Friday, March 23, 2012

"Wind Sculpture"

This is a photograph from a little photo adventure I took yesterday.  This tree was at the very top of a hill, and had been sculpted by the wind, which pretty much blows at top speed everyday in this location.  It was so windy, I had trouble standing and holding the camera steady.  Unbelievable!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Why take black and white photographs?

I wonder that myself, even though I prefer black and white photography to color.  In today's world, it must seem like an act of craziness when we have the best digital camera's at our disposal that can take beautiful, vibrant color photographs.  I was really happy to come across this article by Smashing Magazine:

It is one of their inspiration articles, a series they do to inspire artists and designers.  The images they included are beautiful, but their explaination of why black and white is not a lost art is well said.  This part of the article explained perfectly what I've been struggling to convey to people who ask, "Why black and white?"....

"Compared to colorful designs where catchy colors help the design to stand out, in black-and-white designs the ability to stand out depends only on its ability to communicate rather than on its appealing visual presentation.
Indeed, beautiful black and white photography doesn’t attract with its play of colors. Here close attention to composition, lighting, perspective and the context it is shot in are important. Hence, before considering the photos presented below please prepare some patience and time."

Yes, that's just it.  Color can be a crutch too easily relied on for even the best photographers.  Take the color away, and see if a photograph can stand on its own.  If it can, you've got a truly good photograph.  Composition gets lost when color is overwhelming the photographer.  I'm guilty, I take thousands of photographs of fall colors, when I should really be looking for that one that stands out.  Without color, you are now photographing light, and photography is all about light.  So, in answer to the question, I take black and white photographs for thier ability to convey emotion through eliminating the distraction of color, for their testing of my ability to compose a beautiful photograph, and because they show the viewer where the light is.  Even if you're not ready to leave out color in your photographs, I hope the article above has inspired you to try it out. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Photographer of the week: Jack Radcliffe

Image by Jack Radcliffe
I've been a huge fan of Jack Radcliffe's since I saw his work on Behance three years ago.  I'm particularly drawn to his portfolio of photographs that he took of his daughter Alison throughout her life.  It is a visual representation of how a human finds who she is.  She dates different people, grows up and goes through many phases of style and preferences, just like all humans do.  It's a truly beautiful and meaningful body of work. I recommend looking at the portfolio from beginning to end, which you can find here:

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Favorite Thing of the Week...Rifle Paper Company

 Ah, Rifle Paper Co.   So many things to say.  The word lovely comes to mind.  Anna Bond is the brilliance behind Rifle Paper Co., and she does these handpainted floral designs for everything from recipe cards to prints for the home.  You can visit Anna Bond's store to purchase some of these lovlies here:
The colors are fantastic!  That is what first drew me to Anna Bond's designs, the colors she uses are eye-candy.   
I have these cute recipe cards earmarked for mother's day.  My mom is a great cook and loves to organize her recipes.  I thought these would be perfect for her, and she's going to love the aqua blue flowers around the edges. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

New Work - "Silos Trio"

It has been unseasonably warm here in Montana, so the clouds are starting to become puffier, like they are in the summer.  They sky is clear and less overcast, so it works out great for us photographers.  This shot is at the Story Mill in Bozeman.  It is a place I used to photograph regularly, but it's now blocked off from exploration.  The shadows are so defined around the curved edges of these silos.  They have a beautiful shape and contours.