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Archive for the ‘Landscapes’ Category

lake-traverse-2017

Join me for an exclusive, weekend workshop deep in the heart of Ontario’s Algonquin Provincial Park on scenic Lake Traverse for an opportunity to create stunning imagery from this remote, pristine landscape. This event will be held on September 15, 16, & 17. Lake Traverse is situated in a remote area of the park and is rich in both history and stunning scenery. To reach this remote location in Algonquin Provincial Park you must enter at the Sand Lake Gate. In the early 1900’s lumber baron J.R. Booth established a private lodge – The Booth Turtle Club on the shores of Lake Traverse. Today remnants of this lodge can be found in the woodlands such as impressive stone fireplaces and a rusted old wreck decaying in the forest. The timing of this event will allow for misty sunrises over Lake Traverse and assuming weather conditions co-operate we are in one of the best locations in all of Ontario to photograph the night sky and possibly the aurora borealis. Furthermore, we are situated a short walking distance from picturesque waterfalls on the Petawawa River.

Our accommodations for this event will be at the very comfortable Algonquin Radio Observatory, located on the shores of Lake Traverse. A tour of the immense satellite has been arranged during the mid-day hours when lighting for photography is generally at its worst. Also available to participants is the use of canoes and kayaks during the mid-day hours to explore the lake on your own.

This workshop will run rain or shine.

A quick note about the Algonquin Radio Observatory (from their website):

The Algonquin Radio Observatory (ARO) is Canada’s national radio observatory featuring Canada’s premiere Earth station facility. ARO is a division of space technology company Thoth Technology Inc.

Completed and commissioned in the 1965, ARO’s 46m antenna is the largest antenna in Canada and one of the largest in North America. The observatory is situated on a 100 acre wild and breathtakingly beautiful site in the North of Algonquin Provincial Park on Lake Traverse, deep inside the park. The observatory hosts a suite of state-of-the-art scientific equipment including its own atomic clock and still operates with a state-of-the-art technical capability.

ARO is the official ground station for Northern Light, Canada’s mission to Mars.

 

This workshop will be open to a maximum of 10 participants.

The cost of this workshop is $495 based on double occupancy (single supplement $40). Payable by cheque or e-mail transfer.

A non-refundable deposit of $200 to secure a space in this workshop is required. Payable by cheque or e-mail transfer.

Participants with any special dietary needs must communicate them at time of booking so the necessary arrangements can be made to meet your requirements.

 

Itinerary:

Friday September 15:

Meet & Greet Dinner at 6:00 p.m. follow by photographic presentation and a nightscape photo session (assuming weather conditions co-operate)

Saturday September 16:

Morning Photo Session (6am – 10am) followed by breakfast, tour of satellite, Petawawa River Session, Rusty Old Wreck Session, Evening Photo Session, Nightscape Session (assuming weather conditions co-operate)

Sunday September 17:

Morning photo session (6am – 10am) followed by breakfast. Checkout is at 11:00 a.m. however, participants are permitted to explore other areas of the park at their leisure for the remainder of the day.

Do Note: Each location we will photograph at is only a short walking distance from our home base at the Algonquin Radio Observatory.

What’s Included:

  • Landscape photography instruction by yours truly
  • Lodging at Algonquin Radio Observatory
  • Friday – dinner
  • Saturday – breakfast, lunch, & dinner
  • Sunday – breakfast

What’s not included:

  • Transportation to Algonquin Radio Observatory
  • A 3 day, daily vehicle permit must be purchased at the Sand Lake Gate to enter the park (currently $17 per day. This would allow participants to remain in the park until 10:00 pm on Sunday)
  • Snacks
  • Alcoholic Beverages

In the event that the workshop does not meet the required minimum number of participants to run all deposits will be refunded in full.

To reserve your spot for this exclusive workshop please contact me at info@andrewmclachlan.ca

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Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm

Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm

 

One of my most favorite winter subjects to photograph is the skeletal forms of tree in winter. Living in a rural area in Essa Township provides me with ample opportunities to photograph these winter trees. Often I will head out at either sunrise or sunset to photograph them and when doing so I always search for the trees that are a slight rise in the terrain so that I can compose them against the sky being very careful not to allow any of the branches on the tree to merge with the horizon. It can also be rewarding to create artistic renderings of winter trees with a variety of photoshop plug-ins. In this post I am revealing two such creations that utilized the Topaz Labs plug-in Simplify. For the two artistic renderings at the end of this blog post I selected one of the sketch presets in Simplify and tweaked the sliders until I achieved the strong black and white treatment.

Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm

Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm

 

Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm

Winter Tree, Innisfil, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm

 

Winter Tree - Topaz Simplify

Winter Tree – Topaz Simplify

 

Winter Tree - Topaz Simplify

Winter Tree – Topaz Simplify

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Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 26mm Singh-Ray 3-stop Reverse Graduated Neutral Density Filter

Sunset at Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 26mm
Singh-Ray 3-Stop Reverse Graduated Neutral Density Filter

 

I finally had a chance to go through my image files from my September trip along the shore of Lake Superior Provincial Park. One of my most favourite locations within the park is that of Gargantua Harbour. A long, winding dirt road brings you to within walking distance of the lake, where you will come to a fantastic beach to the left and to the right the shoreline is scattered with large boulders which have been rounded and smoothed by the waves of Lake Superior. A couple of other bays that are often quite productive for landscape photography are Old Woman Bay and Katherine Cove. As you view the images make note of the captions and you will notice that for some of the imagery I chose to use my B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter. I will often resort to this filter when I am wishing to blur the wave action to a silky smooth texture, but the ambient light is still too bright to facilitate this, therefore, I will add the 10-Stop ND filter and presto I can usually go down to 30 second exposures with easy. When using this very dark filter I find it is best to use Live View and open up the aperture of the lens to compose the scene and focus the lens. I will then stop the lens down to my desired f-stop and click the shutter.

Please do remember to click on the images to view the larger, sharper versions.

Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm 30 Second Exposure B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm
30 Second Exposure
B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

 

Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

Gargantua Harbour, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm
Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

 

Old Woman Bay, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 24mm Singh-Ray 3-Stop Reverse Graduated Neutral Filter

Old Woman Bay, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 24mm
Singh-Ray 3-Stop Reverse Graduated Neutral Filter

 

Katherine Cove, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 20mm 25 Second Exposure B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

Katherine Cove, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 20mm
25 Second Exposure
B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

 

Katherine Cove, Lake Superior Provincial Park Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 35mm 25 Second Exposure B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

Katherine Cove, Lake Superior Provincial Park, Ontario
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 35mm
25 Second Exposure
B+W 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter

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Winter Stream, Innisfil, Ontario, Canada

Winter Stream, Innisfil, Ontario, Canada

Happy New Year to all!!

This morning I arose bright and early to greet the new year with a winter sunrise over a small stream near my rural home. It was a beautiful and peaceful morning.

To view the larger, sharper version please remember to click on the image 🙂

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Andrew_McLachlan_Ontario_Landscape_Cover

I am pleased to announce that this evening I will be presenting my “A Photographer’s Guide to the Ontario Landscape” program for the Etobicoke Camera Club at the Humber Valley United Church ( 76 Anglesey Blvd. Etobicoke, Ontario) at 7:00 p.m. This is the presentation format of my popular eBook “A Photographer’s Guide to the Ontario Landscape” – the only extensive resource available for photographers on landscape photography in Ontario.

Also, a reminder to folks about the upcoming Frogs of the World Photographic Workshop on Saturday November 26th at 8:30 a.m. There are still a few spaces available for this one-of-a-kind workshop that will provide the opportunity to photograph some very interesting frogs from all around the world. Folks that are interested should contact me at info@andrewmclachlan.ca for further info.

frogs-of-the-world_november-26th

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Autumn color at Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Laowa 15mm Macro Lens ISO 100, f16 @ 0.8 sec. Singh Ray Thin Mount Warm-Tone Polarizing Filter

Autumn color at Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Laowa 15mm Macro Lens
ISO 100, f16 @ 0.8 sec.
Singh Ray Thin Mount Warm-Tone Polarizing Filter

Now that the leaves have fallen from the trees I have found time to process some of this year’s newly created autumn scenes. I took the time to photograph a few typical fall color scenes with the brilliant reds and oranges of the sugar maple trees and the surrounding landscape as seen above and below, but mostly I noticed I focused on different elements of the season.

Georgian Bay near Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm VR Lens @ 85mm ISO 100, f16 @ 1/10 sec Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

Georgian Bay near Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm VR Lens @ 85mm
ISO 100, f16 @ 1/10 sec
Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

 

Georgian Bay, North Shore Rugged Hiking Trail in Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens " 18mm ISO 50, f16 @ 1/5 sec. Nikon Neutral POlarizing Filter Sing Ray 2-stop Graduated Neutral Density Filter

Georgian Bay, North Shore Rugged Hiking Trail in Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm
ISO 50, f16 @ 1/5 sec.
Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter
Singh Ray 2-stop Graduated Neutral Density Filter

 

Oxtongue River, Dwight, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm ISO 100, f16 @ 1/5 sec Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

Oxtongue River, Dwight, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm
ISO 100, f16 @ 1/5 sec
Nikon Neutral Polarizing Filter

As I began editing the new image files I noticed that many of the photos had a more intimate view of the season. The cinnamon tones of dying ferns, autumn colors reflecting in flowing rivers, and impressionistic-style blurs of a grander scene reflecting in quiet ponds. Below are a few of these intimate autumn scenes that were newly created this year during several excursions into the autumn woodlands. The autumn fern scene was created on a particularly blustery day that required me to dial in an ISO of 800 and wait for a bit of a lull in the persistent breeze. After a lengthy wait I was rewarded with a moment of stillness.

Interrupted Ferns, Torrance Barrens, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm ISO 800, f8 @ 1/20 sec.

Interrupted Ferns, Torrance Barrens, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 18-35mm lens @ 18mm
ISO 800, f8 @ 1/20 sec.

One afternoon I decided to park beside a small quiet pond to have my lunch when I noticed the interplay of reflected sugar maple trees and paper birch trunks on the surface of the pond. Using my Nikon 200-500mm lens I zoomed in on various sections of the reflection to create several impressionistic blurs of the scene.

Autumn Reflections, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 200-500mm lens @ 500mm ISO 100, f16 @ 0.3 sec.

Autumn Reflections, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 200-500mm lens @ 500mm
ISO 100, f16 @ 0.3 sec.

On another afternoon I found myself at McCutcheon’s Falls on the Black River in the village of Vankoughnet. After creating a few various compositions of the waterfall and surrounding autumn color I became drawn to a small section of the river where a sunlit sugar maple tree was reflecting off the river’s surface. Once again using my Nikon 200-500mm lens I zoomed the lens out to this section of the river to create this intimate view of the flowing water with stunning, blazing color as it reflected on the water.

Autumn Reflections, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada Nikon D800, Nikon 200-500mm lens @ 450mm ISO 100, 16 @ 0.3 sec.

Autumn Reflections, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada
Nikon D800, Nikon 200-500mm lens @ 450mm
ISO 100, 16 @ 0.3 sec.

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Hattie Cove on Lake Superior in Pukaskwa National Park Sleeklens Light Rays Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

Hattie Cove on Lake Superior in Ontario’s Pukaskwa National Park
Sleeklens Light Rays Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

 

Recently I was given the opportunity to try some overlays by Sleeklens on my landscape imagery. I was drawn to the Light Leaks and Light Rays overlays for their effectiveness in regards to enhancing the sun for a “natural” creative look. When the right image is chosen to apply one of these overlays the result can be pleasing and not over-the-top in terms of it’s creative effect.

In the fisheye scene above of Hattie Cove on Lake Superior in Ontario’s Pukaskwa National Park I composed the early morning scene to catch a sunburst effect with the fisheye lens. By applying a Light Rays overlay I was able to give the sunburst a more pronounced and dramatic appearance within the scene. Converting the image to black & white was not my initial intention but I felt it brought the image together for a natural look.

In the below photograph of a misty morning on Horseshoe Lake near Parry Sound, Ontario I chose to apply the same Light Rays overlay that was used in the Hattie Cove image above. Once the overlay is brought into Photoshop I can easily maneuver the rays around using the Move Tool or the Transform Tool. Since the overlay is on its own layer the Opacity of that layer can be adjusted to taste easily as well. Here I chose to reduce the opacity significantly so that the rays of light were just becoming visible through the misty conditions of the morning.

Misty Morning Sunrise on Horseshoe Lake. Parry SOund, Ontario Sleeklens Light Rays Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

Misty Morning Sunrise on Horseshoe Lake. Parry Sound, Ontario
Sleeklens Light Rays Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

Below is a photo created along the Georgian Bay Rugged Hiking Trail in the town of Parry Sound, Ontario with a Light Leaks overlay applied. This image would express the most creative use I applied, but I do like the added interest it gives to this mid-day scene. To created the desaturated look to this image I originally was creating a B&W conversion in Nik’s Silver Effects 2 but later decided to reduce the opacity of the Silver Effects to bring back a touch of colour to the image.

Georgian Bay Rugger Hiking Trail. Parry Sound, Ontario Sleeklens Light Leaks Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

Georgian Bay Rugged Hiking Trail. Parry Sound, Ontario
Sleeklens Light Leaks Overlay Applied for Creative Effect

While these Light Rays and Light Leaks overlays may not be everybody’s cup of tea, they do work for me when applied to the right situation. I often create artistic renderings of many of my landscape and wildlife imagery and the Sleeklens overlays now give me another option in my toolkit to utilize along the creative pathway. If you also like to explore the artistic / creative rendering side of your imagery, then you may also find the Sleeklens Photoshop Overlays to be a useful tool and rewarding option too.

 

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