It's been another wonderful week in the world of photography, and Toad Hollow Photography has been busy searching all over the internet for links to share here. This week's list features a set of tutorials, a special feature and a list of great photography to enjoy, posted by some truly gifted photographers and artists. We really hope you enjoy checking out this list as much as the Toad did in bringing it to you!
15 Beginner Tips for Winter and Snow Photography – 15 great tips for capturing fabulous outdoor photography in snowy conditions. These atmospheric conditions create new challenges for producing great imagery, and these simple tips will most definitely help in this regard.
Embarking on Your First Kitchen Shoot – this is a great article full of useful tips and tricks for this particular style of photography. All the key points to achieving great results are covered in this piece, sure to leave the viewer with a renewed sense of confidence to tackle projects like this.
Document Our Changing World – I share Joe Farace’s love for shooting old barns, frequently travelling up and down the island that we call home on the hunt for that next great find. Joe shares some great and simple insights for the avid barn hunter, illustrating it all with a great black-and-white rendition of a wonderful rustic setting.
Cinematic Shooting Principles: Using a Long Lens – this ten minute tutorial video discusses the application of long lenses for shooting cinematic style video segments. Terrific shallow depth-of-focus is explored as well as compositional techniques that will really make produced video stand out.
Two Toads Against The Oil Giants – as the political landscape begins to take sides and emerge in Canada in regards to the Northern Gateway Pipeline project, we here at Toad Hollow Photography brandish the only real weapons we can bring to bear in this fight; that is, our camera and our pen. The need for economic growth is evident in Canada, but not at the cost of our beautiful and majestic landscapes that set this special place apart.
A Confounding Beauty – Laurie MacBride finds herself experiencing a natural phenomenon here on the west coast of Canada, that is a thick fog that sits over our low-lying areas including shorelines. This shot takes on a distinctly abstract feel, with great layers to provide depth and wonderful tones to captivate the mind.
Monochromatic Zonda – this is a great black-and-white rendition of a photo featuring one of the worlds most famous supercars. The frontal composition that Barry Turner used to create this shot takes advantage of the serious look the car possesses, even standing still. Great light plays off the bodywork and fabulous details are explored here.
Fire Over Moraine – the still blue waters of Moraine Lake in the Canadian Rockies create a stunning reflection of the majestic scenery that surrounds it. The sheer magic of the mountains in the distance create natural leading lines in this shot, culminating on a colorful and beautiful swatch of colors that accent dramatic clouds in the far distance.
Saint-Nazaire (#3) – this black and white study from Mathias Lucas features a series of shots of what looks to be a long unused submarine base. Mathias does a great job in this set in capturing the feel of drama and abandonment in the scenes, creating a collection of photographs sure to captivate everyone who visits.
Winterborne River Lavant – this shot showcases the inherent beauty in the landscapes found in the UK. Barry Turner finds a spot where a meandering waterway makes it’s way under a stone bridge, and Barry’s composition brings it all together.
Summertime in Antarctica – a journey on a cruise ship to the Antarctic results in this stunning image from the studio of Anita Megyesi. Beautiful cold tones adorn the screen, accenting the shapes and lines created by the ice, all capped off with a bright and vibrant sun to create a sense of happiness.
Viceroy Butterfly – The Monarch Mimic – Kerri Farley captures a wonderful photograph of a Viceroy butterfly delicately perched on the stalk of a plant. The beautifully shallow depth-of-focus that Kerri used to capture this piece does a great job of isolating the tiny subject from it’s backdrop, adding a great element to a terrific image.
Orchid Deep – a beautiful flower with slightly muted tones reveals gorgeous details and creates a strong and dramatic feel. This wonderful photograph from Mark Neal explores the delicate beauty of the orchid in a very unique way.
Over The Rainbow – colors and details merge in this vibrant picture to showcase a beautiful city in China. The busy roadways cast light-trails the lead the viewer through and into the frame, settling on the architecturally wonderful bridge in the distance.
Icy rivers in Pittsburgh – this is a wonderful series of photographs featuring the iconic city of Pittsburgh as it finds itself inundated with freezing cold temperatures and the after-effects of a massive storm system. Dave DiCello takes advantage of the situation to capture and create a fabulous set here, showing off the landscapes and dramatic architecture of his city.
His Royal Highness – absolutely striking details are revealed in this photograph of a Golden-crowned Kinglet from Jay Taylor. The lovely shallow depth-of-focus Jay used in this shot does a great job of totally isolating the wonderful little feathered-friend from it’s backdrop, creating a striking image that reveals a bit of the spirit in this wild bird.
Great Blue Heron Flying Toward The Sunrise – Steve Creek captures a fabulous shot here, just full of great natural tension. The Great Blue Heron makes its way flying across the water top, bathed in wonderful warm tones from the natural light of the fading day.
Scotney Castle – Ann captures a riveting piece featuring an old castle near a body of water. Terrific details and textures in the ancient construction highlights the incredible architecture that expresses the true character of this enchanted place.
Fred Hartmand Bridge at Night – the brightly lit Fred Hartmand Bridge in Houston is the main subject in this stunning shot by Tim Stanley. Reflections from the bridge’s lights create velvet ripples of lively color, accenting the natural leading lines in the shot and the strong architectural features of the bridge itself.
Gate to Yosemite – the frost of winter drapes a frigid landscape, creating details and contrasts that reveal the inherent beauty of the setting. The gentle waters in the foreground cast a terrific reflection of the majestic mountains, highlighting the raw burst of vibrant color as the sun kisses the peaks in the distance.
Barcelona Gothic Quarter: Pont dels Sospirs – Lee Brown carefully composes and captures a stunning shot featuring the intrinsic character and wonder found on the old streets of this world-famous city. As a person walks through the frame, the perfect touch of artistic tension is captured here in a photograph sure to spark the imagination of all who visit to view.
Barn and Leaning Trees – there is just so much to take in and enjoy in this wonderful image by Jim Denham. A weathered red barn stands in a field, surrounded by really incredible leaning trees that almost seem to be standing guard.
Dunstanburgh Castle – Jimmy Mcintyre uses rocks in the foreground as an anchor in this shot that leads the viewer into the distance where we find the ruins of an ancient castle. This is a quintessentially English scene cast in a moody light with dramatic and colorful clouds overhead adding a layer of interest.
Another Arc in Paris – Jim Nix shares a great shot of an iconic structure in the heart of Paris. As the sun sets, it casts long shadows, creating deep contrasts to create depth and dimension to this wonderful architectural study.
Owl – a wonderful photograph of an owl in mid-flight is captured and shared here by Stefano Ronchi. Great details in the bird emerge in the frame, exhibiting terrific natural tension as this intent creature makes its way to its intended target, likely something that is soon to become a meal for it.
First Cell on the Right – the haunting cries of inmates now long gone are captured in this amazing photograph by Mike Criswell. The Eastern State Penitentiary makes for a perfect place for photographers to visit, exhibiting some of the best textures and fascinating details found in a weathered setting such as this.
Happy New Year – the beautiful colors of a wonderful fireworks display are wonderfully captured in this image from the studio of Michael Lewis Glover. The crisp details in the streams of light from the fireworks paint the night sky in colors full of joy and hope, a wonderful way to ring in a new year.
SunBeam V – the remains of an old shipwreck leave a wooden skeleton behind on the beach, creating the perfect subject for the photography of Marek Biegalski. The gorgeous tones created by the golden hour play with the textures and details of the old wreck, casting an absolutely fascinating scene to enjoy for the viewer.
Car repair (not) done here – dramatic shadows play against the remains of the inside of what once was a booming car repair business. Melinda Green Harvey captures a great shot full of drama and tension with great balance in terms of the exposure for both the inside and out.
“Grand Traverse Lighthouse” – Rachel Cohen captures and shares a terrific series of black-and-white photos featuring the Grand Traverse Lighthouse. This large structure was originally constructed in 1858 and still casts a dramatic silhouette against the surroundings that it calls home to.
Little Siberian – vivid blue hues and tones are captured of this frozen snow vista, complete with a mirror-like reflection from the still waters that encompass the scenery. The shoreline makes for a wonderful natural leading line in this composition, captured and shared here by Eric Maupate.
Three Windows – great character is found in the textures of these weathered windows located in the mill at Lawrence, MA. Steven Perlmutter’s careful composition and processing highlight the intrinsic tension found in spaces like these that haven’t been actively used in years.
Moraine Lake – Alberta, Canada – we feature another photograph of the wondrous Moraine Lake in the Canadian Rockies in this week’s list. The incredible natural beauty of this spot on earth is hard to digest in terms of its true scale, and Luke Austin’s vivid shot does a great job of exploring that as well as the deep blue waters that comprise the lake itself.
I'm busy… – incredible character and details in this tiny Burrowing Owl are exposed in a shot that is framed in more than just a little humor. Austin Thomas’ wonderful title for this shot does much more than convey the feeling you get while viewing the image, it also expressed a little of the spirit that makes these wonderful creatures such a joy to observe and photograph.
What We Recommend to Improve Your Photography Fast
It's possible to get some pretty large improvements in your photography skills very fast be learning some fundamentals. Consider this the 80:20 rule of photography where 80% of the improvements will come from 20% of the learnable skills. Those fundamentals include camera craft, composition, understanding light and mastering post-production. Here are the premium guides we recommend.