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A Word About Art-Making

In Creativity and Inspiration, Life Is Short, Pep Talks, Rants and Sermons, The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory by David137 Comments

One of the happy perils of posting your work online is the very real possibility of criticism. I suppose posting it anywhere exposes you, but the internet gives people both a microphone and anonymity. Things get said online that would never be said in person to another soul. The internet, especially social media, emboldens us. But it’s not only the internet. …

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Postcards from Vancouver Island

In News & Stuff, Postcards From..., The Craft, The Life Creative by David48 Comments

Every year, off the coast of Vancouver Island, the place I call home, the herring spawn by the millions. The usually dark green water turns a magnificent chalky blue-green as the herring do the reproductive dance that makes them a keystone species, while at the same time drawing in an astonishing number of animals: gulls, seabirds, bald eagles, sea otters, harbour …

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Crank It Up! (Or How I Stopped Fearing The Noise Monster)

In Lightroom & Workflow, Pep Talks, The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory by David22 Comments

My first “real” digital camera was a Canon EOS Digital Rebel. All black, with a vertical battery grip and an impressive 6.3 megapixel sensor, it felt like a tiny miracle. But take that ISO up to 800 and the resulting images were less than miraculous; they were so noisy you’d need earplugs. That was 20 years ago, and while so much has changed …

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The Adventure of Art

In Creativity and Inspiration, Life Is Short, Pep Talks, The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory by David10 Comments

“Life,” said Helen Keller, “is either a daring adventure or it is nothing.” The same can be said about art and the effort to make it. Adventure is defined as ” a risky undertaking of unknown outcome, an exciting or unexpected event.” Risky. Unknown. Unexpected.  Art-making has a wildness to it, an untamed quality. I know I’ve written about this …

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More Important Than Good?

In Life Is Short, Pep Talks, Rants and Sermons, The Craft, The Life Creative by David22 Comments

Some of your photographs aren’t very “good”; they’re way more important than that.   You’ve felt it—I know you have. You’ve experienced the rush of making a photograph that turns out exactly as you planned. Perhaps better. It’s sharp in all the right places, the colours work together, and it has a certain je ne sais quoi that garners more …

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10,000 Frames to Make One. What’s Wrong with Me?

In Pep Talks, Rants and Sermons, The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory, Wilderness by David66 Comments

I loaded my gear into my truck last week and headed 12 hours north to the mouth of the Chilko River, my first trip since the amputation. I drove the same route a year ago, through towering mountains and golden aspens, my mind less on the bears I would photograph and more on the looming surgery. If I didn’t change …

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Refine Your Mood in the Darkroom

In Lightroom & Workflow, The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory, Tutorials &Technique by David19 Comments

In my last post (August 06), I discussed a few ways to improve the mood in our photographs, namely by finding stronger mood in the first place, usually by looking for more interesting light or more interesting weather. Just getting out there earlier and staying later helps. Some weatherproof gear and a willingness not to baby the camera so much …

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Find the Light, Find the Mood.

In The Craft, The Life Creative, Thoughts & Theory, Tutorials &Technique by David19 Comments

“How do you photograph that great light?” is one of the top three questions I’m asked about how I make my photographs. It’s a good question because the camera sees light differently than we do, and unless you know what’s possible, you’ll struggle with retaining the mood of beautiful light. That struggle is more difficult for photographers who are still chained to …