Sony a6000; Lensbaby Sol 45; 1/200 Sec; ISO 250
I bought this lens a year ago and was really frustrated with the results of my photography sessions. No matter how I adjusted the lens or bokeh blades my photos left a lot to be desired. Yet many photographs taken by others with this lens were amazing. Why theirs and not mine?
Initially, we were not a good fit. The whole purpose of the Lensbaby is to create soft, dreamy photographs. I am someone who strives to create clear, sharp photographs. I suddenly realized when using this lens I was just shooting to shoot. So I set out to create one really sharp area in an image and let the rest just happen through adjusting the bokeh blades. Much happier with the results and this lens has become a whole lot of fun!
“There is a difference between solitude and isolation. One is connected and one isn’t. Solitude replenishes, isolation diminishes.” Henry Cloud
“I think we all see the world from our own little unique bubble.” Julie Taymor
Today I had some fun working in Photoshop. Recently I purchased some water gel beads and decided to get a little creative!
“Imagination is the beginning of creation”, George Bernard Shaw.
My photography club decided to challenge our members to create a new image using a provided sunflower photo. It was quite fun! The final image was created from 3 separate photographs. The software programs used were Smart Photo Editor; Photoshop; Luminar.
“Nothing is hidden under the sun.” ~ Leonardo da Vinci
Samsung S9 – f/2.4; ISO-50; 1/276 sec.
A couple of weeks ago my camera club went on an outing to the Chicago Garfield Park Conservatory. The sun was shining full force through the glass ceiling above casting rays of sun on portions of botanicals throughout. I decided to take photographs with both my camera and phone. To my surprise, my phone captured the sun lit plants much better than my camera!
Last week we drove to upper Michigan to view the wonderful fall colors. The timing and lighting were just right the day we went to Tahquamenon Falls State Park in Paradise, MI.
The upper Tahquamenon Falls is 200 feet across with a drop of almost 50 feet. The lower falls are about 4 miles downstream, and are made up of a series of five smaller falls around a small island. The water is a golden brown color which is caused by tannins from nearby cedar swamps that drain into the river.
After so many years of taking and processing “traditional” photographs, I decided to expand my creative side and signed up for an “unconventional” photography class at a local community college near me. The class is designed to sharpen your photography skills and combine images artistically through photo manipulation. The professor displayed a number of creative photographs that were the result of combining two or more different photographs. Window frames became works of art, and portraits were fashioned into painted illustrations. It awakened me to a whole new photographing/editing adventure!
Part of class last night was to take abstract photographs inside the campus. Below is a closeup of part of a waterfall taken with a slow shutter speed inside the entrance of the building my class was in. I liked the way it turned out and decided to try my hand at combining two photos. I had taken a photo of a white pelican on a lake a couple of years ago. Given the white edge at the top of the waterfall photo, I thought these two photographs might blend well. Both photos where processed separately then processed again when combined. I used two Apps, Snapseed® and Painnt®. Then finished it off with Photoshop Elements® and NIK®. I am quite sure this can be done using just Photoshop. I haven’t mastered it enough so I improvised with what I know well. If you haven’t tried this yet, I would highly recommend it. It has awakened a whole new energy within and expanded my parameters on what to photograph!
It always amazes me how differently each sunset can look depending upon where you are in the world!
Chicago Skyline – f/5.6; ISO 800; 1/15 sec.
Danube River – f/7.1; ISO 200; 1/125 sec.
Sorrento, Italy – f/10; ISO 200; 1/250 sec.
f/6.3; 1/800 sec; ISO 3200; 187mm
f/6.3; 1/400 sec; ISO 6400; 210mm
Brookfield Zoo also known as the Chicago Zoological Society is located in Brookfield, a suburb of Chicago. One of my favorite places to visit is the monkey house. There are quite a variety and more than a few that are happy to pose.
“In every walk in with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” John Muir
These photographs were taken with a Sony Mirrorless Camera in a Manual mode setting using an 18-55mm lens with an Opteka Achromatic 10x diopter attached to it.