We've had another terrific week here in the world of photography and Toad Hollow Photography has been searching all over for links to tutorials, special features, great photography and interesting blogs to share here with everyone. This week's list of photography links is full of great articles and photographs created by some of the finest artists practicing in the field today. We hope you enjoy perusing these links as much as the Toad did in bringing this list to you.
Simple And Effective Food Photography Techniques – this is one of the better food photography tutorials I have seen. This short article delivers on sharing great tips and tricks for producing stunning food based product shots. Many of the details discussed here would likely apply in other types of product work as well.
Tutorial Explains How to Sharpen Images Contextually – sharpening and enhancing can play an important role in post-processing an image. In this 10 minute video tutorial, Photoshop wizard Michael Woloszynowicz takes the viewer through the detailed steps of selective and controlled sharpening techniques.
A Concise Explanation of How Crop Factor Affects Both Focal Length AND Aperture – this complex and detailed video presentation by Tony Northrup talks about the relationship between sensor size, focal length, aperture and resulting image quality. Although it is unlikely to answer all the questions that circulate on this topic, it will definitely shed some much needed light on subject.
BTS: Photographer Goes on an Adventure to Shoot an Abandoned Prison – this amazing 7 minute video presentation takes us along as photographer Mike Palmer and cinematographer Jon Simonassi go through incredible lengths to journey to and completely document a long-abandoned prison in Canada. Inspirational and eery at the same time, this is a journey that you will not soon forget.
Fairy Lake Fir – this shot features a true landmark and icon here on Vancouver Island, one that has been shot many, many times before. A lone tree emerges from the dead stump of another in the middle of Fairy Lake, casting an almost magical scene upon the viewer. Our own photograph of this incredible spot is featured on our blog post “The Cycle Of Life”.
Deception Pass Sunset – David Williams creates an amazing image featuring a gorgeous sunset framed by the silhouette of a bridge. The timing for this particular shot is critical as all the elements only come together twice a year, and the results are definitely worth the efforts.
Golden hour – this gorgeous landscape scene features beautiful colors in the sky hanging over a wonderful waterscape. Magnus Østebrød uses a wooden pier to create the perfect natural leading line in this composition, leading the viewer through the frame and out into the expanses beyond.
Sunset at National Harbor – a terrific shot from Jimi Jones that showcases the beauty of the harbor as the sun begins to set for the day. Wonderful colors in the sky work in harmony with the great details in the shot. Pay special note of a jet airplane in the skies adding a touch of artistic tension.
what light (through yonder window breaks?) – dewdrops sit on the petals of a vibrantly colored flower that oneowner carefully composed and captured to share here. Delicate details in the plant truly come to life in this macro shot, revealing some of the mysteries of nature in a picture.
108 Feet Above – this terrific architectural study from CJ Schmit finds us looking at a very interesting hotel building in Milwaukee, WI from a high perspective. CJ shares some incredibly crisp details in this shot that also showcases the colors illuminating the buildings as they shine in the night.
Vintage Grain Elevator – Scott Prokop captures a great shot of an old wooden grain elevator on the prairies. The building literally exudes character in the natural weathering that it has experienced over the years, and the textures Scott has captured really showcases this perfectly.
St Malo Chapel – wonderful stone work comes together with the natural surroundings to create perfect harmony in this shot that features a stone constructed chapel. Brian Behling’s shot is absolutely amazing, with a perfect balance of that created by man in the natural landscape that exudes the beauty found in Colorado.
Boats on the River Looe Cornwall – a wonderful harbour scene is explored in this terrific shot by Barry Turner. Slopes lead down to the waters below in this shot that features wonderful architecture and boats both parked and in motion.
Dixie Plantation – this shot features a stunning landscape showcasing an “avenue of oaks” aligned in a way to create a terrific natural pattern. Vibrant greens and natural shapes converge in this picture to deliver a stunning piece, captured with the perfect composition to take advantage of all the natural elements.
Shafter Cemetery – Derrick Birdsall visits a cemetery in the heart of night to capture and share a stunning piece. The rows of crosses are all gently lit under the sky as the sun begins to make itself known to herald in a new day. The juxtaposition of a new day against the resting residents of the cemetery work in harmony in this piece.
Newport Beach Sunset – a stunning sunset plays host to a captive scene showcasing a pier that leads out into the ocean. Michael Smith shot also features a dramatic sky with natural cloud formations and a perfect natural leading line.
Dead Horse Reflection – this breathtaking shot from Len Saltiel takes us to this famous spot where the emerging day casts long shadows on the landscape, heightening the natural drama. A soft reflection of the main landmark adds a perfect touch to the composition.
Lavender field, Provence – row upon row of vibrant purple greets the viewer in this great photograph by Tomáš Vocelka. A lone and bare tree in the frame adds the perfect touch of artistic tension to this scene, delivering a piece that is a joy to view.
Live Oak Lane – a lovely scene perfectly captured by Mike Criswell shares a row of oak trees leaning into a winding ribbon of roadway. The wonderful shapes created by the hanging branches accents the character found in the both the locale as well as the incredible trees.
Mesa Arch Without The Arch– terrific layer upon layer of landscape is revealed in this shot from the studio of Mark Garbowski. Mark’s visit to this world-famous spot finds him using a different composition from norm to accent the incredible scale and expanse of this wonderful location.
I think it’s a Thunderbird – I would definitely call this a terrific character study of a classic Ford Thunderbird car. Bob Lussier focuses on the steering wheel, using a shallow depth-of-focus to really bring out the wonderful character of this classic gem.
Point Wilson Lighthouse – a great shot from David Williams shares a view of a great lighthouse sitting in the foreground as a range of commanding snow-covered mountains in the far distance stand overhead. David works with predominantly blue, cool tones in this shot to accent the overall feel and mood of the scene.
rust in peace . . . – this is a fabulous character study, as well as a strong study in textures. This great image from ƊƦคƓ๏ƝŦlץƊгєคɱʂ88 is full of great detail, exposing the true character of the old GMC truck, highlighting the interesting life it must have led.
NYC – this is a stunning monochromatic cityscape study of the NYC skyline. Dani Diamond’s epic photograph creates a moody sensation which serves to accent the rich drama found in this simply incredible architectural study.
Hawaiian Sunset – simply gorgeous colors that can only be found during a vibrant sunset come to life in this breathtaking piece by Chris Frailey. Chris’ long exposure technique smooths out the water’s surface and provides a perfect surface to gently reflect the colors of the sky back to the viewer.
Owl – a very dramatic looking owl is captured here mid-flight as it turns in the air. Dave Ovenden’s perfect timing and composition work together to deliver a picture full of natural artistic tension, discovered in the way the bird is turning as well as the very serious look on it’s face.
Playing The Long Game – this terrific article discusses at a high level the fear that most artists feel, and how to overcome it in an effort to be successful. This great article is a great way to begin to ask yourself some key questions about your practice, and through that process learn a little about yourself.
Cop Who Threatened to Make Photog’s Life a ‘Living Hell’ Found Guilty of Misconduct – the ongoing stories of photographers who are improperly hassled by authorities has an interesting outcome, at least for this one story. The photographer in question ran his cell phone video during the altercation, capturing the entire event in video to share online.
Sony Unveils a New Push in Technology with their Curved Sensor – a brand new sensor design is unveiled by industry leaders Sony. This design is particularly interesting in how it is the closest mimic the human eye seen so far.
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.