A wonderful week in the field of photography has passed once again, and Toad Hollow Photography has been searching high and low for the best links to tutorials, great photography and interesting links to share with everyone. These inspirational and beautiful pieces are some of the best seen this week, and the Toad really hopes you enjoy viewing them as much as he did in bringing them to you.
by broo_am, on Flickr
At 3:45 am on a quiet Sunday morning the alarm clock went off and the Toad sprung to action. An extensive blue hour shoot was scheduled with an exotic supercar, and he couldn't be late! The resulting collection of photographs is featured in his blog post “Blue Jet: Corvette Grand Sport“.
Bird Photography Tips | How to Photograph Birds Like a Pro – a great set of tips and techniques is discussed for photographing wildlife in general, and specifically birds. This is a thoughtful post that contains really useful information for the avid bird photographer.
How to Process 32bit HDR images in Lightroom 4.1 – A.D. Wheeler creates a brief video tutorial that shows the visitor how to work back and forth between Photomatix and Lightroom to achieve the best quality image possible from the workflow.
AskJoeB: Three Favorite Photos – Joe Baraban shares three images submitted by one of his students and shares some thoughts on each of them. All three photos are absolutely fabulous, and when taken in context with Joe’s comments, the reader comes away with a renewed vigor and depth to use in your own practice.
Post Processing Video Tutorial: Removing Distractions – this 15 minute video tutorial takes us deep inside Photoshop with Jason’s great lesson on how to remove distractions from your images in post-processing. Jason shares some really great tips & tricks here and wraps it all up with the image he created in the video as a visual example of the power of his work.
5 Tips for Shooting Photos & Video from a Helicopter – Chase Jarvis is a world-renowned photographer who finds himself on the most exciting missions. He loves to give back to the community, and in this post he delivers a really great set of tips and tricks for helicopter based photography. Oddly enough, just two weeks ago we were scheduled to do just this ourselves here locally, but last minute technicalities precluded this. You never know when it’ll happen to you.
Panning Photography Tutorial | How to Photograph Moving Subjects – this brief list of tips and tricks is full of great information for those who are trying to work with this technique. We do a lot of this ourselves in our practice, and there is a definite method to pulling this off well, and this article details a series of very important points to achieving the goal.
The King's Gate at Kastellet – this is a jaw-droppingly good photograph of a remarkable location in Copenhagen, Denmark. Jim Nix photographs this historic site and by exploiting a perfect composition, Jim captures a great image complete with natural leading lines in the architecture and surrounding details that are brought together with a great vanishing point.
Steady Hand – an absolutely epic scene is captured by Jerry Denham, full of mystery and shadowplay. As a fisherman makes his way through a fog enshrouded setting along the Little Tennessee River, Jerry takes the opportunity to create a great visual story through his art.
Canyon’s Edge – a gorgeous landscape taken in the Grand Canyon is displayed here in this post by Jason Hines. Great natural light paints the scene with a deep backdrop of the canyon that appears to go on forever. This image contains many layers, each revealing their own secrets.
by CEBImagery.com, on Flickr
Penthouse Sunset – a stunning city lies below in this shot taken from the top floor of a penthouse suite in Philadelphia. Scott Frederick captures and shares a shot full of really compelling colors and tones, and all the details in the city really bring something extra to the picture.
Ruptured Duck – this is a great shot from the studio of Mike Criswell featuring an old airplane. Mike does a great job with his composition here, creating a picture that is sure to be enjoyed by everyone whether you are a fan of airplanes as subjects or not. There are fabulous details here, well worth the time to visit and view.
Steely sites – Dave DiCello brings us along as he explores the city skyline of the iconic American city Pittsburgh. Great details in the bustling city below are delivered in this series, presenting the viewer with a set of shots that is guaranteed to keep you busy as you explore all the details captured.
Tread Lightly – a beautiful landscape image is captured and shared here by Andy Gimino. Andy’s adventures through the Vermont countryside finds him seeing all sorts of beautiful and unique compositions that he masterfully captures. He then applies advanced post-processing techniques to bring his personal vision of the scene to life for everyone to enjoy.
Through Tinted Glass – if you love lines and geometry, then this post is most certainly for you. LensScaper (Andy Hooker) captures two images in the Geneva Airport that exemplify this style of photography with pictures that are full of wonderful details.
Fill ‘er Up? – we’ve all experienced a wait at a gas pump to receive service. This location will require the visitor to have unbridled patience as it truly looks like no service is pending. Perry Bailey captures a great and dramatic shot of an old abandoned gas station, sure to be enjoyed by all who visit to view.
NASA’s T-38 – jet planes make for awesome photography subjects, and in this post by Tim Stanley we get to see exactly why. The beautiful lines intrinsically found in an airplane as well as great details converge to produce imagery that is very compelling.
Side Street – great architecture rooted in local character can be the producer of stellar imagery, and in this post by Len Saltiel we get to see why. The natural leading lines that Len has created with this composition guides the viewer through the frame, creating a series of places in the picture that reveal really wonderful details that are a joy to view.
Italian Hospital B – The Last Song – Mark Blundell takes us inside an abandoned hospital and shares a very dramatic and compelling picture of the main reception area. Mark also weaves an interesting story of how a group of photographers recently inside shooting were almost sealed in while they were working!
Fisherman’s Evening – the golden hours casts a warm glow over a sunset scene that contains great natural tension with the silhouette of a fisherman out on the water. Bob Israel’s image here also showcases a great cloudy sky that brings an added touch of drama to the overall scene, making this a must-see shot in this week’s list.
Synchronised – what an incredible image. A pair of frogs appears just above the water line and the rich colors in the scene really accent all the character captured. Simon Roy delivers a shot with so many great elements in it, you just have to see it for yourself to discover them all.
Little paradise – IR photography can produce images that are well beyond proper description in their ability to convey a rich and detailed scene that in some ways can appear to come from another planet entirely. This shot by Thorsten Scheel is a great example of this style of imagery.
Old Sleigh – photography featuring old artifacts and antiques can be so engrossing because you get a chance to see something you wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity to. Anita Megyesi shares an image of an old sleigh here that is just full of great character and is a real pleasure to view.
Annas Again – Jay Taylor captures a photo of a hummingbird as it floats feeding on a beautiful flower. These delicate birds are very fast and are a real challenge to photograph well, and in this post from Jay we get to see a great example of the best of this genre of imagery.
We'll see you again at the 2013 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally! – we get a peek into the famous Sturgis Motorcyle Rally just held in this post from Dakota Visions Photography. All the motorcycles that come to this event are as unique as their owners, and this post showcases a few scenes from the big event.
Terres Rouge – great details, textures and reflections are all expressed in this picture from the studio of Mark Blundell. Mark does a top drawer job with this scene in creating an image that is sure to captivate the imagination of everyone who pops by for a visit to see. Definitely one of our must-see shots in this week’s list.
The Great Wall Stretches Across the Sunset – a very compelling picture of this world’s wonder is presented here by Trey Ratcliff. The great natural leading line the wall creates in Trey’s composition here is really accented quite nicely with the gorgeous colors in the sky as the sun sets.
Trafalgar Grass – local photographer Ehpem explores the landscape of his area, and in this post he shares a series of shots featuring the tall grasses. The natural beauty of the grasses are explored nicely here, creating a set of images that are sometimes abstract in nature. This really showcases the natural beauty that surrounds us all if we just open our eyes to take it in.
Chipmunks In The Tetons – chipmunks make for great photography subjects, if you can get them to sit still long enough to compose and fire off the shot! Steve Creek captures a set of images of one particular little fur-friend who is busy gnoshing on something delicious to eat. The last photo of this set in particular really exposes the wonderful character these creatures have.
by Rubén Chase, on Flickr
River 1 – an abstract black-and-white piece from the studio of Chris Maskell is shared in this post. The natural drama found in b&w imagery really lends an added element of interest to this scene, producing a picture that holds many mysteries for the viewer to find and unfold.
Worth It? – Adam Allegro takes us along as he captures a pair of images of a beautiful sunset unfolding in front of him in Greece. The beautiful colors in the sky really accent the unique and wondrous architecture that is found in this part of the world, creating a pair of images that are truly indeed quite worth it.
Almost 7 in London – I can stare at this picture for hours on end and will continue to find new jewels to enjoy. This is a top drawer shot by Jim Nix of the Big Ben clock tower is mesmerizing and beautiful in its intricacies and details. An absolute must-see shot in this week’s collection.
Church SS UK – an abandoned church forms the basis of this detailed photoshoot. These urban explorers have made their way inside this grand facility and have come away with a truly astonishing series of images that showcases beautiful natural light, grand architecture and wonderful artifacts and details left behind.
Shining and Hopeful – a beautiful, beautiful flower is elegantly captured and shared here by Gareth Glynn Ash. The perfect shallow depth of focus that Gareth has used to create this image adds a dash of interest to the already vibrant and breathtaking photo captured here.
Porsche Club Race – two epic race cars frozen in time, caught in the action… presented here by Hansrico Photography. This is a great photo that really brings all the excitement and the action of the scene Rick has captured here to the screen for everyone to enjoy.
Over the Top – these shots of roller coasters are so wonderful in capturing the fluid action of these rides that I honestly feel a little queasy. No better way to enjoy a roller coaster than with your feet firmly planted on Terra Firma… unless, of course, you enjoy these sorts of things in which case these great photos will definitely have you with one foot out the door heading to your favorite theme park!
Green Barn with Stables – an almost iconic American farm scene is presented here in this great post from Mark Summerfield. Great beauty is found in the classic architecture in these buildings, producing a piece that is sure to be thoroughly enjoyed by all who visit.
The Suzuki Shop – what seems to be a bit of a sign of the times is explored in this great post from Jim Denham. What once was a vibrant community has found itself downsized as some of the local businesses no longer can make a go of things. Great, great textures and details in this abandoned building all come to life in this awesome photograph by Jim.
Beautiful Burano – a classic Italian scene is presented here from Edith Levy. This old area on the island of Burano creates the perfect photography setting for Edith, who comes away with a compelling and detail-rich photo sure to be enjoyed by all who visit.
All Natural Chicken – this is a chicken with a plan! Rob Hanson grabs a great shot of this really fascinating bird as it strolls about, creating a post that is sure to be a source of delight for everyone who makes the time to pop by and see for themselves.
Jailbreak! – what could possibly follow-up the previous chicken themed post? How about a gaggle of chickens on the run?!?!? Rob Hanson delivers a post that follows along on the heels of the one above with a great, great shot and some wit to go along. Check out this post, you’ll love it… both the shot and the rich humor are sure to bring a big smile!
The Plush Interior – a great HDR image taken of a forlorn VW car’s interior. Great textures and details in the weathering are all perfectly exposed in this shot, creating an image that is fascinating to take in.
Couple on Lake Louise – one of the most beautiful locations in the world is the source of this photograph by Vu Le. The natural beauty of Lake Louise deep in the heart of the Canadian Rockies is reflecting back the surrounding landscape and details, producing a very captivating image to view.
The Lighthouse of Heaven – a very romantic lighthouse sits under a blanket of stars in this epic photo from David Keochkerian. People standing in the distance in the shot produce striking silhouettes, helping to create an image that is sure to be the source of much fascination for everyone who visits.
Silence after the storm II – a very dramatic and ethereal piece is displayed here, featuring what appears to be a boat that is keeled over on its side in shallow waters. Caras Ionut does a great job in capturing all the inherent features in the scene. The long exposure utilized to create this photo does a wonderful job of turning the surrounding waters into a silky-smooth entity that resembles fog, furthering the drama.
Just touch! – this shot is a great study in natural dichotomy as Cj Kale photographs a landscape scene where an active lava flow finds the water. The incredible juxtaposition of heat, fire, smoke and fast-moving waters all provide their own elements of interest to the scene, and when combined all together into the image produced we get a compelling and dramatic picture to view and enjoy.
Allow Me To Introduce You – a gorgeous spot on the shores of the ocean in California is shared in this wonderful post from Blake Rudis. Blake creates a very detailed and quite beautiful panoramic picture from the scene, and shares it here with everyone producing a piece that is a real must-see in this week’s list.
Choices – Mark Garbowski takes us deep inside a long abandoned building, full of debris and decay. Mark’s introspective thoughts on the shot add a further layer of interest to his post… but the obvious choice of “running away” has been left out. This is a very dramatic piece full of awesome details and textures to enjoy.
Skyline Beauty – the natural and amazing beauty of Shenandoah National Park is explored in this set of images posted by Jay&Jacy Photography. One of the images shares a vista of the gorgeous landscapes of the park, and the others deliver the natural beauty of the wildflowers.
Starry Night at Cannon Beach – an ethereal and otherworldly scene is painted in this epic photograph from Scott Wood. As night completely surrounds Scott, he finds himself on a shore looking at an iconic rock formation to the left, and the lights of civilization to the right. The natural fog that enshrouds the scene adds really incredible elements of interest in how they turn light into something you can almost touch and feel.
Winding Wonder – the natural and breathtaking beauty of Yosemite Park is captured and shared in this stunning black-and-white image from Aaron Barlow. Aaron’s composition in this shot naturally leads the viewer through the frame with certain natural elements, creating a piece that is sure to be enjoyed by all who visit to view.
Route 50 Connected – like a scene cast from an entirely different planet, this very dramatic black-and-white photograph from the studio of Bob Lussier shares a desolate view. The power lines are perfectly composed in this shot to be the best form of natural leading lines through the entire frame, producing a highly artistic piece that is sure to captivate the mind of everyone.
Pump You Up! – I half expected Arnold Schwarzenegger to pop out of the scene suddenly, with aplomb. Yet somehow he didn’t, and we’re left checking out a totally captivating and mesmerizing photograph from the studio of Jim Denham. These long forgotten gas pumps form the most perfect photo subjects for the lens of Jim, who creates this image full of truly incredible textures and details to take in.
Miller House Kitchen – an old-fashioned kitchen in a very old house is the subject of this image as captured and shared here by Raymond Jabola. Great details in the items held here are all perfectly captured to produce a picture that is guaranteed to captivate the viewer.
“Sylvan Lake” – fabulous natural light drapes the massive rock formation, presenting a scene that is both dramatic and compelling. Photographer Robert Berry takes us to this beautiful lake in North Dakota sharing a scene that is sure to amaze everyone who visits.
Sumner House – classic Victorian architecture is something that is supremely photogenic. Intricate details all come to life in this great example of a really beautiful home. Wayne Frost grabs a great shot full of vibrant colors in Claremont, California.
Baie Sainte-Marguerite, Québec, 2012 – what a fabulous landscape shot, complete with rolling hills that seem to go on forever. Ren Bostelaar captures this beautiful photograph lakeside that features a very dramatic sky as a great accent.
The Coal Mine – a great vanishing point is a strong element in imagery, and this really fabulous example of this by Urbex Junkie delivers a stunning picture. Really strong and deep shadows add drama, drawing the viewer's eye quite naturally through the frame.
AMPUL ( BULB ) – this is a fabulous concept brilliantly executed. Tunahan Bayraktar delivers a multi-faceted piece that is very cleverly composed, sharing a complete story in a glance that is unique and bright.
a trailerful of sunset – a dramatic semi and trailer fill the frame in this awesome HDR image from the studio of Lorenzo Montezemolo. Great details and textures in the truck are really accented here by a dark and brooding sky with a colorful sunset.
Red rose – a beautiful rose is perfectly composed and captured in this lovely image from Lotus Johnson. Deep, rich colors are all brought to life as the gorgeous natural light gently brushes the petals.
by Gaga M13, on Flickr
Pumped Up Cheeks – OK, this is really cute. Rob Nopola grabs a shot of a furry little chipmunk, who just left the drive-thru restaurant and has rather full cheeks as evidence. A very shallow depth of focus in this shot brings all the character of the little furball out here.
Evening Rolls – I just love the natural lights and shadows working with each other in this wonderful image from Jerry Denham. Jerry finds a hay bail in a farmer's field, and by composing it with some of the natural leading lines found natively within the scene, he really creates a wonderful shot that really exemplifies the natural visual interest found in farming.
Jetty Simplicity – we have several great image elements at work in this piece from Steven Perlmutter. By using a long exposure technique to smooth out the water surfaces, Steven creates a mystical feeling image that has one of my personal favorite elements; a great vanishing point.
Daybreak – a fabulous study in classic architecture is accented here by the beautiful colors in the sky. Jimi Jones find himself in a setting where all these things come together, all emphasized by a dramatic sky from the remnants of a powerful storm.
Geddy’s Down-Under – a colorful and feature-rich scene is presented in this photograph of a front for a restaurant in Maine. Edith Levy grabs a pair of shots here that are full of great details and textures, enough so that the viewers eye finds itself moving about the frame finding more and more gems.
The Strangest Places – nature has a propensity to survive, and through so you can find the most amazing features around this planet that sometimes defy explanation. Aaron Barlow makes such a find with a tree growing out the side of a rock formation. The black-and-white image he shares from this is absolutely dramatic with a perfect composition, making for a must-see shot in this week’s list.
Stretched Out – trees possess the most fascinating ability to express themselves in growth by exploiting fractals. The results are amazing natural formations with really captivating shapes and lines, as evidenced by this wonderful photograph by CJ Schmit.
Raining Fire – Fun With Steel Wool – lights, colors, sparks and clarity all join forces in this post from Scott Wood to capture and share here. Scott and a group of compatriots gather at the side of the sea to create this colorful and absolutely compelling set of photos.
A Tucson strike at sunset – an electrifying event showing the power and ferocity of nature is captured and shared in this great lightning photo from the studio of Mike Olbinksi. The storm responsible for this event is clearly visible over the city as the strike lands, resulting in a really breathtaking piece to view and enjoy.
Abacus – a lovely wine bottle is perfectly staged and photographed here by Steve Beal. Great surrounding colors and tones in the backdrop further add to the sense of warmth the scene delivers, and the great shapes and details in the bottle itself are all brought forward with the narrow depth of focus Steve has used to create this picture.
Up High – there is something alluring about this image inasmuch as a Cheetah in the wild is standing in a very unique spot creating an absolutely uncommon sight for Andrew Schoeman to capture and share. This is definitely a shot that is guaranteed to amaze everyone who pops over for a viewing.
Fire In The Sky! – the bluest blues are found in the lake, and the most fervent glowing oranges are found in the surrounding mountains in this epic landscape photo by Rawin Cheasagul. This is a truly breathtaking scene with stunning colors, a real must-see in this week’s list.
Palouse Falls – shots using this particular composition are usually quite striking, but in this case Scott Wood has really created something exemplary. This awesome landscape photo has the viewer overlooking a beautiful waterfall with a complex layered backdrop draped in natural light, making for a stunning image
Cappadocia, Turkey – this is a very, very special image to view and enjoy, as created and shared by Sean Bagshaw. A hot air balloon expedition at the break of day presents the perfect environment for breathtaking photography, and Sean comes away from the adventure with a really exceptional picture.
OO – a perfect silhouette is cut into the face of the moon in this awesome image from the studio of Peyman Az. This monochromatic piece really delivers great natural tension, with all the elements coming together in a way that shares the pictures story in a glance.
Chernobyl and Pripyat, May 2012 (Part 1 | Part 2) – a place with a history that will never be forgotten by anyone, ever. The nuclear disaster that occurred in this place has left an indelible mark on the people, the country and the world. Urbex photographers got a chance to head into the city to capture a series of images that are utterly profound and in some cases poignant. These two blogs posts are the results of that work. These are highly emotional images that are sure to leave everyone with their own personal innermost thoughts.
New eBook – L2R XCanada – Victoria Volume One – roving Canadian photographer Jordan Oram, a great friend of ours, releases his latest installment of eBook series. As Jordan makes his way across Canada enjoying all this vast country has to offer, he creates a special form of documentation of his adventures to share with his audience, creating a book here that is sure to be enjoyed by all who download and read it.
Iceland Saga III – The Quimper Hittys take us along as they adventure in the beautiful lands of Iceland. This really great set of images is presented alongside a truly wonderful storyline that just adds so much depth and interest to the posts. This post in particular shares some great images of the epic landscapes found in this part of the world, and shares some really interesting back stories and details. Well worth the time for a visit.
Vacation time – @astaroth here on Light Stalking produces another blog post that is really quite wonderful to visit and enjoy. Typical vacation shots tend to include Aunt Martha and Uncle Joe scarfing down ribs at the local eatery, but in this post we get to enjoy the actual landscapes and natural beauty of Eastern Spain as we join @astaroth on his adventures.
Haboob Hits Tempe Town Lake – Chris Frailey produces a time lapse video showcasing a massive storm formation known as a Haboob rolling over his city. This is really quite something to see, the sheer power and force of nature at work can produce the most striking imagery.
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.