What a huge week we've had here in the wide world of photography, and Toad Hollow Photography has been very busy compiling this very comprehensive list of tutorials, great photography and interesting blogs to share. You will find some great links here taking you off to see some fabulous works by some truly talented people. We hope you enjoy visiting these links as much as the Toad did in bringing them to you.
Getting The Perfect Portrait Every Time – a great piece from master photographers outlining tips and tricks on how to achieve that perfect portrait, every time you get behind the lens. David Ziser hosts this fabulous tutorial, making it widely available for everyone to enjoy and gain some behind-the-scenes information from.
Make Your Own Canvas Portrait – a short but awesome post on how to create your very own canvas portraits. Even if this is something you don’t have an immediate plan for, this great post is highly informative and left me personally with a lot of new creative ideas.
Lighting Basics: Hard Light and Soft Light – an absolutely detailed and highly informative article on different lighting, how it effects photography and how best to employ it. This is an in-depth article, sure to shed some light on this subject for most photographers, if you’ll pardon the pun.
Learning to See (Part 3) – seriously profound, this series of pictures and accompanying story will leave you feeling something, no doubt about it. Master photographer and writer Tom Dinning shares a personal story that is punctuated with the most incredible imagery, sure to move all those who take it in. As the story unfolded, I had a strong sense I knew where we were going with it, but each and every word, each and every picture, was taken in like the finest square of chocolate or a sip of the finest whiskey.
Pyestock – The Gates Of The River Styx – easily one of my picks of this week, Mark Blundell roars onto the photography scene with this picture that will leave you with as many questions as answers. Incredible photography and processing merge to create this absolutely incredible piece. A great accompanying write-up explains the setting, leaving the viewer yearning for much, much more.
The House of the Crazy Man – our very own @astaroth delivers a profound, moving, dramatic and highly emotional piece that will take your breath away!! An absolutely incredible set of photographs of an abandoned and dilapidated building forms the imagery that is encapsulated in some of the most incredible writing I have seen this week. Guaranteed to move you, this series is a must see!!
Waterfall – a gorgeous and brooding image from the studio of A.D Wheeler shares a view of a waterfall and an older building on the side of the river. A beautiful and detailed photograph, this is absolutely amazing.
In The Pond – a montage of one of my favorite subjects; frogs. Barbara Youngleson shares a truly wonderful image, full of color and wonder that is sure to delight everyone.
Open Doors – textures, tones and a strong visual interest that is partly a result of a slightly minimalistic scene… a great photograph from the studio of Steve Beal shares a not often seen picture taken in an abandoned factory.
Dance Images – wonderful photographs of dancers in action are the prime subject of this post. Frank Doorhof captures and shares a truly stunning and evocative set of pictures with a captive audience.
Sure Footed Fellow – this picture showcases a shaggy mountain goat captured in Banff National Park. A fabulously composed image from the studio of Jeff Clow reveals a truly wonderful creature enjoying it’s life in a natural habitat.
Blue Door – personally, one of my favorite subjects is doors. If they have character and drama, all the better. Rich Helmer delivers such a piece in this post, full of great textures and contrast, creating a piece that is just fabulous.
Cloud To Ground – another great photograph from the studio of storm chasing Mike Olbinski. Mike’s work in this genre of photography is truly second to none, and in this shot we have all the inherent drama of the power of Mother Nature at work.
Conception of Peace in the Distance – a masterful picture from the studio of Gareth Glynn Ash shares a minimalistic view of a shoreline. Processed in dramatic black and white, with a brooding sky to add drama, this picture is a wonderful work.
Inveraray and Oban – a stunning series of HDR photos taken of a small town in Scotland provides a truly wonderful subject. Great colors and details adorn the set, creating a chance for everyone who visits to get to see a truly wonderful part of the world.
The Day Is Done – a gorgeous sunset creates spectacular splashes of color, using a train bridge as a silhouette and leading lines producing a great photo. Chris Frailey captures and shares a truly beautiful picture, one that immediately introduces a strong sense of serenity.
Red-Tail Hawk at Bolsa Chica Wildlife Sanctuary – a powerful and commanding photograph of one of Mother Natures beautiful birds sitting on a tree, like a sentry. Jay Taylor captures and shares a truly breathtaking picture of this amazing bird, one well worth the time to view.
Fly on Daisy – great macro photography has the ability to captivate the viewer with details most often not seen. This incredible photograph of a fly perched atop a daisy is a great example of this and provides a truly wonderful picture to enjoy.
Stormy Days Ahead – wedding photography typically produces bright, soft, gentle and inevitably beautiful imagery. This picture shares a slight variation to this. David A. Ziser uses a dark and dramatic sky as a backdrop to a beautiful bride, producing an image so compelling it’s sure to entrance all who take the time to view.
The Beauty of Fog – a dreamy and surreal set of pictures all using fog as an element of mystique and drama. Jaw-droppingly awesome, this entire series is absolutely incredible and is guaranteed to mesmerize the viewer.
Magical Forest – if you like bright and vibrant colors, this photograph is sure to delight. Matt Anderson finds and captures a true autumn scene, one filled with wonder and beauty. Definitely worth the time to visit.
Winter Scene – a wonderful and beautiful winter scene from the studio of Richard Cummings truly produces an image worthy of being on a postcard. This is an absolutely delightful picture.
Red Fox – this photograph of a red fox by Anna-Liisa Pirhonen is absolutely astonishing. A prefect capture grabs a moment of life for this elusive creature for everyone to enjoy.
Old Town – Heather Neil shares a few images of Old Town Arvada and delivers an architectural study of classic Americana. Wonderful processing further adds to the sense one has from the imagery, definitely bringing us back to a time now long past.
Rolling Fog – a stunning landscape photograph that is full of drama produced by a rolling fog. Great splashes of details and colors become evident as the viewer spends some time taking this fabulous shot in; a wonderful picture from Len Saltiel.
Château d’Amboise on the River Loire – this is beyond wonderful, beyond fabulous… a stunning set of images captured in France while Lee Brown is adventuring delivers a compelling and beautiful set of photographs of an iconic spot in the world, absolutely guaranteed to delight and amaze everyone who visits.
Great Blue Heron On The Rocks – another absolutely jaw-droppingly fabulous shot from the studio of Aaron Barlow shares a scene of this gorgeous bird in it’s natural habitat. Incredible details combine with exquisite black-and-white processing to create something truly unique.
Classics – a fabulous set of pictures taken of classic vehicles, straight from the studio of Chris Frailey. These old vehicles make for wonderful photography subjects with great lines, colors and textures, and this series is sure to delight the car buff in us all.
smoker#8 – wow, this is an amazing image to say the very least. A poignant piece of time is captured and the textures and details in the resulting imagery are absolutely astounding. Yaman Ibrahim shares a truly unique moment in time through the eye of his lens.
Just Like I Pictured It – the iconic New York, New York Hotel in Las Vegas is the subject of this shot straight from the studio of Mark Garbowski. Great colors and details converge in this picture to deliver an image sure to amaze everyone who views it.
Buried Souls – a dark and macabre piece from the studio of CJ Schmit is captured in Seminary Woods in St. Francis, WI delivers a brooding piece, right in time for Halloween as it approaches. A wonderful picture, definitely worth the time to view.
Afternoon Light In Montreal – gorgeous, gorgeous colors are evident in this picture and are accompanied by a peek-a-boo look at some fabulous Montreal architecture. Jim Nix captures and shares a unique viewpoint of an iconic Canadian city.
Walking Away – a perfect combination of a father’s love for his son and masterful photography skills merge in this dramatic and highly emotional piece from the studio of Jim Denham. Pictures like this really exemplify why many of us are so into photography, and this post is sure to leave all who view it pondering life’s priorities. An absolutely wonderful piece.
Can You Feel Her Heartbeat? – a truly stunning photo from Mike Shaw as he shares a special image with everyone. A wonderful and colorful still life picture with exquisite composition, this picture left me feeling somewhat emotional from the drama instilled.
Autumn Dawn – sometimes it’s what’s left to the imagination that produces the strongest impression in a photograph. Jacob Lucas delivers such an image with a picture of a sunrise on the Pacific Northwest with a seaplane as it makes it’s journey into the day.
Castle – our very own LightStalking forum is the source for this great image. A castle sits on a hilltop, posing a commanding presence to all who pass by. A great sky provides a strong sense of drama in this wonderful piece from the studio of our own @mrbigger.
Above – Paul Tixier captures and shares a great picture, truly one-of-a-kind. Perspective is everything in photography, and sometimes fresh vantages can really produce striking imagery, and this is a great example.
Fall Foliage Graffiti – a great, great shot from the studio of Len Saltiel shares a scene that combines incredible lines through architecture with gorgeous fall colors. Fabulous tones and details merge in this picture to create a truly compelling image, one well worth spending the time to view.
The Doors and Windows of Roussillon – the south of France once again provides the perfect series of subjects for the masterful photographer Lee Brown to capture and share. Jaw-droppingly incredible details, textures and scenes present themselves in this incredible blog post, sure to delight and amaze everyone who visits.
The Last Sunset on Route 66 – an iconic roadway provides the perfect target for the lens of Jacques Gudé as he shares a truly stunning photograph of an old and weathered building that is punctuated with an awesome sun-flare.
On Seizing Opportunity Like It’s The Holy Grail – top shelf photographer Brian Matiash shares his incredible passion and vision in the field of photography with this image. The crisp details in the dock as it makes it way out against the juxtaposition of a fluid and dramatic sky are all accentuated with the exquisite black-and-white processing.
Bolton Emerson Americas: The Welder’s Bench – Bob Lussier captures and shares another iconic image of industrial based subjects. The black-and-white processing and careful composition are truly sympathetic to the subject at hand, producing a strong and dramatic piece.
Back In Action – Jason Hines returns from a brief break to share a pair of images, each processed slightly differently. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so we will leave it to you to visit this post and pick which one of the 2 absolutely incredible images you like better.
Slow Train Comin’ – another series of images from the studio of Heather Neil this week, this time of an awesome train as it makes it way through a crossing. Trains are one of the most romantic and nostalgic subjects in the field of photography, in my humble opinion, and wonderful photos like the ones Heather has shared here really exemplify this.
No Trespassing – prepare to be utterly blown away with this incredible photograph. Michael Murphy shares an image of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Fransisco as the sun is setting that delivers incredible colors and details; an absolutely top drawer picture well worth the time to view!
Admin – Steve Beal has a knack for capturing photographs that truly leave the viewer with a strong sense of drama. This incredible picture taken in an abandoned school portrays a scene that was at one moment full of happy kids and teachers, and in the next it all just vanished. A lonely broom is all that remains of the previous activities in this incredible image.
Soco Falls – a wonderful and detailed landscape photograph straight from the studio of Curt Fleenor shares a view of a beautiful waterfall. Curt literally had to repel down the side of an embankment to capture this shot, and the results are absolutely stunning.
Harbor Blues – this picture made me stop in my tracks. This photograph has it all going on; wonderful reflections, great tones and exquisite leading lines. An absolutely jaw-droppingly awesome photo from the studio of Steven Perlmutter.
Train Station – an old and weathered train station makes a perfect subject for this wonderful photograph from the studio of Helene Kobelnyk. Great details and textures merge in this image to create a strong and compelling scene to enjoy.
A Sliver Of Color – leading storm photographer Mike Olbinski is right there to capture this incredible photo of a stunning landscape with a brooding sky forming overhead. Incredible drama and tones are both brought to life through Mike’s lens producing an image that is sure to amaze everyone who visits.
Pair Of Grey Owls – another just incredible photo of owls shares a picture not often seen. Incredible composition coupled with a truly wonderful facial expression from our feather-friends are both evident in this wonderful photograph.
Spider – With Lunch! – a bit on the creepy side of things… OK, well, it’s VERY creepy but Halloween fast approaches and this is totally appropriate! Kerri Farley captures and shares an image of a spider in it’s natural habitat, well worth the time to view.
The Beauty of St. John – color, details and rich beauty are all very evident in this breathtaking photograph. The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist is the perfect subject for photography, and this post also has the bonus of a video to enjoy. Well worth the time to visit, to say the very least!
Pointing The Way – a wonderful photograph from the studio of Aaron Barlow shares a black-and-white wildlife shot. Perfect composition and expression from the bird come together to create a truly stunning piece.
Dreamer – a grungy and moody piece complete with wonderful textures, tones and details to enjoy. From our very own @13ftfall here at Light Stalking, this image is absolutely dramatic and compelling, well worth the time to view.
Trawler Cochin Kerala – a truly fabulous picture from the studio of Anoop Negi showcases a fishing trawler as it makes it journey. Great composition and details are evident in this picture, definitely a great photograph to enjoy.
Sheep – master photographer Alan Shapiro displays a series of wonderful, wonderful pictures of sheep. Each image is full of emotion with truly great facial expressions captured in just perfect compositions.
Maligne Canyon – Rob Dweck delivers a truly incredible landscape shot of a powerful waterfall as it meanders through Maligne Canyon. An absolutely incredible piece, full of color and details, it also has the hallmark touch of silky smooth water by using long exposure techniques with a neutral density filter.
PATH Tunnel, Toronto – a minimalistic piece that is absolutely riveting. Great natural leading lines, textures and tones all merge in this mesmerizing photograph straight from the studio of the highly talented Ren Bostelaar.
The Splendor of Pinewood – colors, details and rich wonder all converge in this jaw-droppingly awesome photograph from the studio of Michael Glover. An iconic mansions garden is the subject for this wonderful picture, with the promise of more to come from this location soon.
Path of Righteousness – Jay Taylor shares a truly beautiful and serene landscape image with us. A trail leads off through the woods, creating a wonderful natural leading line to guide the eye through the frame. Most definitely a picture well worth the time to view.
Detroit Architecture – Jon DeBoer delivers a series of absolutely incredible black-and-white photographs of the Detroit cityscape. This study of architecture is absolutely dramatic and highly compelling, sure to please the photography fan in everyone.
Morning Colors – simple yet totally evocative, this incredible photograph is straight from the studio of Edin Chavez. Great colors and a mysterious body of water converge in this photograph to create a complete image, well worth the time to view.
Bismarck, North Dakota – storm chasing as a form of photography can produce some of the most powerful and commanding imagery in terms of outright drama. This photograph of a cloud cell as it comes upon a field in North Dakota is sure to take everyone’s breath away.
Commercial Interior Photography – photography master Alex Koloskov shares another one of his top drawer HDR interior photographs. Spot on composition, tones and details are all highly evident in this wonderful capture.
Barcelona – an absolutely incredible architectural study from the studio of King Midas Touch on Flickr delivers a truly stunning piece. Great lines and fabulous details are all perfectly captured here, making for a photograph that is absolutely incredible.
Palawan – I am not exactly sure where this is, but it is a wonderful photograph. Honza Čopák captures and shares a beautiful image captured on a river with a great shoreline peppered with homes and rich green foliage.
Ayachuco, Peru – absolutely awesome light combines with the drama of a downpour on a city street in Peru. Mary Jo Allen captures fabulous tones and details in this shot that could easily reside on any postcard or wall hanging.
Never Misses – a great photograph and post from the studio of Mike Victorino shares a landscape photograph with a fence post as the prime subject. Great textures and details are captured and shared with a great depth of focus, really making the subject pop right out at the viewer!
Our Barista – wow, what a wonderful portrait photo from the studio of Erik Kerstenbeck. Natural lighting provides fabulous tones and a semi-candid shot of this beautiful girl really produces a compelling image that is absolutely incredible to take in and enjoy.
Me & My Shadow – a lighthearted and poignant post from the studio of Edith Levy shares a photograph of a rolling landscape with the added drama of her shadow. Light and shadow converge in this picture to facilitate deep interest, and the long shadow cast by the photographer on the crest of the hill is absolutely wonderful.
Wood and Stone – architectural photography will always remain some of our favorite in terms of subject material. Rachel Cohen captures a truly character rich scene with a wonderful and quaint older home in this colorful and detailed picture, well worth the time to view.
The Caramel Helps to Hide the Bruises – another truly great installment from the studio of Terry Border gives us a slightly whimsical look into his world. Truly humorous, this photograph tells a complete story in one wonderful glance. Absolutely well worth the time to visit.
Barn Light – wonderful, wonderful tones and colors punctuate the warm sensation one gets while viewing this incredible photograph from the studio of Len Saltiel. This picture is a beautiful image, and leaves the viewer feeling absolutely satisfied with a slight yearning for more.
UrBex Cathedral – a truly stunning photograph by master photographer Viveca Koh gives us a truly unique look at an abandoned powerstation. Great composition and processing come together in this work to create the ultimate image that conveys the feel of the subject material. Absolutely incredible, this is sure to delight and amaze everyone who visits.
Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse – wow, this is one absolutely top drawer image here! Rob Hanson masterfully shoots and processes an iconic lighthouse on the east coast of the US, and delivers a colorful and highly detailed image. Complete with exquisite lighting, both from the sun as it marches down for the evening, and the peek-a-boo lighting that is evident through the window of the structure itself.
Closed for the Season – old, character rich fences and other artifacts are always wonderful subjects for photography. In this great picture, Steven Perlmutter uses such a gate as an element to frame an iconic lighthouse at Martha’s Vineyard. Well worth the time to visit.
The 10 essentials of real estate photography – a fabulous post from professional photographer Thomas Russ Arnestad discusses tips and tricks for real estate photography. This is a fabulous piece, accompanied by a great set of photographs.
Don’t Fall in this Ring of Fire! – if you view one set from this weeks link list, this has to be it. Human ingenuity is something that never ceases to amaze me, and the risks that were taken by this group of photographers to capture this series really is a testament to such. This set is guaranteed to amaze, definitely a highly recommended destination for this week.
Toad’s Penultimate Shot – a wonderful friend, photographer and source of inspiration recently approached me to do an HDR photography collaboration. The results were truly incredible, in my humble opinion, and the blog post to accompany it is overwhelming to take in for those close to these people. Thank you, Rob, you are the real deal, a class act, my friend.
Wild Animals in the Urban Landscape – this is a profound series, sure to make everyone who visits and views this set of images stop and ponder the bigger picture of life. Every detail is attended to, including brilliant shadows, creating an illusion of life on this planet unlike any other.
Professional Photographers Who Make Special Images Sell More Than Those Who Pander To Their Prospects – a short but thoughtful post that speaks volumes. I consistently see this message from the successful pro’s out there and this brief blog post succinctly discusses why.
ND Filters – What’s All The Fuss? – a great post detailing why and how neutral density filters are a great addition to your bag. Coupled with great example photographs, this post really describes wonderfully the use of this line of filters.
Think You Don’t Need to Focus? Think Again. – Chase Jarvis discusses the pros and cons, the ins and outs, of the new pending Lytro camera technologies that are emerging. Art is art, the camera is a tool, and Chase discusses the future role of photographers and how this technology will alter our landscape.
The children of Dadaab: Life through the lens – an utterly poignant and profound video piece showing the plight of life and hunger of Somali children living in Kenya’s Dadaab. Widely believed to be the worlds largest refugee camp, this film is sure to move all who view it.
Lens Genealogy – Roger Cicala delivers a comprehensive article on the history and background of lens design and creation. This long article goes in-depth into the topic and covers pretty much every conceivable question. If you’re a photography nut like I am, prepare to spend some time here in this one.
The perks and perils of turning a hobby into a business – a really great article in the Canadian news discusses turning your hobby into a career. As the economy changes, I suspect more people are looking towards these sorts of ideas, and this article definitely left me with a strong sense of “no time like the present!”.
A Photographic Alphabet Around the House – a wonderful series of photographs taken by creating an alphabet with people and objects. A truly incredible series, this post really shows how the most innocuous things can be the source of fabulous creativity.
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.