Weekly Photo Challenge: Jubilant

When I see the word jubilant I think of bright colors, orange and yellow:

ISO 400 4.3mm f/2.7 1/200

ISO 400 4.3mm f/2.7 1/200

I had been stalking these wildflowers most of this week, but rain has made it difficult to get a good shot.  I finally caught a break two days ago in the evening when the rain stopped and the sun made a brief appearance.  I took this photo with my point and shoot camera on the macro setting and set the ISO at 400.  There was a slight breeze, but at 200th of a second, this flower seems frozen in time.  I kept the editing to a minimum.  I cropped and sharpened a bit in Photoshop, then added a grain filter and vignette in Lightroom.

What do you think of the editing? Do you also associate certain words with colors?  Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Face

It’s Spring time so it’s time for chickens:

ISO 1000 50mm f/5.6 1/40

ISO 1000 50mm f/5.6 1/40

Time for cute little faces like these:

ISO 1000 50mm f/5.6 1/60

ISO 1000 50mm f/5.6 1/60

I love taking photos like these.  These particular chickens were hatched in a second grade classroom as part of a life cycles unit and were moved today to a farm.  They grow quickly, but for now they are fluffy and have large feet.

The main challenge for taking photos like these is to catch the chickens at a moment when they are still.  It means a lot of photos end up in the trash bin.

Cheers!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Earth

Editing photos can be a fun way of interpreting the earth around you. This photo is an image I created in Photoshop:

ISO 400 4.3 f/2.7 1/250

ISO 400 4.3 f/2.7 1/250

The reality of what I saw was closer to this:

ISO 400 4.3 f/2.7 1/250

ISO 400 4.3 f/2.7 1/250

The larger story was that I had gone to the park bench these flowers were growing next too because I thought it would be a good photo.  It turns out it wasn’t.  Even the various edited versions could not match the beauty or serenity I saw in the moment.  That’s a bit frustrating.  But when I got home, this images above, that I didn’t think much of when I was taking it, ended up being the image that I liked best.   On this particular day, I had both of my cameras with me, but it was this image taken with my point and shoot that I liked best.  In Photoshop the image was cropped and sharpened.  I then applied a preset filter in Lightroom that gave it a different color and I also added a bit of grain.

Has that ever happened to you? You are sure a certain image is going to be a gem, only to find out the riches are hidden in another image?  Feel free to leave a comment below.  The edited image looks quite different from the original, what do you think of the change?

Cheers!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Admiration

It was a nice afternoon, so I went for a walk in our local park.  I found this wildflower blooming:

ISO 400 4.3mm f/8.0 1/250

ISO 400 4.3mm f/8.0 1/250

Pretty amazing when you consider that this was the same area that was the control burn at the beginning of March.  Here is what it looked like then:

ISO 160 170mm f/5.6 1/640

ISO 160 170mm f/5.6 1/640

I blogged about it here.  I couldn’t help but admire how fast things were growing back.  The photo from today was taken with my point and shoot.  I used the macro setting, which I think does a nice job of shooting flowers in particular.  In Photoshop I cropped the photo and sharpened it a bit.  The photo from the controlled burn was taken with my Canon 50D and was edited in Photoshop into an HDR image.

Pretty amazing how quickly the area changed isn’t it? Do you have a favorite place to go and shoot under different conditions or at different times of the year? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Abstract

In the Spring the St. Louis Art Museum hosts one of my favorite exhibits, Art in Bloom. The challenge for some local floral artists is to create a work based on a piece from the museum that is assigned to them.

This was one of my favorites from this year.  It was this detail that caught my eye:

ISO 800 10mm f/5.0 1/13

ISO 800 10mm f/5.0 1/13

The ribbon, an almost exact detail from the painting, I think made the arrangement go from abstract to concrete.

This exhibit is usually crowded, for that reason I take my point and shoot camera. I usually set my ISO to 800, turn the flash off, and then let the camera make the rest of the decisions.  This low maintenance approach leaves me with nice photos and more time to focus on the art I am looking at.  I was lucky this year to have time to see the exhibit twice, once in the morning on its first full day and once near the end of the weekend in the evening.  It was interesting to me how much the arrangements had changed over the few days.

What do you think, do you like this take on the painting? Do you have a favorite yearly art exhibit?  Do you think that the time of day changes how you interact with the art you are looking at? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Dinnertime

I went to an exhibit a few weeks ago that has then been lurking in my brain ever since. I will say upfront that I tend to shy away from contemporary art, but still, there I was in the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, wandering through the galleries.  I had not taken my camera, it was a conscious choice; to go and visit with the art, but not bring along my full kit of art supplies.  I did however bring what I consider sometimes to be my sketch pencil, that is my phone.  I’ll take snapshots of things that interest me so that I can come back to them later.

When I saw the theme for this week’s photo challenge, this display floated back to the front of my brain.  The exhibit was called “Not Human” by artist Arcangelo Sassolino.  This particular piece was not working the day I was there so I found this video on Youtube of what it is supposed to look like.

Figurante, 2010 Steel, bone, and hydraulic system

Figurante, 2010
Steel, bone, and hydraulic system

I will tell you that what this photo doesn’t show is blood that was dripping down the jaws and onto the floor.  Overall, the exhibit was noisy and messy for an art exhibit.  All but one of the pieces moved in someway.  A certain amount of housekeeping is required daily for this exhibit.

Speaking of housekeeping,  I’d just like to let my readers know that I am in the process of a pretty big move and so will not be posting as regularly over the next few months. I’m hoping to still post and visit other blogs, but overall my “blogging time” will be less than usual in the short term.

So what do you think of the work of art? I found the display different and the most thought provoking exhibit I saw that day.  Feel free to leave a comment below, let me know too, if you watched the video of the art in action.

Cheers!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Harmony

It’s worth it, I think, to have public parks, they make it a little easier to feel in harmony with nature. Maintaining a natural setting requires some work.  Setting fire to a prairie seems counterintuitive, but it does actually help keep the land healthy and productive.  This weekend there was a controlled burn at a nearby park, so I went to take some photos:

ISO 160 170mm f/5.6 1/640

ISO 160 170mm f/5.6 1/640

It was a sunny morning, so I was able to set my ISO low and still have a high shutter speed.  The image you see above is an HDR image.  I bracketed the photo while I was shooting so that I could create an HDR image later in Photoshop. For this shoot I was using my 70-200mm lens; it allowed me to get great shots but not get in the way.

The images in the gallery below tell more of the story of the burn.  I decided to not edit them at all, keeping them as close to what I saw for the viewer.

It was interesting to watch them work.  This particular park of the park is beautiful when it is in bloom.  The burn will help keep it that way.

Don’t you love it when interesting photography shoots just drop in your lap? Have you ever seen this type of work being done?  What do you think of the HDR version?  Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!