m4/3 photos win ASMP - NJ juried show
I just got word this morning that all four photos I entered in the ASMP - NJ (American Society of Media Photographers, a professional association for photographers, New Jersey chapter) show were juried in. Total of 35 images juried in.
Three of the four were shot with my GH-2 and the Panasonic 7-14mm. My favorite m4/3 body (because more of the controls are on the outside instead of the menu, compared to my G3) and my favorite m4/3 lens.
Here they are, with the results. I'm including the one non-m4/3 photo for completeness, shot with a Nikon d700. The m4/3 photos were printed at 18x24 on cold press watercolor paper, and there's detail a-plenty, and rich colors every bit as good as my DSLR photos.
Nice confirmation of m4/3 image quality.
First place. I think I have 20 different framings and angles of this, including the woman on every step from the first curved one to near the top. A good lesson in why taking your shot and moving on isn't the best strategy.
Second place. Shot during a rooftop performance of a rumba/Yoruba dance group. I love my flip out LCD screen. Camera was pressed into the ground to get the angle. This was cropped a bit, to remove a photographer on the far right of the image.
Juror's choice. Nikon. Cropped heavily. Shot probably 1500 images over an hour and a half between my Nikon and m4/3 gear, a whole area of Havana let their pet pigeons out to play at sunset. It was insane. Think I got three good images. Stupid birds did NOT understand composition.
This one was juried in, no prize. Might be my second favorite of the four. I did some heavy perspective adjustments, including some tweaks to try to make the guy on the jury-rigged bicycle cart not look so weird and small. (But he was weird and small.) I came to this corner for three days trying to get the right people going down the right streets with the right light. Which explains why my family refuses to go on vacations with me.
Wow. Just, wow.
Great work, and congratulations.
God loves the noise just as much as the signal.
Very, very nice. It is a pleasure to see such beautiful work. Please describe your PP.
Very, very nice. It is a pleasure to see such beautiful work. Please describe your PP.
All shot raw. With the m4/3, I try for mild underexposure except at high ISO, because highlights blow out easily. See the sky behind the dancer? Zero data in large portions of it, but if I'd preserved those highlights, there'd be no detail in the dancer. But, underexposing a touch and then pulling the image up is a lot like push processing in transparency film... you risk increasing grain, but it richens up colors in a way that I like. A lot of the emotion in my photos comes from the way the colors look, and I spend a lot of time on that. I also do a lot of exposure bracketing, where I can. None of these images... the moments were too fleeting - but I shoot a lot in tough light, really early or late in the day, in the rain, at mid-day full sun, and in-camera metering is only OK.
When I initially process the images in Lightroom, I tend to use a bit more "presence" adjustment than most people do, but now we're getting into style questions. I also punch vibrance up. I do almost all my contrast adjustments by manipulating highlights and shadows, white point and black point. The contrast adjustment is a blunt object... If I'm below ISO 800, I set all noise reduction to zero, usually.
In Photoshop, I'm a devoted user of Nik Multimedia's Tonal Contrast adjustment tool. It lets me tweak contrast in shadows, highlights, or midtones very precisely, and on exactly the places in the image where I want to do it, just like burning, dodging, bleaching, and heating did in the chemical darkroom.
After cropping and sizing, before printing, I add grain. Used to use the Photoshop filter, but Nik produces better looking grain with a ton more control. Not a lot of it - at a level where you have to know it's there and get really close to the print to find it. It gets rid of the weird flat digital look in areas with low detail (like skies). Every professional fine art photographer I know and admire does this; I learned it years ago when I apprenticed myself to a very well known NY photographic printer for several months. It adds to perceived detail (just like grain in film does) and reduces the impact of what digital noise might be there.
Not relevant to screen, but to printing... I profile my printer/paper combinations myself. I get results out of my printer/paper combinations that no one else can believe. It's well worth the effort.
I really like the 2nd place image
Love the first and the last though all of them are gorgeous. Great job!
an HDR look (I mean that in a good way) to them.
How did you get that look?
Just careful exposure?
Fantastic work! Thank you for posting
I would have to say that the second and fourth images are my favorite. But all are technically just about perfect, and a pleasure to see. Congratulations, and thanks for posting!
The man who created the hokey pokey died peacefully in his sleep at age 90. The hardest part for his family was putting him into the coffin. They put his left leg in. That was when the trouble started.
My photo blog: http://forestjarvis.blogspot.com/
congrats! thanks for sharing, both your photos and your process.
To do HDR, you need everything in the image to stay still. I do quite a few of them, although I'm proud of the fact that no one seems to know which ones. But, it doesn't work when you're in a "decisive moment" situation. One of the things I hate most is when I forget that I've set the camera for HDR bracketing and hit a split-second moment, and discover that I've lost the shot because of the bracketing sequence. However...
What makes the "HDR look" is really four things - saturation; equalizing the white and black points and everything in between; tone mapping; and micro-contrast, which is usually heaviest in the mid tones. However, people also control shadow and highlight contrast.
I do the first layer of equalization work with the shadow/highlights and whites/blacks sliders in Lightroom. Pull detail up from shadows, down from highlights. I don't care much about noise because I've made and looked at 60x40 prints and it's just not visible.
If you've got the new Lightroom, open a raw image and slide the Clarity slider hard to the right. It adjusts the micro-contrast in the mid tones. I use it heavily for fine art images to control the emotional feel of the image. Nik Multimedia's Tonal Contrast tool allows you to do contrast adjustments differently for different tonal ranges, and has several forms of application. One approach to tonal contrast, High Pass, can produce images with as much or more micro-contrast weirdness than any HDR you've ever seen. BTW, take an image into Lightroom - like a flower, or a glamour portrait, and slide the Clarity slider hard to the left... another valuable tool.
I'm also a saturation monster, always was. Still have a couple boxes of Ektachrome VS in my freezer...
Clarity and Tonal Contrast can produce slight halos around some areas in a picture. Look at the ball on the Masonic Temple... But even experienced photographers haven't noticed it until I pointed it out. The image is so strong that things like that never make it into mind.
Beautiful, Ednaz, I have photographed that staircase on Concordia Street in Havana as well. La Guarida restaurant is on the top floor. The second one is a dance in honor of Ochun, the orisha of love according to Afro-Cuban lore....Congratulations... Havana is a spectacular city!
Beautiful work. But it ain't the camera that made those images sing.
You should take a bow.
Call me crazy. I happen to like photos of cats.
Many congratulations . I love the colours and compositions. Very well taken. Dancer is my favourite.
A sincere thanks for sharing your shots and success...great motivation to improve!
ps thanks for the printing info.
Anticipate the Light and wing it when you get it wrong
Great set of shots, congratulations on your success.
And yes, waiting for the right moment in a shot can waste some time - no way I'd survive travelling with a bus tour group. Luckily my wife also tends to wait for the right scene to emerge so we waste time together - and enjoy what is going on around us during that wait.
...... After cropping and sizing, before printing, I add grain. Used to use the Photoshop filter, but Nik produces better looking grain with a ton more control. Not a lot of it - at a level where you have to know it's there and get really close to the print to find it. It gets rid of the weird flat digital look in areas with low detail (like skies). Every professional fine art photographer I know and admire does this; I learned it years ago when I apprenticed myself to a very well known NY photographic printer for several months. It adds to perceived detail (just like grain in film does) and reduces the impact of what digital noise might be there.
Now I need to go and send Joe Mama/Joe Josephs/Great Bustard here as he told me I was silly to talk about needing to add noise/grain to prints to avoid the digital look.
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