Last year April during a hike I almost bumped into a couple cheetahs sunbathing in the Eastern Cape. It was hot and they were fairly inactive. I could approach them up to about 2 meters distance and not a centimeter closer. Anyway I got the opportunity to picture one and processed the original RAW file in B&W reduction leaving only the hairs and the eyes of the animal visible next to a bit of background. Last week I started to add some colour in the image again and this is the result.
The first Weekly Photo Challenge of this year is NEW.
The other day the neighbour came in saying that he just bought a ‘new’ moped. What he meant is that he bought a new second hand one (60 yrs old). A farmer can buy the latest newest model of an plough but the principle of the plough is older than the road between Cologne and Rome. Recently I looked into my collection of horticultural books and noticed that “La Maison Rustique” (printed in 1836) describes the principles and core technical details of every possible agricultural machinery (except than the specifications of an engine but that was where horses and oxes were for) from a barrow (drag) to a potato grading machine. And I read also in detail about the slaughter of cattle and where every single part (including eyes and testicles) are destined for…. 😉
Plants make flowers. That’s not new but when it makes a new flower that flower is new.
As for myself: At the end of last year I erased around 5000 pictures (each in RAW, Psd and JPEG + JPEG web-format). That created a nice space on my hard- and other disks to start something new. For this month I scheduled already quite a few of last year’s ‘residues’ (ones I kept) but slowly you will see New Year’s pictures creeping in. The past few years (see my ‘about’ page) I have been experimenting with different processing and collage (layering) techniques and slowly working to my own style (more surreal minimalism as you will see in the ‘moon’ picture). You will see the NEW ME every now and than between the more traditional landscapes, portraits and so on but also these will slowly evolve into images with an own identity; let’s name it ‘NEW REALITY’ … Something NEW is brewing here…
First: ‘A Closer Look’ followed by what’s new and not so new.
With the grape harvest in South Africa about to begin I thought it was a good idea to ‘dive’ into my archive and re-process some harvest pictures of last year. Photo shooting at Springfontein Winery in Stanford, South Africa. Original RAW-images reprocessed with Topaz (Photoshop plug-in) in ‘opalotype’
Silly question of course; every photographer knows that. This morning I decided to play a bit with a bird that looks black but is not. A bit of photoshopping, first in RAW and later in PSD, made this black bird (kind of starling, I believe) more colorful. It also made the white gutter a bit rusty … :). The roof however kept its own color…
In a small village like Stanford it’s not easy to ‘persuade’ people, especially women, to photograph them. Whatever the reason it took a while and against all odds (even her mother said that she would “never ever” do it) Karuna didn’t even think twice. She admits that she hates to be photographed but this time she challenged herself.
I prefer making pictures as natural as possible without artificial lightning and if I use a model I prefer him/her to look natural. The only compromise I make is the use of photo-processing software which I’ve done extensively with Karuna. I’ve been cropping a bit and processing in RAW I shifted the buttons for exposure, black, white, highlights, saturation, contrast, shadow, etc. numerous times to get the desired image. While taking these pictures I tried to emphasize on reflection with the use of windows and a mirror.
But before I really started to work with this first time model I made several snapshots of her and together discussed them. After that I made a serie of approx. 300 portraits and this is what’s left.
BTW: Karuna does not like bananas….