This Christmas, we attended a party at the home of a friend. I took this picture of her father as he watched the festivities. I've always been fascinated by the faces of those old enough to have their lives written on their skin -- not just in the deepening lines, but in the carriage of their brow, the balance of their body, the light behind their eyes. I chose to emphasize those things in this portrait by boosting the contrast in the conversion to black and white, which added drama to what otherwise was fairly uninteresting lighting in the color version. There's a darkness to the image, now, that surrounds the seamed face and unruly hair, and the direct gaze into the lens of the camera adds to the sense of glimpsing something intensely personal in an unguarded moment. What that something might be is up to the viewer to interpret.
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
I drive by this spot every day and it's almost always beautiful, with mist rising from the water, waves lapping at the shore, or the magnificent sky perfectly reflected in the still surface of the reservoir.
Check out this photo from the same set, looking down into the deep reflection of the water:
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
I just downloaded the photos from my cell phone, taken over the last few months, and I'm seriously impressed by the quality of a few of the images captured by my iPhone 4s. If the lighting is poor, the quality's not so good, but in decent light the images aren't half bad, given that you're working with a quarter-inch lense on a camera body only about 3/8 of an inch thick. The color reproduction is good, and the detail is decent if you don't zoom in too close.
Of course, the most important thing in any picture is composition, not camera quality; and it's nice to have the option of snapping an artistic image even when you don't happen to have the heavier camera on your shoulder. I spotted this view looking back at the trail in the Ashford County Park last November as I was checking on one of my geocaches. I loved the random pattern and colors of the autumn leaves turning brown on the pavement, and the way the lines of the trail and fence curved away gently into the distance, contrasting with the strong verticals of the trees.
Here's a link to some of my other favorites from last year's set of cell phone pictures.
Monday, January 23, 2012
On January 19, after several days of storms, our snow changed to freezing rain, encasing every branch, bud, and blade of grass in a thick layer of ice. It was a dangerous cocktail, leading to broken limbs, trunks, and power lines across the region and plunging hundreds of thousands into darkness for days at a time. But it was also beautiful in a surreal way. I went out in the evening, just as the sun was setting behind the clouds, to capture some of the delicate ice sculptures on fingers of vine maple and rhododendron. This is one of my favorite images, with the frail branch reaching skyward, glistening in its crystal sheath.
Here are two others I like equally well:
Sunday, January 22, 2012
After Daniel's piano recital, I had some fun taking pictures of ornaments on the Christmas trees in the lobby of the church, playing around with reflections and bokeh. This one's my favorite -- not only is the family in the picture in focus, but the depth of field is perfect, with beautiful out-of-focus lights all around.
Here's another one, an individual self-portrait, that I like just as well. The reflection in the globe isn't as cool, but I like the composition and color around it even better.
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Anyone who knows what's been going on in my life this month will understand why I've fallen behind on my photo blog. I'm hoping to be able to catch up now... Here's a start.
I took this photo of my sister's new cat, Oliver, as a demonstration of my favorite lens, a 50mm f/1.4 "prime" lens. I love the way it focuses on just a narrow sliver of depth of field, in this case, Oliver's beautiful eyes. I chose to convert the image to black and white because that emphasizes texture, in this case, the fur and whiskers.
Here's another favorite from the same set:
Monday, January 16, 2012
Here's another cute kid watching the festivities...
Brown eyed girl, originally uploaded by The Bacher Family.
...while the adults catch up on the latest gossip.
Friday, January 13, 2012
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
An interesting side note: Michael's hair, formerly straight, has grown in curly! Makes you wonder if there's some bone marrow donor out there in Germany with curly hair!
Here's a photo of Michael with my son David. I have a great fast lens that allows me to take pictures in really low light; unfortunately, it sometimes uses a very narrow depth of field, and I don't see the lack of focus until I bring the picture home to my computer. I need to remember to watch my f-stop more closely!
Saturday, January 7, 2012
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Monday, January 2, 2012
Sunday, January 1, 2012
So many plants here in the high country spend so much of their lives buried under the snow. You've gotta root for the little guys.