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Archive for the ‘Creative Visions’ Category

An Intimate View of Muskoka's Rosseau River

An Intimate View of Muskoka’s Rosseau River

 

A couple of days ago friend and colleague Kyle McDougall posted a very inspiring short film on his blog. Kyle is a very talented photographer, filmmaker, and cinematographer. The film is centered around landscape painter Terry Gill, who creates very impressive works of art in a unique style. Please do follow this link to Kyle’s blog post and scroll down to the video, click the white triangle to hear Terry’s message. I think you will be glad you did :)

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A Waterfall Along the Nottawasaga River, Organgeville, Ontario

Secluded Woodland Waterfall on the Nottawasaga River near Orangeville, Ontario

The above artistic rendering of a small waterfall located along the Nottawasaga River near Orangeville, Ontario was created using the Photoshop plug-in Topaz Simplify, which is available from Topaz Labs. I visited this waterfall a few years ago and have had the image sitting on the back-burner ever since. This evening I decided it was time to optimize the image file and play around with creating a painterly-like version of it as well. Below you will see the original version of this lovely, secluded waterfall.

Secluded Woodland Waterfall on the Nottawasaga River. Orangeville, Ontario.

Secluded Woodland Waterfall on the Nottawasaga River near Orangeville, Ontario.

In other news: the May issue of the Creative Photography E-Mini-Magazine (The Mini-Mag) is now available on-line here. This wonderful, absolutely free, on-line creative photography magazine is published monthly by Denise Ippolito. Do check out this magazine that is full of useful and creative tips and to see the latest froggie article by yours truly click here.

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Old Boat_8532

While vacationing in the Cayman Islands, on the island of Cayman Brac I often passed this old wooden boat along the road on the south side of the island. I could not help myself but to create a low perspective, wide angle composition that I could bring home to play around with for that grungy look. After making the required tweaks in ACR and performing a bit of image clean-up for dust bunnies and such I opened the image in Nik / Google’s Color Efex 4 and selected the Detail Extractor tool. Using a heavy hand I enhanced the detail to a slightly grunge look and applied the results. Next I opened the image a second time the exact same way to apply the Detail Extractor Tool a second time. This is my lazy-HDR technique when I am seeking that grungy effect. I often use this technique for my Rusty Old Wrecks gallery, which is on my Smugmug page. Please do click here to view this gallery too.

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Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada

Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada

It was in bright, afternoon sunlight that I found myself along the shore of Lake Superior at the mouth of the Coldwater River in Ontario’s Lake Superior Provincial Park, during my trip to the park in September of 2013. I knew that I wanted to create an image whereby the waves on the lake would be blurred to a smooth texture so that they would not compete with the other elements within the composition. But the light was too bright to obtain a slow enough shutter speed to allow for this vision. At the last minute before departing for Lake Superior I decided to throw the B&W 10-stop Neutral Density Filter in my gear bag.I was glad I did. After attaching the filter to the lens I had the extended exposure that was needed for this composition. The above images was the result of a 15 second exposure that blurred the wave action on the lake and captured the passage of the swiftly moving cotton clouds.

For folks planning to attend the upcoming Long Point Workshop I will have this filter on hand for anyone that may wish to give it a try. If you missed the Long Point Workshop announcement you can find it by clicking here for more information.

Please remember to click on the image to see the larger, sharper version.

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Winter Trees, Orillia, Ontario (original version)

Winter Trees, Orillia, Ontario (original version)

On Saturday I was in Orillia, Ontario helping my folks with a few chores that needed to be done, as they have received a significant amount of snow this season. There is roughly four feet of snow on the ground. It was a dreary winter day with a mix of fog and rain due, so I took some time to go for a drive in search of some fresh winter tree images. I only found one scene that really caught my attention. I was immediately drawn to the form of the main tree. You will notice that I carefully composed the image by choosing a low perspective to eliminate any merging of the trees branches with the distant trees or horizon. Also note how I lined up the main tree with the distant trees so that the tallest trees help to fill in the space to the left of the main tree. After composing and capturing a few variations of this scene it was time to have some fun at the computer. Here is what I came up with. Let me know which is your favorite version and why.

Please click on each of the images to see the larger, sharper version.

Winter Trees with Silver Efex Pro with the Preset Film Noir 1

Winter Trees with Silver Efex Pro 2 with the Preset Film Noir 1

Winter Trees with a Panoramic Crop

Winter Trees with a Panoramic Crop

Winter Trees - 3 Image Stitched Panorama

Winter Trees – 3 Image Stitched Panorama

Winter Trees - Invert Adjustment Appication

Winter Trees – Invert Adjustment Appication

 

 

 

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Sunrise on the Agawa River in Ontario's Lake Superior Provincial Park

Sunrise on the Agawa River in Ontario’s Lake Superior Provincial Park

This year I decided to come up with a ‘baker’s dozen’ of favorite photographs that I created over the past twelve months. It was difficult to narrow it down to just 13 images, but here they are. Please do click on the images to see the larger, sharper version.

This past year I re-visited my most favorite location within Ontario – Lake Superior Provincial Park, and was blessed with one of the most beautiful sunrises I have witnessed. In February I traveled to the Port Antonio region of Jamaica where I photographed one of the most picturesque waterfalls in the Caribbean and my favorite image of my daughter Ava while she was having fun in a swing at Boston Bay. I was invited to co-write the Fractasic eGuide with good friend, colleague, and mentor Denise Ippolito, and to do ‘The Three Frosties‘ guest blog post for one of the world’s premier bird photographers Arthur Morris.

A scouting trip for planning what will become the launch of my first workshop to the tip of Lake Erie’s Long Point Peninsula (a UNESCO World Biosphere) was a success. Folks wishing to be added to the interested list for this workshop, which will likely run in late spring, should shoot me an email here.

Also Gentec International, the Canadian distributor for Sigma lenses was kind enough to loan me the Sigma f2.8 15mm EX DG Fisheye Lens, which opened up a whole new world to me for creativity and fun times photographing the natural world.

I hope you enjoy these images as much as I did creating them.

May you all have a safe and prosperous 2014.

Cheers!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Ava on swing at Boston Bay, Jamaica

Ava on swing at Boston Bay, Jamaica

Reich Falls on the Drivers River, Jamaica

Reich Falls on the Drivers River, Jamaica

Johnstone's Whistling Frog chorusing, Jamaica

Johnstone’s Whistling Frog chorusing, Jamaica

Lone tree after ice storm near Thornton, Ontario

Lone tree after ice storm near Thornton, Ontario

Storm clouds over winter wheat crop near Bradford, Ontario

Storm clouds over winter wheat crop Bradford, Ontario (Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens)

Bullfrog-scape with the Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens

Bullfrog-scape on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario (Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens)

Rusty Old Wreck in fog, Milton, Ontario

Rusty Old Wreck in fog, Milton, Ontario

The tip of the Long Point Peninsula at sunrise, Lake Erie, Ontario

The tip of the Long Point Peninsula at sunrise, Lake Erie, Ontario

Bullfrog (Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens)

Bullfrog (Sigma 15mm Fisheye Lens)

Aspen Trees Multiple Exposure inspired by Denise Ippolito

Aspen Trees Multiple Exposure inspired by Denise Ippolito

Window Frost Pattern

Window Frost Pattern

Fractalius of Woodland Interior, Killbear Provincial Park, Ontario

Fractalius of Woodland Interior, Killbear Provincial Park, Ontario

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Window Frost & Reflection

Window Frost & Reflection

The last couple of morning here in south-central Ontario have been bitterly cold. This morning the outside temperature was -26 degrees Celsius, without factoring in the windchill factor. On mornings like this, my living room window gets covered with some very interesting frost patterns. While the window is in need of replacement and I dread the day when I do change the window and lose these cool effects, but for now why not have a little fun with nature’s frost paintings :) In the above photo, I stood outside to catch the frost pattern and reflection of the large spruce tree that sits in my front yard. In the two images below I sat in the comfort, and warmth, of my living room to carefully compose the resulting frosty paintings.

Window Frost

Window Frost

Window Frost

Window Frost

And with such cool patterns I could not resist the temptation to run a couple of them through the Photoshop Plug-in Fractalius. To learn more about how to use this very addictive and highly creative filter please check out the eGuide FRACTASTIC, which was written by the very talented  and creative Denise Ippolito and yours truly.

Fractalius of Window Frost & Reflection

Fractalius of Window Frost & Reflection

Fractalius of Window Frost

Fractalius of Window Frost

 

 

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