Toad Hollow Photography has been away for a few weeks and is now back with a fresh list of tutorials, special features and great photography to share here with everyone. This weeks list is comprised of some of the finest pictures and articles created and written by some of the best people working in the field today. We really hope you enjoy checking out this list of links as much as the Toad did himself in bringing it to you.
These Are the Features That Will Make Cameras Amazing in the Next Few Years – technology has an amazing way of continuously marching forward as progress is made in many different fields that employ electronics, and photography is certainly no stranger to this. Check out this great article posted here on Light Stalking that discusses potential advancements in photography and equipment that could be finding their way to our cameras in the next several years, allowing us all to focus on capturing great images in the easiest way possible.
Tips for Photographing In Snow – as the winter season approaches, it’s time to start planning and thinking about doing photography in the outdoors when the landscape is covered in snow. This great article covers a plethora of issues and challenges that are unique to this type of shoot, giving you a leg up in terms of getting started on your own outdoor projects during this time of year.
Personal Pearl of Wisdom: Place your subject way off center, cause its much more better – Joe Baraban is a well-known successful commercial photographer with an incredible career, and now he shares his insights with a wider audience to help us all improve on our work. This brief article discusses how breaking the age-old rule of thirds can help create stronger images by accenting the artistic tension in the frame.
19 Tips For Shooting Better Portraits (#19 is my fav) – this is a terrific short list of tips and insights to help you shoot great portraits. Even though many of these tips may seem obvious to most photographers, having them all listed in a form like this gives you a broader view on how the pros go about shooting portraits, and can be quite helpful for those who are striving for a certain look and outcome in their own work.
A Product Photographer's Guide to Studio Strobes and Small Flash Lighting – this video presentation gives us a great overview of the theory behind the application of speedlights, studio strobes and constant lighting sources, particularly in the context of product photography. These concepts are portable to other types of photography as well, and this short video will give you a great place to start in terms of selecting the right lighting source for your needs.
A Guide to Edge Sharpening in Adobe Photoshop for Beginners – there are typically a countless number of ways to achieve a certain look in post-production when it comes to using Adobe Photoshop. This in-depth tutorial takes you through a complex method of image sharpening that produces great results using a sample shot as the article works it’s way through the concept.
This comical sketch shows the practical differences between photo and cinema lenses – many of us are transitioning from shooting only still photography to also including videography in our repertoire of services for our clients. This short video presentation talks about the differences between standard DSLR lenses and cinema lenses for these applications, and the benefits that are found with an investment of this nature.
Abandoned Jordan River Power Station – after years of scouting the area out resulting in 2 site visits over the course of the summer, we finally found the elusive abandoned Jordan River Power Station. The town of Jordan River is now all but a ghost town due to concerns around an earthquake that could cause massive flooding and loss of life. We visited the abandoned facility with our drone, video equipment and our camera gear and came away with this story, an extensive catalog of still images and a 10 minute video presentation that features drone photography inside and outside the forgotten building.
Vivian Maier: The Intentional Work of the Photographer Nanny – this story has only recently come across my desk, and if I properly recall this body of work was discovered posthumously and today represents and incredible and important body of work by an amateur photographer. The shots she captured during her career are all fascinating and unique works that exemplify the human condition during the time period covered. This story reveals the lingering importance of photography in terms of history, even long after the photographer has passed away.
The Art of Style and Speed – for those of us who love the artform found in automotive photography, this is a short video presentation you will not want to miss. This feature provides several key elements of this genre, including the obvious great car shots, along with a bit of a behind-the-scenes look that will give you a great idea of what goes into a shoot like this.
Scott Kelby Makes His Case for HDR – Scott Kelby is well known for his teaching materials, helping photographers navigate the deep waters of the craft by reducing the mystery in quick and easy presentations. This video feature is just over 8 minutes in length and reveals a bit of the power and beauty that can be found in HDR done tastefully using Lightroom.
Outta The Way! – Red Bull Photography does it again as they capture an almost iconic shot of a rally car doing what it does best; racing sideways across rough terrain. This shot is framed by spectators as they stand on the sides of the track cheering the team on as the race unfolds.
Icefields Beauty – Icefields Parkway, Banff National Park, Alberta – the Canadian Rockies are one of the most amazing places on earth, with majestic mountains, ice-fed lakes of azure and dramatic landscapes presented at nearly every turn. Len Saltiel shares a great shot here of the icefields found in Banff National Park that brings many of these elements together and showcases the epic natural beauty found in this park.
The Fox Look – a wonderful fox peers up to look back at the camera of Hisham Atallah in this stunning natural portrait. The surroundings are accented here by the shallow depth-of-focus employed in capturing this shot, helping the fox to stand out in this amazing picture.
Convey – Michael Criswell shares another shot in his ongoing series of work that features the remains of long-abandoned facilities and buildings in the United States. This great shot features a conveyor belt that was once used in a busy china factory, revealing the effects of years of neglect and decay and leaving us all wondering about the story behind the place.
Moscow International Business Center – the incredible and contemporary architectural stylings of this area in the heart of Moscow are featured in a dramatic photograph by Roman Alyabev // Роман Алябьев. Incredible details, lines and shapes are explored in this photograph, finished off perfectly in post-production by focusing on the blue hues of the scene.
Sea Otter – Ron Niebrugge captures a candid shot of a sea otter lying on it’s back floating in the icy waters of Alaska in this great portrait photograph. As the otter is lying there, it is looking straight back at Ron’s camera, creating a great pose and a candid facial expression that does a marvellous job of sharing some of its spirit and personality with the camera.
Long-eared owl – a wonderful long-eared owl stares back resolutely at Milan Zygmunt, creating a dramatic portrait image of this unique looking owl in its natural habitat. The shallow depth-of-focus used to create this image does a terrific job of isolating the subject from the natural backdrop, allowing the viewer to focus on the rich details found in the face of the owl as it sits perched.
Blue hour at the BC Legislature – the BC Legislative building is a heritage building in the heart of Victoria on Vancouver Island, and is one of the key landmarks of the city for those who come to visit and for those who live here. Jim Nix visits this site during the blue hour and comes away with a wonderful shot that showcases the interesting architecture as wonderful colors grace the sky and the setting from the late time of day.
Couple – this is another nature themed shot in this week's list, featuring a pair of owls standing on the ground with one looking back directly at camera and the other looking in another direction, creating a strong sense of artistic tension. This candid frame comes to us from Hisham Atallah and is a delightful example of nature themed photography that exudes character.
Wünsdorf: Lenin Statue – Bob Lussier visits Berlin in this blog post and enjoys the company of a host that reveals some of the treasures found in the region, photographically speaking. In this post Bob launches a series that showcases the abandoned facility at Wünsdorf military camp, a long unused site that once was a busy location until the fall of the Berlin wall in 1994.
Fly – this crisp shot of an owl in flight by Stefano Ronchi finds us staring right back at a very serious looking owl who’s wings are extended as it floats gracefully through the air. Stefano Ronchi’s shot uses a shallow depth-of-focus as several others do in this week's list, making it truly stand out from a bokeh backdrop that creates a soft and perfect color palette for the owl to stand out against.
Turbine Hall – many of us photography enthusiasts enjoy the abstract qualities that can sometimes be found in architectural studies. This short series of photographs is shared here by LensScaper (Andy Hooker) and reveals the art found in shadow-play against dramatic contemporary architecture.
Thermodynamics – the dynamics found in a rolling fog postured against dramatic architecture of huge skyscrapers comes to our screens in this great study by Daniel Cheong. The tips of the structures that rise above the clouds creates a strong and ethereal feel to this shot, highlighting the subject matter being explored here.
Silent Wave – Edith Levy shares a great long-exposure piece in this post, turning a beach scene with a surfer on the waves into an almost abstract color picture. The dreamy quality of the shot introduced by the long exposure time adds a perfect feel to this composition captured in Tel Aviv.
Spiral – this is a great abstract study in lines and geometry created by a beautiful spiral staircase the appears to go downwards forever. Nᴏʀʙᴇʀᴛ Lɪᴇsᴢ uses a composition to capture this piece that takes advantage of the strong leading lines, culminating in a riveting vanishing point the delivers strong artistic tension.
Dougan Lake . . – this beautiful small lake is situated on a farm in the Cowichan Valley that we have photographed countless times over the years, as have various photographers on the island. It sits in a very picturesque rural setting with farms surrounding it, and in this wonderful shot by ƊƦคƓ๏ƝŦlץƊгєคɱʂ88 we find that sense of tranquility and peace that many of us constantly strive for.
Wooden Bridges – this impressionist piece comes to us from Mevludin Sejmenovic who captured this in Bosnia in the autumn. A wooden bridge leads the viewer into the frame on a personal voyage of discovery as nature awaits at the other side, featuring splashes of color from the autumn leaves.
Urban Crystal – the amazing city of Milwaukee in Wisconsin reveals a scene of architectural majesty in this great photograph by CJ Schmit. Captured during the late blue hour, the lights in the buildings add a great feel to the drama of the contemporary architecture being captured and shared in this shot.
The Wanderer – this early morning shot takes on a magical and ethereal feel as a thin fog covers the scene and highlights the overall sense of the image depicted. This shot was captured at the perfect moment by jae youn Ryu, just as a person is walking across a tiny bridge towards an amazing little structure that sits in the middle of the still body of water.
Hearn Ascendant – this series of shots features an urbex exploration of a massive powerplant in Toronto, Canada, shot on a film Rolleiflex camera. These poignant shots reveal an industrial site that is now long-abandoned, with a ton of character that has made it an ideal location for several movies over the years.