Everything you can imagine…

Blog, Pennsylvania Center for Photography, Photography

Everything you can imagine is real ~ Pablo Picasso.

Making something appear real, feel real… or just believable is, for me, the most difficult part when creating from the imagination.  As a viewer, allowing ourselves to believe in possibilities, despite the reality we live in, is a major part in making any story a success, whether in be artistically, photographically, in books, movies, etc.  For as long as I can remember and to this day, I’ve never doubted those possibilities, which may be why I’m such a fan of stories like Alice in Wonderland, Winnie the Pooh, and more modern day stories such as Harry Potter.   And now here I am telling my own stories, unlocking my imagination photographically…  It feels kind of crazy, but how exhilarating!  There is something very captivating in creating from the imagination, it’s self-exploration and breaking boundaries both technically and artistically. I’m hooked!

Sometimes though, as the saying goes, it is easier said than done.  I attempted a series, a concept or a part of the story that resonates in each image.  A big project with the added goal of being ready to submit for the Transformations Exhibit.  I say attempted because only two of the three in the series were accepted.  I’m not surprised.  On this, the third image, I struggled. 

 

You know the old saying…  So close you can feel it.  Well, that’s where I left it and I knew it when I hit submit.  Even now, looking at it here, and asking… the tree? the owl? the yellow?  So I know if I’m asking those ?’s, probably so are you.  Disappointed?  No.  I’m actually excited about deconstructing it and putting it back together with all the right elements in all the right places, and telling the story just as I imagined.  Will it still be part of the series?  I’m not sure… Something tells me this one has a story all it’s own.

psst…  Check out my Facebook page for more information about the Transformations Exhibition or click HERE.   And STAY TUNED to my blog and/or my Facebook page, as I’ll being sending out another link when the Transformations online gallery is open!

 

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Work, work, work…

Blog, Photography

Good Sunday Morning!
As often happens when I work on a photo, a song gets stuck in my head.  This time, Work From Home by Fifth Harmony.   Just in case you’re not familiar with the song, a line of lyrics goes like this “You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work.  But you gotta put in work, work, work, work, work, work, work”  No surprise where the title of this post came from.  Anyway, moving on…

The challenge:

How to make the original photo taken at a public and popular folk festival in 2017 look and feel like the 1700’s (or was it 1800’s) or at least like it was taken out of a history book.

You can check out this work horse in action HERE .   As you can see from the video, there are spectators, cars, etc., roaming in and out of the frame.  So I took some advice from the composite experts, I photographed the scene many times, from many different angles; allowing it to change, as I knew it would, because no one was standing still… not even the horse.

Once I had a solid foundation to build on, I got to work.  

So I really like the color version… all those blue overalls which, by the way, led to the title of this image “Overall Blues.”  But I also debated whether converting to B&W would really accentuate that history book look.  So, I did both…

 If I got it all right, you’re not even thinking about what was added (or deleted).  But since you already know I worked on it, lets just say anyone not wearing overalls was removed and, what the heck, a couple more guys in overalls couldn’t hurt.   The unflattering back ends of a couple of horses were swapped for a more picturesque horse.  And finally, to blend everything together and give it that aged feel, a smidgen of a painterly effect and, of course, some textures were applied.

The result

For me… an image from 2017 as if I were standing there in the the 1700’s (or was it the 1800’s 😉 ).  It’s definitely not a sight you come across everyday…

 

Feeling a little blue…

Blog, Photography

… there is nothing like getting out in the garden with the camera to fix that.

The garden is also where I head when I’m feeling a little artistically and photographically stuck (which also makes me feel a bit blue).  The natural beauty, perfect palate of color, and ever so soft flow and movement in a single bloom is simply…breathtaking.  Capturing all of that is such a delight and a good exercise for tackling a rut.

Even as the season wears on, when the blooms are a bit more scarce, and their the petals a bit faded and weary,  capturing the beauty that remains by creating a still life is another great exercise to reignite that creativity.

I’m a bit obsessed (there I said it) with learning all sorts of new techniques… and there’s a lot out there!  So much so, I tend to skip around a lot, never really feeling like I mastered one before I move onto another, and this can lead to a very big pile of… frustration… and a rut.  So dialing it back a bit, choosing a simpler subject (simpler in that it is not moving, travel is not required, and it is ready when you are) and using a familiar platform to practice techniques that are still a little unrefined or experiment with new ones… is key and starts by returning to the garden.

Tech Tip

New techniques used in the images above Curves!  I never used this before, honestly because I had no idea how it really worked.   But now that I do, I use it to boost/change color, lighten/darken ~ all over or just by selecting the most minute areas.  Curves has moved to the top of favorite tools!  Who knows maybe I’ll try a curves how-to video post… uh-oh, there I go again.  On second thought, maybe it would be better if I just go find a good one to share with you 🙂

This is Spring!

Blog, Photography

Stealing a few minutes to capture the cherry trees in full bloom.

Has it really been a month since my last post?!?   Well, that’s spring… projects getting started, spring cleaning, and thinking ahead to all that summer will bring; and I’m just talking about all things photography.  Add the day job, etc. to the mix and I guess it’s not so surprising after all.

Just one of the projects I have going on is right here.  I’m in the process of consolidating my website and blog into ONE.  Of course, there’s a learning curve for this do-it-yourselfer, so it is taking me a little longer than planned to get things looking just right.  So if things start to look a little different or a bit wonky, not to worry… I’m working on it.  Oh, and comments, thumbs up/thumbs down are welcome.

Until next time (and fingers crossed with a new look),
Maria