Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Photographing New Year's Eve Fireworks


Bringing in the New Year



On New Year's Eve many places will celebrate with traditional fireworks so I thought it might be fun in this week's post to give some tips on how I photograph them. When I am going out for a specific photo shoot, I get my equipment ready and packed the day before. To photograph fireworks in late December when it is dark and cold, I will err on the safe side and have extra batteries, the cold weather and longer exposures will drain batteries fast. Also included are additional memory cards, a cable release and a small flash light. The cable release will prevent camera shake and allows me to watch the display while I press the shutter. A flash light will come in handy if you need to change any camera setting.





Arriving early is important for scouting out a location with a clear view, up wind of the fireworks, away from tree branches and artificial lighting which could all interfere with the exposures. Since a tripod is a must, I will stay away from crowds where someone could trip over the legs. If you are not able to use a tripod, you can place the camera on the top of a car or some other stationary object. The wind direction can cause problems when the smoke and haze obscures the clarity of fireworks.





I will pre-set my camera before hand so I do not have to be fumbling around in the dark. With my D90, I use a low ISO of 200 and shoot in the manual setting with the shutter speed on bulb. With the cable release, I hold the shutter open for 1-4 seconds without overexposing the image. The aperture that I prefer to use is f/8, which is in the midrange. I always use the RAW setting for picture quality. And with fireworks, you should use the highest quality setting possible to reduce the amount of compression on your photos. JPEG compression degrades image quality. My preferred lens for fireworks is the Nikon 35-70mm 2.8 which gives me a pretty good range. A wider angle lens, without getting too wide, is better for catching more of the action.







Auto focus doesn't work well for fireworks, so I pre-focus on an object close to where the fireworks will be exploding and use manual focus. I will check the camera's monitor often to see if I am getting the desired results.





Catching the fireworks at the beginning of the exhibition is important, when there is less smoke and haze.





A trick of the trade, place a black velvet scarf or non-shiny object in front of the lens while the shutter is being held open between bursts, then quickly move it away to catch the next one. This allows you to get multiple fireworks in one exposure.






If you are using a point and shoot camera that does not have a fireworks setting, you can set it to Landscape mode (it is the small mountain range). With many point and shoot cameras, the Landscape setting works like setting the lens to Infinity.

I wish every one a happy and safe New Year's. I will see you back the following week of 2011!









No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/





Sunday, December 26, 2010

2010 Winter Solstice Lunar Eclipse


Once in a lifetime Photo Opportunity


On December 20-21, in the Northern Hemisphere, we were privy to an occurrence that has not happened since the year 1638. A total lunar eclipse fell on the 2010 Winter Solstice and was a historic event because it was only the second one to occur during the Common Era. I was afraid that the eclipse would not be visible from my area due to a weather system that had moved in with a layer of stratus clouds containing heavy moisture. Snow was starting to fall on the higher mountains. However around 9:00pst the clouds had thinned enough for the full moon to shine brightly through in the overhead sky. Since the eclipse was scheduled to begin at 9:27pst, I scrambled to get my camera equipment set up.



With the lunar eclipse, I used a long telephoto lens, a Nikon 500mm 4.0 to bring the moon up big and close. The six pound lens was attached to my Nikon D90, which was then tightly secured to the pistol grip head on my Bogan tripod. The piston grip allows me to turn the camera by just squeezing the grip handle, and I can also move from horizontal to vertical with just a squeeze of the grip.





At this time of night, the moon was just about straight up in the sky. Positioning the moon in the center of the 500mm lens required extending the tripod to its full height, then pulling the camera and lens back to a near vertical position. This is where the trust comes in with my equipment because if the tripod clamp had released, my night would have turned into a nightmare.

Once the camera, lens and tripod was set up, I metered the moon in spot metering on manual setting at f4.6, which indicated a 1/500 second shutter speed. A cable release was used to trigger the shutter and prevent camera shake. Around 9:30pm the clouds started to break just as the moon was beginning to eclipse. As the moon slowly passed through the Earth's shadow, I continued to take meter readings, dropping the shutter speed as the moon grew dim. My last shutter speed when the moon went in total eclipse was 2.5 seconds.





Most often during a Lunar Eclipse when the moon is lower in the sky and dust particles are present in the atmosphere the moon will take on an orange/red color. The color of the moon is affected by the geographic location of the observer, local weather and atmospheric conditions. Colors can vary during the eclipse from dark pastels, to violet, to dark apricot and or red.




Red moon during the August 28, 2007 lunar eclipse, 02:45,
Walker Lake, Nevada



When the moon is in the darkest area of Earth's shadow, it will continue to give off a faint light which comes from the Sun's light being bent as it enters the atmosphere.





The Winter Eclipse lasted for around 6 hours, until 03:06pst and all during the event as if on cue the sky remained clear and without any wind.


The 2010 eclipse fell on the descending node of the moon's orbit. Lunar eclipses are always paired with a solar eclipse 2 weeks before or after at the new moon in the opposite node. There will be a partial solar eclipse at the ascending node on January 4, 2011, visible from Europe, northern Africa and western Asia. A word of caution when viewing or photographing a solar eclipse, do not look at the sun even when it goes dark. And never look at the sun through the camera viewfinder. The sun light is so strong that even a very small exposure can cause permanent eye damage.



For More Information:









No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/






Sunday, December 19, 2010

Photographs as Fine Art


What Makes Photography Fine Art


This past Monday, December 13, 2010, I was interviewed by Terry Joy on KUNR Radio about my photography. I am always a little on edge when I'm going to be interviewed because you never know what you will be asked and if you are going to stumble over your words. One of his questions was what sets my photography apart from others and I have been thinking about that since the interview, so I decided to incorporate my thoughts in this week's blog post.

When I decided to pursue photography seriously, there was no doubt that the genre of fine art photography was where I wanted to put my energy. And shortly after making this decision, my photographs were juried and I was accepted in one of the largest art shows in Las Vegas, Nevada, the Summerlin Celebration of the Arts. So what actually determines if a photograph is fine art?



"Sand Totem" was my very first enlarged print.

Going back through the evolution of photography, it took a long time to be recognized by the art world and no longer considered the "unwanted step child". In the early days, people thought that mechanics was involved with the camera in making the photography, which did not entail much of a creative process. The photograph was created when light entered a mechanical box, exposing a negative. The negative was then developed with chemicals in a dark room. Since it was a dark room, most people were unaware of the printing process. Like other mediums of art, the camera did not require many fine motor skills or much hand-eye coordination.

In 1889, photographer Peter Henry Emerson founded a fine art photography movement that he entitled "Naturalistic Photography". Emerson's belief was that if a photograph brought aesthetic pleasure to the viewer, it was art. A short time later around 1892, pictorial photography became more accepted by people, thus paving the narrow path of photography as a medium in the art world.

Around 1919, a young man named Ansel Adams was in training to become a concert pianist. However after discovering Yosemite National Park with his Kodak Brownie box camera, he began a sojourn that would dedicate his life to pursuing fine art photography and preserving the wonders of the natural world.

So what is it that makes a photograph fine art? In my opinion, to become a fine art photograph, the image must be created for its aesthetic value and judged for its beauty or meaningfulness. It should be uplifting and thought provoking. However, there is a saying that art does not have to be nice.

Morning Moon, White Sands, New Mexico 

The image should be created as technically perfect as possible with sharp focus, strong subject or story line and accurate color saturation. The resolution of the photograph should be high enough for the image to be enlarged to at least 16x20 inches. The quality of the print material is very important and should be archival with inks that are stable so that the image will not fade beyond acceptable levels for a number of years. And along this line also is the backing board and mounting tape. Cardboard, various paper products and gummed tape will give off gases that eventually cause the print to fade. Furthermore, it is almost impossible to remove the gum when it becomes attached to a print.

Watchman's Moon, Zion, Utah


The old adage that art is in the eye of the beholder goes without saying, however it is my belief that no matter what the medium of art it should be created with precision and style. Photography has come a long way for recognition in the fine art world. And I would recommend to anyone entertaining the idea of becoming a photographic artist to first study the masters in the field, the Ansel Adams, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Anne Geddes, Dorothea Lange, Edward Curtis and any one else that you find both stimulating and inspiring.

Snowtree at La Madre Springs





No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/





Sunday, December 12, 2010

Photographs for Special Occasions


Photographs Make Great Gifts

I have a new slogan that goes like this, "Photographs Make Great Gifts", but it doesn't replace my main slogan, "Reflecting Nature's Artistry". It's just a little reminder to tell people to consider photographs when selecting gifts for themselves or others.

With Christmas drawing near, people are out shopping and getting ready to exchange gifts, so I have been reminiscing about several of my photographs that were purchased for some very unique reasons. I would like to share them with you in this week's post.

The first photograph that comes to mind was also the first photograph that sold when I made my debut in to the world of fine art. It was at my first art show, the Summerlin Celebration of the Arts in Las Vegas, Nevada. A woman saw the photograph titled "Carpe Diem", and immediately fell in love with the cloud formation and God's lines. She collected photographs of clouds and also recognized the location where I had taken the photograph.





Several years and many photographs later, I was doing a solo exhibit in the Visitor Center at the Red Rock Conservation Area. During the reception, I had noticed several people sitting in a group and talking quietly with each other. When the reception was over, a man from the group came and asked me in a very quiet and somber voice if he could purchase the photograph titled "Waterfall at Lost Creek". He then continued to tell me that his brother had recently passed away from cancer and that he used to spend all his free time hiking and rock climbing at Lost Creek. The family was here for the memorial service and just happened to stop by to see my exhibit. When they saw the photograph they knew that it would be the perfect way to always remember their loved one.




I was participating in a different art show in Las Vegas when a woman walked up to me carrying a matted photograph of "Spring Mountain Sunset". She asked me in a quiet voice if I could ship the matted photograph to Australia and then she told me that her brother had just lost his wife. She said that the colors reminded her of the sister-in-law who was so vibrant and full of life, that it would cheer her brother up each time he saw it hanging on the wall.




Cathedral Rock in Sedona, Arizona has always been a very spiritual place and as you stand in the flowing water and look toward the amazing rock formation of two lovers joined in time, you become filled with its essence. "Cathedral Rock" was a special purchase from a friend to her sister who was in recover from a major illness.





The photograph, "Serenity" was taken by the bridge under Weeping Rock at Zion National Park, Utah. Weeping Rock is a rock formation that has water seeping through cracks in the rocks and appears to be weeping. The scene caught my eye and was the perfect setting to sit and relax or meditate. Serenity was a special purchase by a person who had been through a traumatic life altering event, it would go in an area of her home where she spent time meditating.





The last photograph that has special meaning, "Primal Fire" was so named for an exhibit at the Artisans International Gallery in Minden, Nevada, titled Elements. While at a recent art show, a gentleman came to me carrying the photograph and began to tell me that he would like to have it because he had been struck by lightning! He was so grateful and amazed that not only his life had been spared, but he was unharmed, other than being shaken up and knocked off his feet.




In conclusion, I would like to add that I get as thrilled now when someone buys one of my photographs as I did during my first sale. A wise man once told me that all the awards and ribbons aren't nearly as exciting as when some one is willing to purchase your photography. And this is as true today as it was when I first became a professional photographer. I guess it's that kid in me that is always there. I appreciate every purchase, no matter how large or small. Over the years, many people have shared their special stories with me. The experiences I have mentioned here really touched me because the people shared a very vulnerable part of their life with me. I feel deeply honored that my photography can touch people and also bring comfort.



No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/






Sunday, December 5, 2010

A Historical Overview of Walker Lake, Nevada


Evolution of Nevada's Desert Lake

During the Prepaleozoic Era, before 586 million years, Walker Lake was covered by a great ocean. However, due to plate tectonics, the ocean floor uplifted, the land became fused, and an inland sea was created that had no outlet. Moving forward in time, during the Pleistocene epoch (Ice Age), this area was covered by the ancient Lake Lahontan which reached over 8,665sqmi (22,000km) of Northwestern Nevada and part of California. With an estimated depth of 900 feet (270m), Lake Lahontan was one of the largest lakes in North America. The climate during this era was much colder and received more precipitation. Around the end of the Pleistocene, the climate began to change which caused the massive ice sheet covering so much of the land to recede northward. This led to the gradual desiccation of Lake Lahontan, leaving a number of smaller lakes behind, including Walker Lake. During the Ice Age, Lake Lahontan was fed by flows from many different rivers, including the Truckee, Carson, Humboldt, Susan, Quinn and Walker.




The Walker River continued to feed Walker Lake, creating a diverse ecosystem of plants and animals that thrived in the lake and on its shores. At least 11,000 years ago, Native Americans, the Agai Ticcatta’s, a hunter gather society lived around the Walker Lake Area, or Agai Pah (Trout Lake) as it was originally named. Life was plentiful and abundant for the Agai Ticcatta’s, with the lake supplying all their essential needs. Their food source was more varied than that of modern day people and included seeds, berries, rice grass, native plants, pine nuts, ducks, fish and a variety of animals. The tall grass or Tule that grew along the moist shore was used for many different purposes, including the building of homes that provided warmth and shelter during the cold winters.




Life was plentiful and abundant for Trout Lake and the Agai Ticcatta’s until the fur trappers, gold rush and white settlers discovered what was to become known as Walker Lake. The new name, Walker Lake was so named by Fremont after the trapper Joseph Walker.



In the late 1800's, water from the Walker River was needed for agricultural purposes and since that time, the level of the lake has dropped over 150 feet (45.72m). Unfortunately, as the lake level drops, the salt levels increase. Presently, the total dissolved salts have reached a critical level, and the lake's ability to support wildlife is being compromised.




The future for Walker Lake is uncertain. Much research has been conducted by the Desert Research Institute and University of Nevada, Reno. The water from the Walker River is presently 130% over allocated for agricultural use. One thing is for certain, if an adequate supply of fresh water does not begin to flow in to Walker Lake, it will continue to recede. How far will it recede and what ecosystems will it be able to support, only time and nature will tell.





For additional Information on Walker Lake:











No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/





Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cold Weather Photography


Photo Fun When It's Cold Outside 


Winter has arrived to the High Desert of Nevada bringing in cold temperatures and other than bundling up, it's a great time to go out and explore nature with the camera. When I mention cold temperatures, I am referring to the freezing point and on down to the single digit range. The further the thermometer drops from the double digits, the harder for me to endure the cold, guess it's my southern blood.



Dressing warmly and in layers goes without saying, but what about the camera. Just like ourselves, the camera body also needs protection from extreme cold. Prolonged exposure when it is very cold quickly drains the life from batteries. In my Nikon D90, I have an auxiliary battery pack that holds two batteries and I always carry an extra battery just incase.



To protect the camera from extreme cold when the air is dry, I wrap it in a neck warmer. When there's rain or snow, a plastic produce bag from the grocery store comes in handy. I place it over the camera with a hole in the end for the lens. Another precaution during cold weather photography is to avoid breathing condensation on the viewfinder.


For protecting my hands, I use Atlas Therma Fit insulated gloves. These gloves are cotton coated with latex rubber on the hand and finger portion,which makes them waterproof. The gloves are thin and very flexible so that I can feel the shutter release and move the command dials on the camera.

After coming in from extremely cold temperatures, be careful about bringing a cold camera in to a very warm area. The sudden warm-up can cause condensation to form in the camera, and this is not good. Leave the camera and lens someplace safe where they can gradually warm up.

So when the mercury takes a dip, layer yourself in warm clothes, bundle the camera up and go explore the frozen world of nature.




No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/





Sunday, November 21, 2010

Color Simplify Your Photograph


How to Color Compliment Your Photos

How often do you photograph a scene that you are drawn to, only to look at it on the computer screen and find that there's something about it that you just don't like. You are left feeling dissatisfied, wondering what inspired you to click the shutter.

In this post, I would like to discuss how the effective use of color balance and color simplicity will enhance your photograph, making it more visually appealing.

What could be the problem with you photograph is, it has such a broad range of colors that it is too busy and distracting. A good example is with this desert scene where all the wildflowers are in bloom. An actual scene in nature is viewed differently by our eyes than through the camera lens. As we look at the photo, our eyes do not want to spend too much time sorting out the image. Intuitively, we are drawn to an appealing image and shy away from the others.




Simplifying the scene with colors and including only objects that support the main subject allows our brain to process the image and not become overloaded with information. In the photo "Sugar Pine, Lake Tahoe” notice how the simple scene without color clutter creates a soothing and visually appealing photograph. To me, I feel like I am there, sitting on the bolder, gazing across Lake Tahoe.



On the color wheel you have analogous colors that are located next to each other, for example orange and yellow and green and blue. Analogous colors in a photograph create a soothing look with the scene, giving it flow and a feeling of harmony.




Complimentary colors on the other hand are opposite each other on the color wheel, red purple is opposite to and complimentary of yellow green, where as orange red is the compliment and opposite of blue green. Selecting or isolating complimentary colors in your photograph will accent the scene making it more outstanding. An example is with the photo, "Desert Tapestry" where the complimentary colors fall in the range of red purple and yellow green against the gray sky.



Another example of complimentary colors working well together is in the "Western Tiger Swallowtail" photograph, where the two dominant colors are yellow and purple. The two complimentary colors create contrast and each color makes the other appear more active, resulting in a more dynamic image.





There is no set rule on color choices for photography, just as there are no rules that nature must follow in providing us with such a rich and vibrantly colorful world. An understanding of how colors accent and augment the scene will help to avoid those photos that end up in the delete file, giving you that Oh Wow! moment with your photography.



For additional information:





No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/





Monday, November 15, 2010

Black and White Digital Photographhy


Shooting in Color for Black and White Digital Photographs

The shorter days and active weather patterns have forced me inside to spend more time on the computer. This past week, I was going over photos and got in the mood to see how they would look in black and white. After opening up Photoshop, I started playing around, removing the color. My D90 has a mode and I can shoot black and white in the camera, but I haven't experimented with it, yet. I prefer to shoot in RAW, and then process the photos in Photoshop where I have the most latitude over the output. This way, I can add or subtract contrast and try out different filters like red or yellow.


We live in such a vivid, colorful world, why would anyone want to do black and white photos? Well, the answers are quite simple to this question. With color photography, textures and forms in subjects often become muddled, so by removing the color, thus creating a black and white image, details become more predominant and stand out.



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Lighting is very important for black and white photos and should range from highlights to shadows, where the contrast is needed to create emphasis. Gray, overcast skies can augment the scene, especially where there is action in the sky.


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Clouds help create interest, set moods, and add drama to landscapes. With the black and white photo, it helps to slightly overexpose some of the white clouds but without clipping too much of the details.



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The composition and subject matter differs in black and white than color and should be kept simple with isolated images.


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The geometric structure of the scene is emphasized in the black and white photo, and the good old rule of thirds is always important. Lines and curves support the composition by leading the eye into the picture and suggesting a 'flow' to the scene.


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Everything in the scene should be relevant to the composition.


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If you are interesting in trying black and white, experiment with your photos and see how appealing they are to you. Now that winter is coming, the skies will be more active, so go out and explore your world, look for different subjects or objects.


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In conclusion, I would like to mention the Zone system and how it relates to black and white. This is my simplified version. There are nine zones that range from 1, pure black; to 9 that is pure white. Gray is 5, and falls is the middle. Digital cameras tend to overexpose the highlights, so try and expose for the middle to highlighted areas of the scene. You will have to ultimately make the decision on what is the most important part of the scene and go from there. Learning to use the histogram in your camera is a big help and will show you where your exposure falls. If using a point and shoot, study the aperture and shutter speed indicated in the meter so that you will begin to learn the settings for different lighting. Have fun and enjoy the world of photography.

For additional information on Digital Black and White Photography and the Zone System:

http://www.normankoren.com/zonesystem.html

http://dpanswers.com/content/tech_zonesystem.php



No images on this blog are within Public Domain.






With my Nikon and tripod, my goal is to recreate the scene as it appears in nature, to preserve in a photographic image the awesome, yet simplistic beauty of the scene that waits around a bend or over a hill. Sometimes it's a colorful landscape, and many times I'm allowed in the presence of the numerous creatures that adapt to life in the wild.
 
 All rights reserved, world-wide and images protected by Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). All photography, graphics, text, design, and content is copyrighted by Bonnie Rannald and should not be copied, down-loaded, transferred and re-created in any way without the express consent, in writing to Bonnie Rannald. For information on Bonnie Rannald licensed, right-managed images, please submit a written request.

"Reflecting Nature's Artistry"

Follow this blog for upcoming post!
Photos Make Great Gifts!
Many of these images are available on our website.
We now offer Gift Certificates and Digital Downloads in addition to the
"Off The Wall" custom matted and framed images.




Visit our website at: http://www.bonnierannald.com/