Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Shape: Light and Distance

I'm doing the Strobist Lighting 102 course / exercises, and I the distance exercise is really valuable, I recommend everyone go read the post and do the exercise. The direct link is here.

So the exercise to the reader here is: what color is the actual background material? That's right, it's white foam core, and it's only 5 feet behind the vase. But (and here's the a-ha moment), the light is only 18 inches from the vase. So the light it casts on the background is much less intense than the light it casts on the subject (insert inverse square law here).

You can click on this image if you want all the lighting details.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


I'm loving duotones. It's been a while since I applied the technique and it's nice to come back to it. Duotones (and tritones and quadtones) are incredibly flexible ways to render monochrome images. Traditionally the technique is used in conjunction with printing, but I love the control and the huge range of possibilities. I don't know of another way to achieve the same results with as much consistency.

So my process is to first convert an image to B&W, either in Aperture or using CS3's B&W layer... then I convert to grayscale, then to 8 bits per pixel, and then to duotone. I'm defining my own duotones as I go and saving them, so that I build a library of good combinations. Finally I convert the image back to RGB color.

I liked the results on this one in particular.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


I'm really trying to work on composition these days... Houston Photobloggers did a photo walk in downtown Houston on Saturday, so I took the opportunity to try and focus compositions, shooting the whole time on my 70-200mm f/2.8. The long lens forced me to see differently than I might with something wider.

I really like this shot of Cabo's outside wall... I loved the relationship in placement of the two objects and the similarity in appearance, despite their being for entirely different purposes. And the wall color is killer, too.

Monday, June 04, 2007


This was just too good to pass up. This is a little church in Stafford, TX (near Houston). The same building could easily be found in a small town nowhere near the big city, it looks like a little country church.

I processed this with CS3, using a black and white layer, a couple tint layers, two layers of "grain" (Add Noise filter) and a couple layers of curves adjustments. I think it successfully adds to the feeling that this could be a little country church.