Monday, January 31, 2011

iPhone Test Results

This is a tough image for a modest camera to record.  There is lots of fine detail and a broad spectrum of light to dark areas.  The iPhone did a good job of capturing this.  It was an overcast day so the light was very flat which helps I think.  This photo needed only a slight levels and contrast and levels adjustment in Photoshop. 

Sunday, January 30, 2011

iPhone Test Results

Here's another iPhone image.  I took this on a construction site; this is a pallet of bricks that had gotten wet before the temperature dropped to below zero.  The somewhat orange cast is from the light cast from some nearby orange tarps.  All and all not bad quality; reasonably sharp corner to corner and the ice in the upper third looks quite sparkly.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Iphone Test Results

The Apple iPhone 4G is a lovely thing in many respects.  But is the built in camera up to snuff?  In the world of camera marketing it's all about megapixels; which is only one of many things to consider when evaluating a camera.  More is generally better but the quality of the pixels themselves and the static interference (digital noise) are key to the quality of the image potential.  My first digital camera had 4 megapixels.  The iPhone 4G boasts 5....and what about that tiny little lens?  Here's the first of a few test images.  This is a routine sighting for most people - soap bubbles in the bathroom sink.  The colour is a little mottled but that could well be the light over the sink.  The bubbles are reasonably sharp.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Industrial Abstracts

Here's the last of the industrial abstracts photos.  The photos posted this week have all featured the same subject.  It is a piece of plate steel about 2.5 metres high by 3.6 metres wide.  It is raw steel that has had various bits and pieces welded to it so that tools can be hung.  The odd time a grinder gets put back while it is still spinning and the surface gets banged up a bit.  The notes are written onto the surface using the marking pencil used to lay out the cuts on the steel components; the notes tell the shop workers what is supposed to be put back where.  Art is everywhere - even in the strangest places sometimes.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Industrial Abstracts

Number 3 in the industrial abstracts series.  Don't know about you but I have seen far less interesting artwork hanging on gallery walls.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Industrial Abstracts

Next up in the Industrial abstracts series.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Industrial Abstracts

Any regular follower of this blog knows that I am a sucker for anything with extreme texture or unusual detail.  Sometimes there are things found in nature, sometimes in the street (remember the photo of the variously coloured chewing gum stuck to a bridge pylon from our trip to Seattle last year?....the subjects can be a little weird sometimes).

I'll post a few new examples in the next few days.  These photos were taken in the steel fabrication shop I visited to photograph some of the young workers.  Here's the first.

Monday, January 24, 2011

New Assignment

The instruction I gave these three fellows for this shot was to look like you own this shop; give me a little bit of swagger and attitude.  In my mind the shot was to be high contrast black and white.  Here is the result.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

New Assignment

Getting the exposure right on these welding shots is a little tricky; lots of trial and error.  But getting the white balance correct is easy, as long as the photo has a heavy blue cast you are AOK.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

New Assignment

This is one of the lads that put on a small light show for me with the various torches, grinders and other tools that are part of the steel fabrication world.

Friday, January 21, 2011

New Assignment

I recently started a new assignment that will be ongoing over the next short while.  An agency that works with young people and industry has retained me to photograph some of their clients in the workplace.  The first stop was a major Edmonton steel fabrication shop.  Here's the first of a few images I will post over the next few days.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

U of A Farm Lands

In this shot I opted to have almost no contrast in the sky or snow as I wanted the trees to be the main subject.

Here's a thing to note...most digital cameras will display a 'histogram' of each photo showing the range of dark and light areas in the photo.  It's a chart basically with the dark areas on the left and the light areas on the right.  If the histogram shows that all the dark and light areas are recorded - that is, no indication of data on the extreme left or right then you have a good exposure.  Data that seems to be way off the scale left means underexposure, off the scale to the right and your photo is overexposed.  A perfect histogram would look like the top of the tree line in this photo with the balance of the recorded data on the right side of the photo.  So there is the lesson in this photo - 'expose to the right of the histogram'.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

U of A Farm Lands

Here's a solitary pair of trees standing along an access road onto the U of A farm lands.  Some of the U of A buildings are on the horizon; including the old farm building that was featured in my 2011 January 08 posting.

This is a rather straight forward kind of shot, only minor editing required to bring out the contrast in the clouds and a bit of vignetting around the edges.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

U of A Farm Lands

Photography is supposed to be about capturing great images with a camera not about developing computing skills.  That said, there was a fair bit of processing applied to this image.  I was after an old-photo-in-the-farm-house-kitchen-drawer look for this shot of a lone tree in this snowy field.  I really like the way the prairie grass in the foreground give us a clue about how much snow there is in this field and provides a bit of foreground interest that does not detract from the main subject in the photo which is of course the tree.

Monday, January 17, 2011

U of A Farm Lands

I am really happy with this photo.  I think it has a lot of structure and rythm to it both in terms of the the horizontal and vertical overlapping elements and the contrast from light to dark.  I tried to control the contrast so that there was plenty of it but still retaining the detail in the shadow.  Even though the photo was shot directly into the sun everything worked out quite fine I think.

Canon G11 1/250 sec @ F8.  Black and White Conversion via Nik Silver Efex Pro using 'underexposure EV-1' preset and Kodak ISO 32 Panatomic X film representation.  Further contrast and clarity adjustment in Adobe Lightroom.  Final Brightness adjustment via Adobe Photoshop.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

U of A Farm Lands

Official business takes me to the University of Alberta Farm Lands at least once a week and there are a few spots I've been wanting to stop at for some time.  This week I had time to do just that and I'll share a few of the shots I took on that visit over the next couple of days.  Here's the first.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Snow Storm

This is the street in front of our house taken Sunday January 09 around 9 o'clock. I had to hurry, the car coming toward me was not slowing down probably for fear of getting stuck in the snow.

Canon 5DII w/ 24 TSE lens; ISO 100 F11 @ 13 Seconds.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Snow Storm

This is a photo of a back Alley near our house.  Rather bleak, apart from the Christmas Lights on the fence to the left.  It will be a few weeks before the RV on the extreme left will see any use I expect.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Snow Storm

I'm not sure what this thing in the foreground is exactly;  I think you put your kid in it and they wobble around or something - no doubt it's hugely popular whatever it may be.  No line up for any of the playground gear this day however.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow Storm

If you want to go for a skate best bring along your shovel in addition to your hockey stick.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow Storm

You can see this hyrdant from the sidewalk which will be useful if the fire department responds to a call on foot.  Which of course the wouldn't - however they may have to walk the last few hundred feet given the state of the residential roadways!

Nil Silver Efex Pro renders the reflective paint in an odd way which I didn't like at first but after staring at it for a while I came to like it just fine.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Snow Storm

We've had a big dump of snow here in the last 3 days; I will post a few photos taken during this period over the next few days.  Here's the first...This is on the deck at home, one of our favourite deck chairs now hopelessly buried.  In the lower left you can see some disturbed snow; that is the footprints from one of the dogs who came out to assist then had the good sense to get back inside on the couch.

Canon 5DII with Canon 15mm fish eye lens.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Old Buildings

This is the Rutherford Library on the campus of the University of Alberta.  The photo was taken in mid September 2010, just as the leaves had started to turn.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Old Buildings

This barn rests on the University of Alberta Farm lands.  I added an antique effect to it using Nik Silver Efex Pro.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Old Buildings

There are buildings like this scattered across the prairie; this one neat the Rainbow Vallet Ski Club soutf of Edmonton.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Ice Details

Here's why wandering out onto the river ice is a bad idea.  That's open water.  Looks like even the coyote who made the tracs in the foreground had the sense to get back to land.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Ice Details

It's tempting to go out onto the river ice at this time of year but I'll leave that to fools and coyotes.  I took this shot from the safety of the bank.  I think the ice balls on the windswept ice look like shredded foam coffee cups.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

It's all in the details

This weird little photograph - which I think would be quite at home on the walls of any modern art gallery was taken as a bit of an experiment.  I came across a trail-closed sign in the river valley and the back of the sign was rather scratched up.  At first pass it looked like just another aluminium sign but when I looked closely I could see lots of faint colour.  A simple vibrancy/saturation adjustment in Adobe Lightroom resulted in this image.

Monday, January 3, 2011

It's all in the details

I like the overlapping textures in this shot of a wooden power pole clad in wire mesh - I think the mesh is to discourage beavers and other wood chewing animals away.  Canon G11, Pinhole Camera effect via Nik Silver Efex Pro software.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

It's all in the details

Here's another shot taken with the Blackberry.  The resolution is quite good for close ups but not that spectaculat otherwise.  When I took the shot I thought it would look good in black and white but I settled on colour when I saw the lovely copper hue stood out.  This is a detail of a telephone pole; the staples are left overs from lost dog notices I think.  Sure hope the posters were taken down because the dogs were found.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

It's all in the details

This shot was made late one afternoon in a river valley parking lot.  I had forgotten my point and shoot camera but I did have my blackberry so I was able to get the shot.