Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Lanaconing Silk Mill and Hooked on SnapArt3

Monday I visited the Silk Mill again. It is always a long day trip there six hours round trip driving and 4-5 hours of shooting. I hardly made any "big camera" images, instead spent time wandering around with the iPhone and the Olloclip, but that will be on my iPhone blog later. Tonight I worked on the few HDR images I shot on Monday. The images were first processed in Nik HDR Efex Pro and then further processed with SnapArt3 and Photoshop. The chair has been photographed many times, many ways, but this time the umbrella that has been around since my first visit and probably since 1957 when the mill shut down, presented an opportunity. There is a space in the mill on the third floor I have dubbed "the studio." The soft diffused window light falls so beautifully in this space. I juggled the old wooden hampers around to create the composition as well as juggling the chair and umbrella. As I was processing this I thought about the painters in the Renaissance Period and the way they depicted light in their images and came to realize that this was the very type of light that they worked with. I made two compositions in this space with the chair, and like both for different reasons. I would be interested in knowing which one you might like best and why? Art is so weigh in on that, or maybe you won't like either one?
Ellery pointed out a window where the vines had grown over the outside and the leaves had begun to turn colors. I decided I loved the scene so I made a few shots there too. These were also HDR images processed in Nik HDR Efex Pro  and then in SnapArt3.
 My last shot with the "Big Camera" was of the push broom Herb has used to keep the peeling paint swept off the floors. I loved the multiple light sources in this scene from the single overhead light bulb to the bright diffused light of the tall windows. The windows are beginning to fall out of their openings and I see that the structural supports are twisted a bit, I don't know how much longer the mill will be safe to work in but the roof is leaking now pretty badly and winter could be very bad if we get any wet and heavy snows. Herb is still hopeful.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Losing my Marbles? iPhone meets SnapArt 3

Yesterday I helped a friend with the process of boxing up belongings in preparation for moving out of her childhood home. It is always a sad time when both of your parents are gone and you are left with the task of sorting and pitching, saving or selling what remains of a lifetime of living. But we had some fun too with another friend..finding unusual items stored and long ago forgotten. When we found some marbles I just had to get my iPhone out and make a few goofy shots of the marbles on the plastic table cloth. When I got home I started "playing" with the marble images. They seemed perfect for an iPhone app called iDroste...and another app called Decim 8. After making those images I downloaded them to my laptop and further processed and re-sized them for processing in SnapArt3. So now I am crossing over between iPhone images and large file software programs. I really did not know where to post this on my iPhone blog or here, but since I have kept my iPhone blog pure, processed and shot on the iPhone, I decided to post them here. There really are no limits to what you can create with the iPhone and a few cool apps. I will be introducing some of the iPhone apps and my processes in a presentation during the Nature Visions Weekend in November. I hope you can join me there.
After making the marble images above I decided to run another iPhone image I had made through SnapArt3 and the shot below is the result of that.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Delmarva Bike Week "Biker Art" with Snapart3

Whew, here at the shore the wind kicked up last night and howled all night. The rain stopped for a while but started again this morning. The bikers started up the highway as early as 4:00am and have been going all morning. My guess is that many are heading home with the prediction of showers off and on all day. Too bad as the organizers of Delmarva Bike Week really put a lot of effort into the weekend activities as the culmination of the week. Today is also my last day at the beach until November so I will be heading back to Baltimore after the Ravens game!

When I was walking around the Arthur W. Purdue Stadium lot yesterday looking at bikes and looking to make some images, I focused on details that caught my eye from the hand made leather details of the Indian to raked forks on custom bikes. I surely wish the rain had not started or I would have really had a great assortment of images to work with. The bikes and their owners had such style and they were coming and going so there was a constant stream of incoming bikes and owners to see. I will be back next year to get some more images and enjoy the event...maybe I'll even do a photo workshop for anyone who might be interested in capturing some great bike and biker shots. : - )
This  group I am calling "Biker Art" because I enjoyed applying some painterly effects using SnapArt 3. (I don't get any commissions from them I just enjoy using it.)

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Delmarva Bike Week

The bikers started rolling down beach highway around Tuesday for the Delmarva Bike Week, but by Thursday there was a constant rumble of bikes running down the highway. I love motorcycles for their design, individuality and freedom. Too bad I don't have one. Today was the day I had picked to head over to the gathering at the Arthur W. Purdue Stadium, where there were many vendors set up as well as a band stage for the days events. The morning looked good but by 11:00 the clouds had rolled in from the ocean and it had begun to rain. A bikers worst enemy, rain! There were hundreds if not thousands of bikers that had arrived to participate, but as the rain continued to fall the bikers began to thin out. I stayed until 2:00 as I had carried my umbrella and made some shots in the rain.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Nanticoke Indian Pow Wow

Today was a bit of a rainy day at the beach, so I culled through the images I made yesterday at the Pow Wow, and processed a few more using SnapArt 3. I loved the colors of the regalia, many of the garments were made by hand by a family member. It is my understanding that the garments reflect the individuality of the maker or the individual who wears them.

One of the ceremonies I witnessed yesterday was an honor ceremony for an elder who had passed away leaving a widow behind and family members. They escorted the widow into the circle and all the member of the tribe who wanted to proceeded to pass by her and her family as they stood or sat in the circle, as each participant honored the passed. It was a beautiful tradition.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Nanticoke Indian Pow Wow, Delaware

Today I attended the Nanticoke Indian Pow Wow in Millsboro, Delaware. This is the 34th year of the event, but the first I have attended. After seeking out the "field" where the Pow Wow was located I was directed to park and then jump on the tractor pulled carts to ride into the woods where the PowWow was set up. There were many vendor tents as one might expect selling wares and food. But I went for the Indians. I wanted to see the Regalia and feel the spirit of the Pow Wow. It was great. I loved the dancers and the music. It was difficult getting clean shots because of the crowd around the dance area. I did not want to jump in front of others that were already seated in their chairs, so I patiently waited and walked around until I found a spot in front of a tree and then waited for interesting events to happen. All the images here were made using a 70- 200 mm lens hand held with VR activated and shallow f-stops 2.8-4.5.

The following images were processed using SnapArt 3 from Alien Skin.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Honoring our Heros of 911

As we approach the ten year anniversary of the most dreadful day in our country's homeland history (in my adult lifetime) I find myself in the exact same place: The beach, cleaning up the beach house after the summer season of rentals. I will never forget that day.........I was outside cleaning the porch on the most beautiful September blue sky day. My neighbor walked by and said, "You don't know what's happening do you?" with real stress in her voice, and I replied with concern, "No what?" At that time she said, "Go inside and turn on your TV." So I did. The shocking images of the day riveted me to the television, in disbelief and sadness for hours. I remember the images of the public service workers desperately trying to save people and deal with the tragedies, many of whom lost their lives. I pray we should never see an attack like this ever again! So I would like to thank all the first responders that do so much to help us everyday in every home town in our country.

I made these shots during the Grand Prix Race in Baltimore Labor Day weekend. Jim and I were trying to crossover the track and found ourselves having to turn around but there was a group of fire fighters and trucks inside the fencing in case any issues occurred. My mind said if you can't get images of what you intended then take images of what presents...and so there were some image making opportunities I had not expected. Jim spotted the shot with the boots on the ground while I was making some of the jacket hanging on the truck. The images were all enhanced using Topaz Adjust.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Baltimore Grand Prix..Porsche

These shots were all made on Friday of the Grand Prix in Baltimore, in the AMLS paddock. It was great fun observing the behind the scene activity. All these shots were made handheld with a 70-200 mm lens.
I'll be spending some time at the beach and will be speaking at the Coastal Camera Club in Lewes, Delaware on September 14th  on how I use the Lensbaby in my work. If you can't catch me there I hope you can sign up for my workshop on the Lensbaby at Nature Visions in November.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Baltimore Grand Prix....continued....

When it comes to awesome automobiles, the Ferrari with it's charisma of sleek Italian design and engineering has long been a favorite of mine.  (Anyone remember Tom Seleck and his Red Ferrari 308 GTS in the 1980's TV show Magnum PI?) I saw the crew opening their truck and then lowering the gate to bring the Ferrari down to ground level in the morning before the practice runs. I just had to watch and snap a few shots. The team pushed it to the prepared space where all the tools, diagnostics and interlocking red rubber flooring had been set up.  I was once again impressed with the total self contained operation of these crews, right down to their own special fuel reserves.
and there was time for a little levity before the competition started.......

Not sure if this set of wheels actually belonged to team Ferrari but when I reviewed my images they seemed to fit with the color scheme of this post.                    

Practice run.....
The "Food and Party" tents had been set up and all the tents proudly displayed team colors.

Baltimore Grand Prix

Yesterday I had the great pleasure of attending the Baltimore Grand Prix practice day. Sunday will be RACE day after two days of practice runs Friday and Saturday, fine tuning the vehicles. Make no mistake these guys were racing yesterday, and crashed several times yesterday, but the public was open to view the days events. My friend Jim had tickets to park in the Corvette car corral which was a beautiful thing, otherwise parking might have been a real issue with lots more walking. The other cool thing was I got to ride down in his 66 Vette at 6:30 in the morning. That brought back some memories from when I had my Corvette. Fun! The practice was delayed from 8:00 am until 12 pm. so we spent some time walking around the event to understand what photo ops might be had when the cars did get on the track. Much to our dismay there really were no unobscured views unless you had a photo pass.
We made some images of the crews prepping for the race and walked through the Indy Car pit in the convention center, grabbed a bite to eat met some fellow photographers and headed out to the stands around 12:30. We watched the cars run until 6:00pm. It was exciting to see this event in Baltimore. I forgot how much fun the "car thing" is. These race cars are sexy! The engines roar is powerful...there is some magic in the thunder of fine tuned high performance engines. Not to mention the good looking men in color coordinated team attire. The mobile shops and garage set ups are incredible!
I made lots of images but only really liked the ones I made in the morning when I was shooting the crews prepping. The race shots were all made through wire and just don't meet my standards but it was fun trying to grab some on the track even if it was through the fencing. This post is Team Jaguar.
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