Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Almost broke the string.

It has been a long day and I have been fighting a cold through out.  It was a little difficult but I managed to teach the final class of my Basic Lighting class at SAIT.  Still needed a shot for today's Instagram 366 photo so I took a self-portrait of my eye.  Can you guess which Helmut Newton photo is reflected in my glasses?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I'm shooting in the rain.

We had a terrific downpour today and while Cool was in at his Jazz Dance Class I decided to take a little walk out in the rain.  The following are images I found during my walk.
The Lilac trees are in bloom and I loved the way the drops were coming off the petals.  I shot up with the sky in the background which gave a soft look to the photo.  Cropped and tuned for contrast and brightness in Snapseed. My Instagram 366 photo for today.
I saw a lot of reflections but liked the backboard reflected on the cracked concrete court.
I found this padlock and chain on a garbage can and loved the texture in the wood as a background.
A down spout spewing water as the rain beat down.  I used the drama filter to add some snap in Snapseed.
There was some hail and this poor tulip took the brunt of the damage.
I liked this reflection of the posts in the large puddle that had formed in front of it.  No soccer tonight.

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Long Weekend is over.

Well the long weekend is now over and I am happy as it was a busy one.  Here are some of the photo's from Sunday and Monday.

This is my Instagram 366 photo for Sunday and I took it at St. Luke's Church from behind the alter.  I like how the triangle window worked with the cross.
In the evening we attended a performance organized by the local Malayallay community here in Calgary.  They were able to arrange to have a group of South Indian Movie Stars who are touring North America and made a stop in Calgary.  These are actors who are very popular with people in my wife's home state of Kerala and she wanted to attend.  So I went with her and the boys and though it was in a language I could not understand I was able to enjoy it on the most part.  Below are two images taken with my iPhone (I didn't bring my 7D as usually one can't take photo's during performances but they did not seem to mind here) and they came out OK. I posted the second one to both tadaa and Streamzoo.

Today we had a birthday party for my nephew Will at my brother's house and I shot a couple images while there.  Now Greg had a thing about time and he has a number of clocks around the house.  I liked the look of this one in the kitchen and shot an image as my Instagram 366 for today.  It was processed in Snapseed to give it a look I wanted.
I shot these two photo's of my sister's dog who has the most interesting eyes.  The first was processed with Snapseed to give it a little pop.  The last was shot with the Hipstamatic app and I liked the way composition of the image.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

A little bit of variety.

So I have a bit of variety today as well as posting two days worth of photographs.  The following are images I posted to Instagram.
Today's Instagram 366 is of a dandelion after the sprinkler system had watered the lawn.  I had plucked it to keep the seeds from getting on the lawn and thought it had some beauty in it even with a lot of the seeds blown away.  I thought it looked interesting so took out the iPhone and held it up to get the sky behind it.
This was shot at the Camera Store as I went down to pick up some dark room chemicals as I have some film to develop and I am planing to shoot with my 4x5 and 8x10's this summer.
Here is my Instagram 366 for May 18, a portrait of my wife Lysa sitting by the front window.  I liked the quiet look on her face as she sat there with the soft evening light coming through.  I added a sepia look in Snapseed.
 These are my images for my 'tadda Today" project.  Above is another look at the dandelion with a bit of evening sun shining on to it and a different sky.  The second photo is from May 18 and were the Orchids that I gave my wife for Mother's day.

Finally these are my photo's for Streamzoo.  The above is a photo of my-self taken with Canon's new 320HS Powershot.  This camera incorporates a wi-fi feature that allows you to down load the images immediately to your computer, tablet or mobile devices.  It is a 16.1mp point and shot and looks to give good quality, but the file sizes downloaded to the iPhone were compressed and smaller then file from the camera on the iPhone.  You maybe able to change this but I didn't have time to fool around with it more to see what it can do.

Finally this photo of the tulips in front of the rocks in our front yard and was yesterday's Streamzoo post.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


The Roses that Cool and Luke got their Mom for Mother's Day still loke nice 4 days later so I decided to use them for today's subject.  The first image is entitled "Rose and Shadow" and this image was post processed in Snapseed and then OldPhotoPro to add the colour and texture.  I posted this as my Instagram 366 photo for today.
This version was processed using Snapseed to crop, SwankoLab for the color and RealCamera+ for the frame.  I shared this on on Streamzoo.
Finally I photographed the two roses together and processed it in Snapseed using the Drama 2 filter to kick it up a bit.  I added the frame in RealCamera+ and added to my "tadaa Today" images.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Seeing the Light.

A photographer must always be aware of the light around them and understand how it will record on the tool they choose to use to capture the moment.  As I was sitting waiting for the school council meeting this morning I saw this wonderful early morning light skimming across the pepper shaker and toothpicks on the table of the staff room.  I took out my iPhone and snapped a frame knowing I would convert it to B&W and that the background would go black.  I loved the way the light shaped the objects and gave texture to the pepper grains on top of the shaker.  T his was my Instagram 366 photo for today.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Flower Power

Out at the Golden Acre Garden Centre today where I shot images 1 3 and 4.  Image 2 was at the Varsity Community Association.  The top one is my Instagram 366 photo for today and is a close up on a Hibiscus flower..  A little post processing in Snapseed to add some contrast, crop and frame
Shot at the Varsity Community Association and I just like the mixed colours in the  tulips. Cropping and frame added in Snapseed.  Posted to Instagram.
Inside of an Orchid. Cropped in with Snapseed and border added.  Shared with Streamzoo. 
I liked the way these two large Lilly's stood out together Some pot in Snapseed to darken the edges and background and the frame was added using CameraReal+.  Added to my "tadaa Today" profile.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Exploring the John Hextall Bridge

I had 45 minutes this afternoon between appointments to get out and take a little walk near the Bow River here in Calgary.  We have an old bridge that has been converted to a pedestrian walk way named after John Hextall.  I wanted to continue and test some of the various camera apps that I have to learn their properties, looks and styles. The first image is from the Retro Camera app and the Barbl camera.  I find that this app has a few nice features and looks but is limited in the variety.  They still don't have the share options that the others have thus you have to save to your camera roll and then share it to Instagram that way. This was my Instagram 366 photo for today.
The following two photographs are from the Hipstamatic app and the more I use it the more I am getting to like some of the looks.  Once you download all the available HipstaPaks you have a fair amount of variety as you can mix films and lenses.  It also geotags the images, and records the camera info used.  The share possibilities also are better allowing one to post to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and Flickr.

The photo was created with the Roboto Glitter Lens, Float Film (both from the Shibuya HipstaPak).  I got down low and placed the sun behind a girder to get the view I was looking for.
This photo used the Lucifer VI lens (Portland HipstaPak) and Alfred Infrared film (Camden HipstaPak).  This mimics the look that Kodaks Colour Infrared film use to give.  This was my Streamzoo photo for the day.
This photo was with the Wood Camera app.  I found that there are a lot of filters available and that this can really slow down your process as you line up the image.  I guess as time goes on one might get to know them all and the results they give.  I shot the photo below with the Berlin filter and then used the tilt and shift to change the focus.  The boarder was the one they call Frame 10.  You can also do these changes after you make the initial capture.  This photo was my "tadaa Today" photo.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Day 500 and counting.

Today I reached 500 consecutive days of taking at least one photo.  There have been struggles, some great shots, some not so inspired shots.  Yet I have reached this milestone and I am very happy with doing so.  I will keep doing it as long as I can and will let it run until something prevents me from doing so.

I shot these first two images at my brothers house and processed them both in Snapseed.  Other then the conversion and cropping their was very little post production in the first one, my Instagram 366 photo for today.
 I found these lamps and fixture on the wall in the hallway and thought it would make an interesting image.  I cropped it and then enhanced it using the Drama 2 filter.  I posted this one as my "tadaa Today" image.
 The photo below was taken with the Hipstamatic app using a high contrast film and industrial lens.  I was a little busy yesterday to blog so I am sharing my Instagram 366 shot for May 12 today.

Friday, May 11, 2012

New opportunities.

Today was a beautiful day and I had to opportunities come my way.  The first was a return to an activity that  I had not had for a long time, to get out and play some golf.  Last fall I was fortunate enough to win a set of irons and woods but by the time I received them we had snow on the ground.  Now when I was younger I worked at one of the local private clubs as a pro shop attendant and on the greens keeping crew.  I did a fair amount of golf but never really took it seriously as I wanted to go and take photographs more than I wanted to go out on the course for 4 hours after working 8 - 10 hours.  So I never really got proficient with it.  So today I was able to walk for nine hole and though I had a lot of inconsistencies it was such a relaxing day that I can see me getting out every couple of weeks to give me a bit of a break and a chance to recharge.

Later in the afternoon I had a meeting with Deidre from the Art Gallery of Calgary.  Our discussion centred first on my doing a couple of weekend workshops on camera phone artistry similar to the lectures I will be doing at the Calgary Public Libraries in the fall..  The big difference here will be that after the presentation we  will take the participants out for a photo walk in the downtown core so they can shoot and then work on their images.  We also discussed the possibilities of me joining them and a couple of other photographers they are already working with to develop a photography program that will be run through the gallery.  I am looking forward to exploring and building on this and having an exciting fall.

The above image here is my Instagram366 photo for the day with only the cropping and framing in Snapseed being the post production work.  Below is a photo I took on the fairway as I walked up the ninth hole at ConfederationPark Golf course shot with the Hipstamatic app.
I did my "tadaa Today" photo of the Tulips in the front yard and cropped and framed it in Snapseed. I missed one for yesterday, but hopefully will be back on track today.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A few random thoughts.

As I close in on 500 days of at least one photo a day I have a few thoughts and observations to share.

The challenge of photography a creative image is a daunting one and one that can easily be derailed.  When I also look that at this stage of my life that I am limited to a few areas and most of the images have to come from my time spent there it makes it even more difficult.  I have photographed many items in and around my home, at SAIT where I teach, my boy's school, choir, dance or other activities.  There have been times when travel to other locations have allowed me to explore a bit more but in general my sphere of activity is limited.  I try hard not to photograph the same thing twice, but if I do I try to look at it in a different way and try techniques to make each image unique.

Saying this I was thinking today that if I was to suddenly stop that no one would really care.  Sure I have some followers, but it would make no difference in their lives if they did not see something new from me.  The only one whom it would affect would be me and I would be the only one who really noticed.  I am really enjoying this and will do my best to stay true to myself.

I have also given myself permission to experiment and play with the photo's I create.  Currently I am working exclusively with the iPhone and a variety of apps to give different looks and feels and a chance for me to express myself artistically.  I do plan to shoot more with the DSLR this summer as well as some of my film cameras.  This is about growth and expression for me, not recognition as such.

In doing this I hope to grow as a photographer, artist and person.  I want to become even more familiar and proficient with a number of techniques and then be able to share with others.  I hope that those of you reading this will stay with me and enjoy the trip.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Revisiting Hipstamatic

One of the first apps I downloaded with my iPod touch was Hipstamatic.  I used it a few times but found that I was not comfortable having my shots limited to what I choose to use as far as film style,  lens choice and camera type.  I wanted to capture my image and then change it to the look I wanted.  However I decided to day to get to know Hipstamatic as well as RetroCamera to see if I can get a better understanding of the looks one can achieve with these apps.

Since I had not opened Hipstamatic for a while I was pleasantly surprised to find an improvement in the sharing part of the app. Now one can share easily with Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and  Instagram.  As I walked on the hill of the Bowmont Park Natural area I took these shots with a couple of different films and lenses.  The first two were shared to Instagram and the last was posted to tadaa.  Over the next few weeks I will be shooting more and will be posting the results here as well.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Spring brings the flowers.

Out at the Varsity Community Association on a fine spring evening and I noticed that they had a variety of flowers coming up beside their building that I had not photographed yet.  So I took out the iPhone and shot a variety of images.  The first three were posted to Instagram and the first of the bleeding hearts was my Instagram 366 photo.
The clouds were a little dramatic as well so I shot a frame of them and posted it.

This photo was posted to Streamzoo.
While the final photo here was my "tadaa Today" image.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Out and about with Luke

My son Luke had the day off school today so I had the chance to have time alone with him.  After playing in the morning at home we headed to the University of Calgary where Luke participates in some learning centre activities for the students there from time to time.  He really enjoys going there and had a lot of fun today.  Afterwards we headed over to Confederation Park as it was such a nice day out.  We walked over to the large pond where we sat just watching the ducks.  Since we were here I shot some photo's with my iPhone, zooming it in mid way to get the ducks to fill more of the frame.  This is still one of the weak point's of the camera in the iPhone as the zoom quality is not that strong.  However I captured the image below and liked the reflection of the sun on the water behind the duck.  I decided that I could punch it up a bit using the Drama 2 filter in Snapseed and achieve a look I was happy with and could post as my Instagram 366 photo for the day.
When we returned home after picking Cool up from school Luke wanted to play in the front yard once again and while watching him I noticed the Tulips by the house had opened to full bloom.  I moved in close with the iPhone and shot straight into the flowers as I loved the patterns created inside the flowers.  The top one is my "tadaa Today" image and the bottom was my Streamzoo photo for today.

Cool and Luke then had to join me at my Advanced Lighting class at SAIT as I was with out a babysitter and Lysa was on shift.  Any way this is never a problem as my two boy's are so well behaved and entertain themselves very easily.  However as the night wore on Luke decided that he wanted to get some pictures taken so I waited till all my students had finished with our model and then let him go in front of the lights. Luke of course got very excited and started jumping up and down.  Here are two of my favourite captures using my Canon 7D.