I’m engaged!

Posted on March 22nd, 2005 in by jud || 24 Comments

On our recent trip to Mono Lake, Magda Jusinska agreed to marry me! I’m very happy and excited. No date has been set yet, but we’re planning to get married this year!


A few people have asked how these pictures were taken. I put the camera on a tripod, and, using the Canon Timer Remote Controller TC-80N3, I set it to interval mode so that it would take a picture every 2 seconds. I had told Magda that I wanted us to take a picture together, and so we did!


New Images: Mono Lake Winter Wonderland

Posted on March 15th, 2005 in , , by jud || Add A Comment

I have posted a new collection of images, titled Mono Lake Winter Wonderland, which is also the title of one of the images.

Magda and I took the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day off, and turned out to be much more of an adventure than we’d planned. I should write a separate entry about everything that happened, but suffice it to say that it involved a car accident ($5000 worth of damage caused by a large rock), a tow truck driver from Deliverance, a separate rescue by the Mono County Sheriff, getting snowed in, and a number of really exciting photographs! Enjoy.

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Site facelift

Posted on March 14th, 2005 in , by jud || Add A Comment

Inspired by the new wordpress templates, I’ve given the whole site a facelift. There’s now a relatively uniform look for all of the site, although it is still best when viewed with firefox. Major tweaks to the header and navigation, minor tweaks to the image gallery. CSS makes all of this so much easier. I deleted a few lines of PHP, and add 2 div tags in my html, and everything else was done via CSS. CSS ROCKS!

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Powered by WordPress 1.5

Posted on March 11th, 2005 in by jud || 3 Comments

I’ve upgraded my blog software to wordpress 1.5. The upgrade process was completely painless, and so far everything looks good. I also like the new layouts (although the photo is mine!)


Two x 20: An Exhibition by Bay Area Photographers

Posted on March 10th, 2005 in , by jud || Add A Comment

I’m excited to be part of a photography exhibition currently on display at the Modernbook Gallery in Palo Alto, California. Twenty Bay Area photographers were each selected to present two images, and the result is a diverse
and compelling show that includes timeless landcape and nature, black and white street photography, hand painted photos, artistic recreations of childhood memories, and special topics like antique neon signs and colorful details from Europe. More information can be found here. This is my first
gallery exhibition, and I have included two Mono Lake images. I also have a number of other matted prints available for viewing (and purchase) at the gallery. Check it out, and let me know what you think.

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Mark Hatasaka’s Digital Landscape Photography

Posted on March 10th, 2005 in , , by jud || Add A Comment

I recently had the pleasure of meeting Mark Hatasaka, a professional nature photographer and author of two books on digital photography. While both of his books are very impressive and packed with useful information, I was really blown away by his most recent book, “Mark Hatasaka’s Digital Landscape Photography”. Both books are full of stunning images taking with a variety of digital cameras, ranging from compact digitals (which he advocates because of their convenience and use in capturing images other cameras can’t reach) to high end digital SLRs.

What I find most useful about his books is his overall approach to photography, which is to concentrate on the essentials, and focus on
those techniques which will allow you to rapidly progress as a photographer. For example, he advocates what he calls “high volume digital photography”, taking a very large number of pictures, bracketing compositions and exposures, and then carefully examining the results. Digital cameras are an incredible teaching tool, because you can experiment with new techniques, variations and (almost) random chance. By taking a large number of pictures, you become intimately familiar with how your camera responds to a wide variety of situations, you are able to record your photographic thought processes for future reference, and you have a visual record of what works, what ALMOST works, and what doesn’t work at all.

I have typically shot primarily RAW images. Mark advocates shooting highest resolution JPEG images for most landscape and nature photographs, arguing that the advantages of being able to take (and process) 3 to 4 times as many images with the same storage, battery and time requirements outweights the extra security (and detail) provided by a RAW file. Although I continue to pursue my own independent investigation, I have begun trying his techniques and in just the first week had learned more about how my camera handled exposure and depth of field by bracketing (and comparing) multiple hi-resolution jpegs instead of trying to post-process my RAW images in Photoshop.

I highly recommend his books to all serious students of photography. If you are new to photography and are looking for a way to take better pictures quickly, buy his book and follow his techniques. If, like me, you have been honing your skills for a number of years, there are still plenty of jems, and the photos themselves are woth the price of the book. As of this moment, only his first book Digital Nature Photography is available on his site, but if you contact him, I think you can purchase it directly. I also understand that Keeble and Schuchat Photography in Palo Alto, California, carries one or both.

I honestly think that had I gotten his book and began rigorously applying his techniques years ago, I would have progressed much faster as a photographer.

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Selecting “keeper” photographs

Posted on March 10th, 2005 in , by jud || Add A Comment

Much of my growth as a photographer has come from rigorously examining, comparing and ranking my own photos. This ongoing exercise has forced me to determine what works and doesn’t work every time I shoot by comparing photos with similar (or sometimes wildly different) subjects, compositions, lighting, depth of field, and/or other elements.

Alain Briot has an interesting article about how he selects his photographic “keepers”. I found it interesting because he goes into a fair amount of detail about not only the different reasons for selecting keepers, (commerical sales, personal enjoyment, years of viewing pleasure and discover, a “best of each location” album, same location in different seasons, etc.), but also some of the tools he uses and also some of the techniques he uses both to manage these collections, and to solicit useful feedback from other people.

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