Tag Archives: Black and White

The Joy of Clouds

There is nothing less interesting to me as a landscape photographer than a bright clear cloudless sky, but add some clouds and marginal weather with interesting light and wow, some magical images can be made. A great example of this is my Bison and Crestone Peaks image where the sun lights up the layers of clouds formed  from an inversion and a clearing late Spring storm with fresh snow on the peaks . Earlier in the morning the valley was blanketed in fog and I was able to make some interesting images but as it started to burn off, this  amazing scene was revealed.  Clouds can add a dynamic element to any landscape and can make any image truly unique.

I will offer two additional examples, a black and white image of amazing cumulus cloud build up over the Chiricahua Mountains in Arizona in July, and early morning  clouds over the Tall Grass Prairie Preserve in Oklahoma. Without the clouds my camera would have stayed in the bag.

Cumulus Cloud Build-up over the Chiricahua Mountains, AZ

Tall Grass Prairie Morning, Oklahoma


Color or Black and White?: the Power of the Digital Darkroom

Photographers today have some amazing tools available to them in the digital darkroom! The ability to to produce either a color or black and white image from a digital file today gives the photographer great control and allows  vision, experimentation and choice in bringing the final image to life as a fine print.   I recently started using Silver Efex  Pro, a photo shop plug-in from Nik Software, and for someone who originally did B&W burning,dodging, and toning in the chemical darkroom , the control over the image that this  digital tool  allows is is amazing.  As an example I present a macro image of Broadleaf Chasmanthium, a grass species I photographed this Summer in Oklahoma. Although I do  really like the color image, I believe the  B&W version is a bit more “artistic” and has its own unique beauty.  As an artist I find it very liberating to have such tools available to me as I pursue my creative vision to capture the beauty the natural world.

Year in the Life of a Camera show

In 2004 I participated in a unique photography project which became known as A Year in the Life of a Camera. Basically what this project entailed was one camera, a Canon AE-1  35mm film camera, being provided to one photographer to use for one week to photograph anything that photographer was interested in with the only rule being that the photographs would be Black and White! Fifty-two photographers participated resulting  in images made over a complete calendar year. Each photographer submitted 3 images and we all got together to pick one from each participant. These 52 images became the Year in the Life of a Camera Exhibit. The exhibit has been shown in several venues and for the next month will be shown in Colorado Springs Colorado at Heebee Jeebees located at 318 E. Colorado Ave. The opening reception will be August 7, 2009.

KRCC’s The Big Something has a great slide show and interview with my friend  and one of the main organizers,Heather Oelklaus about the show here: