Artsy, Black and White, Color, Fine Art Photography, flower photography, Flowers, Photography

Tulips – Flower Photography

 

There are a few flowers I really enjoy photographing. Lilies, tulips, and rhododendrons are counted among that number. As a common photographic subject, flowers are appreciated for their variety of form, intricacy, and emotional connection. Few people don’t have some level of appreciation for flowers. It’s no wonder that flower photography is such a popular genre.

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Take these tulips. I went for a classical representation. A simple black background and a single light source positioned to reveal detail. My goal with these images was to give the viewer a chance to appreciate not just the obvious prettiness of the tulips, but also take a moment to consider the amount of detail provided by nature. The lines of the petals, the dusting of pollen that can be seen in some the images, little details that can provoke an inner dialogue.

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I especially like the cutaway image that reveals more of the inner flower. It is an uncommon viewpoint, and I think imparts a greater sense of character. The slightly warm tone added to this black and white image was a whim, but one I think works.

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Each of the images shown here are important for me to have created. Like with any creative act it was about expressing something for myself and then sharing it with the rest of the world.Each of the images shown here is available for purchase here.

The images shown here are available for purchase here.

Artsy, Color, depth of field, flower photography, Flowers, Macro, Nature, Photography

Sakura (2017)

The cherry blossom tree that I photograph every year made an early bloom. I was fortunately quick off the mark because it really didn’t last long.

What is it about cherry blossoms? They are not the biggest nor the most robust of blooms. I think it has something to do both with their delicacy and the arrangments of the blossoms that seems almost painterly.

This must be why I always seem to photograph them with a shallow depth-of-field and the sort of subdued color that is well-represented by Fujifilm’s Classic Chrome film emulation.

Shot on the Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF 90mm f/2 R LM WR (usually a portrait lens, but it close-focuses well enough for this purpose).

Prints available here.

Sakura (2017)

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Abstract, Artsy, Black and White, Fine Art Photography, Photography

Hairdryer

As a photographer, part of the deal is developing the ability to see photographs essentially everywhere. Make no mistake that this is an ability, an affinity, that must be cultivated. How? Well, by slowing down and really looking at what’s around you, by never taking anything for granted, and by developing a visual vocabulary all your own.

There are plenty of rules and guidelines to photography, but those are mostly on the technical side. You have the law of reciprocity, the rule of thirds, the inverse square ratio…but these are all tools, means to and end. Never should you focus so much on the technical aspect of your photography that you forget to nurture your particular vision.

Because you have one. Everyone does, nascent or fully-formed. Find yours. For myself, I know that I am drawn to appreciate and make certain types of photographs. I love shadow, the appreciation of minute detail, a sense of narrative in portraiture. I can trace all of these back to the influences on my own visual vocabulary, my aesthetic. Growing up in the 1980’s as a lover of comic books I know that informs some of my ideas of storytelling, my appreciation of western paintings influenced my sense of storytelling in portraiture, an interest in Japanese art still has a heavy influence on my color palette in processing photographs. None of this even begins the address the influence of modern photographers like Ralph Gibson and Gordon Parks.

You can see some of these influences in the images posted today. I saw what I wanted to capture in the form of an antiquated hairdryer and the way the light from a window fell on it. The rest of my particular photographic habits informed these images as they inform all my images.

Fellow photographer, I hope you know your visual vocabulary. I hope you cultivate your aesthetic the way a gardener would cultivate orchids. I hope you find your way.

HAIRDRYER

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Artsy, Fine Art Photography, Photography, Portrait

The Boxer

I do like an enthusiastic portrait subject. Playful, mercurial, easily bored; pretty much sums up the gamut of what you encounter photographing children. This was a session of a boy and his mother. In all a successful sitting but these in particular were my favorites as the young man ran through a full range of expressive gesticulations and pulled faces. A lot of fun!

THE BOXER

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NEXT UP: SOMETHING WITH STILL LIFE…MAYBE

Artsy, Color, depth of field, Fine Art Photography, Photography

The Unstrung Violin

The violin is one of the most romantic of instruments. If there is a more pragmatic reason other than the effect the violin has on the listener that prompted Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to have Sherlock Holmes be an aficionado of the instrument, I prefer not to know it. In my youth I played, but those days are long past and now it is more of a curio, a battered remnant of someone’s musical journey rescued from the trash heap. It is likely the fact that like all musical instruments the violin marries form and function, it could not be made other than how it is and be the same. And they are just darned gorgeous.

THE UNSTRUNG VIOLIN

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NEXT UP: THE BOXER

Artsy, Color, depth of field, Food, Glorious Food, Photography

Cupcake

Still coming to terms with my switch to a new camera system it is only prudent that I put it through it’s paces with some basic photographic tasks. To that end, I give you; cupcakes.

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Blue Cupcake #1

A pretty straight forward pair of product photography shots. Processed to have a little faded film-like appeal as is my style.

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Blue Cupcake #2

Set-up and execution were simple enough. This is good. I am a firm adherent to the KISS principle.

Artsy, Everyday Life, Fine Art Photography, Photography, Portrait

Imagery Hodge-Podge

A few of the first images of 2017. Do you want to hear an interesting observation I’ve made? The right tool can affect how you work.

All of these images were shot with a rangefinder-style camera. I do feel like it is not only my personal style/preference to shoot in a more “journalistic” style, but that this type of camera almost demands it, or at least puts one in the frame of mind that facilitates it. I would doubtless have shot these same types of images with a dSLR, but the discreet nature of the rangefinder (and the stealthy silence of the electronic shutter) does make it easier to put people at ease and still the urge to perform for the camera. It is an advancement of why I enjoyed shooting with point-and-shoots a lot last year (the Fujifilm X10 & X30), but with greater technical capability.

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Face of an Angel
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Cards on the Table
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Laying Track
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Free-Flowing Cups

I’m not a gear head, but I have to remark on how much I’m enjoying  Fuji’s XF35mm f/2 R WR lens. As a “normal” lens I find it is pretty much living on my X-Pro2. With my preference for primes it’s a part of my “portrait trinity” along with the 90mm f/2.8 R LM WR, and 56mm f/1.2. Speaking of portraits, this is something I plan to focus more on this year both professionally and personally.

How is 2017 treating you and your photography this year?