As another terrific week passes us by in the world of photography, Toad Hollow Photography has been searching in all corners of the internet to find some of the best links to tutorials, special features, great photography and interesting blogs to share here with everyone. In this week's compendium we find a great selection of hand curated links to some of the best photography and most interesting articles related to the field. We really hope you enjoy checking out this list as much as the Toad did in bringing it to you.
Tutorial Shows Off Effective and Efficient Method of Smoothing Out Skin in Portraits – a different approach is explored and discussed in this 10 minute video tutorial that takes the viewer through the entire process of using this technique. The great results are well worth the time to view the tutorial and note the tips and tricks discussed in the piece.
How to Use A Marble To Detect Catchlights – sometimes the simplest solutions are by far the best. This 2 minute video tutorial shows you how to use a marble on location to assess lighting angles and identify the perfect angle to use to capture the shot you are working for. This is a simple concept with powerful results.
Dramatic Lighting for Pole Dancing Fitness Instructors – this is a highly interesting article that discusses dramatic artificial lighting techniques for use in a fitness studio. The illustrative photographs in the article are terrific, and JP Danko goes into fairly good detail showing you the setup and equipment used to achieve the results we see here.
Tempus Fugit: A Clock’s Storied History – our work in the field of heritage and history continues as we roll out a new feature photoblog series here at Toad Hollow. In this edition we visit the Cowichan Valley Museum where we take a close look at an antique clock that started its life in the town’s train station that hosts the museum today, only to take a long journey in its life to return to the museum again in 2007 as a display exhibit.
How a $3.6 Million Supercar was Photographed in Under an Hour – this incredible post shows us dramatic photographs of one of the fastest and most expensive cars prowling the planet at this time, the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport Rembrandt Edition. The almost impossible task of capturing it’s true character was reduced to a 60 minute session due to scheduling difficulties, but quite honestly there’s no way you can tell by the pictures captured. Prepare to be utterly amazed.
Incredible Time-Lapse Captures Up Close & Personal View of a Supercell Forming – the forces of nature come to life in this epic time-lapse piece shot and produced by storm chasers Basehunters Chasing. Events like this, especially when captured up close like this, really show how insignificant we all are when up against the incredible forces that nature has at its disposal.
Remington Standard Posted – local Vancouver Island photographer and friend EhPem captures a captivating series of photographs featuring the work of artist Paul Bishop. In this exhibit, Paul uses old typewriters as the core of the pieces on display, creating haunting vignettes that are a perfect exploration of rust and texture as well as artistic statement.
CHARGE! – a spirited otter making a run full-tilt directly at the camera is captured in this photograph by Mark Bridger. The terrific details in the image really leave the viewer feeling like they are a part of the scene directly as the little creature flies headlong towards us with a mission in mind.
‘Lost Lake’: The Ethereal, Foggy Landscapes of British Columbia – the raw and ethereal beauty of the British Columbia forested wilderness comes to life on the screen in this post that features the epic work of Owen Perry. Deep, dark contrasts are explored in the moody fog-filled landscapes explored, creating a dramatic series of vistas that showcase the true character of this part of the world.
Iceland – the gorgeous, almost surreal landscapes of Iceland are captured in this piece by Guðmundur Einisson that features incredible natural details as well as beautiful color hues. Natural leading lines are used in the composition to subtly guide the viewer into the frame and across the landscape to take in the raw beauty.
kiss me . . . – just because I’m a Toad doesn’t mean I have a propensity to particularly enjoy photos of great amphibians. OK, well, yes it does. ƊƦคƓ๏ƝŦlץƊгєคɱʂ88 captures a wonderful head-on portrait of a frog that is truly ribetting. Hop on over and see for yourself.
Fishing boat beached – a fishing boat lies prone and long abandoned on the rocky shores of the sea as the wild weather pounds it from all angles. Anek S captures a terrific black-and-white rendition of the scene, exposing all the intricate drama and artistic tension for the world to enjoy.
Witnesham St Mary Church Altar – this terrific HDR rendition of the inside of Witnesham St Mary Church features great details and textures in the aged surfaces found inside the old building. This shot by Art Hakker HDR takes us inside a wonderful character facility where we get to enjoy and explore a holy sanctuary that has withstood the test of time.
io sono il diavolo – a very serious looking, and seemingly evil, Eagle Owl stares back hauntingly at the camera of gorka orexa in this stunning photograph. The title of this piece loosely translates into “I am the Devil”, and quite honestly it’s hard to argue this point. At the same time, this is a wonderful study of the character of this owl that is sure to captivate the mind and imagination of everyone.
Singleton Village from the Trundel – the rolling hills and vistas of the UK countryside come to life in this wonderful photography from Barry Turner. Leading lines are found everywhere in this shot that gently guide the viewer through the frame and into a window of discovery and wonder in a town that is full of great character.
April night – the natural wonder and beauty of the Aurora Borealis comes to life in this beautiful piece from the studio of Rune Askeland. As the vibrant colors of the solar winds dance across the skies in the distance lighting the sky in wonderful tones, a soft reflection in the waters below cast this back to the viewer.
Approaching Tauranga – beautiful colors in the sky work in harmony with the brooding clouds that linger overhead in this wonderful landscape presentation by Barbara Youngleson. There are several dominant layers in this great piece, creating a picture that is both slightly abstract in nature as well as a landscape study full of detail sure to engage everyone who visits.
Storfjorden – beautiful blue tones grace the screen in this shot that features the natural and epic wonder of the Norwegian landscape. SysaWorld Roberto Moiola captures a great piece here that has natural rocks in the foreground adding warm tones to a scene that is predominantly cool in nature.
Cowboys and Cattle, Merritt, BC 2014 – a perfect composition and exposure shares a story in an image from one of my favorite local photographers Don Denton. Don’t powerful imagery captures a dynamic view of an active group of cowboys at work on a ranch, giving a glimpse into this lifestyle that started many years ago.
Wait for me… – someone is in a rush, that’s for certain! This is an incredible photo by Austin Thomas that features a little owl running towards frame right, capturing the wonderful character and spirit of the tiny feathered friend and sharing great tension for the viewer who wonders where the little fellow is off to in such a hurry.
It’s a Whole New World – who doesn’t absolutely love cute and cuddly? For those who do, here is the perfect pair of photographs to view and enjoy, captured and shared here by Lisa Gordon. This pair of images features a new little duckling as it discovers the world around it. Completely heartwarming.
Twin peaks – from the unknown Antarctica – this absolutely incredible photograph taken in the Antarctic features a mountain range never seen before by man, let alone photographed. Join Jørn Allan Pedersen on a journey to one of the spots that is the farthest south on this planet we all call home to.
Point of Rocks – Mark Summerfield shares a pair of shots featuring an old train station that is steeped in American history. The first shot is an overall view of the station as a whole, showcasing the terrific architectural character that has gone into it’s design, and the second shot features the incredibly detailed steeple.
Arch at Whitney Pocket, Nevada – a natural stone arch discovered by Anne McKinnell makes for the perfect abstract subject in nature in this wonderful photograph captured in the late day. The arch itself peers through the opening to a landscape scene lit with wonderful tones, accenting the incredible natural details that create the setting.
The Lonely Tree – Custer State Park, South Dakota – this wonderful minimalistic piece by Len Saltiel highlights the raw artistic tension found in a solitary tree as it stands in a huge park. The perfect sky accents the scene, creating a naturally pleasing image to view, and I simply love the shadow the tree casts as it stands sentry.
Samburg on Reelfoot – this powerful black-and-white long exposure piece by Jim Denham takes us to the shores of a local lake. Jim’s composition casts a haunting scene bereft of signs of life, delivering a surreal study of abandoned and decaying pilings against the backdrop of great natural scenery.
Rain – rain like you’ve never seen it before greets the visitor in this great photo from Andy Hooker (LensScaper). As the powerful torrent pounds the pavement, an artificial lake is formed on the roadways adding to the overall feel and effect from this unusual weather event.
Hunting Island Lighthouse – a terrific shot of this iconic lighthouse brings to life the storied history of the facility and it’s surroundings. Mike Criswell’s photograph is taken in the early morning light, capturing a soft and natural light on the scene that was once home to hunters and pirates alike.
Coronado Springs Resort – a beautiful resort in Disney’s Florida based facility is captured and shared in the fading light of day in this great shot by Michael Lewis Glover. As the lights come on and the sun sets at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, Michael creates a brochure-worthy shot of this terrific destination spot.
The First State-Sanctioned GoPro Tour of Pyongyang, North Korea is Awesome, Eerie – using a GoPro setup, photographer Aram Pan is granted access to the reclusive country of North Korea where we go on a tour of the city. This 22 minute video is raw and unedited, giving the viewer an almost surreal look into a place that is not often seen firsthand.
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.