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Monthly Archives: February 2010

Photographer Earnest Haas said, “I am not interested in seeing new things. I am interested in seeing all things NEW.”Seems to me this pearl of wisdom applies well beyond image making.


In my photography classes, I teach people to “see differently.” One way is to GET CLOSER to what is around you. I found this image on a faded wall in Viet Nam. Only about 18 inches wide, I cropped it further so viewers would not see what it really was: an old soft drink ad!

Some photographers think the best way to make a black and white image is to select the monochrome setting on their cameras. It is NOT. You end up with half the “information” that is gained when shooting RGB. If you want black and white images, then convert your RGB images using Photoshop.
For more photo tips,

Photography is a great equalizer. Fellow shooters pay more attention to what you shoot instead of who you are. Collectors of your work are more interested in how you “see” not IF you can still see! In my case, when I teach photography, or make photographs, I am no longer type cast by age, ethnicity or net worth. I am just a shooter.

Visiting some 33 countries, I have picked up survival tips that you may consider excessive or useful. First, I always carry credit cards in TWO places (in my wallet …with another in a deep pocket or shoe). Secondly, if I think I have shot some winning photographs (the kind that pay for my trips), I keep that memory card separate from the camera.. in case the camera is stolen as I shoot or sleep. Tell me if I need therapy!!

I shot “Basket Case” two ways- one with BOTH eyes revealed and the other with only one eye peaking through. I chose the latter because the singular eye seemed more menacing, if not original in its content. The difference between an average shot and a good shot can be impacted by the angle you choose or the crop. These are the kind of concepts we discuss in my photography classes.

Photographers are a bit nosy. They tend to be aware of what is happening around them. Like yesterday when I saw two separate instances where parents were dining with children, but not engaging them. Why? Because they had their hands full- NOT with children but with their Blackberry’s. I know the work place can be most anywhere now. Time with kids, though, is a finite resource. Look up, Mom and Dad before it’s too late.

At a local photography class held at the Arlington Arts Center Steven shared his favorite game. The finger game teaches people to go with their gut reaction and just see art. Take a moment to view the video.

Sometimes images are more powerful when you can not see a person’s face. Assuming I can upload this image (the snow has frozen my brain today, I think), tell me your reaction.

Washington DC is especially beautiful when covered in snow. While it makes for stunning photographs, photographing snow is tricky- especially if you shoot on automatic (P or Auto on your camera).That’s because light meters provide an average reading of what is IN the frame, ie: dark trees, white snow, etc. As a result, the true brilliance of snow is compromised and often appears a tad bit gray. To make snow look like real snow, you need to OVER EXPOSE when you shoot. When making the final print…in the darkroom or via Photoshop, you will need to burn in elements that need more contrast, ie: trees, etc.