That’s a big paw.
|Originally published at CREATE. EVALUATE. ITERATE.|
I’ve been having a hard time getting very much done recently, so when in the last couple of days I had the chance to make a chunk of progress through my backlog of unprocessed photos, I jumped at it. I had a hundred photos from the last year to work on; some of them probably won’t end up making the cut, but some of them are going to be awesome. Like this one, of an ore dock on the north shore of Lake Superior.
I was somewhat reluctant to make this black and white, because of the fall color, which is a big part of why it took so long. The trees, and the rust-colored dock, work very well together, but the water and the sky really didn’t. Since the shapes here were more important than the colors, I tried it in monochrome, and I’m very happy with the results.
The Two Harbors breakwater is parkland, and is a really nice spot for photographing, though probably the windiest place I’ve ever shot from. I took one lens and no tripod, and hopefully I’ll be able to get back out there with the full set of gear at some point when it’s less windy.
There may or may not be a TIE Fighter in this photo. Don’t ask me, this is as close to it as I got.
This week’s Classic Photo Tuesday is… a duck!
This isn’t a zoo duck, it just happened to be a duck at the zoo. The beaver exhibit is open to the outside, and they keep the pool heated year-round, so there are often ducks there. Which is good because the beavers hardly ever come out of their dam. I’ve never managed to see one. However, the exhibit is structured so that people can see both over and underwater, which is convenient for getting unusual angles on the ducks.
I’m not having a great week, and I need to get something done and post it, and hey, piglets!
This seems like a good time to remind people that 10% of all print sales from zoo photos goes back to the zoo where they were taken.
This week’s Classic Photo Tuesday is back in Minnesota, at Frontenac State Park again:
Depth of field with ultrawide lenses can be a very strange thing. While a normal or telephoto lens focused this close would go directly to blur, this shot with my old Tokina 11-16mm still keeps a very sharp foreground, but the background gradually becomes more painterly as the scene deepens. Rather than a typical photographic bokeh effect, it ends up impressionistic, almost as if a painting had been placed behind the real plants in the foreground. It’s interesting, and I probably couldn’t make it happen again if I tried.
OK, it’s warm enough that I feel comfortable posting winter photos now. (And there are actually leaves on the trees! This is exciting.)
This is from way back last year, delayed because of some technical problems that I couldn’t fix myself. (And while I have an awesome volunteer, he has a family and a job to worry about before fixing my photos.)
The Mississippi in downtown Minneapolis is conveniently situated so that around the winter solstice the sun appears to rise from directly downstream. For some reason we don’t have a henge or something to celebrate this, so the blue lights of the new 35W bridge will have to do. This year the fresh freezing of the river came at just the right time to get fantastic reflections on the new ice. Do click to see the larger version.
This week on Classic Photo Tuesday, we’re still at Pt. Reyes for a night on the beach.
One of the things about taking natural light nightscapes is that sometimes there’s not enough light to have any idea what you’re doing. It becomes a matter of take a photo, review on the screen, and repeat until you get what you want. Nowadays I shoot tethered to a ten-inch screen, and the process is fairly painless, although long, especially on cold nights. But in 2008 I was still using a rather primitive camera, difficult to manually focus, with a tiny screen, and without tethering. (Which also meant no exposures over 30 seconds unless I wanted to time them manually.)
Fogged in, I could see some light on the mountains in the distance, but the vast majority of the landscape here was completely dark to my eyes. So this photo ended up being very much about shape and form rather than detail. It’s unsharp, from having nothing to focus on. I was concentrating more on getting the framing right, getting it level, and bringing out the mood of the fogged-in mountains. I think I did pretty well, and the unsharpness adds rather than subtracting.
OK, here’s the other spring thing: I’ve been doing The Reader for a while now, and I’m intending to keep doing individual ones as before, but it occurred to me that we have an important Minneapolis book that would be perfect for a series of them: Emma Bull’s seminal urban fantasy novel War for the Oaks. Basically I want to take pictures of people reading WFTO in the locations from the book.
Most of these will be done individually, and I’d like people to volunteer for them. But I’d also like to do two large group readings, one on the Deer Pen field at Minnehaha Falls and one in front of Como Conservatory. Those I’d like to get as many people as possible to show up for. I’m thinking the first weekend in June for those, if the weather suits.
Here’s the list of individual locations I want to do, more or less in the order they appear in the book. I was surprised at how few are things that aren’t there anymore. A few of these can be done immediately, but most of them will have to wait a week or two until the trees have greened out a bit.
As you can see, there’s plenty for everybody. Some of these need a little extra location scouting, but they should all be workable. I made a Google map. I would love to be done with this by sometime in early June, if Minnesota makes it possible, so that we can have results by Fourth Street. I’m keeping my own schedule very open for this, so hopefully I can work around you.
Comment here or on LJ or tweet at me and I’ll update the post as I get volunteers.
So, this is part one of my new spring projects posts. Part two tomorrow, hopefully.
Anyway, a couple of months ago, there was a particularly resonant XKCD:
And I thought, OK, we have to do that. So I bought pickupartistry.net and figured it could wait until spring came and we could work outdoors. I want to be doing more outdoor work when I’m not photographing, and this seemed like a good way to do it, with some chance that some other people might also be interested.
Then spring sort of failed to come, but I’m going to believe that it’s finally here for real and start setting these up around the Twin Cities when it’s nice out. First one’s on Monday evening, and I’d love to have you come out and make art with me. Click the link above for details.