render landscapes as if they were glowing, moonlit, or immersed in an extraterrestrial light. Because exposure meters either hand held or in-camera are not sensitive to infrared light, it’s difficult to calculate exact exposures but that doesn’t mean you can try, especially with IR-converted digital cameras that provide...

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Special Effects are Subject Dependent
May08

Special Effects are Subject Dependent

Before the Dot Com bust,  I also wrote for several computer magazines and one of the things I dreamed up was “Farace’s Laws of the Computing Universe.” I figured  if Murphy and Burke (my inspiration) could have their own laws so could I.  When I started writing exclusively about photography, I brought those laws into my magazines and books. One of the most important of all of Farace’s Laws of the Imaging Universe is that all special...

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Surfing the Learning Curve
Apr25

Surfing the Learning Curve

“There is the desire of a consumer society to have no learning curves. This tends to result in very dumbed-down products that are easy to get started on, but are generally worthless and/or debilitating.”—Alan Kay In my experience, it seems that most photographers progress through three distinct stages while they are learning and refining their image-making skills. In my friend Rick Sammon’s book Creative...

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What Inspires Your Photography?
Mar28

What Inspires Your Photography?

Photographers get inspiration from many places. One friend finds it in old master’s paintings; I get the inspiration for many of my images from the movies. Recently I watched (for the umpteenth time) Frank Capra’s 1937 classic Lost Horizon and was struck not just by the cinematography but by all of the still images used to illustrate a “making-of” video on the DVD that were shot using 4×5 film. This was truly the golden age of...

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