There are a few spaces remaining in our Creative Sessions Workshop on March 5-7, 2010 in Seattle, Washington. If you are interested visit the Art Wolfe Workshop Website.
The International Conservation Photography Awards (ICP Awards) is a premier worldwide photography event focused on conservation and the environment. The biennial juried photo competition, along with awarding cash and merchandise to selected photographers, will include an online exhibit, a 3-month museum gallery exhibit at the prestigious Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture in Seattle, Washington, publication in a national photography magazine and other printed communications, and a slide show for use in community outreach and global on-line entertainment/education. Hurry, the deadline is quickly approaching – February 28th, 2010.
Candy Crab on soft coral, New Britain, Papua New Guinea.
Come back next week when we will give you a new Vanishing Act image along with the location of the candy crab in this one.
Welcome to the new IMPACT online exhibition, a project exploring the internet as a venue for insightful photographic work. In an effort to remind viewers of the important role photographers play around the world, we invited an array of imagemakers to share galleries on their blogs (like this one) that comprise 12 images representing an experience when they had an impact on or were impacted. By clicking on the links below the IMPACT logo, you can move through the exhibition, viewing other galleries by different photographers. You can also click the IMPACT logo to be taken to a post on the liveBooks RESOLVE Blog where you can see an index of all participating photographers. We hope that by linking different photographic visions of our first topic, “Outside Looking In,” we can provide a multifaceted view of the topic as well as the IMPACT individuals can have on the world around us.
Fed by snowmelt from the Himalaya, the Ganges River is the spiritual center of Hinduism, and one of India’s holiest cities is Allahabad, cradled at the confluence of the Ganges and Yamuna Rivers. Every few years, depending upon the alignment of the planets, sun, and moon, this is the site of the world’s largest gathering of humanity, the Kumbh Mela.
I have been in the midst of huge migrations of wildlife, but nothing ever prepared me for this mass human pilgrimage. From every corner of the subcontinent, millions of people converge to bathe in the purifying river waters. There is nothing on Earth that can match this pilgrimage for sheer spectacle and exuberance.
From the earliest moments of the day to late at night, there is constant pageantry and stimulation. I love working the margins of the day, especially the mornings when people are just waking up. Filtered by low light the atmosphere is hazy with dust and smoke; the harsh edges softens and even the most mundane scene looks like a painting. It is easy to say that photographing the Kumbh Mela has been one of the great adventures and privileges of my life.
According to a new study by James A. Johnstone and Todd E. Dawson of the University of California, Berkeley, the redwood ecosystem of the US West Coast is increasingly drought stressed as the occurrence of summer fog has declined in the past century. The long term implications could be serious for the flora and fauna of an iconic ecosystem.
Read the article here:
A quick glance on any photography forum and you will soon realize that while there are a few photographers who have a clear identifiable style, most photographs are very similar as if cooked in the same pot. As in every discipline, most enthusiasts start out by trying to emulate the work of the great masters. That often translates into copying the style, the compositions even the locations (ever heard the expression “tripod holes”?) that these masters have, well, mastered. However, as you delve deeper into your art, you start wondering where you should go with your photography after you have photographed your favourite icons and followed the footsteps of the Muenchs, Wolfes or Rowells of this world. Even from a professional standpoint, given the intense competition in the field, how do you set yourself apart from the next photographer? So how do you develop your own, unique style? While there is no magic solution or standard answer, here is a little food for thought to help point you in the right direction.
1- Study the work of other artists
You are probably, wondering what on earth I am talking about since I have just said that you have to try and develop your own style. First, when I talk about artists, I mean it in a general sense, not just photographers, but painters, architects and designers. Painters can teach you how they handle light, what makes a good composition. Architects will show you the power of curves, lines and patterns. In the work of designers you can learn how to combine colours to convey your message. By getting acquainted with the work of other artists, you will seamlessly incorporate some of the elements that they use into your own photographs and have a more deliberate and controlled approach to your art.
2- Get off the beaten path
As a landscape photographer, I often find myself drawn to the so-called “photographic icon”. Who hasn’t dreamt of shooting Mesa Arch, Antelope Canyon or Horseshoe bend? While these icons for obvious reasons, our planet has no shortage of stunning, photogenic locations. While most photographers are content with “roadside” photo opportunities, the most rewarding locations are those that are seldom visited or secluded. In addition to coming out with some unique shots, you also get to experience nature at its best. There is nothing more rewarding than waking up in the middle of nowhere, knowing that there is just you and Mother Nature around.
3- Try something different
When I first dabbled into photography all I cared about was landscape, all I shot was landscape. Since I don’t live in photo icon hotzone, I quickly spent the photogenic potential of my area and found myself out of new things to photograph. My next decision proved to be instrumental in developing my skills. As I have better access to urban zones, I thought that I could shoot buildings and urban areas in a self-imposed assignment to improve my eye for lines and patterns. Not only have I discovered an exciting area of photography, but the skills I learned photographing buildings have been central to my landscape/nature photography as well. As I become more apt at capturing patterns in buildings, it became easier to see and frame photo opportunities in nature. That said, you don’t have to change disciplines to “try something different”. All you need to do is get slightly out of your comfort zone, and learn to see the world differently. If you shoot wide-angle scenics exclusively, trade your wide-angle lens for your telephoto or macro lenses and aim for more intimate nature photography. Inversely, if you are more at ease with a telephoto, trade it for a wide-angle.
4- Break the rules
One of the main drivers of uniformity in photographs is our tendency to want to follow rules. Obviously, these rules exist for a reason and do come in handy at times. That said, you have to learn to think outside of the box if you want to take your photography to another level. Your gut tells you to use the rule of thirds? Don’t listen and put your horizon right in the middle. The magic hour only happens at dawn and dusk, right? Does that mean you can’t take amazing shots during the remaining 23 hours of the day? Certainly not! I have seen amazing pictures taken right at noon, others, in the middle of the night. Basically, just keep your mind open for possibilities and don’t restrict yourself simply because it is a “rule”.
5- Take photography workshops
I have been very fortunate to attend an Art Wolfe workshop a few months ago and I have to admit that it has had a tremendous impact on my approach to photography. Again, the idea here is not to go out there and replicate everything your instructor does or tells you. Instead, you should watch and listen carefully to the way he or she approaches their art. It can be really an eye-opening experience when you are looking at a scene that inspires you nothing, and have someone come in and show you five or six different ways to look at it! You may not like everything you are told; in fact, you could even dismiss some of it. However, back on the field, once on your own, you can surprise yourself identifying photo opportunities that you wouldn’t have noticed before.
While I hope these pointers may have been of some help, there is one last element I would like to stress: just remember why you are into this in the first place and make sure you enjoy what you do. Keep the passion alive, and you are sure to succeed in whatever you set your mind to!
Just in case you couldn’t see the snipe from Monday’s Vanishing Act Post, (it isn’t easy) we have outlined it in the photo for today’s post.
February 19th 2010 marks the 20th Anniversary of Adobe Photoshop® and Adobe is getting together with the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP) to celebrate the anniversary of the software that changed the face of photography and design forever.
The Photoshop 20th anniversary celebration on February 18th at 7:30 p.m. pst will be streamed LIVE and feature Photoshop luminaries including NAPP’s Scott Kelby, John Loiacono, Adobe Senior Vice President and General Manager, Creative Solutions Business Unit, NAPP Photoshop gurus Dave Cross and Matt Kloskowski, Adobe Photoshop star Russell Brown, and other key members of the Adobe Photoshop team. This fun-filled night will feature a walk through Photoshop history, a glimpse into the future, and celebrates all things Photoshop.
It’s easy to attend! Sign up at http://www.photoshopuser.com/photoshop20th, and come back to that page on February 18th at 7:30 p.m. pst for an amazing history-making night.