Group 83 Bulletin Board

9 threads - 50 total comments

This page is dedicated to discussions about our theme (Monochrome) that are outside the scope of our monthly images.

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Continuing the Discussion on Wabi Sabi:

Long before my recent introduction to Wabi Sabi most of you have heard me speak and promote the "Visualization" process: here we seek to become one with our immediate environment in hope of initiating creativity. In my opinion (and a thought I also shared with two of the Japanese photographers I listed previously) the Wabi Sabi philosophy works well (and seems interconnected) with the process of visualization. Here are some of my thoughts from my Intimate with Nature Series I began about three years ago:

'creep along the forest floor or climb tree limbs and seek the often hidden spaces in bushes, thick grass and behind rocks, or explore the crevasse of tree-bark and moss examining the intricacies and interaction between light, shadow and texture. Take a full breath and smell the varied Earthy scents from the fallen and dried leaves of fall or the sweet smell of roses and wildflowers in spring. Thus, I invite you to look closely and seek more than what initially meets the eye and is perceived as austere, or common place in nature, and instead, explore and find deeper meaning within your immediate environment. In this instant, the camera is a tool to capture artistic perspectives that bring to print a swatch of the normally hidden beauty, mystery and foremost, reality that surrounds our space'. LAL   Posted: 07/12/2020 06:42:55
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Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

Your image this month and the concept of wabi sabi and discussion of film has so intrigued me and opened me up to a new path. I photographed images of an antique carpentry tool and using Silver Effex and applying a film type, toning, and borders, along with moving the other sliders found myself creating much stronger images. Indeed, I started exploring the tool from different directions all in the same setting, the wooden rail of my deck, and in different light conditions. It is amazing how one object, in different light conditions (even light painted in the evening) could reveal such different secrets.

This exploration led me to look at my pond in a new way. I found myself meditating on a dying leaf from a water hyacinth floating pushed by the moving water with small bubbles forming around it. Before, I would have ignored the dying leaf because it was not perfect. Now I looked at it, wanting to capture it in its last day(s).

The concept of wabi sabi has led me to explore the hidden treasures of the pond under different light, time of day, and weather conditions and watch nature unfold. To capture the beauty, I have learned to use a polarizing filter. It so enhances water images.
  Posted: 07/21/2020 15:55:47
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Judy, I am very happy to hear your enthusiasm about this latest topic - The BW floating leaf is a prime example of finding beauty in the austere - or common place. Similarly, the antique tool is a portrait exposing that can reveal many different details, emotion, and surely, mystery.

Please, continue to share your photographic compositions and details on how you created the final piece - these are wonderful lessons in the Art of Photography. Thank you, Judy!

  Posted: 07/22/2020 09:40:45
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

Given your comment of creeping along the forest floor, I looked along and under the lily leaves in my pond and saw these three newborn frogs. I used a circular PL filter to darken the water and reduce the glare on frogs, leaves and water. In LR, I did not open the shadows in order to retain the dark water. When editing in PS, I applied a levels adjustment and moved the black point minimally to increase the black in the water but allow some of the leaf stems to show through the water.
On each frog, I did a curves vignette to draw attention to them. Also, I applied a Nik Color Effex light centre on the frog in the lower left corner, and the CE detail extract and color contrast filters to the entire image.

I did compare using minimal flash from my pop up on camera but found that it flattened the texture on the frog, revealed the debris in the water, and left some tiny pin prick highlights on the frog texture. Therefore I concluded it is better to use the polarizing filter to obtain the dark water effect.

Using the PL filter, this same technique,and a levels adjustment I was able to achieve the black in the lily image above. The black background simplifies the image, and helps the lily stand out.

  Posted: 07/22/2020 16:02:29
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Judy, this is an excellent review of your procedures and findings - as it is with a lot of the techniques used within the photography genre, nothing is set in stone - and variations are key to creativity - and even more important, individuality. Well done, Judy. Thank you.   Posted: 07/26/2020 13:50:03

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin

The Japanese Wabi Sabi philosophy includes several aesthetic principles:
1. simplicity
2. asymmetry or irregularity
3. beauty in the understated
4. naturalness without pretense
5. subtle grace
6. freeness
7. tranquility

Within these ideas beauty is found in the simplest of forms and perhaps, inspires tranquility: for example, a single rock or the draped dried flora that seemingly cascade like fireworks from an old Bald Cypress Tree - (see attached example). Or the eeriness of the swamps located in the deep south - but to some a nostalgic feeling, as it did with me. (See my July post).

Alternatively, a photographic composition of old tools, a torn or used leotard next to a similarly used pair of ballet shoes will evoke many different emotions - including those that describe the beautiful.

Shooting in film helps to capture the many aesthetics outlined in this Japanese philosophy - but careful planning and proper used of any both digital and film photography techniques can also capture and produce engaging compositions. Landscape and natural photographers like Bob Kolbrener, Nobuyuki Kobayoshi, Naohiro Ninomiya shoot film exclusively: that film captures and amplifies the aesthetics outlined above. (I too, have now dedicated myself shooting up to 35% BW film using my 1970's camera and lenses). Another photographic technique that helps build an aesthetic is the paper you use to print on: this is also an important process regardless if you capture using film or digital means.

The topic is grand - and needs serious research, practice, and also examination into ones own means of inspiration to fully appreciate. However, this initial introduction can help us all "look" and "see" photographs with a new perspective and surely, appreciation for the individuality in work that follow and help sustain the traditional values of photographic fine art - and the work most collectors are hunting for.

Thank you.   Posted: 07/09/2020 14:34:19
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
The Wabi Sabi philosophy is also very connected and in many ways, compliments the "Visualization" process. I speak about this concept regularity in all my photographic clubs and PSA groups, as it is central in becoming one with your environment as a means to initiate creativity from behind the lens. A subject talked about with passion and conviction by Ansel Adams in the 20th Century.

Image: "Destiny" digitally captured from my series Intimate with Nature.   Posted: 07/09/2020 14:54:34
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Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

I attach a dying leaf image that I discussed below.   Posted: 07/21/2020 16:00:20
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Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

I attach an image of the antique tool with the background described in another comment.

It was difficult for me to decide which image to choose. I had angled the tool in different ways, photographed in under different light conditions, experimented with flash in broad daylight to create black backgrounds, and light painted it both inside and outside. I used it to explore depth of field because of its unique shape.

I researched but do not understand how to use it. However, it has taught me so much about photography and editing wanting to explore its beauty.   Posted: 07/21/2020 16:12:10
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Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Recently, Judith asked about textures. It is so easy to make your own. Of course, you can photograph textures all around you. But you can also make textures out of an image that has the color pallet that you wish to capture in a texture. I searched for classic images on the Internet, because I love the colors in most of those old images. I also used some of my own flower images.

1. Select your image and open it in PS CC.
2. Copy the first layer (Ctrl J).
3. Make any color adjustments you wish with Adjustment layers.
4. Play with your image. Here are a few tricks I used.
a. Copy the image to a new layer and invert that layer (Edit > Transpose > Invert (horizontal and/or verticle)
b. Change the blending mode on the inverted layer. Just page through the blending mode with the down arrow key on your keyboard.
c. Merge up to include a merged layer on top of your underlying layer, without loosing the underlying layers (Cntl Alt Shift E)
d. Take a merged layer into Topaz Studio Impressions and find an effect that you like and save it. You can also play with the properties of any effect, e.g., change the brush, change each color, smudge it, etc.

Here is a flower I put on a texture background that I created from a classic angel picture I found on the web.   Posted: 06/12/2020 14:28:20
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
This is incredibly gorgeous, Georgianne! I hope you plan to print this!   Posted: 07/09/2020 13:56:04
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

Thanks for describing the process. I made a screen print of it.   Posted: 07/21/2020 15:19:32

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Secondly, asking if Black and White photography is a manipulative process is a bit strange and in my opinion pointless - and my feelings well described in the document.

However, when we talk about "manipulation" as a whole (color or BW, still or cinema) this is a logical and legitimate discourse: as many feel the very Preservation of the Art of Photography is in question.

But this is entire different debate. Thank you.   Posted: 06/10/2020 16:29:29
Peter Newman   Peter Newman

Hi Lance,

How many time have any of us heard the claim in essence, that a particular image is not photography, because it does not accurately represent what the camera saw.
I think that a statement by a photographer claiming that they are from the f64 school, just like AA, is either hypercritical, or made without knowledge of the facts. One of my former clients was one of his lab technicians. According to him, just about all the original negatives were flat. Each one had extensive notes concerning the amount of manipulation should be done during the printing process. Each plate had detailed instructions on how it should be developed. i.e. How much time in each type of developer, and the temperature foe each stage.

As a veteran of a wet darkroom, who made some of his own developing chemicals from scratch, I understand his reasoning. No, I don't remember my formulas, but many were based of information contained in the CRC handbook.

  Posted: 06/10/2020 18:47:10
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Peter, your comments (and those of your friends) are correct and have merit, but the differences between 19th and 20th Century manipulation and 21st Century digital alternatives are not even remotely close: we have pushed photographic manipulation way past the boundaries of traditional photographic technique and have entered a new realm of art: Digital Art with a photographic base. Your comments fall outside the topic posted initially, so I will not comment further until we all decide to close this chapter and move forward with another. :)

Sadakichi Hartmann reflected on a similar point: “I do not object to retouching, dodging or accentuation as long as they do not interfere with the natural qualities of photographic technique”.

This is a very involved and deep discourse needing its own space to breath. Thank you.   Posted: 06/11/2020 05:57:54
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
I'm not sure that I follow the "arguments" here. Perhaps that is because I tend to agree more with Jose. To me, some images look better in monochrome, others in color, as inferred by Lance.
I think it is important to remember that, before the advent of digital art/photography, the only way to share an image was in print (or TV/Movies). Initially, that meant monochrome. I recall that the only reason that Ansel Adams printed in monochrome was because he could not find a printer who did justice to his color negatives. As humans, we do have a tendency to hang on to that to which we have become accustomed and there is still a tendency to prefer monochrome because that is the "way it used to be".

Color has a very emotional impact upon people, so it is, indeed, part of the authenticity of a scene. The emotions evoked vary by time and local, so an image in color more authentically represents "reality" if the colors in it are synchronous with both the local and the intent of the photographer. There is nothing in our world to which we react without some kind of emotion, unless we are a psychopath. So a captured image is INTENDED to convey some kind of emotion as translated through a photographer to an audience. The audience had better have the same emotional reactions to the colors in a scene as does the photographer, or else the image is wasted as a document that records "reality" of the scene. of course, if emotional color reactions are not synchronous between the photographer and the audience, then the image must have enough meat in it to stand by itself in monochrome!   Posted: 06/10/2020 19:29:01
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
These are good and valid points, Georgianne.

Indeed, there are many color renderings that can be strong and dramatic. But as you point out, the photographer needs to have a skill set that will allow a scene to reveal itself. However, the viewer may not necessarily engage the piece with the same interpretation as the photographers: There will always be room for interpretation - the mere fact that the composition "moves" you or "Pricks" you (effects the viewer emotionally or as you already stated, it needs the "meat" to be a powerful image)is all that is important,

The degree of this difference in interpretation between the photographer and viewer can also change significantly depending upon the type of work being viewed: i.e. traditional abstract and landscape for two examples.   Posted: 06/11/2020 06:15:16
Peter Newman   Peter Newman
Lance, This may be OT, but I congratulate you, and thank you for sharing your well written article.

I I read it correctly, I totally agree with your point on the importance of visualization, and by implication, its effect on the emotional impact of the image.

  Posted: 06/11/2020 12:34:20
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Peter, at this point...we have been north, south east and west of the original topic!! LOL!!

Really appreciate you liking the piece - and yes, I am very passionate about preserving this (the Visualization process) as a vital component within The Art of Photography:

The art of "seeing" lies in our ability to slow down, step back and retrace our steps: elaborating on the old trope, "Stop and smell the roses", be cognizant of your surroundings by slowing down to experience the sensations that infiltrate our space we do not notice in our hurried pace. Experiencing more from our environment by opening all our senses to see, hear, smell and taste a wider sampling, stoop low and see what the insects see, or pull back and glee at the grandeur of a majestic landscape. With a stronger awareness of the world around us, helps expose hidden nuances in helping to initiate creativity in the pursuit of achieving dynamic compositions.
  Posted: 06/11/2020 18:35:55
Debasish Raha   Debasish Raha
We the photographers have the gift to find beauty and interest in things most of the people usually overlook. In addition we have the interest to capture the beauty through photographs. How we present what we captured is up to us, the photographers. That is her/his interpretation, reflecting a way to tell the story. The final photograph might reflect a photographer's interpretation of what he/she actually saw, or a variation that reflects the mood and sometimes a dramatization, all reflecting photographer's interpretation. So it is pointless to argue about authentication irrespective of color or monochrome because photography is about an artistic interpretation, as always has been, of individual photographers. That is why every photography show is a unique experience.   Posted: 06/13/2020 22:41:34
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Debasish, indeed, we are all individual artist - and our interpretation of a landscape, event or portraiture is all within our artistic means: as far as BW not being authentic, the idea is baseless and why I presented it here to see everyone's reaction.

Thank you for commenting!   Posted: 06/18/2020 14:39:58

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
From a very engaging conversation with participants and fellow photographers on some months ago. I am confident you will all enjoy reading (part) of my tran. I look forward to your comments regardless if they are for or against my comments. Enjoy!

As it relates to BW photography, as many questions about the authenticity of color photographs now has equal competition from its BW alternatives, including film based versions. I see every day in both online posts, and speaking with people at gallery exhibitions, including my own solo exhibition in 2017. However, (the participant) brings up an entirely different topic that questions the 'authenticity of a Black and White photograph' (regardless if it was digitally converted or a result of developing BW film negatives).

Rendering a subject in grey scale (again, regardless if converting a digital file or developing a BW negatives) is all about “seeing” and ingesting the “whole” frame. Successful photographs are ones that can reveal its Gestalt; where interpretation of the whole is more expressive (interesting or seems to “prick” the viewer, as Roland Barthes so eloquently coined in 1980) than the artworks individual details. Then we can also suggest a BW rendering, perhaps, even more than color, reveals how we “see” in real-time and thus BW photography presents a truer sense of reality. A “Point to Ponder”, indeed.

“Why BW?” Even after color film was introduced, (especially in the early years) BW photography was still the hallmark of what represented Photographic Art - and like then, even now, viewers of Black and White photography are dictated to interpret the “whole” as opposed to the individual sensations of color - as a consequence, BW renderings still stand as the forefront of what defines Fine Art Photography to many photographers and especially to patrons of photographic art.

No. Black and White photography is not manipulating or otherwise represents a skewed reality, instead, may actually support more closely how our eyes and brain work in union to reveal our World in all its beauty and intricate detail, and thus, how we conceive reality; an ideal pursued through Impressionism in painting (color) and Pictorialism in (black and white) photography. Thank you.

Lance A. Lewin
  Posted: 06/10/2020 14:54:55
Jose Luis Rodriguez   Jose Luis Rodriguez
My humble opinion
Talking about the authenticity of color photography or manipulation of the BW is a bit pointless and absurd
Is it like saying Canon or Nikon?
is that Canon colors are more real or I like them more
or before when we were working with a movie, the question was Kodak or Fuji?
To argue for the authenticity of color photography is absurd. Digital cameras do not see in color, (they interpret colors with formulas that someone has created because they only "see" light and shadows.
I don't even know how my daughter sees the colors nor does she know how I see them, the color has so much of a subjectivity that you can't speak of authenticity.
Photography is an art and as art everything is valid within it and no part is more authentic or real than the other.   Posted: 06/10/2020 15:14:43
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
...and to be clear...the question that was proposed by the participant was if Black and White was authentic, and not a manipulated genre of photography!   Posted: 06/10/2020 16:24:16

Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi
Reasons for using monochrome is that reduces the distraction of color and can assist in making a story stronger. Also, it can produce a more timeless image.

For me, another benefit is allowing us to more easily read across multiple images at one glance and simplify a message.

Using focal length, I compressed an image, and challenged the question of social distancing. One image, may seem aberrant. However, compiling three images taken within 10 minutes apart, eliminating the distraction of color, the message is stronger.

  Posted: 06/10/2020 13:38:08
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Great topic Judy:

Street Photography takes on more than one type of narrative: for example, the implied "instantaneous" capture as we see in Georgios example is one narrative (and in itself, has two possible methods of capture; we will expand on this shortly)in creating a narrative, and the second is more like Judy's, that of which resides within a documentary narrative.

The two methods of Instantaneous or Spontaneous or Reactive technique in capturing a subject - in creating a narrative - can 1. after studying a particular location or space (i.e. a particular street corner or the entrance to a movie house) the photographer begins to become one with his immediate environment and the things and people that reside within its boundaries: from this point forward the photographer can gauge and interpret his subjects before finally pulling the trigger at the optimum moment, or Cartier's "the decisive moment". 2. the shot is truly instant or likely "Reactive" to fast thinking (and experience) as Jose pointed out earlier on review of Georgios photograph.

Lastly, we have results that are a manifest of Luck, Intuition/experience, Visualization, or a combination of all these important and varied variables.

On Documentary Street Photography - lets here from everyone. :)   Posted: 06/10/2020 15:13:19
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

I am very familiar with this area. However, when I took these images, I was not waiting for something to happen. I was intrigued by the man in an orange jacket on the scooter behind my husband with a blue jacket and thought orange and blue were a nice color contrast. Then I had to run to catch up to my husband and saw another image and without thought took it. Ditto for the third image. When I saw the images, the theme of Social Distancing came to mind. These images were spontaneous.

That same morning, I took other images of landmarks along the Thames River. Some were horrible with ugly colors but I converted them to monochrome and created a triptych with them called Along the Thames. This to me is straight documentary.   Posted: 06/10/2020 17:17:44
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Peter Newman   Peter Newman
I think it depends on the image and its purpose. A few days ago I would have agreed that, especially with street, That color often only interferes with a good monochrome. I am showing both a color and a mono version of one of my old images. Yes, I could have played around with the luminescence until I got a much better conversion. However after the properly converted version was complete, I am not sure that it would tell a significantly different story than the color version.

I think that this comparison does illustrate that: it is far more difficult to get a good monochrome image, than one in color; that there times when color can aid in telling a story; color is not always a distraction.
  Posted: 06/10/2020 17:43:51
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Hello Peter, and thanks for stopping by....but no, this is not a good example to show the differences between color and BW photography and how it is viewed and interpreted: a more complex example needs to be used...the conversation between the importance of (or significance) between color and BW photographs, well, is not as simple as black and white. :)

All kidding aside, I think most artist will agree we are discussing more complex pieces that reveal themselves differently through BW and color renderings.   Posted: 06/11/2020 05:43:44
Peter Newman   Peter Newman
Lance, I probably did not make my paragraph clear. I posted that image for the very narrow purpose of not agreeing with Judy's statement that: "Reasons for using monochrome is that reduces the distraction of color..." more specifically I was trying to illustrate that color is not always a distraction.

I apologize if my above statement moved the thread. That was not my intention.   Posted: 06/11/2020 11:49:33
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

This conversation about monochrome vs color has really made me think about how, when, and where to use monochrome vs color.

I am so new to photography (3 years vs the vast experience of those commenting) and have simply concentrated on learning techniques. My desire to learn monochrome was simply because webinars would state learn monochrome because your photography will improve. Thus I joined the DDG 83 group Dec. 2018. I would research to find simple answers to what makes a good monochrome image. Nowhere, did I find the type of conversation in this thread.

Last November I started on a journey to learn still life, how to create themes, and then light paint,. My images changed from monochrome to color because I was challenged to use color to create mood and story. How can one appreciate the artistry of Italian Faenze hand painted ceramic without seeing the rich tones and gradations of color or the oozing of the yellow egg yolk that tells the story. When I converted this image to monochrome, it lost impact and story.

I use images as a way to remember and have never considered them as art. This thread is challenging me to think deeper - documentary? art? choice?. Therefore, I appreciate the different points of view.

  Posted: 06/11/2020 13:23:46
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Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Judith, it surprises me that you are someone who is new to photography. your work is amazing! You are obviously someone who really approaches learning in a strongly focused and dedicated manner! I do love your egg image. Last week, I was day dreaming about how to photograph just such an egg, in an old fashioned holder such as the one you used. however, I didn't have one or know where I could find one. I can't go shopping, due to susceptibilities and COVID. Do people even use those wonderful egg holders anymore? They used to be common (am I dating myself?)   Posted: 06/11/2020 17:07:59
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

I just saw your comment. For some reason, I am not getting messages delivered from the server.

This egg cup holder is from Faenze, Italy famous for its ceramic. My husband grew up there.

I have attached another idea for an egg. This image is light painted on white card stock and the color temperature adjusted to blue. I also tried this setup on my black granite kitchen counter to purposely catch reflections.   Posted: 07/21/2020 15:14:17
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
CALL FOR ARTIST Gilmer Arts National Photography Exhibition 2020

Please, follow link to the Prospectus. Reach out to me with questions. Thank you, everyone!   Posted: 06/05/2020 12:02:18

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Good day, everyone! Hope you take time to copy and paste this link to a 3min read on my work and the other artist on the site, too. They recently highlighted my work. I also use this site to promote photography exhibitions scheduled at Gilmer Arts in Ellijay, Georgia. And please, leave a Comment after the article regardless if Pro or Con on what you read. Thank you.   Posted: 05/22/2020 09:02:34
Georgios Kazazis   Georgios Kazazis
Have a good day everyone!
Great idea indeed!
For me is Pro definitely!
Well done dear Lance!!   Posted: 05/22/2020 10:33:44
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Good day, Georgios. I am glad you enjoyed the post. Thank you.   Posted: 05/24/2020 06:02:58
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
This is a comment on your article, Lance.

What you say, about slowing down and really visualizing the beauty around us, is right on. I do think that gift of 'seeing' comes mostly from a lot of practice. After awhile (perhaps years), a dedicated photographer begins to really see the components of a scene that would make a good photograph.

One comment on your article involved the wish for a resurgence of "documentary" photography. Indeed there is a place for good images that purport to "document" something. However, it is important to note that ever since photography began, photos have been altered in development, to the point that it is unwise to trust that any photo is really a straight photo. Indeed, there is always a difference between what is "actually" there, and what the photographer perceives. The camera records straight pixels, and in development, the photographer attempts to tweak them to look like what they perceived.   Posted: 05/22/2020 11:13:59
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Perhaps part of the reason why there is often a difference between what the photographer remembers and the actual scene as captured in raw by the camera, is because of the lack of context in the image, verses what surrounds the scene in the photographer's memory. The photographer has a multi-sensory experience, including their own perceptual historical memories. The camera has only one of the senses, in that it sees, but does not perceive (perception is a brain function which incorporates memory).   Posted: 05/22/2020 11:30:11
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Hello, Georgianne. I really like your comments and insights...thank you for this wonderful detailed response.“To those who believe that beauty and meaning exist only in people's imaginations, photography would seem to be too closely bound to reality; to be too wingless an art to be interesting. But to those who love life, photography will appeal because of its very closeness to reality.” Irina Khrabroff

However, we are all aware in recall, our joy of an event, place or thing is not as clear as the experience in real-time, as such we tend to modify details which may be a bit left or right of what was experienced. Traditionally, and for the most part, in both words and pictures, we do our best to convey the deep emotional real-time experience in a clear and authentic manner.

A great example are the landscape photographs of Ansel Adams - Adams openly admitted his long time in the dark room ended in final prints revealing more drama than experienced in real-time. His heavy hand in Dodge and Burn techniques have produced many extreme variations of light and shadow helping him bring his deep emotional experience to the viewer. However, never is the work questioned of its authenticity: his darkroom techniques are pure as most (but not all) 19th Century and early 20th Century photographers during the Pictorialism movement, and the final print reveals an authentic visual experience - one that any viewer could have experienced and appreciated.

Another example can be seen in my many pictorial sea-scapes - as I tend to sometimes use a slow shutter speed to reveal motion of waves and clouds in attempt to bring the enormous emotion felt during the real-time experience.

And this is because, as you shared in your comment - environmental nuances that surround our space often reveal themselves only after time has passed or alternatively, as you also stated, through years of capturing photographs and learning to “see”: as experienced photographers’ have learned to visualize and capture all that lay before them.

“Art is hidden in nature…and that he who can tear her out of it, owns her”. Painter Albrecht DŸrer (1471-1528)

  Posted: 05/24/2020 07:22:16
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
  Posted: 05/24/2020 07:41:09
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Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Lance, thank you for your excellent reply. I do love the quotes! But most of all, I LOVE your beautiful boneyard image! Wow! I do love to photograph boneyards. There was an excellent one a Hunting Beach, SC, but last year they cleared all the dead trees from it, and totally ruined it for photographers! We also found a good one on Jekyll Island, GA. Is that where you took this one? The moodiness of your image really communicates. Thanks for posting it!   Posted: 05/24/2020 12:17:30
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Here is one that I took at Hunting Island, when the trees were still there! I just love working with these images of trees. I called this "Cold Storm Coming", and used the blue cast with white vignette to induce the feeling of coldness.   Posted: 05/24/2020 16:13:31
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Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
....appreciate this meaningful dialogue, I feel it is good to discuss the many facets of our art genre.

Yes, I love visiting these places as well, Georgianne. Captured on Long Boat Key, Florida a couple years back during a very strange optical event: the late afternoon-evening sun was just cutting through very thick fog which had descended upon the beach - in post-production I decided to convert to BW and use similar Toning to mimic the experience: though the color version is outstanding - the BW w/toning made the scene more stark.

Oh, gee...I really like your shot...the cool tone fits it well! I need to visit your neck of the woods (or coast) Georgianne - where do you suggest I visit and at time of year? Thank you for sharing...very cool!   Posted: 05/24/2020 17:11:38
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
This shot was taken at Hunting Beach, and the trees there have been removed. The beach is baren. Perhaps the Jekyll boneyard is still there. If you visit Jekyll island, also take a full day to visit nearby Cumberland island. Actually, Cumberland is best explored in two days, as it is huge. We loved it, with its ruins and amazing vegetation and wild horses. We ran out of time to visit the 14 mile long beach, as we took the amazing tour of the north end and walked the south end. Access to the island is by ferry only, and aside from the tour, you have to walk or rent a bike. As we didn't visit the beach, I don't know if there is a boneyard there. We'd planned on exploring it this year, but got sidelined by COVID-19.   Posted: 05/25/2020 08:00:09

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Hi everyone! Hope you like this added feature to our group. Again, this Space will be available regardless of the month we are reviewing: however, feel free to post specific questions on any photograph, from any month.

Thank you.   Posted: 05/19/2020 12:12:23
Judith Ponti-Sgargi   Judith Ponti-Sgargi

This is a wonderful idea.

My questions is: from what sites, can I download free textures to experiment with?   Posted: 05/19/2020 12:51:21
Tom Pickering   Tom Pickering
The best thing I can recommend is to do a search for "free textures". This is how I started collecting them. Eventually, you can bite the bullet and start capturing your own - take shots of walls, flooring, asphalt, concrete, etc.   Posted: 05/19/2020 17:05:25
Peter Newman   Peter Newman
I do not intend to sound snarky, but why purchase textures.

I prefer to make my own, for essentially the same reason I don't buy picture postcards. Then there is the practical purpose: I have to search through my collection to find an almost fit, and then modify it. Creating my own background sometimes can be a real PITA. See my image posted this month in Group65, which has a fairly detailed description of how I turned a garden into a putting green.

To get you started see the video at: <>
Once I started getting into it, on some mages I sent more time on the background than the image itself. I also learned that PS will do some strange things, which I might want to use later. e.g. If I change a red to a green, using the color replacement tool, or curves in LAB mode, (probably the fastest way to change a color,) HSL may not recognize the change as either red or green. etc.
  Posted: 06/10/2020 19:30:13
Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
thanks for the kick in the behind, Peter. I have a collection of my own textures, made from photographing cement, walls, peeling paint, clouds, etc. However, your suggestion made me think. I don't like nor use most of my textures, so I am going to embark upon a project to actually paint my own textures. it will give me something to do while being so home bound.   Posted: 06/11/2020 17:12:10

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