From time to time, I look back at some of my older images – and my images from our amazing visit to Havana in early 2013 are now in that older category!
This is an image I hadn’t processed before – that struck me as I was browsing through my Cuba images in Lightroom.
We were in a large warehouse with a farmers’ market underway. Lots of nooks and crannies. As we walked around, we mostly had friendly encounters – with one except that I’ll always remember! This is a shot that I took looking out from within the warehouse – just loved the feel of the characters.
Shot with my Nikon D600 and post-processed in Lightroom 5 and VSCO Film.
San Francisco’s Kearny Street is one of our favorite photographic stages – there are a couple of whole blocks that have no parking on the eastern side of the street – the side which is also well lit during the day. You can stand on the other side of the street and just wait for interesting things to happen.
Here’s one from a recent visit with my friend Doug Kaye. I enjoyed the shapes in this image: squares, rectangles, triangles – and cones! The simplicity is the shot.
Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and the 55-200mm zoom, I post processed it in Lightroom 5 using VSCO Film.
A few days ago I published another version of this image shot at Filoli with my Fujifilm X-T1. It was somewhat unsatisfying to me – not sure why but it just was.
After asking my friend Doug Kaye for his thoughts, I worked on it again in both Lightroom 5 and Photoshop CC – working to remove a couple of branches in the middle that I thought distracted from the “tunnel effect” of the composition. I also, learning from Doug’s feedback, used some dodging and burning to adjust the contrast selectively in various areas of the image – trying to improve the sense of dimensionality.
I think this one is better – but I’ve decided to set it aside for now and will likely come back to it again with another try!
Here’s an image shot a couple of years ago at Point Montara along the Pacific coast. This is one of my favorite spots close to home – and I shot this image using my old favorite Canon 5D Mark II with the 70-200mm f/2.8L lens.
I processed it in Lightroom 5 and added a touch of Glamour Glow using Nik’s Color Efex Pro 4 to soften the skies and water just a touch.
We recently saw the Vivian Maier exhibition at the Scott Nichols Gallery in San Francisco. We’d seen the documentary film “Finding Vivian Maier” a week before.
At the exhibition, many of her photos struck me in terms mostly of composition but also with respect to tonality and how she used light/dark. A favorite – which also had some truly beautiful film grain is this untitled image of a woman laughing. She’s totally out of focus in the shot – but the story is there nonetheless.
As we were walking down California Street in the rain recently, I was about to snap an image of the cable cars when this man, coincidentially another photographer, walked in front of me. I thought the shot was a throw away – but decided to channel a bit of Vivian Maier into the shot – with tonality and adding grain in Lightroom. While it’s certainly not up to Maier’s composition, it’s a fun image – and that smile on his blurry face makes me smile!
Here’s another iPhone 5s image shot from a bench in front of San Francisco’s Pier 3 with my iPhone 5s. Actually, this is three images overlaid on each other.
I selected the three images based on the placement of the people in the frame. I used Photoshop’s auto-align layers feature to get them into alignment and then applied layer masks to isolate the subjects. The monochrome conversion was done using Nik Silver Efex Pro 2 along with some dodging and burning to adjust highlights, shadows, and contrast – along with a touch of toning.
The image isn’t perfect – if you look closely, you’ll see a few flaws. It’s one of those 90 percent complete solutions!
I continue to delight in how great the whole renovation of San Francisco’s Embarcadero has turned out to be. Recently, I found a bench and just sat down and began taking pictures with my iPhone 5s as people walked, bicycled, ran, and skateboarded past. This was a great “stage” – with no parked cars along the curb and the interesting convergence of the Embarcadero Center buildings in the background. And that locked up bicycle provided an interesting element to “the set”. If you’re curious, this bench is just outside Pier 3 – a few steps south of the entrance to Hard Water.
After capturing this in my iPhone 5s, I post-processed it in Lightroom 5 applying a VSCO Film emulation and a bit more tweaking done in Photoshop CC.