I am writing this article to both document, educate, and hopefully entertain my friends. In the event that this article gets in the wild, I have pulled the names to reduce the potential of aggravating an already bad situation. However, that status may not be permanent.
Preamble (optional background if you don’t know what a gTLD is):
Without getting too technical, let me first set the scene. Most everyone is aware of website addresses that end in .com, .net, or .org. These are called Top Level Domains (TLDs). Up until this year, there have only been a few of these and with 6 billion people (and perhaps even more websites than that) relevant and unique domain names are becoming a limited resource. That is until the recent adoption of new Generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs). This new paradigm will introduce up to 900+ top levels. Continue Reading…
For advanced lighting, had to do some Hollywood style portraits. I decided to go full-out and make some movie stills based on the film noir classic, The Big Combo. Shout out to the actor and film buff Jon Schuller (http://www.matchflick.com/columnist/47). Here are the results:
Jon also makes for a great portrait…
My first 4×5 field camera.
I just posted my second podcast on youtube. In this episode I’m reviewing the prototype table I created to do 360 Product Photography. The original table had some limitations but helped identify key things that I need to address moving forward on the second design. The image above is the main prop used for photography. I think I’m going to feature a different camera for each product photo blog.
For the podcast itself, this one went a bit easier than the first one. I’m having a difficult time overcoming the mental block from being in front of the camera. I am trying a script on key pieces, but reading is obvious. Will probably be building a teleprompter here in a few weeks.
Created a 6-page spread for Digital Publishing. The visual concept is a romanticized view of decaying man-made landscapes (hopefully) enhanced with classic/ancient poetry. The background of each page is a unique landscape photograph that is “fading” away (feathered from side to side). On top of that is a different unique landscape image. Originally the background was just a visual gimmick, but then I realized that architecture is often built on the ruins of older civilizations. It’s a cycle of life thing.
So, I had to do a mock magazine for a Digital Publishing class the other day. The topic was about social media and how we use it. It got me thinking that I really have no DAM (Digital Asset Management) plan in place for stuff I put online. The OCD kicks in with the help of Visio and I created this flowchart of where my online content should be ultimately hosted based upon the type of data and the proxy it’s going to be used. HOLY COW, it is a helluva lot more complex than I had imagined.
I’ve been a fan of Zenfolio.com for many years, so will probably keep them as my hosting provider (great organizational tools, fast and secure hosting, my own branding, etc.) It does host videos as well, but i can’t proxy the files to YouTube or Vimeo so I’m opting to put the large (good quality) vids on Zenfolio and then the lower quality stuff on YouTube.
Facebook (the evil, soul-stealing, bastards) will only be graced with my low-res snapshots (and links to my website).
This is the first step and only covers file storage. Next step is content management and marketing. ugh.
My latest project is a 30 day timelapse of decaying cherries. This was a customer job, so was restricted to their requirements and that explains the clinical look of it. This is the raw sample of the whole thing, the final version (cleaned up, with credits & branding) will be done later this month. We looked at splitting the screen into two different timelapses, that’s why there are two clock. I cracked open the clocks and pulled the minute and seconds hands, so the hour hand is what you’re seeing sweeping. We were hoping to see huge fungal/mold growth on the control plates (the two rear plates), but overall they seemed to decay about the same rate. The cherries turned out more like raisins. I tried pumping moisture into the control box (that was cooled) and sprayed the cherries directly so they didn’t dessicate, but no real luck there. Also, about 2 weeks into the shoot, one light died and was out for several days before i figured it out; need to normalize the exposure.
Posting this for my Digital Publishing class. Hoping my professor, Thomas Benjamin, who loves typography will also be subject to some subliminal messaging….
Two of my favorite subjects… 1) Anything Rodchenko & 2) my beloved partner, Mary. I had a helluva time figuring out the way he got the angle, it’s deceptively simple. I saw the orginal (pre crop) some place and he had her sitting in a chair and leaning back and he shot it portrait orientation. Ironically, that’s how I ended up doing it too, but only after several different attempts. Though I never saw his contact sheet, I figure he got it on the first try.
I passed by one of my favorite places to shoot the other day. I shot it a while back and had always planned to come back and do it right. Well, even buildings aren’t permanent. My beloved abandoned factory(?) on Hillsborough street has been demolished to put in a condo tower. Progress is not always a friend to art.
early experiments with tilt-shifting
On October 27, it will be official: I will be a Charlotean. With a sad heart I bid Raleigh, my home town, a farewell.
We wonder,—and some Hunter may express
Wonder like ours, when thro’ the wilderness
Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace,
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What powerful but unrecorded race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.
– Horace Smith
I never took up smoking but I fondly remember the late summers when the tobacco harvests would roll into Durham and the sweet cotton candy-like smell would permeate downtown. Traveling in any direction outside of the city limits, I would see the ubiquitous farms across the Piedmont and assumed they would always be there. However, due to modernization and regulation over the past few decades, the literal and figurative landscapes of industry have changed. Instead of re-purposing the structures, most have simply been abandoned and forgotten. Decay, nature, or encroaching development will completely erase them in a few years. Though individually they have no historic importance, collectively the buildings represent an important piece of our North Carolinian history. This series is not a political statement as to the pros and cons of modernization but is simply a remembrance of our past.
This is my second “in camera” exploded view shot. Other than a few PS clone stamps to remove the strings, it was all done in-camera with one shot. It actually wasn’t as difficult as the “Juggling Dice” shot earlier. The trick was to set up a bar (used my dropcloth rig) across the top and like a puppeteer, lower the pieces into place. The lens was the hardest as it was the heaviest and required using actual fishing line instead of the thinner invisible thread. I did luck out in the fact that everything was essentially balanced so it hung vertically.
It took all day and several different setups, but the results look quite nice. This is one shot, no Photoshop (well, did some refinements but no copy/paste…i really need to get my sensor cleaned) and no CGI. One strobe with a makeshift (tinfoil) snoot; several yards of invisible thread, and a lot of tape. Part of my Studio final project. Only 4 more unique shots to go before Monday.
Had a great time last night at the Capital City Camera Club to do the Panoramic presentation. It’s been a while since I’ve been in front of a large crowd. Got some good feedback from my biggest fan (Mary) on ways to improve: Gotta not mumble my jokes and have better visual contrast for the slideshow.