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Archive for the ‘Fine art’ Category

When most photographers think about having some fun shooting, they usually think about driving somewhere. But it’s good to remember that sometimes… there’s no place like home. Well, near home anyway, especially on Cape Cod.

I’m grateful that Falmouth owned Peterson Farm is just across the street. I escaped for a few hours this afternoon, walking over to the farm with my camera and favorite lens (Canon 70-200 f/2.8L IS II). It was one of the first warm, sunny days we’ve had this spring. Capturing images of the sheep and goats at Peterson Farm is a special treat in spring since so many newly born lambs are romping around.

Here are 6 of my favorite photographs.

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I bit the bullet and upgraded to Canon’s 70-200 f/2.8L IS II professional zoom lens. From everything I have read, this new-and-improved Mark II lens is not only Canon’s finest zoom lens ever, it’s perhaps THE highest quality zoom lens ever made by any manufacturer. Tack sharp. Vibrant color. Improved image stabilization enabling hand holding at slow shutter speeds.

So as soon as it arrived today, I grabbed some shots outside of my home for 30 minutes or so before it began to rain. (Why is it that it always seems to rain on days when I receive new camera equipment?). I am blown away by the lens and image quality which more than justifies its 3+ lb. weight and $2,000+ price tag.

Here are some of my favorite test images – straight from the camera with the exception of basic post processing of RAW files in Adobe Lightroom (similar to what cameras do for JPEG files automatically).

I can’t wait to use it for portraits of individuals, children, and small families. The lens will also be great for covering concerts and events. What do you think? A keeper?

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The town of Falmouth, Cape Cod has been named one of the top ten dog-friendly communities in the United States! The contest was sponsored by Dog Fancy Magazine, with results in their September 2012.

With many dog friendly amenities, it’s no wonder an increasing number of tourists come to Cape Cod with their canine friends in tow according to Stanton Terrell, publisher of Falmouthvisitor.com. Our new Falmouth Dog Park on Brick Kiln Road, their recent Pool Party complete with kiddie pools, walking paths, and shops such as Uptown Dog on Main Street are a few examples.

While most Cape Cod beaches are closed from May to September, there are a few beaches off the beaten track in Falmouth that are accessible to dogs year round. I recommend these to clients whose family beach portraits would not be complete without their beloved 4-legged furry ones.

Family Beach Portrait with 3 dogs

An added benefit:  it sure brings about real smiles and makes for an especially fun portrait session, as five cousins and their 3 pups discovered during their recent family portrait!

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The Falmouth Art Center’s Fall Juried Show opened last Friday. Both of my photographs, along with 10 others, were selected to be part of this competitive show of 88 works of art. And I’m delighted that “Wave Catcher” was awarded “Best Photograph!”

“Wave Catcher” is one of many images selected by the little girl’s mother from her extended family’s portrait session held at Old Silver Beach in Falmouth, Cape Cod last summer. She especially adored this one since it so aptly reflected the free and adventurous spirit of her beautiful daughter.

During the visit to the center, I also discovered that “Afternoon Fog” – my other entry – is one of a handful of pieces selected by the Falmouth Garden Club. A club member will create a floral interpretation to be unveiled at the “Petals and Palettes” awards reception held Sunday, October 9 from 2 to 4 PM at the Falmouth Art Center . I hope that many of my friends and fans will be able to attend.

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I was editing some of my Scotland and Ireland photos. Funny, but there are a few folks who still believe a photograph must be straight from the camera, that it must reflect “reality.”  That’s certainly true if its purpose is documentary, such as capturing images at a crime scene. But when it comes to art – landscapes, scenics, portraits – a camera is simply one of many tools used in the creative process.

For example, no camera, no matter how advanced it is (and my Canon 5D Mark II system is right up there), is capable of capturing the full dynamic range that our eyes see when the scene is contrasty – with details in the darkest shadows to the brightest highlights. As a photographic artist, Photoshop enables me to create the image as I see it, and as I want others to see and enjoy it. My Irish Robin is an example.

Before Editing

After Editing

The first isn’t bad. But isn’t the second version much more captivating? While I don’t dare post before-and-after images of my portrait clients, I think you can see why no portraits leave my studio without retouching. Capturing the image is just the beginning. The process continues in the digital darkroom to fine tune color, tonal range and composition. To portray my clients in a flattering, realistic way – toning skin and minimizing “imperfections” that we simply don’t notice in person, but glaringly stand out in print. Still looks like a robin, right?

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