Monday, April 28, 2014

Up up and away

When taking photos I think it is really cool when you look up or down from your perspective.  I like the way it kind of has a mystery feel to it, like it makes you wonder whats at the top or bottom depending if it is out of focus or not.  With the way the weather here has been lately I only have a few good pics of this to show but I hope it still gets the concept across.

Photo by Ricky Williams
This first one is looking down and I wish just the bottom was out of focus instead both the top in bottom but I what I got so we'll have to deal with it.  I like this type of photography because it gives a perspective not usually seen as you are looking down the tree bark.  I also like how this type of photography makes you twist you head to try to straighten out the image, it is kinda distorted and makes you try to guess if the picture is upright or not.

Photo by Ricky Williams
When looking up it is easier to tell what the image is of and it is not as head twisting as when you look down.  But I personally like the way photos look when you look up better because you can make the object seem bigger than it actually is.  Like for example this tree wasn't very tall but when looking up it creates this illusion that the tree is taller than it actually stands which I find really cool.  I also like when the higher you go the more out of focus the image gets it creates a cool mystery affect which I really like.

I encourage anyone to go out there and try something unusual with photography because a lot of times you can create something very unique.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Textures In Photography

I was actually inspired to try this type of photography after viewing another blog and found out I enjoy this quite a bit.  When I used to take photos I would often think about the big picture instead of the little details of what I was photography.  I found out when photography nature there a lot of cool details we miss out on because we are not looking close enough.

Photo by Ricky Williams
In this first photo instead of taking a picture of a few trees you find cool if you get right up close to it, it brings out so much more of the tree that you had no idea was there.  For instance from a far I thought the dark spots between the bark was just an empty space but to find it was actually a moss filled area made it that much more interesting.  All the different textures going on in this photo is what makes it not so boring.  From the softness of the moss to the rough cracked tree bark all these textures kind of made me realize that every tree is different and the bark of the can resemble to a finger print of a human, they may look similar but when it comes down to the fine details they are completely different.

Photo by Ricky Williams
This next photo was probably my favorite one because it is so simple yet there is still so much going on.  There are just some many different textures and colors going on in this photo it is unbelievable.  I love all the colors from the fungi and the texture it gives to the photo, I also really like the texture of the wood where the bark has broken away from the tree, this might be one of my favorite photos I have ever taken.

Photo by Ricky Williams
The photo of textures I am showing a a simple one of a log.  I liked this one because of the wood grain and how it all kind of flows together. The textures in this photo are pretty great, I like all the different breaks in the wood as well as the knots you can see in the wood.  There are also a few moss spots in this photo which add a nice soft texture to it.

Overall I really enjoyed trying this type of photography out and I encourage anyone who hasn't tried it who loves photography to try it! Because you will be amazed by how many cool things you can find in an object if you just get up close to it.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Photography Techniques

This entry doesn't really have a set topic, I'm more just going to show some photos I took and explain the technique I was using and what I was trying to get in the image.

In these first two images I was messing around with depth of field, so I was trying to make one object in focus and the rest of the photo blurred.  I really enjoy using this technique because it leaves the viewer thinking whats going on behind the image in focus and I like having that sense of mystery.  This also keeps the photo very simple while you are usually just focused on one item and a lot of times these type of photos come out very nice which I like.
Depth of field (Photo by Ricky Williams)

Depth of field (Photo by Ricky Williams)

These next photos I would say are just me experimenting with different viewpoints.  Viewpoints are fun to mess around with because you get something from a totally different perspective and it is not just the standard straight on shot.  In the first photo it is looking down the railroad track from one of the rails itself.  I really like this photo because it's different to look at a railroad track from that perspective.  The next photo is a up close and angled photo of a stop sign.  I really like the way this on turned out because the sign is cut off a little bit so you don't see the whole thing but it is also at a different angle than just straight on.  

Viewpoint down railroad track (Photo by Ricky Williams)

Viewpoint of stop sign (Photo by Ricky Williams)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Photography Styles

When it comes to photography there are many different styles or entry points that can be used to attract the viewer to what you want them to focus on.  These consist of simplicity, contrast, balance, framing,  viewpoint, direction of movement, diagonals, and rule of thirds.  I will explain and show examples of the ones I personally like to use the best.

Simplicity is probably if not my favorite to use because I like to keep things rather simple.  When using this you are trying to keep the background of the image uncluttered, this will take out any other distractions.  Simplicity lets you see only the subject you were trying to capture so it only draws the viewer to one specific object.

Framing would be my next favorite to use when shooting photos.  I like to use framing because it is using others objects to frame what you are trying to capture and a lot of times it brings out a cool look or effect to the photo.  I also find framing really fun because it brings a different perspective to the photo.

Lastly I enjoy using viewpoint because being able to view something from a totally different angle gives you a cool idea of lets say what it is like to be a dog or maybe you are even high up like a bird.  Changing viewpoints is just a lot of fun and I highly recommend it to anyone who shoots photography.

This photo is viewpoint but can also pass for simplicity.
It falls under viewpoint because you are looking up at the clock tower.
(Photo by Ricky Williams)

This one falls under framing because I used the
hockey stick to frame the kid.
(Photo by Ricky Williams)

This one would be simplicity because the background is
blurred out just drawing you attention to the pod in the center.
(Photo by Ricky Williams)

Monday, March 10, 2014

Flash or No Flash?

To use flash or to not use flash that is the question.  When it comes to photography many photographers use no flash and it honestly irritates me when I see people using flash on their iPhones or cameras in general because I don't think they realize it actually can ruin the photos were they think it makes it better.

Flash totally alters the photo from what your eye sees and that is not a good thing.  Flash will create shadows that are not really there, and add light to areas where absolutely no light is.  When taking a photo you first capture the image with your eye, so that's how you picture the image and if you use flash it will totally change how you pictured the image with your eye, so you won't even capture what you aimed for.

So for all you photographers out there remember flash isn't always necessary and can often times ruin what you were trying to capture.  I'm not saying not to use flash because sometimes it is needed to get the right lighting but remember not to use it all the time.  Down below are a few examples I took of a photo with flash and then the same image without flash.

Without flash (Photo by Ricky Williams) 

With flash (Photo by Ricky Williams)

Without flash (Photo by Ricky Williams)

With flash (Photo by Ricky Williams)

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Black and White Film

Today we are going to bring it back to old school black and white film photography, which I actually quite enjoy still doing today.  Shooting with a film camera is just so much different than today's digital cameras.  Today's digital cameras are all pretty much automatic, where you point shoot and can instantly see the image without having to setup the aperture, shutter speed, and focus.  Everything is done for you making it easy for anyone to look like a professional photographer.

The process of film photography is truly like magic from snapping the picture to the whole development processes.  Film photography is really a true art when you compare it to digital photography.  Each picture you take has to be so precise, because you have to be able to read the natural light knowing what to set the aperture, shutter speed, and manually focus on what you are capturing at otherwise the picture will not turn out and unlike a digital camera you can't see the image until you have shot the whole roll of film.

Developing the film is what made me really fall in love with photography because it was just amazing to see your image appear like magic.  It is honestly also an unbelievable feeling knowing that you did everything to make that picture come out and it really makes you appreciate the art of film photography and I am lucky enough to go to a school where they have a dark room for me to use.

Photo by Ricky Williams

Photo by Ricky Williams

Photo by Ricky Williams

Sunday, February 9, 2014

HDR Photography and The Goods and Bads

HDR photography is probably my favorite type of photography to use because I love all the different effects you can get.  For those of you that don't know what HDR is, I will give a quick explanation.  HDR stands for High Dynamic Range and is when a photographer takes up to3 to 5 exposure and gather low light and high light exposures of whatever they were photographing.  Once you have the different exposures you combine them into whatever editing software you have weather it is Photoshop or Photomatix Pro and Lightroom (I prefer Photomatix and Lightroom) and play around with the settings until you have a the picture looking the way you want it.  Here is a before and after of an HDR photo that I download from StuckInCustoms which is a website that has many free HDR tutorials and photos you can download yourself for practice.
Non HDR (By Trey Ratcliff)
HDR (By Trey Ratcliff)
Many people either like or hate the way HDR photography looks, I personally have mixed opinions some people make the photos look terrible and unrealistic but others such as Trey Ratcliff do a great job and making HDR photographs look as real as possible and he really wows his images.  You can judge for yourself by searching HDRphotography on google images to see how some HDRs are so much better than others. 

HDR photography has some positives and negatives to it.  The positives would be that it makes the photo have a wow effect to it and really brings out the colors in the photos. Which is why its called High Dynamic Range because it has a high dynamic range of all things.  The negatives of HDR photography would be a lot of times it can make the photos look unrealistic which is really bad for whoever is trying to enjoy the photo.  another negative would be you have to stick to landscape because anything with motion in a HDR photo will create ghosts so you need to find something that will stay still for 3 to 5 exposures.  To the left I will post some of the HDR photos I have taken myself I hope you all enjoyed reading about HDR photography!
HDR (By Ricky Williams)

HDR (By Ricky Williams)

HDR (By Ricky Williams)