Morning Mist along the Klamath River at Requa

The Klamath - Requa - 2014

For four days last week, I participated in one of Michael Frye’s Mystic Forest photography workshops held way up along the coast in northern California. We stayed at a delightful B&B – The Historic Requa Inn – which is situated just across from this wonderful bend in the Klamath River about a half mile from where the river meets the Pacific Ocean.

One morning we headed up to the Overlook to shoot images above the fog. We spent about an hour up there watching the sunlight shift and play with the valley fog flowing out onto the ocean. When we came back by the Requa Inn, we discovered this beautiful light shining through the fog above with a light mist on the river itself. This image was captured with my Fujifilm X-T1.

We had a wonderful time at this workshop – thanks to Michael and his wife Claudia Welsh. For some more background, see this post I wrote for InMenlo.com which includes another view from along the Klamath on that same morning last week.

Unmasked in New York City

Unmasked - New York - 2014

When you shoot almost 2,000 images during a five day workshop, it’s amazing how many you initially overlook as you review them. This is one example – a very friendly construction worker with a great smile. For some reason, this image hadn’t caught my eye until just yesterday when I was looking back through my New York street photography images. It’s another example of capturing gesture.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and post-processed in Lightroom 5 and Photoshop CC.

A Different Look: White Seamless

Ferries - San Francisco - 2014

Earlier this week, Scott Kelby posted a new portfolio of images that he described as looking like they had been shot against a background of white seamless. He described the technique he used in Lightroom to create this look – based loosely on blowing out the sky, increasing contrast and clarity and reducing vibrance.

I gave the technique a try on a couple of my images from a bright New Years Day 2014 in San Francisco. This is perhaps the best of what I tried – the Hornblower cruise boats tied up at Pier 3 in San Francisco.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-E2 and post-processed in Lightroom 5.

That Porcelain Doll in New York City

Porcelain Doll - New York - 2014

This is one of my favorite images from my recent Jay Maisel workshop in New York City.

It was early evening on the first day of the workshop and we were walking down Spring Street toward Broadway when we came across this brick wall and window across the street. As usual, when you find a stage like this you setup the camera and wait for an actor to appear. A couple of folks did – but none as interesting as this woman – who, with her beautiful skirt, just matched the colors of the brick. Lovely!

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and post-processed in Lightroom 5.

Prep on the Streets of New York

Prep - New York - 2014

Walking the streets of New York early in the morning reveals new perspectives. This image is an example – a worker waiting outside and checking in before heading inside to get to work. And that blue front wall in the midst of being prepped for a final coat of new paint! From my recent New York City street photography workshop with Jay Maisel.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and post-processed in Lightroom 5, Photoshop CC and Nik’s Color Efex Pro 2.

American Duty

American Duty - New York - 2014

On our long day of street shooting in New York, Doug Kaye and I headed uptown – stopping at Times Square along the way. Mostly, shooting in Times Square was pretty frustrating – way too many people – going this way and that.

But we came upon this construction site – lots of manual work being done in front of this American flag billboard. An appropriate reminder of Memorial Day.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 – post processed in Lightroom 5.

The Painted Brick Wall: Gesture, Light and Color in Street Photography

Juxtaposition - New York - 2014

This is one of my favorite photographs from my week in New York with Jay Maisel. About a block away from Jay’s “bank” (studio/gallery/home) at on Bowery is Prince Street with this beautiful painted wall. It’s a classic stage opportunity – where you stand across the street, setup for the shot and wait for the actors to appear.

In this case, these two were walking at each other. I waited to snap the image until they had crossed and captured this image. I love how they’re positioned – with the gestures of the guy on the right with his headphones, the lovely light coming down the wall, and the rich color of the whole scene.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 – processed in Lightroom 5.

The Importance of Gesture

Hey You! - New York - 2014

In his street photography workshop, Jay Maisel stresses “go for the gesture over the graphics” when shooting images. Light and color are important – but most of the street photography we think of as “among our best” have some powerful gesture as part of them.

This image is an example. I shot this on the way to lunch at Katz’s Deli on Houston Street the second day of Jay’s workshop. We were walking up a relatively narrow street when we came upon this construction site. What caught my eye was the triangular wire shape hanging down from a crane. But what makes this picture powerful is the construction worker pointing directly at me with his finger. He wasn’t happy with me – and it came across with this initial gesture!

Of all of the nearly 2,000 images I came home with following the workshop, this is one of the best gesture images – and also the only one that I recall upsetting the subject as I was taking the picture!

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 – processed in Lightroom 5.

See also my post about this image and Jay’s workshop on InMenlo.com.

Street Photography Tip: Wear Basic Black!

Chinatown Cafe - New York - 2014

Here’s an image I’m using to make a point – if you’re doing street photography, you might want to think about wearing an all black outfit. At last week’s Jay Maisel workshop, we briefly discussed this – Jay wears black shirts constantly.

For street photography, you’ll sometimes find yourself in the image – such as me in this image of a Chinatown Cafe early in the morning. You can see my reflection – especially my white hat! – just above the cook himself. I had a black jacket on – which you can also see – but it’s much more subdued than that white hat!

I’ll be shopping soon enough for a black version of my favorite hat!

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and processed in Lightroom 5.

On the Wall!

On the Wall - New York - 2014

After lunch on the second day of the Jay Maisel Workshop – at Katz’s Deli – we walked down some of the nearby streets. On one of them this crew was working on painting the wall – here’s a closer up version of the woman while the man was ducked behind the front cover doing something else.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1, post-processed in Lightroom 5.