Photos and Links That Will Make Your Day Better in 5 Minutes Flat

Join us as we explore a new weekly list of links to tutorials, special features and great photography all sourced and hand-curated by Toad Hollow Photography. This weeks list if full of variety, showing off some of the greatest photographs created by contemporary photographers, and interesting articles and tutorials. We really hope you enjoy checking these links out as much as the Toad did in bringing this weeks list to you.

TUTORIALS

Bird Photography – Don’t Wing It – Sheen Watkins posts a great how-to guide here on Light Stalking that talks about all the core aspects of photographing birds in their natural habitats. Awesome sample shots are included as she covers the various topics giving some visual feedback and inspiration for those looking to follow along in this genre of photography.

JCB200

JCB200

A Beginner's Guide to Retouching Portraits in Photoshop – a 30 minute video tutorial takes you through some of the basics of retouching portraits in an easy-to-follow manner. Each step is carefully shown in a screengrab as the photographer works through the process, giving you a visual foundation from which to start from in your own work.

Learn the Science of Deep Focus and Hyperfocal Distance – take a deep look into the physics and science behind the application of hyperfocal distances in the field of photography in the 12 minute video. This highly technical presentation will give you a great understanding of how the theory works, and for those with a keen interest in the niggly bits behind a scientific construct, this is a terrific presentation.

John Bastoen

John Bastoen

A Quick Fix for Correcting Distortion in Stitched Panoramas – many photographers who have to shoot by stitching together a series of frames to create a panorama find that horizon distortion can be quite the problem, particularly when using wide angle lenses. This 5 minute tutorial takes you through a quick Photoshop technique that can make a huge difference with this particular problem.

How to Refine Content-Aware Fill with a Layer Mask – mastering Photoshop is all about the tips and tricks we learn over the years of using this powerful tool. This 6 minute video feature shows us a great trick for how to take full advantage of the content-aware fill feature in Photoshop to create realistic results.

Rolf Dietrich Brecher

Rolf Dietrich Brecher

Getting the Most Out of Golden Hour Using Only Natural Light – this short 6 minute video tutorial covers the basics of how to fully leverage the golden hour when shooting portraits in natural light. This foundational skill will help in all aspects of portrait photography, especially when introducing strobes into the equation.

SPECIAL FEATURES

Photographer Finds Unusual Creatures in the Depths of Oceans – this collection of photographs is an amazing look at the teeming communities that live deep under the surface of the ocean. Alexander Semenov has spent his career analyzing and studying this not often seen part of our world, and his work has been used by nature publications and tv specials all over.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Steve Gosling: Hypnotic Pinholes and Black and White Photography – get an in-depth look into what drives a creative who works in a specific genre of photography in this great interview that also includes a selection of pieces from his body of work. The images are all haunting in their own way, each one expressed as a black-and-white representation of the artists personal vision in the context of the scene being captured.

Tintype Portraits at the Jazz Age Lawn Party in New York City – for those who love nostalgia, particularly within the paradigm of a photograph, this is a post you will not want to miss in this weeks list. An annual event that is intended to capture the spirit and essence of the 1920’s is visited by a tintype photographer who captures a series of period-correct images in a set of portraits with some of the best pictures shared here for all to enjoy.

HO JJ

HO JJ

Philbrick Photography's Literal Cliff-Hanging Wedding Photos – if you suffer from vertigo, please be forewarned that these shots are so amazing they can create that intense feeling even when viewed from the safety of a chair on a computer screen. The title of this post really does say it all when it comes to what to expect here, so for the brave of heart follow on through for an amazing set of shots.

GREAT PHOTOGRAPHY

Infinite sea – let’s head to the top of the Dolomites in Italy where an amazing otherworldly scene unfolds in front of photographer Isabella Tabacchi. In this shot we find a sea of clouds dancing over the majestic mountain peaks, creating a feeling of a rolling sea created by the cloud formations as they play amongst the mountains.

Official U.S. Navy Page

Official U.S. Navy Page

Seastack Glory – Cannon Beach, Oregon – rising an incredible 235 feet above sea level, this rock formation is world famous as a location for people and photographers who admire amazing natural phenomenon. In this shot of this feature, Len Saltiel also captures two of the other smaller formations and finds the entire scene in great natural light that is completed perfectly by the soft reflections in the waters of the ocean.

Serenità – Anna Ovatta shares a wonderful shot that features warm tones created by a low-hanging sun on the horizon. A lone wooden boat sits in the center of this composition, with a wood pier on the left that has a large bird perched with its wings spread open for a touch of artistic tension that helps to make the picture.

Roberto García Ruiz

Roberto García Ruiz

Chateau de Chambord in the Loire Valley – Jim Nix shares a different take of an incredible architectural wonder found in France. This building is absolutely astonishing in it’s presence and in this rendition Jim uses a vintage post-processing technique to create an antique feel to the image.

Sunny Riomaggiore – this enchanted village sits on the cliffs of Italy overlooking a dynamic sea, with brooding clouds hanging overhead to add a sense of drama. Daniel Metz’s shot features perfect natural lighting conditions, helping to turn a photograph of this wondrous location into a picture that strongly resembles a painting by the masters.

hedera.baltica

hedera.baltica

Cute Bear Cubs – I can’t help it, every time I see a photograph of bears and their cubs I stop in my tracks and enjoy every second of the experience. This wonderful shot from Ron Niebrugge features a pair of brown bear cubs in Alaska hanging about the grasslands, full of character and wonder as they explore the world around them.

Going Underground II – Peter Stewart gets to the front of a fast moving subway train to capture this great shot the truly expresses a feeling of speed and dynamism. The lines created by the tunnel when blurred by a quick moving train turn into a series of abstract light and colors in this amazing piece.

Matt Wiebe

Matt Wiebe

a walk in the forest – the application of selective color to a shot can definitely help make it, and this image by Frank King is a great example of one that works. Frank finds himself in a forest thicket in the heart of winter and converts the entire image into a black-and-white except for the inclusion of himself standing on the snow covered path in a bright red coat.

CitizenM Hotel London – the eye plays tricks with the mind in this great abstract architectural study from Herbert A. Franke who shoots this frame by looking downward through a circular staircase. At the bottom of the stairs sits a bright orange chair that creates a perfect anchor in the centre of the frame.

IIP Photo Archive

IIP Photo Archive

Magical – this photograph exhibits a convergence of several great elements, including a great swatch of color in the sky, soft reflections in the gentle waters and silhouettes of wood piers standing above the water line. Barbara Youngleson also includes a subtle silhouette of a bird standing on one of the piers for a great finishing touch.

Formation – Study I – Christophe Staelens creates a dark and mysterious abstract in this long exposure seascape shot that features a series of wood poles standing out of the ethereal waters in neat rows. The use of black-and-white to finish this great shot further adds to the sense of artistic tension found in this visual phenomenon.

Jeff Hollett

Jeff Hollett

Analyzer – certain locations lend themselves perfectly to the inclusion of a certain artifact that makes the viewer wonder about how it all came together. This great photograph comes to us from Michael Criswell taken in the heart of an old barn full of textures and patina with an old engine analyzer sitting there for a fabulous dash of artistic tension.

Otherworldly – truly strange rock formations stand on the side of a hill that has dark and moody light streaming in from above, creating a mysterious looking scene that does look like it comes from another planet. The foggy mist that envelops the whole scene adds a further eeriness to this amazing photograph captured by Marco Grassi.

David Álvarez López

David Álvarez López

Darkwater II – Vancouver Island based photographer Ehpem captures a dramatic landscape shot on one of the islands that surrounds the perimeter of Vancouver Island. He processes this shot as a black-and-white to really bring out the grain and texture exhibited in a frame originally shot on film and then scanned and processed as a digital piece.

Shot into Norwegian darkness – this frame was apparently captured in pure dark conditions by using a very long exposure time to capture what little photons were circulating about at the time. The water and natural formations are draped in amazing soft colors in this shot from Adnan Bubalo, and the captured frame must have been just as much a delight to the photographer once exposed as it is to us, the viewer.

Jean-Pierre Dalbéra

Jean-Pierre Dalbéra

The Sands of Time – the world-famous Antelope Canyons are an amazing series of natural formations that play with light, shadow and contrast. This picture comes to us from Edith Levy who found this incredible spot in the perfect conditions, finished off with a flourish with a sand feature flowing down like a waterfall.

Vestrahorn Iceland – sharp details in the Icelandic landscape come to life on our screens in this epic black-and-white photograph by Etienne Ruff. The rugged snow-capped mountains in this shot are emphasized by the fluid clouds that linger overhead, completing the picture just perfectly.

New Hampshire White Mountains Fall Color Abstract #1 – Mark Garbowski creates a pure abstract in this piece that he created by using a longer exposure while purposely panning the camera. With this picture Mark took advantage of the natural colors of autumn leaves on the ground to capture these brush-strokes of vibrant color.

PROPato sin charco

PROPato sin charco

Love those eyes…. – and now, for a photograph that expresses delight in everyone who sees it, let’s check out this close-up portrait of a tiny owl sitting in a tuft of grass looking straight back at the photographer Arno van Zon. The delightful bird’s face fills almost the entire frame in this piece, showing off incredible details in it’s features along with revealing a bit of the personality behind the gaze.

Sparkle Waves, Baja Mexico – Mark Paulson creates a terrific abstract shot catalyzed by rolling waves upon the shores as golden light gleamed off the sands. This tight composition benefits from the various tones of the scene, turning the roiling waters into a soft visual texture against the magic of the golden light on the sands.


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About the author

Toad Hollow Photography

I am a fine arts photographer that specializes in HDR techniques. Please feel free to visit our Limited Edition Prints site, our Online Gallery or our lively Photoblog.

  • Melissa says:

    Thanks for all the websites to look at! Great photographs in this blog post. I love the one of the chipmunk or squirrel.

  • Anne Hornsby says:

    Toad Hollow, these are super-helpful. Thanks.

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