Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I posted this image of an Iberian wolf back on October 27, (scroll down to see original post). The image, shot by Jose Luis Rodriguez won the Veolia Environment Wildlife Photographer of the Year award and was selected from over 43,000 entries from 91 countries. Staff at the Natural History Museum opened an investigation after learning the image may have breached competition rules and it seems the photographer may be stripped of his title. At issue are allegations that the photographer used a farm raised "animal model" rather than capturing the spontaneous behaviour of a wild wolf. Kingsley Marten, the managing director of the Association of Photographers said the rules, which clearly state that images of captive animals must be declared and that judges will take preference to images taken in free and wild conditions. Full story from The Independent HERE. Set up with a tamed wolf or not its a great shot that would require a great amount of planning and photographic skill.

Monday, December 28, 2009

A Lighting Tutorial

I'm not saying you need to follow the technique exactly, but the idea is there. A good basic starting point for shooting people in direct sunlight. A simple white card will work, or an assistant in a tight, white suite will work too. So if you want better photos of people outside in direct sun... watch the video and remember...BOUNCEMAN!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Platon's Portraits of Power

The New Yorker magazine has an interactive portfolio of portraits by Platon of world leaders along with commentary by the photographer on every image. Viewing images in print form is better than viewing images on a computer, but this portfolio along with the commentary is extremely conducive to the computer platform. Platon, a staff photographer for the New Yorker set up a tiny studio off the floor of the General Assembly this past September when most world leaders were in New York for a meeting of the United Nations and worked to hustle as many of them in front of his lens as possible. I'm sure this was a very intense project for any photographer but I think Platon nailed it by looking at his portraits...they are great, and the commentary he has with the images are fascinating and add to the portrait viewing experience. See it HERE at the New Yorker. Platon's web site HERE.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Polar Obsession

National Geographic photographer Paul Nicklen has an amazing collection of photographs of Leopard Seals HERE that will be published in a new book called "Polar Obsession" HERE. Check out this amazing story he has of swimming and photographing these beasts on you tube video!!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Fallout From The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

There is a mass of plastic garbage floating in the pacific. Nobody knows how big, some reports compare it to the size of Texas, and some the size of the United States. Nobody knows how much garbage is out there either. Part of the problem is that you can't see it because most of the plastic garbage is floating under the surface of the water. The fact that it is hard to see poses many problems with research, but one interesting obsticle that I came across at A Photo Editor (HERE) is how to do a story on it and present photos of the garbage. It seems that this was such a difficult task that whole stories were scrapped because of it. Photographer Chris Jordan was able to photograph some of this plastic garbage when he photographed dead albatross chicks that were fed this garbage by their parents, thinking it was food. Tens of thousands of albatross chicks die from this diet of human trash every year. Photographing on Midway Atoll, a small stretch of sand in the middle of the North Pacific, and more than 2000 miles from the nearest continent, these images depict actual stomach contents of the baby birds without any manipulation. See more Chris Jordan photos HERE.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A picture of a hunting wolf has won the prestigious Veolia Environment Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2009 award.

Jose Luis Rodriguez captured the imaginations of the judges with a picture that he had planned for years, and even sketched out on a piece of paper. This is what vision, a layout, and good photographic abilities can bring... an award winning photograph."I wanted to capture a photo in which you would see a wolf in an act of hunting - or predation - but without blood," he told BBC News. "I didn't want a cruel image."
With a great deal of patience and careful observation of the wolves' movements, he succeeded in taking the award-winning photograph.The panel of judges looked through more than 43,000 entries to this year's competition.When he started planning the photograph, he feared that he might not be able to get close enough to the Iberian wolves.
This subspecies of the grey wolf lives close to human habitation in northern Spain. They are often persecuted by people who see them as a threat to livestock, and they are consequently very wary.
Watching the animals as they returned to the same spot to collect food each night, Mr Rodriguez decided on his dream shot.
He eventually captured it using a photographic trap that included a motion sensor and an infrared barrier to operate the camera. Full story HERE.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Prius "Harmony" TV Commercial

Interesting video of behind the scenes look at the making of the Prius Harmony commercial. Obviously a lot of planning and work went into this little commercial. Thanks to my friend Jim for bringing this video to my attention.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Ten photographs that changed the world

This interesting article comes to my attention from my friend Jim, who occasionally sends me interesting tid bits of information on world oddities and human interests, and since I have been really busy and not updating this blog as much as I would like, I thank you Jim for the info.
To celebrate 170 years of the camera in the public domain, a look back over photographs that have had a profound impact on the way we live today, see the Ten photographs that changed the world from the Telegraph HERE.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Making of a commercial Product Photograph

This week I spent 10 Hours on a photograph for a catalog. It was not the greatest photograph, but it was technically correct and pleasing, an excellent photograph to interest a person to buy this particular merchandise. 10 Hours! Thats a long time for a photograph. But, with that said I have spent as little as minutes to multiple days photographing merchandise. It all depends on the complexity of the photograph and the merchandise involved. Here is an example of a cover shot for Mac World, done by photographer Peter Belanger. He shot a time lapse video of this cover shot, check it out. Check out the Mac World article HERE.

Cover creation from Peter Belanger on Vimeo.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

10 Years, 60 Hours a Week=80 Photographs

Photographer Robert Buelteman sends 80,000 volts of electricity through his flowers via a metal plate and uses a fiber-optic light source to photograph his flowery subjects. Its hard for me to believe but he has spent and average of 60 hours a week for 10 years to produce 80 of these types of photo's!?!? These photos are nice BUT...10 YEARS, 60 HOURS A WEEK, ARE YOU CRAZY? Read full article HERE at Daily Mail.

The Slap-Chop Re-Mix

This remix of the Slap-Chop commercial apparently started as a joke but is now a real commercial starting this week. The re-mix was done without copyright permission, but the owner of the copyright liked it so much they decided to make it an official commercial to sell their product, read more HERE at Photo Business and News Forum. Obviously a lot of work went into this re-mix and it is pretty cool, check it out. Compare it to the original commercial HERE.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Iconic Woodstock Photo_40 Years Later

Nick and Bobbi Ercoline, now in their 60's were immortalized on the cover of the original Woodstock album in 1970 and also on the movie poster. The photo was taken by Burk Uzzle. They had met three months before Woodstock and married two summers after and remain together. This August 15-17 is the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. Read the full article HERE from NY Daily News.

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Photographic icon for 74 Years... Today KODACHROME Concludes It's Last Run

The Eastman Kodak Co. announced Monday it's retiring its oldest film stock because of declining customer demand in an increasingly digital age.
The world's first commercially successful color film, immortalized in song by Simon, spent 74 years in Kodak's portfolio. It enjoyed its heyday in the 1950s and '60s but in recent years has nudged closer to obscurity: Sales of Kodachrome are now just a fraction of 1 percent of the company's total sales of still-picture films, and only one commercial lab in the world still processes it. See the full story from Yahoo HERE. See Kodak site HERE for a tribute and Great Moments Taken with KODACHROME.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Tenderloin or Taco_?

The state of the advertising business can be summed up pretty easily, more for less. Give me more services for less pay. It is happening across the board right now. What is it exactly that you want? Do you want to sell your products? Selling your products consist of one of the most important things, a visual advertisement... professional photographic imagery that sells the product... and that costs money. After all the time and money going into developing and producing a product, it's the image that grabs the attention of potential buyers and sells the product ... Just look at most of the photographs that catalogs offer on the internet, they are cheap looking and very badly executed, camera inputs are wrong or they're shooting with a cheap camera that does not support camera adjustments, and lighting usually sucks. I do see a trend happening with some of your bigger companies producing better photography online, and there are many print catalogs that have consistently produced beautiful photography. You get what you pay for. Some companies don't realize how many more sales they can execute had they put more thought, and better photography (this costs more $money$) into their layouts, print or internet, but eventually they will...to stay competitive and make money. Spend the money on a tenderloin, sales will benefit, and it tastes better.

Photoshop Tutorial

Blue Angels

Shot the Blue Angels at Wisconsin's Southwest Regional Airport this past weekend and learned that 1/1250 of a second still is not fast enough to stop action on these bad boys_God Bless America.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

4,664 Still Photographs Produce This Music Video

California based photographer Noah Webb (see his web site HERE) shot this video for the song "A Thousand Bees" by Sara Lov by setting 4,664 still photographs to animation. Cool, we are seeing a lot of this type of video/photography and though it may not work well in many circumstances it certainly does have its place where this style fits well and this is one of those.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

New York Times Photo Blog_LENS

The New York Times unveiled "LENS", a photojournalism blog presenting interesting visual and multimedia reporting, photographs, videos and slide shows. Lens will also draw images from the Times own pictorial archive dating back to the early 20th century. Check it out HERE.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Awkward Family Photos

When really bad photographers take portraits this is what you get, proving that portraiture requires a skill level that not everyone attains. This is really funny stuff, and amazing to me that someone can submit work to a client like this and expect a payment. For a hell of a laugh go HERE to Awkward Family Photos.com.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Official White House Photostream on Flickr

White House photographer Pete Souza has recently opened a Flickr photostream featuring behind the scenes photos at the white House, see HERE. Take a quick look at a collection of the photos put together by the Sacramento Bee photo blog, The Frame, HERE.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Time Lapse Video

Bathtub IV from Keith Loutit on Vimeo.

The miniature effect on photographs is popular and very cool, and I have done some myself, see my posts from Friday, January 9, 09 and Sunday, January 11, 09. Here is a very cool video shot by Keith Loutit that uses this miniature effect along with time lapse shooting to create an unbelievable effect you will find very entertaining. Site HERE.

Che Photo_Most Popular Photograph in History

This shot of Argentine revolutionary Ernesto "Che" Guevara, taken by Cuban photographer Alberto Korda in Havana in 1960 is the most reproduced photograph in the world. The photograph used by communists, capitalists, marxists and marketers to sell ideas can be found in all corners of the world including East Timor, Africa, Israel, Lebanon, United States and Latin America. Read more about it at CNN HERE.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Photographer_ Steven Meisel..."Three Hundred and Seventeen and Counting"

Photographer Steven Meisel has photographed every single cover of Italian Vogue for the last 20 years and nine months. That equals 317 covers and is the title of his new book, "Three Hundred and Seventeen and Counting". Lets see, my book would have to be called something like... Fifty Seven Thousand and Counting. Take a look at an interesting article about this fine photographer and see a slide show of his work and a video HERE.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring Clean up_ Rock, Glove and Gym Shoe

I'm looking around my garage, seeing all the junk laying around. I know I have some cleaning up to do, but I decide to take some photos of the crap in my garage. I set my lights and start bringing worthless junk from my garage to my basement to photograph it. So here is a Rock, a Glove and an old Gym Shoe for your viewing pleasure.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Photo Gallery_East Germany, Up Close and Personal

One of the subjects that we recently talked about at work was the future of Cuba. The Obama Administration is loosening restrictions and there is now talk that we (Americans) might soon be able to travel again to that island nation. We talked as photographers how it would be so interesting to photograph and document Cuba as soon as travel restrictions were lifted, because if Americans were to travel to Cuba again that island would change rapidly and forever. Here is something similar, West German photographer Karlheinz Jardner set off on a trip to the East German island of Rugen just after the Wall fell in the spring of 1990 capturing a world that would soon disappear forever. Twenty Years later he looks back and talks about his journey in a first-person account, HERE. and to see his photographs HERE.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Update_Photographer Stephen Mallon's Flight 1549 Salvage Photos

It now appears that insurer AIG and US Airways have given in to public pressure and have allowed Photographer Stephen Mallon to post his salvage photos. AIG and US Airways had previously pressured Mallon to not show these photos for which he was hired to shoot. (Scroll and see my blog posted on Friday, March 27, 2008). See his website and the salvage photos of flight 1549 HERE.

More on Dignified Transfer of U.S. Military Personnel

Boston.com presents a 25 photo picture story documenting the return of U.S. war dead. The Obama administration reversed a ban on media coverage of returning war dead and their dignified transfer implemented in 1991 by president Bush. See photos HERE.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Photographer_Robert Adams Wins Hasselblad Award

U.S. photographer Robert Adams, who is known for documenting human impact on the American West, has won the Hasselblad Award."Robert Adams is one of the most important and influential photographers of the last 40 years," the jury said in its citation."Precise and undramatic, Adams's accumulative vision of the West now stands as a formidable document, reflecting broader, global concerns about the environment, while consistently recognizing signs of human aspiration and elements of hope across a particular changing landscape," the jury said.He was particularly interested in how human activity, including agriculture and building, had transformed the West as documented by earlier photographers such as Timothy O'Sullivan and William Henry Jackson.In his images of main streets, tract houses, trees, and waterways, Adams records two kinds of landscapes, one damaged by people and the other somehow beyond their power to harm. He asks us, through his photographs, to consider where we live and how we relate to our environment. Learn more about this photographer HERE.

PDN Virtual Trade Show

I have been to the New York Photo trade show several times in the past and I always came back with a positive experience. There is nothing like it to see new equipment, to hold it in your hands and get the feel of it, see how it operates, listen to it. You come back enthused and inspired with new ideas and a renewed position of your creativity. But its not always possible to get away either, I havn't been to the trade show in a number of years. Now PDN is sponsoring a Photographer's virtual tradeshow. It is a free online tradeshow for professional and advanced amateur photographers. You will be able to hear and interact with industry experts on the latest technologies, techniques and trends. This online event will happen on two days, May 21 & June 11 and you must also register to attend. Check it out and see their program schedules HERE.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

More on Photographer_Eddie Adams

NPR has a feature story about Eddie Adams and his Vietnam images including a radio broadcast and an image gallery. Check it out HERE. Also scroll down to see my post about Eddie Adams dated Tuesday, March 10, 2009 and use the link to see a very cool trailer of a documentary made of the Eddie Adams story.

The Bigger Picture

The Bigger Picture is a blog produced by the Smithsonian Institute representing an inside look at the Smithsonian's photography collections and invites audiences to engage in an online discussion about photography's impact on our world. The Smithsonian has more than 13 million images in some 700 collections. Through this blog you get a behind-the-scenes look at their photo collections from researchers, archivists, curators, and other Smithsonian staff, updates about ongoing research and discoveries, and discussions of the latest ideas and issues in visual culture. Check it out HERE.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

All Aboard...Spring Break

My son and I had a little spring break together, and decided to take our camera's and video equipment on a road trip. My son and I are really into trains and planes, this time our objective was to shoot trains. We headed for Janesville Wisconsin, home of the Wisconsin and Southern Rail Road. An interesting company, we were informed that the gentleman who started and continues to own and operate Wisconsin and Southern got his initial funding from his father who invented the wire nut and also the plastic zip lock ties. A small company by rail road standards, they do all their work in a round house that is over 100 years old and operate possibly the only full scale turnabout in Wisconsin. We headed on to Rochelle Illinois, where there is a major crossing handling the Pacific Union and BNSF lines. Rochelle sees over 120 trains pass by a day.

On our way we passed by the now closed GM plant in Janesville and I have to say that seeing a plant of this size sitting with no people or cars around was a very scary site. It had a ghost town feeling and really hit home the fact that our country is in a really bad place right now.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Badger Army Ammunition Plant

The photo's above are a few pics from the Badger Army Ammunition Plant up in Baraboo Wisconsin. My son and I were fortunate enough to be included in a tour of the plant recently. With a very long and interesting past the plant has produced munitions for three major wars, including World War II, the Korean War, and a major producer for the Vietnam war. The Plant was first built in 1942 and was decommissioned in 1999. With a new plan in place it is now being torn down and the lands and water in and around the plant are being cleaned up from hazardous toxins that are present. Some of the lands are to be given back to the original owners, the Ho Chunk nation (Winnebago tribe), who plan to raise bison there. The Wisconsin DNR also are receiving a large part of the property. I hope to have a link to all the images soon.