Workflow: Inspirational Videos

Working on creating my own workflow, I’ve used ideas from a lot of sources. I’ve been lucky to come across two videos showing the inspirational photographer Sal Cincotta at work. He is a well known wedding and senior portrait photographer. However, those videos tell about his two creative personal projects.

Last summer I watched the first episode from Sal Cincotta’s series Continue reading

Assignment 1: A Small Change in my Plans

There are not many restrictions in the first assignment for the course: number of pictures and a type: landscape, portrait or  still life. I started thinking about my assignment relatively early (in the middle of November) and very quickly decided on the theme which was related to Christmas. I easily came up with several strong visual ideas about possible subjects those could be used to create a story with the required number of pictures.

After a few weeks working on the assignment and taking and retaking pictures, I realised that there was a flaw in my concept and the point of the emerging  story was really very weak. My story as I planned it did not have a really strong connection with a spirit of Christmas and started falling apart as I progressed with the pictures. Continue reading

My Reading List for 2014

Christmas is a good time to get some new books. I added several books into my Christmas Wish list and now, I’m struggling to decide which book to read first. It looks like it might take me a few months to read all the books from cover to cover. The problem is that I need to read several of them now. I might use a kind of selective reading and read pages from different books on different days.

It is possible to divide my Christmas books in three big category:

  • Practical (books about a specific aspect of photography)
  • Inspirational (books that make me think and could help me understand myself better)
  • Analytical ( useful books to read about theoretical aspects of photography and art)
    Continue reading

Food for Thoughts

Trying to finish my research on still life, I opened the last links from my list and went to the still life pages of “Source”, the magazine for contemporary photography.  There, I came across a set of pictures that could have a significant influence on my set-ups for several pictures for Assignment 1. (http://www.source.ie/artists/artistsM/artmulmar.html#dinnerforone )

Pictures from “Dinner for One” by Martina Mullaney show a different way of presenting food. That way is a far cry from the traditions of modern food photography that rely on help of food stylists to create an increadible picture of something incredibly appetising that almost impossible to get in real life. However, there is something in the style of the pictures by Martina Mullaney that is appealing to me. 

Continue reading

Contemporary Still Life: Wolfgang Tillmans, Part 1

Trying to figure out what is still life is, I’ve read a chapter from the book by Charlotte Cotton that was recommended by my tutor. In that chapter Charlotte Cotton mentioned several prominent photographers who have left their mark in the history of contemporary still life. One of them was Wolfgang Tillmans, a photographer who has taken pictures of, among other things, abandoned clothing items presenting them in a kind of sculptural way (picture of grey jeans). I thought it might be useful for me to find out a bit more about him and his work. (I had a hope that looking at pictures of a different style could help me get over my current photographer’s block.) Continue reading

First Thoughts after an Open-Ended Assignment

I was lucky that my kids’ sport club had a fund-raising night at the end of this year. I had a fantastic chance to practise in taking pictures for an open-ended assignment.

I created a basic workflow almost immediately after I’d been asked to take some pictures at the event, then I followed my workflow adjusting my steps when it was necessary. It was a very useful experience even if I ended up only with a handful of good  (in terms of quality and composition) pictures out of 770 pictures I took on the night. Continue reading

Exercise 1 & 4: Editing

Since the photo session with my friend did not go exactly according to plan, I took more pictures than I intended to. I decided that I try to use Exercise 4: Editing, to deal with the pictures from that photo session. Also, I decided to try out a new application on my iPad. I’d heard so many times that Photosmith was a fantastic app to rate the pictures.

I was put off getting Photosmith immediately by its high price and low ratings. However, the app had been updated recently and the new version started getting good reviews. Also, there was a temporary price reduction. I used the moment and got the app. It was easy to sync it with my computer.
After uploading pictures from the memory card to my hard drive and the backup drive and tagging them with a few standard tags using my “DPP-Exercise” preset, I created two collections. One collection was a standard collection for the pictures taken for a specific task ( in that case), the other collection was necessary for transferring required pictures to my iPad. Then I published the second collection (45 pictures) using Photosmith’s publishing service for Lightroom to my iPad. My next steps were completed on my iPad. Continue reading

Exercise 1 – Finally Ticked Off.

DPP-P1-Ex1-Final Two-508184
DPP: Workflow, Ex. 1

Things often fail to go according to plans, but if you really committed to your plans, you can see them through, eventually. I planned my portrait photo session sometime in the middle of November, but several times either my friend, who kindly agreed to be my model, or I had to put it off. Once I even had to cancel our photo session on our way to the location. (After dropping our children at school, my friend and I headed off to the location, discussing some aspects of the photo shoot, when I got a phone call from my son’s school and had to go back. ) When Christmas was only a week away, I started thinking that it might be a good idea to use a different model to complete the task. Anyway, there was no chance to find anyone else before Christmas, so I tried to use the last week of the school term.

It looked like the weather was still not on my side. It was very rainy on Monday and Tuesday. It quieten down a bit on Wednesday, but there was a school show for the parents that afternoon. Luckily, there was a break in the weather on Thursday and we both were relatively free in the morning. Continue reading

Notebook Magic

I could never image how it could be important for me to have the kind of right notebook for my learning log. When I started doing my first course at the OCA, I got a few notebooks, but, for some reason, I did not like writing in any of my them. Their pages were too white, or the lines were too blue, or the notebooks were too hard or they were too soft and so on. I ended up with a mess of  digital notes in my learning log.

This time I was going to to use a few tried and tested apps on my iPad to keep a digital learning log only. However, I’ve found a notebook I love. Continue reading

My Prior Workflow Experience

I can’t remember when I heard about a photographer’s workflow for the first time.  There was so many articles about different aspects of it on the web. A simple search of my e-mail told me that the first article on a workflow I might’ve read was on the 3th June 2010. It was the article by “Streamline Your Workflow – Getting the Most out of LR ” by Elizabeth Halford. Continue reading