A year ago, I blogged.
I remember feeling that day, as I wrote, the desire to hone my HDR skills, and to grow as an artist, so I thought I’d look back and see what the year has brought.
I’ve spent quite a few hours studying the work of the great masters Jason St. Peter, Lincoln Palmer, EasyPix, the genius Andy Hornby and the HDR magician Louis Trocciola. I’ve made notes of their techniques, the way they frame their shots, and their subject matter. I’ve exchanged emails with them, chatted, and picked their brains on the subject. I’ve learned little bits from all of them and added them into my skills. I bought what I consider to be the best HDR program on the market, Dynamic HDR by Mediachance, which in my opinion blows Photomatix out of the water. Coupled with Lightroom (which is the rock that my photography software is built on) and Photoshop, I’ve created a strong arsenal of HDR tools. My Nikon D90, which ironically, I prefer without the bracketing feature, delivers the images I take with unmatched clarity and color.
But there’s still something needed for a perfect HDR shot. I wish I could tell you what it is, but part of me feels that I’m still searching for it. Sure, I see it occasionally. The way a tree looks next to the path in the snow, or the way another path disappears into the autumn trees. A ship sitting in a river, docked along side a pier, my kids playing in the church steps or Rob delivering a power chord as he jams along with The Midnite All-Stars. I can’t even describe what it is a see, but as occasionally, when I look through my lens, I see the world in layers of light and color.
It doesn’t always work, and sometimes I make some pretty crappy HDRs, and those never see the light of day, my ratio is getting better and better.
That’s what I’ve done in the past year, lets see what happens in the next one…
Here are some of my favorite HDRs from the past 365 days…
Well, now that 2008 is over, and good riddance, it’s time to get my big ole butt in gear.
2008 was a year of personal challenges, and I’m really hoping to avoid that kinda crap in the new year. (Yeah, I know, let’s just pretend, ok?) That will leave me plenty of time to focus on my professional life. While my number one priority will remain to find a day job, there are a number things I want to accomplish in my hobby of photography. As the ball dropped the other night I reflected on them, and thought I should write them down, maybe writing them down would force me to accomplish them. But then I found the loophole that if I lost the paper I wrote them on…. which is why I’m here posting a non-photography related post on a PhotoBlog .. how ghastly!!! I mean what’s the chances of my losing the entire internet, right?
So, this is what I want to do this year….
Resolution # 1 – Sell – I never wanted to make a million dollars off my work, and I never want to do it professionally, but I’ve got all these images sitting around, and maybe there’s a little old lady in Kansas who would love a photo a graffiti covered staircase in her living room. I’m going to use sites like Ebay and RedBubble to sell a print here or there. I’m also gonna actually listen to my sister, and try to find out about art fairs. Might not sell a damn thing, but I’ve got learn that for myself. I’ve got to learn the fine art of tagging my photos and I’m currently brokering a deal with a brilliant mind that will be paid in slices from Carlos. Wish me luck.
Resolution # 2 – Upgrade – Santa didn’t bring me all the nice shiny gear I wanted for Christmas, which means I’ve got to go out and buy it myself. Well… maybe if I do a good enough job with resolution #1…
Resolution # 3 – Keep Up With My Blog – Dawg was right, my blog is horribly erratic, but unfortunately it mirrors my current life. That shouldn’t be the case & I promise to do better. By the way, thanks so much for the recognition, I’m shooting for making the list next year too. I’ve joined PhotoBlog community to draw traffic to my blog, but how interesting will it be if there’s never anything new? In short, I’ll write more.
Resolution # 4 – Keep Up With My Comrade’s Blogs I know so many amazingly talented photographers who go out of their way to share their great art with the world and I should be paying attention more. I promise to keep up with the going on’s of my granny, Sue Henry, Jen Rinaldi, Heather McCullah, Julie Lawson, Scott Bulger, Lincoln Palmer, Jake Easley and more. I should also be keeping up with the wealth of advice and knowledge give by Damien Franco on Your Photo Tips and great blogs like Lightroom Killer Tips, Pro Photo Show and Epic Edits. All of these site mentioned, and any I may have forgetten not only entertain, but inspire me, and help me better myself and my art. I’ll be more active in 2009, reading and commenting.
Resolution # 5 – Keep Shooting All of the above will seem pretty silly and pointless if I have no new material. I need to get out more, see more, shoot more. I’m gonna promise to work harder on the A to Z Challenge at YourPhotoForum. I’ve drawn the first work of 2009 and it’s staring at me from my desk. I’ve got no idea where I’m going in 2009, but I promise to bring my camera with me… and thus, all of you.
So now I need your help. Basically, I need you to break my balls every day. Hey – it’s leap year, you even get an extra day to do so. If you see me slacking, yell at me, slap me in the back of the head, call me at 4 in the morning and scream obscenities at me. It’s ok, I probably deserve it.
2009 will be a year of moments, and I promise to grasp as many as I can.
Strolled around Williamsburg today. I dunno, maybe it was that I stayed up to the wee hours last night reading the blog of the HDR master Louis Trocciola but I just kept seeing all the great color and detail around me.
Now I’m in no way trying to copy his work, even if I tried I couldn’t get close. Visit his blog, and look at his images and let me know when you jaw finally closes. I’ve also been learning a lot at my favorite photo stomping ground Your Photo Forum from the HDR masters there, Jake Easley and Lincoln Palmer. Their stuff will blow you away. They’re both great guys too, and I’ve gotten lots of help and advice from them.
For now anyway, I’m still trying to find my way in this art form. Not every image will work as an HDR, and if nothing else, I’m getting better at taking a photo and making a mental note to run it through Photomatix when I get home.
Here’s what I saw today…