Friday, February 18, 2011

Feeding the Birds

Traveling to a gorgeous place, and gathering together with birds of a feather, in the spirit of creativity… Up here, one might describe that happy convergence of purposes as “feeding two birds with one scone”.

There is an extraordinary place, in this part of the world, called “Painter’s Lodge”.  The resort & event center is situated by the ocean on northern Vancouver Island, in Campbell River - the land of salmon and eagles.

I feel fortunate to have been invited to present at the annual “Photographer’s at Painter’s” weekend this year, alongside eleven other diverse, experienced photographers.

I’m excited about the list of sessions, and definitely plan to sit in on as many as I can while I’m there. The two day, two night event, April 29-May 1, 2011, will include a series of workshops, demonstrations, panel discussions, and a gallery exhibit.
If you’re interested in attending, or are just curious, check it out by clicking this link:  Photographers at Painters 2011

News flash: There is a photo contest going on right now, for a free trip to Photographers at Painters this year. The contest ends March 20th.
To learn more about that, click here: Photographers at Painters Photo Contest

Oh, and if you fish, you’ll be in heaven. There’s a salmon derby going on at that same time!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Budding Tree: A larger image file to work with

I realize that the image file I invited you to borrow from the blog post is really small.
Click here for access to the larger image file in a Mobile Me gallery. It's 4x6, 300 dpi. Have fun!

What I saw on a walk...

 "Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished" - Lao Tzu

There is a powerful, electric, vitality in the spring landscape. Every day that I look around me, I see exciting transformations occurring, bit by bit. If life gets too busy, and if we drive everywhere, we run the risk of not seeing this magic until the trees burst into blossom on a warm spring day, then shout out to us again in the fall in a blaze of color.
That's why I love to walk. Throughout the year, the pace of my feet allows me to notice the subtleties going on, continually, between seasonal peaks. On a walk last week near my home, I was drawn to the tiny buds forming on the branches of trees and shrubs along the road.
The bright scattering of buds looked like living fireworks to me. With the lens I had on my camera, and in the textured, lovely spring palette of colors, I found it difficult to capture the display. So, if I were to just show the original image, viewers might not see what I was noticing, without an explanation. That's where the fun and creativity in the studio comes in.
Most of what I do with Photoshop, and hand-painting, is an effort to emphasize what inspired me about the subjects of the photographs in the first place, and better convey that to others in the finished image.  Here is the budding tree after playing with it in Photoshop, and the original capture below.

Here's an invitation/challenge for you!  If you would like to, drag off the original image of the tree, and work with it to see how you might be able to capture the "fireworks". I'd love to see what you come up with and compare notes.