What makes a "winning" landscape photo for contests like The American Landscape? Beyond the technical basics of exposure and focus, making stand-out landscape images requires finding unique perspectives, timing your shoot for dramatic light and framing the scene creatively. There are also post-processing options to consider, such as color adjustments or deciding to convert to black-and-white... Read More
The very first enlargement I ever made was in black and white. I’ll never forget that moment as I watched the image slowly reveal its tones of gray, white and black as I swished the developer in a red 11x14 plastic tray. (How many of you are smiling right now because you have the same memory?) The magic, amazement, science, befuddlement and excitement of the moment was running through my mind for 90 seconds as it developed. I gingerly used a pair of bamboo tongs with rubber grippers to grab the print from its home. I suspended it in air for 15 seconds as I let the developing solution drip back into the tray and then slowly slipped it into the stop bath. There it lived for another 30 seconds. I grabbed a different pair of tongs, let the excess fluid drip from the surface and gently laid the print into the fixing solution. I had to leave it for three minutes before I could bring it into the light and study what I had created. It seemed like hours. The timer went off and, using a third pair of tongs, I let the hypo drip from the print. I placed it into a fourth empty tray, and with anticipation, I brought the print into the light. Yes, it was magic. From that moment, I was hooked... Read More
“At Dunton Locks County Park, Becker County, Minnesota, these Canada geese were out for a stroll on the edge of the ice next to a small area of open water on Lake Sallie,” describes Meyers... Read More
As a photographer for Alaska magazine and photo tour guide with Wild Departures, Michelle Theall spends most of her time in Alaska photographing black, brown and polar bears. Last summer, she spent time with a sow and her three spring cubs in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve on the Alaska Peninsula. With her favorite lens, the AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II, in the shop, she was shooting with a less-premium rental, which made her nervous. “I knew sharpness and light might be issues,” she said, “but hoped for the best. Two of the cubs were particularly energetic and kept lagging behind to play. The action was great, but it was 8 a.m., the light was flat, the bears were far away and it was raining.” With the sun behind the bears, Theall embraced the challenge, emphasizing the silhouettes of the bears rather than going for detail. “At low tide, you get a shimmer off the sand that gives an image a silver, mirror-like cast.” Theall also notes that, “The bears come out regardless of the weather, so I do too. Some of the most interesting images come in less-than-optimal conditions. And if I can’t seem to make anything work, I set down the camera and just enjoy being part of their world for a while.”.. Read More
In medieval cartography, Ultima Thule was a mysterious place beyond the borders of the known world. While modern mapping techniques have given us a cerebral knowledge of these once “off the map” regions, vast areas of the high Arctic have seldom, if ever, felt the indentation of a human footprint. This is the Canadian Arctic, the photographic playground of Ottawa-based Michelle Valberg... Read More
Westward expansion and the fragmentation of the Great Plains saw the migration of the American bison disappear, leaving the sandhill crane migration as the last great animal migration in America. Every year, over half a million sandhill cranes converge on a 75-mile stretch of the Platte River for a layover before heading to their breeding grounds in Canada, Alaska and Siberia... Read More
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