Monday, March 31, 2014

Day 217; G On Canvas

The background for this photo is a painting of a rose my sister did on canvas. For the main subject I used a charm in the shape of a letter G which I bought years ago to wear hanging from my back brace. I haven't worn it in quite some time, but I saw it sitting on the shelf today and thought it would be a fun subject to shoot. I didn't like the yellows in the photo due to the lighting, so I used a black and white Holga effect from picmonkey.com which also enhanced some of the details in the canvas.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Day 216; Down the Elevator

I didn't have all that much time to shoot today as I was preparing for some interviews I have tomorrow in Ames in addition to my regular school work. I did find time to edit this shot of an elevator which has been sitting out in the hay field for forever. Some of you may recognise it from a photo I posted last year (Day 20). I think This rendition is better, with a more focused angle and better lighting. To enhance the colors already present I applied a slight Dusk effect.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Day 215; Noah in the Dark

I love portraits. I love the diversity and the complexity of people, and how we, as photographers, can capture a sliver of a person's personality and it will be there forever. I didn't set out today with the goal of taking a portrait, but when my little brother Noah was willing to participate I couldn't resist. Since it was totally dark outside I had the idea to turn out the overhead light in my room and use a small portable light to illuminate his face. The result was a very dramatic lighting pattern with deep shadows on either side and creeping onto the left side of his face (his left, it's the right side when you're looking at it). Luckily he was wearing a dark shirt so it worked out surprisingly well. Now that I'm looking at the finished product, the serious expression on his face makes him look much older than his three years. To get the really dramatic look I wanted I faded a black and white effect to give the colors in his face a little bit of a washed out look so the bright colors of his eyes and hair didn't stand out too much.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Day 214; Russian Nesting Dolls

My great aunt Glenda is one of the most interesting people I've ever met. She travels all over the world, and sends back the most beautiful things. These are two in a set of hand painted Russian nesting dolls which she sent to my sister and I a few years ago. The detail of the painting and etching is really quite lovely, and while admiring them earlier today I decided to make them the subject of today's photo. I set them up in my de-shadow box and used a black skirt as the background. I used the on-camera flash and the black background to highlight the dolls and help their color pop. The biggest thing I would change is that a fold in the skirt hides a portion of the larger doll's base.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Day 213; Up the Cedar Tree

For this photo I wanted to emphasize the peeling texture of the bark on this cedar tree. I put my camera right up next to the tree and angled it up so you could see the trunk carrying up toward the sky. I also liked how this angle gave some different depths of field - closest to the camera which is out of focus, the middle ground which is in focus, and then farther out which is again out of focus. This angle showed the undersides of some of the pieces of bark as being quite orange, and each patch of color stuck out. To reduce this distraction, I applied a faded Holga effect to give a washed out look while still retaining some of the original color and depth.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Day 212; Stacked Bark

When I was out looking for subjects this afternoon I noticed the textured, bumpy bark of this tree. It looked almost like the ridges had been stacked on layer after layer. To really enhance the details I decided a black and white effect would be best, and I ended up layering infrared and holga to get the look I wanted.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Day 211; Wood Lines

Leaves, ragweed stalks, and a random piece of dried tree trunk were all thrown together by the intense winds we've been having recently to form the subjects for today's photo. I love lines and textures found in nature, primarily veins in leaves and textured tree bark, so this scene naturally caught my eye. In hindsight, it seems a bit busy, but I like it anyway. I also loved how the dampness we've been experiencing and the time of year left all the items with some of the same hues and colors to lend a unified feel.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

210; Bump on Tree

This bump thing on a tree caught my eye this afternoon because of the textured surface and grooves. Since I went out in the early afternoon the lighting was kind of blank, so to add some color and richness I applied a Dusk effect.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Day 209; Standing on the Haybale

Last Friday I posted a photo of my brother Noah's shadow on the side of a round haybale. Today, to continue the theme, is a picture of my brother Elijah standing on the same bale. I had him try several different positions, some showing the bale and some without. I ended up liking this one since it gave the impression that he was flying or on top of the world. Since the sky behind him was so bright and the sunset only eliminated him so much, most of his body and face are quite dark. To compensate for this and lend an older vintage look, I layered a green cross-process, a dusk effect, and a spotlight effect to get a more unique and unusual photo.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Day 208; Shadow on the Haybale

This afternoon we went to my grandpa's house for dinner. He raises cattle and always has haybales sitting around someplace. Today that place happened to be in front of the barn where the setting sun could light it up. I wanted my brother Noah, who happened to be wearing his farmer shirt, to stand in front for it for some portraits but he wasn't cooperating. While he stood next to me trying to get me to come play soccer, I snapped a couple photos of our shadows. The only editing I did was to highlight the shadows by adding vignetting around the edges.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

207; Lace Curtain

It's been a while since I last posted and there are several combined reasons which prevented me. I wanted to come back today with a stunning or at least memorable photo, but that didn't exactly happen. Today's abstract is of the lace curtain which hangs over the west window in my room, and was taken at sunset when this window lets in all sorts of  beautiful light. I loved how the pattern in the lace really showed in this photo and how the draping of the fabric added some depth to the photo. I chose to highlight those details with a black and white effect.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Day 206; Muddy Tonks

This afternoon was the first time in a long time when temperatures were well above freezing. As such, all the snow we've been accumulating melted leaving lots and lots of mud and slush. Tonks, the mother of our adorable litter of puppies, managed to find some of this mud and apparently thought it would be a good idea to play in it.  Here she is resting on a bed of old feed sacks in one of the barns. When I took this photo the sun was beginning to set with some windows letting in the bright yellow light and causing the patches behind her.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Day 205; Black and White Round Beads

Back in the day I made jewelry as 4-H projects. I got better at it, and started selling my creations at local swap meets. A couple years ago I lost interest in the hobby and put all my supplies away. Today I got out this tub of black and white round beads for the subject of today's photo. I liked the way each bead reflected the round light source I'd used.