Focus-on-Foto-Fun “People and Portraits”

Theme Number Eleven: “People and Portraits”

When photographing people, whether it’s a family group, a wedding, or even when doing travel photography, it’s important to get your shot quickly. People are busy, and so are we, as photographers, so let’s get the shot done and everyone can be on their way.

Having said that, it’s also important to get your best composition. The lighting is important, so if using natural light, make sure to note the time of day and direction of the sun. Then, either have your subject move so the light is complementary, or move yourself around to where it is lighting the people in a complementary way – from the side, for instance. To avoid any deep shadows on the face, they might turn their head to the side, or straight at you, or you could choose to shoot from a different angle, or move to a shady location when conditions are too bright.

What if you’re shooting indoors? If possible, move the subject near a window where natural light is entering the room. If that’s not possible, then it’s important to make sure the aperture of the camera is as wide open as possible, and also use a high shutter speed. This may require a high ISO setting also to ensure there’s enough exposure to light the subject up and not leave the shadows too grainy from low light indoors. A wide open aperture will also keep the background out of focus, so all attention is on the subject.

Try different angles – get down on a knee, or even on the ground if you’re photographing children – and make sure there is some connection between you and your subjects. Many people are camera shy and may have difficulty posing in front of your lens for any length of time. What you want to be able to do is to show them at their best, so finding a way to help them feel comfortable is worth the effort while also letting them show their authentic self in a way that will bring out their inner beauty, whether they believe they have any or not.

The most critical part of taking photographs of people, whether it’s in a studio or in a foreign country and culture, is to make sure you have a sharp focus on the eyes. Our attention, when looking at any photograph, will always be directed to the eyes first. If the eyes are in focus, the viewer will also be able to connect with your subject for the eyes are the window to the soul. Once that is accomplished, then be certain to look around the scene to make sure there is nothing in the composition that is distracting, such as a cluttered background, or bright lights.

We’ll practice together on this one. As I do my best to take more “People and Portraits” photographs, I’ll be learning right along beside you, so be sure to post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/, and share your tips for getting better portraits and people shots. Remember to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #peopleandportraits. When posting to IG, please tag me too, @georgiamichalicek so I’m sure to see your photos there.

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Texture Adds Interest”

Theme Number Ten is “Texture Adds Interest”

Texture in a photograph can draw the viewer into the scene because it allows them to engage the subject with more than just the visual sense. It adds another layer of interest beyond light, color, and composition. Texture in a photograph also makes a 2D photograph appear more 3D, and can elicit emotion which helps the viewer connect more deeply with what the photograph conveys. Depending on the scene, it can make them feel moody, melancholy, or full of life.

When photographing landscapes, the photographer can bring out the texture in an image by making it black and white, and/or by making certain the light is hitting the subject at an angle so the shadows it creates make the texture stand out.

Detail is very important when photographing textures, so in addition to paying attention to lighting, your depth of field will help accentuate the texture. For instance, think of food photography. You will want to shoot close enough that when the viewer sees the food, they can almost taste it. If part of the dish is out of focus, it might not look as delectable, so you will want to use a larger f/stop (or smaller aperture) to ensure it’s in focus throughout the scene. In another instance, you might be focusing on the texture of a plant or flower, and you’ll want the background blurry in order to make the subject stand out. It’s no different than making a portrait at this point; keep the lighting natural and coming from the side instead of flooding the scene, and use a smaller f/stop (or wide open aperture) to keep your subject in focus while the background is faded and/or out of focus.

 Play around with finding textures that speak to you, and zoom in to capture the detail. Instead of photographing the entire old rusty car, find an area on the car where you see the whole scene in the element of texture. You can do this with old houses that are crumbling and falling down, the bark of a tree trunk, or a corner of a painted door on a house. Use your imagination, and make certain when you zoom in to capture the texture of your subject that your focus is sharp throughout so the image becomes tactile in design.

Start practicing today, try something new, or show us how you’ve already photographed the texture of a subject or scene. Post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/, and remember to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #textureaddsinterest. When posting to IG, please tag me too, @georgiamichalicek so I’m sure to see your photos there.

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Water World”

Theme Number Nine is “Water World”

Taking photographs of water is the subject of Focus-on-Foto-Fun Theme Number Nine, “Water World.” Natural landscapes provide rivers and creeks, lakes and ponds, or the calm ocean scene with reflections, and waterfalls that one rarely gets to see in the arid Southwest. Those who live in, or have the opportunity to visit, colder climates might capture a beautifully reflected image in melting ice. If you live in the city, you might photograph puddles on the streets, or a fog covered skyscraper that just barely shows through the mist at daybreak. Or, you might possibly have photographed a storm with rain in the distance, or raindrops falling in a city park, maybe even a water fountain in a city square.

Photographing water is often more fascinating when it’s moving, and this can sometimes require the photographer to take some extra measures when shooting a photograph in order to share what they feel when it’s viewed by others. Sometimes, we want to share the raging flow of water – out of control, over the edge, and being pulled downward by gravity. Other times, we might in-JOY slowing the flow of water down so the viewer can almost hear the water cascading over rocks, or flowing softly downward, while emphasizing the surrounding area that is nourished by its flow.

The best way to slow the flow of a waterfall and make it appear as a mist or soft veil is by using a neutral density (ND) filter, and of course, by having your camera mounted on a tripod. ND filters allow you to take your photograph while using a slower shutter speed with your ISO set lower. This means that you can extend the amount of time the shutter is open so it slows the movement of the water down to a blur. You can also use an ND filter to darken the image enough on a sunny day, to be able to open your f/stop wider in order to change your depth of field, and keep the main subject in focus while everything around it is out of focus.

ND filters reduce the light that enters the camera without changing the color of the scene. They can be purchased in solid or graduated densities. An ND2, for instance, will give you 1 stop more than you would normally be able to achieve with the camera settings, ND4 = 2 stops, ND6 = 3 stops, and so on. A solid ND filter will change the density of the entire scene being photographed, where a graduated ND filter allows the photographer to choose which part of the scene will be photographed in actual light conditions while the rest of the scene is stopped down. Graduated ND filters are typically used to darken a sky, or even the glare of a waterfall in the woods on a sunny day while leaving the foliage surrounding the waterfall more visible without blowing out the whites in the water.

It’s important to pay attention to weather. The best times to photograph whichever “Water World” you happen to be standing in front of is at sunrise or sunset, and waterfall scenes will provide much more even light on a cloudy day. Reflections in lakes, rivers, and harbors are best taken on a sunny day with the sun to your back or on the side of your scene. A polarizer filter can help saturate the colors in the water, but be careful to pay attention when rotating it on your lens. A polarizer filter set to the wrong angle for the direction of the sun can also eliminate reflections. Reflections with great detail can be achieved when the water is calm, while water in motion can provide an excellent opportunity to shoot abstract photographs.

I’m really looking forward to seeing your photographs for this theme. There are so many FUN possibilities! Start practicing today, try something new, or show us how you’ve already photographed the wonderful “Water World” that’s all around us. Then post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/, and remember to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #waterworld. When posting to IG, please tag me too, @georgiamichalicek so I’m sure to see your photos there.

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Photographing Your Own Essence”

Theme Number Eight is “Photographing Your Own Essence”

This topic has come up for me two times in the past few weeks, and seems to be the new buzz among professional photographers. It was the topic at our last Sedona Camera Club meeting and we had a great presentation of what this means by Arizona Highways Magazine photographer, Colleen MiniukSperry. I posted a link to her website on the Focus-on-Foto-Fun timeline if you’re interested in seeing her photography. Another photographer who evidently has been using a technique that connects her to her essence when taking photographs is Karen Hutton. I’m going to give you a link to her Facebook page because that is where she did three live videos on the topic under the heading of “Creating Emotion in Your Photography” – https://www.facebook.com/Karen.L.Hutton. They were recorded, and you can still view them there. I not only respect both of these excellent photographers and the work they have produced, and continue to produce, but I also find the ideas they shared to be of value to me, and to my photography. That’s why I’ve decided to share it with you for our Focus-on-Foto-Fun Theme Number Eight.

No Selfies, please!
So, WHAT does it mean to “Photograph Your Own Essence”? First, it means that you are unique in this world, and that you have a way of thinking, doing, and feeling things that is unique. Unless you are working as a commercial photographer fulfilling your boss’ assignments, or simply documenting scenes as a journalist, each photograph you take is – or ought to be – of your essence, and therefore, your photography will be unique, different, and not just another cookie-cutter photograph of the subject you are photographing. In other words, “Photographing Your Own Essence” is making it your own! Next, the question arises, HOW do you “Photograph Your Own Essence?” The answer to this question comes from within, and you cannot do this without knowing yourself first, and becoming aware of what you are feeling…yes, let me repeat that: Become aware of what you are feeling!

Once you know how you are feeling, or how a particular scene makes you feel, you will then be able to see, and photograph, your essence when capturing that scene. Knowing how you feel can also lead you to an incredible scene and/or subject to photograph that you might not have been aware of if you were not able to feel your own emotional energy. So, here are some recommended techniques to help:

  1. Get grounded – Feel your body, know where your feet are, get out of your head, stop the whirling dervish in your mind, stop to breathe, and feel your breath as it goes in…and out…in…and out. Some people listen to music, others spend a little time doing a meditation, or maybe repeating a mantra. Find a way that works for you instead of just running out to get that shot.
  2. Feel your emotion(s) – Take the time to feel the situation out, look around, walk around. Feel your legs and feet; they are connected to the ground, afterall. See the thing that you feel in your body. Is it sensual, peaceful, excited, wistful, melancholy, filled with a child-like fantasy? Name it, and then see it.
  3. Take your photograph – Try different angles, perspectives, depth of fields…make is soft and fuzzy, detailed with strong lines or blocks of color, change the background, find the color that represents the emotion, etc. Do whatever it takes to photograph what you feel in your body, and don’t settle for anything less.

What if you’ve tried everything, and it’s just not working for you? Move on! You’ll find it by changing locations, or using an orange instead of an apple, maybe by adding a model to the shot on a different occasion. Get grounded, get out of your head – no judgement needed here. Just move on to the next shot. Follow the steps above again to see what you come up with that expresses your inner most feelings – your essence.

Instead of posting a photograph here on my blog, I’m going to provide a couple of exercises on the Focus-on-Foto-Fun FB page, and post my photographs there, along with the other members. If you’d like to join in the FUN, see https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/ and ask to join the group. Remember to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #photographingyourownessence, and when posting to IG, please tag me @georgiamichalicek, too. I love seeing your creations!

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Making an Abstract Photograph

Theme Number Seven is “Making an Abstract Photograph”

I would like to challenge the members of Focus-on-Photo-Fun with this theme, and ask everyone to be sure to add a comment, or two, when they post their Abstract Photographs on Facebook and Instagram. Some of us have had more instruction in photography than others, some have had more experience, others might have an art background, and it’s just possible that we have members who love to make Abstract Photography. I’ll get you started with a couple of my ideas of what makes a photograph an abstract work of art, but I really want to learn from our community of photographers. So please, let us know what you think makes your particular photos that you post for this theme an abstract.

I often think of an abstract work of art as something that appears undefined. In other words, it doesn’t look as recognizable as do my landscape photographs, or a still life, such as, a bowl of fruit that’s nicely lit by a candle or the sunshine coming through the window. Instead, it might just be the light itself and how it forms a shadow on a table. I look at the form of the subject in an abstract photograph more than I do the structure or the entire scene. I look at the various colors and how they interact with each other within the composition, and because of that, I also look more closely at the curves and lines, which often are more defined than other aspects within the frame of an abstract photograph.

The photograph above is an example of an abstract photograph that I created from one of my landscapes taken in an area of the Southwest USA that not many have seen. The small pebbles in the bottom left corner of the composition might give it away, but the eye is instead drawn to the angled and wavy lines that run through the frame – and then to the various colors which add more lines and curves to the form. The vivid orange color, along with the reds, draw the viewer’s eye into the photograph, and holds it there. Intense colors will often elicit feelings, and attract the viewer’s attention through the emotions that arise. An emotional response by the viewer is a hallmark of a strong form found in abstract photography. What feelings do you have when viewing the top photograph on this page? Can you explain why?

One of the newest forms of abstract photography is the intentional blurring of a landscape, or some other object. This can be done by moving the camera up, down, side-to-side, or in a circular motion while keeping the shutter open. Another method used for making abstract photographs is to use the lens to zoom-in or zoom-out while keeping the shutter open. Some experimentation is called for to find the settings that create the effect the photographer wants to see. Since the blur of the image and the illusion of motion combines to make me feel dizzy when I view these type of abstract photographs, I prefer to see some recognizable part of the subject in the ones I make, such as the maple leaves in the photograph above. Here, the dark black lines of the tree trunks also create more depth and dimension in the abstract, attracting the eye of the viewer to look closely for more detail in the overall form.

This theme should be fun to play with a variety of subjects, both indoors and out. Experiment and see what you can come up with when “Making an Abstract Photograph.” Post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/, and remember to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #makinganabstractphotograph. When posting to IG, please tag me @georgiamichalicek. I love seeing your creations!

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Shaping Your Composition”

Theme Number Six is “Shaping Your Composition”

As a photographer, we take many different aspects into consideration as we compose our photographs. We definitely consider the light source, and the direction of the light,  and we might look at patterns, texture, color, and so on. But how often do you take a photograph of something because of its shape? I’ve seen some landscape photographs that are taken because a photographer noticed a heart shape in the scene, or possibly there was a leading line of light, but to photograph an object just because of its shape is not something I see very often.

A shape can be used to frame a subject, as seen in the photograph above, taken at Arches National Park in Utah. Looking at the rock formation known as Delicate Arch through a window in another rock, the composition not only frames the subject, but also forces the eye of the viewer to look through one shape to see another scene – your subject. The end result can be far more interesting to a viewer than the standard view of Delicate Arch that has been seen so many times before, as shown below.

Shapes can be simple architectural or natural landscape structures, but they can also be created by the way the light is falling on a scene, and by colors in a composition. Both add contrast to a composition, and therefore bring out the texture, and three dimensional shapes, when displaying a two dimensional photograph. When photographing a scene straight on, your scene might seem very flat. By moving your feet just a little to step to one side or the other, you might find the shadows created by the angled light will make your photograph appear more 3D. Photographs taken of sand dunes are a prime example of this for a landscape photographer. Contrasting colors have a similar effect. Cooler colors are better used as backgrounds while reds, yellows, and oranges will stand out and bring more attention to the shape of your subject.

One other item to consider when photographing and emphasizing shapes is to keep things as simple as possible. A telephoto lens can work well, and will allow a photographer to frame the subject so only the shape draws the attention of the viewer without distracting elements in the composition. Black-and-white images can also work well for shapes, especially when composing high contrast silhouettes.

Have fun finding shapes to photograph, and be sure when you post your photos to Focus-on-Foto-Fun to tell us what camera and settings you used, so we can all learn from one another. Post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/. Remember, you can tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #shapingyourcomposition, and please tag me @georgiamichalicek on IG.

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Isolating Your Subject”

Theme Number Five is “Isolating Your Subject”

As a landscape photographer who in-JOYs photographing the BIG picture, it is sometimes difficult to think about what the viewer might be drawn to in one of my photographs. My intent is that they will find the grandeur of a scenic landscape just as interesting and captivating as I do, but that might not always be the case. There are people who in-JOY seeing a close-up, or abstract of a scene just as much as anything else. In fact, there are even those who prefer a Zen-like image over all others where things seem quiet and peaceful, focusing only on one thing while everything else in the photograph is nothing more than a blur, or dull in color for instance, which makes the subject stand out. It’s what draws the viewer’s eye without all the distraction of a larger, more complicated scene. These are not typically the photographs I would take, so I thought it would be FUN to explore “Isolating Your Subject” as a theme.

There’s certainly more than one way to do this, but let’s start with something we all probably do with our DSLRs whether it’s intentionally done to isolate the subject, or not. We change our depth of field by opening up the aperture on the camera we’re using to the widest f-stop. This will vary on different cameras and lenses, but it’s usually f/4 or f/2.8. Some lenses will even shoot at f/1.4. This allows more light to come into the camera sensor, and keeps everything in focus in a smaller area of the entire photo, blurring objects that are in front and/or behind the area in focus, while drawing attention to – or isolating – your subject.

The technique is most often used when taking portraits, and also when photographing people who are moving and active, such as when playing sports or performing on stage. The photographer wants to isolate, and therefore, highlight the subject – the person (maybe it’s a bird or animal) – or the action taking place. It brings out the detail of the subject, and draws attention to it.

If you have a telephoto or zoom lens, you can determine how much of the scene is in focus by changing the focal length you use while shooting. When focusing on a subject that is close to the camera, your depth of field will fall off almost immediately. The farther out you focus, less of the scene will be blurred because you’re using a longer focal length. Macro lenses can be used for close-up subjects, and both can be good for creating abstract photographs by focusing only on the smallest, most intimate details of a subject. You only see lines and curves, plus soft colors around the detail you wish to highlight.

There are other methods that can be used for “Isolating Your Subject” in addition to differential focus. I’ve seen wildflower photographers who take a large black card with them when shooting in the field. They place it behind the most beautiful flower to eliminate any distractions in the background. This can also be done with the right elements in play, such as the sun shining on the flower with deep shade behind it, and then post-processing it to make the background even darker. Tracking a moving subject is another method used for “Isolating Your Subject.” I’ve seen this used while the photographer was riding a bicycle, keeping the handlebar in focus and showing the movement of the scene around the bike. Or, when tracking animals in the wild, or vehicles in traffic.

Note: Phone cameras will typically average, or equalize, the light on every subject you photograph, so you will have to experiment a little to get what you want when “Isolating Your Subject.” There are many excellent apps available that will change the look and feel of your phone-captured photograph once it’s taken, too.

Experiment to see what you can come up with, and be sure when you post your photographs to Focus-on-Foto-Fun to tell us what camera and settings you used, so we can all learn from one another. Tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #isolatingyoursubject, and be certain to tag me @georgiamichalicek on IG, and post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/.

 

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Really RED”

Theme Number Four is “Really Red”

With Valentines Day just around the corner, I thought we’d do something seemingly simple for our Focus-on-Foto-Fun theme and take photographs where our subject is the color RED. It can fill the frame, or just be a part of a larger subject. In my opinion, red is one of those colors that already stands out. For instance, when I’m at an exhibit or in someone’s home where there’s lots of artwork hanging on a wall, any one of them with the color red in it will draw my attention from afar. Yet, I don’t typically include red just for the purpose of drawing attention to my photographs. In fact, as an artist whose subjects have often been landscapes of the Southwest, I probably use the color red in my photographs less than most other colors.

Here’s one of few landscape photographs I have taken that draws attention by using a subject that’s red. I found it in a canyon in Arizona that had caught on fire – one where many people loved to visit in the autumn of the year because we could see and photograph the vivid colors of fall leaves on deciduous trees. During the summer months when the canyon was closed and the air was filled with acrid smoke from the fire, none of us knew for certain whether we would ever have an opportunity to see those colors in that particular canyon again. When it was finally opened back up by the Forest Service, I was overwhelmed with the feelings I had for it all, including the firefighters who risked their lives for many weeks to save this beloved canyon. I titled this photograph, “Gratitude.”

For the purpose of this theme, look for subjects that are red, and not necessarily a valentine heart. Maybe find something else that’s red to photograph that will be the perfect subject for valentine cards, or consider turning the task of finding the color red to photograph into a creative project that can be explored further and shared beyond posting to Focus-on-Foto-Fun. Here’s an example of a creative project that touched my heart. I recently saw a photography project on Instagram where the photographer carried a white rose with him wherever he went with his camera. It symbolized connection, caring, love and peace to him, and he would ask complete strangers to hold the white rose while he took their photograph. It turned into a beautiful intention to connect with people in every country on the planet, and he now has an incredible photography portfolio of people from around the world holding a white rose.

It’s entirely up to each individual photographer what to choose as a subject for their photography, but be sure that the focus of attention in the photograph for this theme is “Really RED,” no matter how you decide to accomplish that intention. Then be sure to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #reallyred, and be certain to tag me @georgiamichalicek on IG, and post your photographs to the Focus-on-Foto-Fun page on FB at https://www.facebook.com/groups/150235042147657/.

Here are the links to some of my social media sites where we can share our insights, frustrations, JOY – or just our photographs – and then, play some more. It’s all online, so there’s no pressure, but when you’re ready, feel free to take a risk and try something new. It’s up to you how often you post.

Facebook       https://www.facebook.com/georgia.michalicek/
Instagram      https://www.instagram.com/georgiamichalicek/
Twitter           https://twitter.com/RepPhoto

Let’s just remember to keep it interesting and never obscene or gross, please. I do like beauty in photography. Let your creativity flow, and take the time to see things differently. You can use whatever camera you own. Even cell phone cameras work well for photos on the go, and the more we shoot, the more we’ll all know what we’re capable of creating when we break out of the same old mold.

 

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “3 for 1”

I have never created a triptych with my photographs, and I don’t know why. I’ve seen other landscape photographs that use three images to make one photograph, I’ve used four photographs of earth, air, water and fire to make one photograph to place as a header on my YouTube site and on my Raw Elements Photography fan page on Facebook, but I’ve never used three photographs to create a fine art print – or prints – to hang on the wall. So “3 for 1” is the new Focus-on-Foto-Fun topic, and it will be something entirely new for me.

Here’s a sample I prepared to get us heading in the right direction, but there’s no right way or wrong way to make a triptych.

I took three photographs of a place called Thor’s Well on the Pacific Ocean in Oregon. It’s at the Cape Perpetua Headland where there are all sorts of churns, a spouting horn, and other phenomenon that occur when the tide goes in and out along this beautiful coastline. It shows the progression of the tide coming in and Thor’s Well in front of it, then the tide going under and the water being pushed up through Thor’s Well, and finally, the water receding back down through Thor’s Well as the tide goes out again.

I post processed the photographs, and cropped them to make them square, and then used Photoshop to place them on a canvas so they can’t be separated. If I were making these as a fine art photograph to hang on the wall, I could easily make one print of each and hang them next to one another without any canvas border at all.

If you were making a triptych of these scenes, it’s likely you would have configured the triptych differently, and that’s the fun! You can take any three photographs, and combine them in any way you like. You might choose to show a building being constructed, or food being prepared, or you could recombine the photographs you’ve already chosen in a different way. They can be presented horizontally, vertically, they can be full size photographs, or long and narrow – any configuration you choose to create your unique work of art.

You don’t have to show a process either. Some photographers take a panoramic photograph and divide it into three sections, and this can also be done with the usual size photograph you get from your camera. The important part is that each section can stand on its own as a single photograph, but makes a stunning image as well when all three are combined. You can also take three totally different photographs of seemingly unrelated subjects, and combine them in a triptych that makes a visual statement. You might like to try this with portraits using models, or maybe using wild birds or animals in their natural environment.

One other method that has been used to create a triptych is to take three different photographs of a scene while moving your camera from left to right, or top to bottom, and slightly overlap the edges. These three images can be printed or displayed digitally next to each other and it will seem as though you are looking out the window of a moving car or train, and have captured the essence of the entire scene.

It’s really up to you, and I know not everyone uses the same software, so use what you have available, and if you don’t want to display your final triptych on a canvas, just post all three photographs and explain how you would hang them on a wall – top to bottom or left to right – and number them 1, 2, and 3. Then be sure to tag your posts with #focusonfotofun and #3for1, and be certain to tag me @georgiamichalicek on IG or Georgia Michalicek on FB so we have a page where we can see everyone’s photographs who’s playing along.

Here are the links to some of my social media sites where we can share our insights, frustrations, JOY – or just our photographs – and then, play some more. It’s all online, so there’s no pressure, but when you’re ready, feel free to take a risk and try something new. It’s up to you how often you post.

Facebook       https://www.facebook.com/georgia.michalicek/
Instagram      https://www.instagram.com/georgiamichalicek/
Twitter           https://twitter.com/RepPhoto

Let’s just remember to keep it interesting and never obscene or gross, please. I do like beauty in photography. Let your creativity flow, and take the time to see things differently. You can use whatever camera you own. Even cell phone cameras work well for photos on the go, and the more we shoot, the more we’ll all know what we’re capable of creating when we break out of the same old mold.

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Focus-on-Foto-Fun “Last Light”

Theme Number Two is “Last Light”

“Last Light” …that’s perfect for a landscape photographer, you might say; we get loads of practice taking photographs of sunsets and people LOVE them! However, let’s think about this theme in more detail, or from a different perspective because I’m hoping to see “Last Light” in a new way.

As I was culling through my photographs to decide which one I would include as a sample, I had lots of choices. There are those where I’m facing the sun, and those where I have my camera pointed in the opposite direction from the sun, as is the case in this photograph taken right as the sun was setting on a wintry day at the Grand Canyon. Notice how you can see the last light of day on the very top of the tree branches, and on the top of the rock formations in the distance? Sunset was behind me, yet I can express it creatively by taking a photograph looking away.

When I look at the definition for sunset (or twilight) on a program called the Photographer’s Ephemeris that helps me predict what time the sun will set depending on my location, it lists sunset, civil end, and nautical end. The timing between the three spans over an hour, and each has its own detailed definition, so its easy to understand that when I take a photograph of “last light,” it could look very different depending on which stage the light of sunset is providing.

“Last Light” does not necessarily have to come from the sun either, nor is a typical landscape photograph required for this theme. I’m going to let my creative juices ebb and flow with this one, and see what else comes to mind as I take my camera with me wherever I go. It’s my intent to bring something back that’s very new to me, based on this theme, while being just as fun to create as what I photograph on my scenic landscape adventures.

I hope you will join in the fun and share your photographs of “Last Light” with me. Just tag me on Facebook or Instagram (IG), and I’ll see your photographs, too. Then be sure to tag your IG posts with #focusonfotofun so we have a page where we can see everyone’s photographs who’s playing along.

Here are the links to some of my social media sites where we can share our insights, frustrations, JOY,  – or just our photographs – and then, play some more. It’s all online, so there’s no pressure, but when you’re ready, feel free to take a risk and try something new. It’s up to you how often you post.

Facebook       https://www.facebook.com/georgia.michalicek/
Instagram      https://www.instagram.com/georgiamichalicek/
Twitter           https://twitter.com/RepPhoto

Let’s just remember to keep it interesting and never obscene or gross, please. I do like beauty in photography. Let your creativity flow, and take the time to see things differently. You can use whatever camera you own. Even cell phone cameras work well for photos on the go, and the more we shoot, the more we’ll all know what we’re capable of creating when we break out of the same old mold.

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