Monday, February 14, 2011

Retro Style HDR Photography

I've been experimenting lately with a newer style of photography.  HDR or High Dynamic Range has been around for a few years, it deals with fact that digital cameras are unable to capture the same range of light that the human eye can.  We have all seen it, a photo that is properly exposed for the highlights and the shadows have no detail, or the opposite, details in the shadows but washed out or blown highlights.
The way to fix this problem is to take several shots (3-7), each exposed a little differently and then combined using a special program in Photoshop. The end result can be a picture that more accurately represents what you originally saw. 

Horseshoe Bend HDR
Another technique that has come from this is "Faux HDR", this can be done with a single image.
Depending on how you manipulate the settings you can process the picture and get some interesting results.  While this doesn't work for all images, I really like how it gives some pictures a cool retro look.  I did this with a friends old firetruck, and have gotten a lot of positive comments on it.  I have a copy hanging in a local coffe shop right now and have been asked if I can do several others.  While it takes awhile to process the picture, I think the results are worth it.

Click on image to see full size

Friday, February 4, 2011

Wow....2 Days in a row

I'm on a roll now, 2 posts in 2 days!
So I have been trying my hand at shooting sports.  Thanks again to my friend Josh Buck I got a press pass to the CU men's basketball game.  I had been wanting to do this for sometime now, I have always been impressed by Josh's sports shots and wanted to give it a try.  It was a bitter -15 when we headed to Boulder and the short walk from the parking lot to the CU Events Center was enough to freeze fingers and ears.  After stowing the heavy coats and extra gear in the press room we headed out to the floor to get our spots on the baseline.  CU has been doing pretty good this year and the crowds have been sell outs fairly often, tonight was a little shy of a that though, probably because of the cold weather.  I'm definitely out of my comfort zone doing this type of shooting, and it showed in my photography.  I adopted the "spray and pray" approach, (holding the shutter down and hoping to catch the action). Josh was shooting single frame and I easily shot10 times more frames over the course of the night.  It was tough trying to follow the action, I had a lot of blurry shots, cut off heads and pictures of where the ball had been.  But with some pointers from Josh and shooting a little wider I managed a few keepers. I gained an even greater appreciation for what it takes to shoot sports, I took almost 400 shots and in the end had about 25 that were OK.  Not much of a keeper rate, but it was a great time and I look forward to when I can do it again. 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

It's Been Awhile........

So it's been several months since my last entry, I had planned to keep updating at a regular interval but I always seem to find other things I need to do instead.
The Calendar sales went great, I oredered a total of 110 and sold 90, I gave a few away and am down to 4 left.  Thanks to everybody who bought them!
I have spent the last several days on the computer editing pictures. Thanks to my good friend Josh  I am the "artist" of the month at Ziggies Coffee House in Longmont. I just finished editing, printing, matting and framing 15 pictures to go on display all February.  If your in the area of 4th and Main stop by and take a look and tell me what you think, It's my 1st ever showing and I wasn't too sure about it but with a lot of help all in all I think it came out pretty good. I even got several nice comments from the customers and staff while we were hanging the pictures. (Thanks Josh for all the help in getting me set up!)
Rocky Mountain National Park Waterfall

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Culling and Calendars

Blacktail Overlook GTNP
So I finally finished sorting through all 8,000 shots from my month long excursion through Montana and Wyoming.  I hope as time goes on I will find myself taking less pictures but having more "keepers".
After sorting and discarding, I deleted over 3,000 that were either out of focus or didn't make any sense (I had a lot of pictures of my shoes while hiking or the seat of my truck..) and of the remaining 5,000 I have about 300 I really liked.  For me one of the hardest parts is deleting pictures I took. I always think somehow I had better save it for a later time, that some "magic" will happen if I keep it buried on my hard drive and that when my post processing skills improve I will be able to turn it to a masterpiece!  I am beginning to realize that junk is junk, no matter how good I get at Photoshop. 
One of the main reasons I needed to get my pictures sorted was so I could find some for this years calendar.
For the last several years I have published a calendar of some of my favorite shots. It started as a way to share my pictures with family and made a nice little Christmas gift to them.  The first year I had 25 printed, last year 50 and each time I had more requests than calendars ( it's amazing how popular you are when you give free stuff away! ).  So this year a friend gave me an idea, have the calendars printed with the shift schedules for the fire department and sell them to coworkers, that way people could use them as their calendar and also give them to family and friends who are always wanting to know when they work.  I asked around and there was enough interest in them that I'm having 100 printed up.  All the proceeds from the sale of this years calendars will go to the Longmont FireFighters Charitable Organization.
The calendars are at the printers now and I should have them available by Thanksgiving, If you interested in purchasing one or have questions send me an Email .


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Here I Go !

So this is my first attempt at blogging.
I have been asked by numerous friends and family about my photo journeys, so since I don't "Tweet" and seldom "Facebook"  I figured this would be the easiest way to share my adventures.  My plan is to post a few of the photos and the stories behind them.  If you have found this through a search or linked to it from my website SilverSagePhotography I thank you and ask that you be sure and add a comment or just say hi.