My computer is in the hospital for the umpteenth time so I'm working on a very old and sad Mac that stops charging when it feels like it and also doesn't want me to go into my external hard drive. I had a few things on a thumb which it will read and chose this photo for today. I was sure I've posted this before but I didn't find it in any of my 400+ posts.

It's a favorite of mine. I composed it in the camera...anticipated when he would be where I wanted him and snapped the photograph. No cropping in post. Hope you like it too.

Photography Tips #12

This post started out with me picking a photograph from the dated archives that only goes back to 2012 and I have a lot more to organize. I start with the date - 03/18 for example - and if I didn't shoot on that date I'll go for the file name - 0318 for example.

Today's was the file number. There were other ones that were 0318 but I went with this one, not because I thought it was a great photograph but because I thought I could show you how to salvage a shot that you would normally delete.

So, this is the 'After' I messed around with the file in my digital darkroom aka Photoshop. I did not do anything I couldn't have done with a negative in a real darkroom:


The screenshot below is what the file looked like as shot. I did the screenshot because when I open the NEF file it reverts to the color information even though I shot it in black and white. Having you you at the color version wouldn't give you an accurate difference in the before or after.

So, as you can see my original was way over-exposed. I shoot on manual so I messed this frame up, trying to catch my moving targets - the biker and the runner - in the same frame. Looking at the screenshot now I kind of like it like this but that doesn't make this post a Photography tip.

Moving on, this is the list of what I did in Photoshop to create the above 'After' version from this 'Before' version:

  1. using Levels, I moved the left side arrow and slid it slightly to the right
  2. using Curves, I chose to click the Auto button
  3. using Brightness/Contrast, I also chose to click the Auto button

And that was it, easy-peasy.


Note: The photograph was taken on 5/7/14.

My Day

I was unprepared (as usual) for posting today. No thought what so ever. So I delved into the archives to see if I had taken any photographs on my birthday. I thought not. But then there were two times. 2014 and 2013. 

I looked at the 2013 hoping for a frame to jump out at me. The only one was a photograph I took of an artist that was living on the streets of New York. I remember him being talented and interesting. He gave me permission to take a photo of him. I've forgotten his name. 

Then I moved to 2014. I didn't forget the photographs in that folder but I did forget that I shot them on my birthday. Last birthday I was in Los Angeles. The photograph that jumped out was a a photograph of a photograph of an artist I actually shot a long time ago. I remember seeing this photograph and wanting to shoot it. This artist is obviously at the other end of the successful spectrum from the homeless artist.

2014 Artist Image

2014 Artist Image


Looking at the 2014 Artist Image got me reflecting on his and the 2013 Artist Image with regards to their perceived success or failure. And those thoughts led to me thinking about my own and when and how I take stock of my life accomplishments and disappointments. From there I thought about whether I (and then everyone else) reflect more on my birthday or more on New Years day. I'm not sure. And then I'm wondering if I should even be taking stock at all. I think it could be counter-productive for an artist.

2013 Artist Image

2013 Artist Image


That all led to me wondering which of these two artists is closer to who I am, and hoped that I could be a little of both.

Then I went back at 2013 and looked at more of those photographs and saw one that perfectly depicts how I felt looking at the above photographs and trying to figure myself out. 




My conclusion? Next year on my birthday I should go out and get drunk.


Today is the 311th day of 2015. And every one of those days has a blog post from me. I am continuing to post on the remaining 54 days. Then on January 1, 2016 I am going to make the challenge even harder (for me). I'm really quacked. I wonder if I should write the idea down in case I forget. It has to do with photographs. That should be enough of a hint for me.

In the meantime, I am soldiering on with just managing to throw something up here every day. Today it is ducks.


I think these two are pretty ducky...dudes enjoying their morning float.

Have a great weekend.


Five days ago I posted a photograph of a multi-rooted tree trunk covered in Fall colors. I mentioned it was directly related to the person I was shooting that day but I couldn't reveal any photos without her permission.

Well, I got that permission an hour ago, so here are two photos that I love. All the kudos go to the very talented and adventurous actor, Yasmeen Jawhar. We had so much fun!


We shot these and more in less than a couple of hours on a rainy afternoon in Central Park, two days after we did the main Creative Portraiture that turned out a ton of killer shots. She was so great to play and create with...I predict you will be seeing her on the big screen sooner than later.

Special thanks to Michael Claes for his generous assistance in making these photographs possible.

If you are interested in learning more about my Creative Portraiture (it includes your headshots) click the image below. It's a co-creative adventure day where amazing things will happen.


The Girls

These adorable girls were troopers for the whole time I was shooting their dad on Sunday. We walked, rode the subway, walked more, stopped for a time, walked another mile and there was barely a complaint. They walked the whole time, no carries and as a bonus I got to grab a few candids of them.


Madison is in the foreground. She's just four years old. Her older sister, Isabella, is just coming into the tunnel. You might remember this photograph that I took of Isabella last March in a photo session of her own...


I love shooting kids...they are so much fun to play with and give me the opportunity to visit their imagination. If you know anyone that might be looking for some creative portraiture of their kids, send them my way.