Monday, January 25, 2010

Shooting An Earth Science Textbook Cover in Florida?

5:00 A.M. alarm clock wakens us to a 65 mile drive south through several rain downpours in the predawn darkness.  Thirty minutes before sunrise we arrive at our destination: the bare, weather eroded limestone that is the remnant of a fossilized coral reef.  Low tide is on our side, the 20 knot wind is not.  We get to work cautiously scouting locations on the slick rock among the tide pools. A wonderful red mangrove will make a fantastic backdrop, but we realize that HDR isn't possible in this wind.  We photograph it anyway, knowing we can utilize some digital post processing magic to make the image work. Thirty minutes later, it's over and we've captured nearly 1 GB of camera RAW images. Black coffee tastes really good!

The impetus for this photo journey?  For their Florida Adoption a textbook publisher needs a Florida location with obvious Geology for an Earth Science textbook.  This photo need has plagued them for weeks.  Florida is not a state known for dramatic geological features.

P.S. The mangrove photo is a "manual" HDR made from two frames, one 2 stops underexposed and the other 2 stops overexposed, combined in Photoshop, then processed through Photomatix

We shot both vertical and horizontal as we were told there was a possibility of a wrap around cover.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Horizontal and Vertical

A couple more shots from New Year's morning shoot at Everglades National Park.

I absolutely love creating images like these. Unfortunately years of photo marketing experience has taught me that there is not much sales potential for these in the world of publishing. Fine art prints? Perhaps, but we don't deal in that realm much.

Whatever. Sometimes it feels absolutely wonderful shooting creatively instead of constantly being concerned about "what sells". Nevertheless, I did learn a long time ago to work a subject both horizontally and vertically, always forcing myself to recompose in the viewfinder before walking away.

So even if shooting these for enjoyment, I'm no fool. I cover my arse and compose several verticals as well.

Covers photo sales pay more.

Canon 100mm macro lens, ISO 100, exposure 1/200 at 6.3.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

New Year's Morning

We've long held a New Year's Day tradition, photographing a location in Everglades National Park at daybreak. It's wonderful as we set our alarm for 4:30 AM and depart at 5:00 AM. There's no one on the roads and we have Everglades National Park nearly to ourselves. This was taken at dawn, January 1, 2010 near the Long Pine Key campground area.

Camera on a tripod with shutter release cord and mirror lockup to minimize vibration. Canon 10-22mm lens at 22mm, ISO 100, exposure 1/100 at f8.