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Projects

I have an ever-increasing repertoire of pictures from around my house because of poor weather conditions. I don’t think these kinds of pictures deserve an negativity, but it certainly does say something about how much of a homebody I am sometimes.

Stuck In A Dream

However, if I do stay inside, I try to challenge myself to come up with something interesting. This becomes inherently more difficult as I run out of ideas.

Poppins

Try To Sleep

Invisible Man I

I saw somewhere on the web that someone was using an old projector screen as a backdrop for their studio setup, maybe I’ll do that after I figure out a solid DIY form of lighting. It’s not that I need my own studio or anything, but I do think it’s important to have a set space for lights and backdrops and tripods and all that stuff, that also doubles as my bedroom at the moment. I’d really like to do some self-portraits with flashes and softboxes.

Midnight Reading

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The Land Outside

Recently, I have started to make some photo manipulations. This is different from photography because the starting pictures (stocks) are not my own. I combine them in Photoshop to create something different entirely. Many of them do not come out “spectacular” by any means, but it is a good way for me to learn the tools of Photoshop that I wouldn’t normally use. This way, when I need to do something out of the ordinary, I’ve already had experience with it on a photo manipulation.

The House On The Hill

I think the largest factor to creating these is just knowing exactly what I want to create before I even start. There’s going to be thousands of stock images I’ll have to sift through and it’s a lot easier for me if I know what words to enter into the search bar instead of randomly surfing around.

The Kite Runner

I’m going to start putting pictures away, like a time capsule almost. It’d be very similar to a retirement fund, a certain percentage of your weekly paycheck is deposited into a bank account for later. For instance, after shooting on any particular day, I will take a few pictures off the top and stick them into a separate folder on my hard dive. The rest will be uploaded to Flickr or Deviantart or whatever I want to do with them.

I’m very excited about this idea, because it pushes me to take way more pictures than before, let’s just hope my cameras can bear the weight. My goal is set to have a thousand pictures in my folder, which will probably be narrowed down after all is said and done. If I can get a hundred solid pictures together I’ll be happy.

Dandy

I kind of want to start making a collection of photos involving things on black backgrounds. It doesn’t have to be staged or anything, but I just enjoy the simplicity of the idea. I want to take pictures with low depth of field so that the areas behind the subject are blurred, but instead just have the background replaced with black and the subject converted to black and white in Photoshop. Just an idea I’ve been kickin’ around the last week or so. I’m sure it’s been done before. I almost want to go back and crop some stuff to the less noticed areas on photos and stick those on black. We’ll see..

Amongst my findings on the internet, I’ve come across a good solid amount of “digital art”. I mean “digital art” (as it’s labeled on Deviantart) in the sense of digital painting and photo manipulations, which are both very interesting to me. The thought of creating something from scratch is impressive, and photography satisfies my creative head enough in that respect. Now, as I have not really investigated the inner workings of digital painting, I’m not really going to touch upon it too much in this post. I find it amazing to be able to paint very well and then another thing to be able to paint very well inside of a computer. I think both would be a somewhat similar skill set, but still very different. Anyways, that concept will be discussed at a later date, onto photo manipulation.

Stock images are a big part, if not, the main part of photo manipulation. In my own attempts at this form of creation, using multiple images to form a larger whole, I have found some difficulty. There’s a definite amount of pre-meditated vision that goes way before anything else. You have to know what you want to create before you can create it (this goes for any art). This determines what stock images you have to go find and ultimately, what your overall aesthetic will look like. Next, what I find to be the most daunting part, is actually going on the internet and finding all those images you want to use. I find this part to be very frustrating because of all the rules and stipulations everyone has with their own respective stock images. Then having to download them all making sure not to lose the URLs to any of the images if should I decide to stick my work on the internet somewhere.

Another minor annoyance in regards to finding stock images. There’s a few leading stock image sites, like iStockPhoto for instance, but they cost money. Maybe not that much if you’re just going to make one photo manipulation one time, not spending too much overall. But to anyone who wants to do it all the time, they could end up shelling out a lot of money, which I don’t have. A good free one that I use is http://www.sxc.hu/, but compared to the items of iStockPhoto, there seems to be a significant drop in quality and contrast and all that jazz.

A sort of pickiness goes along with sifting through stock images as well. If I have a certain vision, I want stock images that are as close to that vision as possible, or something I can work with. Of course, all of these issues and minor gripes with the genre are part of the deal. When setting out to create something with stock images, it should be expected to spend some time sifting through websites and pages of photos to find exactly what you want, even it means blowing a few dollars.

All that being said, I would like to show you my most recent photo manipulation. I don’t really know what I would call it. Something to do with water obviously. I don’t want to say that’s Jesus reaching out to some guy with a hatchet, I was going for more of a Poseidon-ish thing. Just in case there was to be any misconceptions

and here’s all the stock images:

Barbarian guy

Rock cliff thing

totally not jesus looking viking guy

Arm


Big waves

Other water

hydra

texture
And I think that’s about it. Don’t post that picture anywhere else please thanks!

Drink Your Little Drink

Street photography is something that intrigues me. How you can just walk around a city in the flow of people and take pictures of unknowing subjects and keep on strolling. I was in a restaurant the other day, and decided to bring my SLR in. I thought there would be a lot of people looking over at me because SLRs are generally pretty sizable, but there wasn’t.

It’s funny, because if you read some results in a Google search, most hardcore street photographers swear by an old Leica film camera and a 50mm prime. I do think that with Street photography, as well as any type of candid photography, that it is necessary to stay as discrete as possible. The smaller the camera, the better. I also think that with today’s technologically consumed world, phones, Ipods and other mobile electronic devices, the people of the world are paying less attention to those around them. This is bad in the sense that there is probably less face to face talking, but it’s good because it means you can most likely sneak by with even the largest of SLRs.

Street photography provides a new challenge to the art, taking pictures quickly, and going unnoticed. This works best in a city somewhere, and is excellent because you’ll probably never see the same person twice in a day, so it’s always going to be different. Photography in and of itself is geared to that respect, it’s never exactly the same, there’s always something new to shoot. Street photos in particular though seem to change the fastest. I have only dabbled with it so far, but I plan on devoting some more time to it soon, like going into Boston and trying my hand at this again.

You should too!