Friday, June 27, 2008


Yesterday our niece gave birth to the newest member of the family, Chloe Melissa Jemison. As a gift, I am printing a series of animal photographs for the babies room — and now that the baby is here I have to get them ready. The series of four photos will be printed on canvas and gallery wrapped on 10" x 10" stretchers. I spent today working on a photo of a mother and baby elephant.

Expand the post for before and after images of the photo, and a link to an interesting web video on retouching celebrity publicity images.

I took this photo at Disney's Animal Kingdom last January. I used Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop to "develop" the photo as I usually do, but it had two problems that needed to be corrected before it could be part of the series. The ferns on the mother's hind quarter were distracting, and the image needed to be larger to show all of the elephants' bodies in a square aspect ratio. Using Photoshop's CLONE STAMP TOOL I was able to address both problems.

First, I used the tool to clone out the ferns on the hind quarter. I enlarged the canvas area and again used the clone tool — very carefully — to create ground, trees and sky in the new blank spaces.

Personally, I don't think that reality should be drastically altered, but I am not above using subtle retouching to make a photo work better. I don't see anything wrong with removing the ferns on the elephant's back, but I would not add a third elephant to the photograph.

Discussions abound on the web about the ethics of retouching photographs. Today's Imaging Insider Blog ( featured a link to a video on the prevalence of retouching celebrity portraits. We all know it is done, but I think you will find the video very interesting! Check it out at here!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Snake in the grass…

Literally! I was working outside today when I came across this albino snake sleeping in the shade of our motor home. Initially, I took the photo so I could check the internet to find out what type of snake it was (appears to be an albino Eastern Garter Snake). I liked this shot, so I did a little post processing. Technical specifics of the shot in the expanded post.

The photograph was taken with my Nikon D70 and a Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4.5-5.6 G VR lens. The VR stands for vibration reduction, which make it possible to take pretty sharp photos without having to use a tripod. It is my favorite lens and I find myself using it all the time.

The photo was minimally post-processed in Adobe Lightroom v1.3 and Photoshop CS3.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Art-in-the-Park Photos…

The photos in this post are a little different than usual. Art-in-the-Park was last Sunday in Northport, and I thought I would post some photos from the show. It was a brutally hot day and I was very thankful Eddie insisted that we buy a tent. I was lucky enough to have a spot near the water, which made it bearable. A few times the wind picked up, but not enough to damage the display.

I was showing (and selling) photographs printed on canvas, and gallery stretched so they can be hung without frames. I was happy with the results, and with the reception the work received. It would have been nice if more people attended the show, but for my first outdoor art show, it was a good venue.

More photos of the display in the expanded post.

My display would not have been possible without all the work Eddie did to put the display together. He did an excellent job—it looked good and held up in the wind.

My good friend Marie Baldwin was a big help before and during the show. She came down down to the park to help with the setup, and I put her to work figuring out what should hang where. She done good!
Most of the images were printed in a 10"x10" format, and several were hung as triptych groupings. This is one of my favorites.

I don't usually put snapshots in my photo blog, but I thought a shot of Eddie and Marie was definitely fitting. I don't know what I would have done without them!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Art in the Park Sunday…

Next Sunday I will be showing my photography at the Northport Art Coalition's Art in the Park at Northport Harbor. This is the first time I am taking part in an outdoor art show, and I am really excited. I have been working hard to get my work, and display, ready. Eddie had some really good ideas for the display, and his vision and technical skill is really putting it together. I have been printing my photographs on canvas, and I am really happy with the results. My display will be setup on the path near the playground. Hope you can stop by and say hello!