I spend alot of time looking at maps. Either it be paper or software, I like having that overview visual of any location I’m photographing. In fact – When the software I use to keep my images organized announced all the newest and latest features – I was most excited for the ability to tag images to a digital map. Having this overview is great but seeing it for yourself is a completely different experience and what can be better then flying over Prince Edward Island in a small 4 seater Cessna?
Holding out for good weather can be frustrating but I recently took to the skies for my first flight of 2012. Here are just a few of the images created in early July 2012.
I really need to do this more often.
Today’s Image – Cape Tryon
I have talked about this lighthouse a few times in previous posts as it’s one of the most photographed and famous of the 63 lighthouses surrounding Prince Edward Island. It also happens to be declared as surplus and the risk of loosing it is very real. The land from the Cape Tryon Lighthouse (lower right) all the way to the New London Lighthouse (center top) is all part of the L.M. Montgomery Seashore.
The blue/yellow polarizing filter is something I rarely use but when I arrived at the beach and realized I had forgotten my standard neutral polarizer — that was as good of an excuse as any to add some color.
Today’s Image – Golden Sand
Sand ripples and reflections in Brackley Beach, PEI National Park.
I routinely visit Covehead in PEI National Park and I still can’t believe how much can and has changed from year to year. What once was a sand dune, is now a clear view out to sea.
Today’s Image – New Stream at Covehead
A year ago and this stream did not exist. The lake (pond?) in the distance was not accessible and separated by a sand dune but today is part of the beach and connected to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. I do not have a great before image but if we compare it to this image of the Northern Lights looking in the opposite direction, you can get a sense of the separation. Using Google maps, we can still see at N 46 25.746 W 63 09.117 how isolated it was just last summer.
I am no expert at composing a perfectly framed image but I do know what I like and I think I know what works for me. This typically means identifying a subject and finding at least a few lines that will draw the attention into the frame and hold it there.
Here I am in Rustico (N 46 27.419 W 63 17.389) for what turned out to be a very brief morning. But I can’t complain. It’s always fantastic when the clouds are heavy and the sun has a clear opening to light them up from below. It may be just another boring sunrise to many but this image is full of leading lines that intersect with even more leading lines.
Today’s Image – Rustico Beach
It doesn’t matter how much I plan, how perfectly I set everything up, or how ready “I think” I am because once that sun starts to rise, everything I had prepared for goes out the window and I frantically adjust to the sky, reflections and shadows. This was one of those mornings where I was all ready to shoot in the other direction with my back to the sun.
It has been many years since I last finished a painting using traditional mediums and I have a desk full of paints, inks, pens and brushes that now only collect dust. I’ve completely surrendered to the digital world but although I’ve stopped mixing paints, I still feel like I create images with a similar purpose routinely reminding myself artist first, photographer second.
Comparing the two can be interesting. If I was to frame the same scene and take the necessary time to paint only what was in front of me – what would I include and what would I not include? That mental reminder will keep you monitoring the frames edges before clicking away.
The majority of my work is not shot for clients. It’s not created for stock. And I am never thinking about sales. My goal is to create something visually attractive that might possibly look good as a print on my wall. How would this look as a 40 inch fine art piece on canvas?
If others enjoy it too, that’s all the more rewarding.
Today’s Image – The End of the Rainbow
Tonight had a little bit of everything in the National Park near Covehead (N 46 25.797 W 63 08.490). A mix of good light, heavy storm clouds, a light rain followed up by a rainbow. I spend over an hour photographing this rock and with almost 100 frames to show for it, this was my selected keeper for angle and wave movement. I’ll keep the rest and revisit them some day.
We live in a world that’s politically incorrect to be negative. In this world where we can do no wrong, you’ll often see complaints among photographers about how Facebook and Flickr, etc are a celebration of everyones work. It has the maximum encouragement because every single photo is the best and those that break that trend are looked down on. Which is totally fair because it’s all personal preferences. There is a reason there is no dislike button. It’s how these sites were designed to work. Negative commenting just looks bad.
So I’m not suggesting this type of commenting is wrong and the support is needed but if it were all true, we’d all be fantastic and if we were all fantastic, how does one feel the need to improve? Finding critiques is hard and receiving qualified critiques is even harder. The two local competitions that I know of are held by the PPOC and PEI Photo Club. While at different levels, the live judging is a great experience to watch. You can learn so much even on the prints that are not your own. And whether I agree with the comments or not, I want to hear the negatives just as much, if not more than the positive ones. After all, I already liked the photo enough to share it.
For the past two years, I have volunteered my time to help organize the photo print show for the PEI Photo Club and part of the exhibit involves hiring judges to provide constructive reviews for each and every print. Judges range from photographers, painters, instructors, designers and gallery owners. I don’t remember all of the positive comments but I do remember all of the negative ones still 3 years later. They have forever greatly impacted my opinions on the specific elements the comments were referring to.
If you’re local to PEI and that alone is not enough incentive to participate, we have put together a nice little bundle of prizes this year that might possibly rival the generous sponsorship from Think Tank Photo last year. This year I approached all the self publishing educators that I’ve personally bought from and asked for help. I was hoping at least 1 would reply but I’m happy to say all but 2 responded and I feel we have a real winning team of support this year from: Craft & Vision, Kelby Training, The Luminous Landscape, Guy Tal, Bruce Percy, oopoomoo, Jay & Varina Patel, OPC Magazine, Stuck in Customs, flatbooks and Atlantic Photo Supply.
Today’s Image – Breathing Warm Light
Made during a Cirque du Soleil parade down Great George Street in Charlottetown, this free to attend parade at dusk was the march to the waterfront for their stage performance during the Summerfest Festival in 2010. This was my most successful image from last years show.
and here are some more of my other entries over the past years.