2012 Deck – Week 8

Although Mashramani fell in the eight week of the year, I did not necessarily want to use a photograph from that event, fortunately I had gone on a walk with Nikhil around St George’s Cathedral and I had tried out an HDR, although it has some issues, I rather liked the outcome.

I was a mere four feet from the door, but other than standing in mid-air to get the shot, this was my only option.  Although I did some correcting to the distortion caused by the Sigma 10-20mm lens (and the close proximity to the subject), I still got some distortion that I couldn’t get rid of.

My aim with this HDR, was to get the doorway, but also to get as much detail on the inside that I could.  Nikhil wanted to go and adjust the mat, but I thought that the angle that it was at worked fine for me.

Oh, and as usual, I neglected to lug the tripod with me, so this was handheld.

Looking In

2012 Deck – Week 1

After two years of doing this, I think that this is what keeps me intrigued in photography, the weekly search for a photograph.  While Nikhil has embarked upon his Daily Photography project this year (I hope he goes the full 366) I know my limitations, I won’t be trying that anytime soon.

I think that this image is somewhat appropriate to the year, the crazy Armageddon stories and to my photography.  If you believe the Mayan Calendar theorists and many of the other Doomsday predictions regarding the year 2012, then you’re probably hoping, like myself, that I get some really good photographs this year! 🙂

This was taken on New Year’s Day, because of my interests in HDR, I thought that I would try another Black and White HDR, this one was taken at midday, I think the originals were 2ev apart.

It was a breezy day (forgot my tripod again, so this was hand-held for all three exposures), and very overcast, lots of clouds as you can see.

2012

2011 Deck – Week 51

I had shortlisted four images for this blog-post, two of them were too much in keeping with the general theme of the last few weeks, so I discarded those (for later publication) and one was somehow reminiscent of photos I’ve seen from Nikhil and some other local photogs, so I ended up with this one.

I titled it “Ritual at Dawn” because I had inadvertently caught some people in the frame, I think they may have been Hindus out to perform a seaside ritual (I think I should enquire more about this)

I was a bit dissatisfied with the original capture, but was taken enough by the scene to try to “salvage” the image.  I tried a single image HDR tone-mapping, but that didn’t work out as I expected.  I then decided to go for a pseudo-HDR, since I hadn’t actually taken multiple exposures, I created the multiple exposures in Lightroom (using a 1.5ev on the original image) In the image with the +1.5ev I wanted to get more detail from the rocks on the shore, so I used a gradient to adjust the exposure in that area.  Using the three new exposures I did an HDR process in Nik HDR Efex Pro, and although the full-coloured resulting image was OK, I thought that in this instance I would get a better image using a black and white HDR rendering.

Ritual at Dawn

2011 Deck – Week 39

A Return to the Scene.

Last year Nikhil and I were unfortunate enough to be robbed, I did a post on it back then, although we were quite traumatised and our families admonished us to stop walking “all about the place” taking photographs, we haven’t stopped, and in that year we’ve made many more friends in the photographic circle in Guyana.  Thanks to Fidal and his idea of a Group on Facebook, we have been fortunate to meet other local photographers of varying expertise and different visions, just seeing what they’ve been doing has emboldened us to see a brighter future for photography in Guyana.

As a symbolic gesture we returned to the scene of the crime, this time, with more caution, and I was armed with a monopod! 🙂

The afternoon was not ideal for me, but I decided to try an HDR looking towards the spot where we were attacked and robbed.

Return to the scene
Return to the Scene

Click on the image for a better view in the Gallery.

2011 Deck – Week 35

Making Time.   If anyone has ever figured out how to get more hours out of the day, please let me know  🙂  Once in a while you just have to stop, and slow down.  Back in August (yes I’m writing this blog several months late) I was visiting with my in-laws and we decided to take a drive/walk out to the seawall at Lusignan.  I took some photos (many left to be processed) but I processed two sequences that I had intended for HDRs, and was somewhat satisfied with this one.

I think that I was still standing in the village of Lusignan, but I was looking towards Annandale,  I was told that somewhere ahead of me was an area known as Courbaine Park and (probably more to the left) is an area called Sand Reef.  As usual, when taking outdoor HDR images I tend to go for the clouds, there was a very nice layering and depth (or height) to the clouds.

I used Nik HDR Efex to merge and tone map the image.

Skies Over Annandale

I’m hoping to sneak in a blog post or two to catch up before the end of the year  🙂

2011 Deck – Week 19

City Hall.

I can’t seem to ever get enough photographs of this building, a heavy weight descends upon me when I go closer to it and see the effects of the neglect, the signs of disrepair, and the toll that the sun and rains take from this glorious wooden structure.

For last week I had not taken a single image for “artistic reasons”, I did do a snapshot of some newspapers for a Road Safety blog for The Alicea Foundation, but that’ wasn’t very artistic  🙂

Most of my HDR images usually use a fairly static scene, no moving elements, this week I decided to try one that included some movement, and try out the “ghost reduction” that Nik HDR Efex has built in, I think it worked very nicely.

Take a look at it larger in the gallery.

2011 Deck – Week 18

I’m still playing “catch-up”, still a week behind in the blog, and months behind in reading  🙂  Today marks one year since I actually registered as a WordPress user, although I didn’t start blogging until one week later, so I feel compelled to at least update the blog today, so I’ve managed to choose a photo from Week 18 of this year, processed it in one of my favourite ways, HDR, and even uploaded it 🙂

On the 5th of May, Cinco de Mayo, Arrival Day, or whatever you want to call it, I went with Naseem and Nikhil for a drive and photo-jaunt between Good Hope on the East Coast of Demerara and Rosignol at the mouth of the Berbice River (West Coast Berbice), needless to say we took a lot of photographs.

Our first stop was at the village of Enmore, we were going to go see the Enmore Martyr’s Monument, but the bridge we were planning on using was unusable, opposite that bridge there was a nice scene, so we took some time to “grok” it (as Nik would say) and even took some photos, I took a set of bracketed shots to use for an HDR rendition, and that’s what I present to you today.  All the original images came out dark and desaturated as I expected, since I was shooting into the sun, but since I planned on using them in an HDR, that was OK  🙂

Early Morn at Enmore

As an HDR, I really suggest you click on it to see it at the Gallery!

Award

Last week, Bob Zeller, was kind enough to pass along an award that he received, and although it is very reminiscent of a chain letter (which I dislike very much) I thought it different enough that I would “pass it along” myself, It is a recognition of our peers, of the people who we enjoy reading, who influence us, or simply blog about something that interests us enough to keep going back.

I’ve linked to Bob’s site at least once that I can remember, but if you’ve never checked his stuff out, you should.  He mostly has bird photographs and writings about them, but who doesn’t like birds, and Bird Photography is hard!!!  He has some amazing captures and sometimes even more interesting stories about the birds.  Bob is an amazing fellow, a musician, a photographer, a bird watcher who lives with a very serious illness, but his blogs make me feel like just going out there, and enjoy life, as free as a bird. Thanks Bob.

Although the award says “Versatile Blogger”, I don’t read enough blogs with that much versatility, in the content, my blog is about my photography (mainly) and I read blogs mainly about photography, or photography related… well, mostly.  So don’t expect a lot of Versatile bloggers being mentioned, but know that every one that I do mention will be ones I read and appreciate for various reasons, and they will be in no particular order.

Apparently there are rules, so here they are:

1) Thank the person who honored you and give a link to their blog.

2) Tell 7 random facts about yourself.

3) Pass the award to 15 new-found bloggers.

4) Contact each blogger onto whom you pass the award and let them know.

5) Let the giver of the award know you accept it or not.

Random Facts:

(1) Because of my spectacles I got the nickname “Professor” as an altarboy, although I hated it at the time, I eventually adopted it into my online moniker ProfessorMC,

(2) Last year marked ten years of marriage for me, our courtship before marriage also lasted ten years.

(3) I love to play the musical keyboard, I’m terrible at it, but I still like to do it, and I have absolutely no musical training or knowledge

(4) I think I sing better than I play, I do a mean version of “La Bamba” at Karaoke

(5) I like Rum, I think it has a great flavour, so of course, I prefer the best, El Dorado! But that doesn’t mean I snob the rest, after all, how else can I do a comparison?

(6) I work in Computer Graphics at a Sign Company, for which I have no academic qualifications whatsoever

(7) What are my qualifications?  I have a degree in Biology, seriously!

Now for those I want to pass this along to (many of whom may simply ignore it as they have better things to do, like actually taking photographs) 🙂  And if you have received one of these before, just consider it a double award.

(1) Nikhil Ramkarran – Yes, I mention him all the time in my blog, he’s my photo-buddy and a great friend, but the reason he’s here is that he IS a versatile blogger, if it matters to him, he’ll blog about it, and he’s even blogged some of his published articles from Apsara magazine.  The one problem with his blog… he doesn’t blog enough. He has over a hundred images in the Petax Gallery which is Pentax’s showcase (and I don’t think it’s that easy to get images in there)

(2) Steve Thomas – from photographyfree4all, a gifted photographer whom I’ve followed for the last seven months, and see his photography go from good to great, and from simple photography to artistic expression and even Photoshop Art from his photography.  Keep an eye on this one!

(3) Journey Photographic – JP has almost covered the globe it seems, has been to places I could only dream about, and has an astounding collection of Travel photographs (and recently Travel Photography Tips!)  It’s sad that I only know them as JP.

(4) Sasi Suruli – his blog My 3rd Eye has some truly amazing photos, he excels at food photography, makes me hungry every single time, it’s a wonder he isn’t working for some magazine or even the Food network.

(5) Tracy Zhang – has a blog called Just In Time, not only is she travelling and sharing some amazing photos, but she has a unique perspective on the places she visits and her photographic style is unusual bit immensely captivating

(6) Simon – aka Dark Halide, although I am not a Street Photographer, there is something about his photos that has kept me intrigued, I just keep going back to see what he has next.

(7) Michael Bonocore – an amazing diversity in his photography, but what I really liked was what he said: “If my clothes, camera and tripod aren’t dirty, then I’m not trying hard enough”, I’m obviously not trying hard enough, but this guy is inspirational.

(8) Roberto Vega Peralta – a combination of photos and thoughts that really works on my very imaginative brain

(9) Sheila Creighton – A persistence in photography that is admirable, Sheila sees things that I would miss, and makes art out of it  🙂

(10) David Sobik – Hands down, some of the best wedding photography I’ve seen, innovative and unusual, don’t even begin to cover it, but even forgetting the wedding stuff, his perspective on photography begs you to look twice.

(11) Brian Stevenson – Funky Slug, a photographer with a great sense of humour, but his images are awesome, sometimes inspiring, sometimes daunting, but always captivating!

(12) David Williams – Quite an impressive array of images, everything from studio type images to outdoor HDRs (which I really like, I have a weakness there), and now even his daughter is into it with her own blog, aptly titled Cait’s POV

(13) Mike – Tau Zero.  If I ever wanted proof that I need to get out more, this was it, other than the amazing scenery, he has a habit of getting birds to do exactly what he wants.

(14) Laura Tinker – Tinkerbelle.  Light-hearted and usually nothing to do with photography, but all about putting a smile on your face.  I only recently started following, but enjoying all of it so far.

(15) Sarah and James Broscombe – I’m sorry to group them but I only have 15 slots, Sarah currently writes the “Six Word Story” telling a story in 6 words, difficult, but Sarah has a way with words, although I must admit I preferred when she wrote 600 (almost) in her blog “Sarah in South America”.  James is an amazing photographer who makes it look so very easy, he currently writes (if he gets a chance) in “Making Pictures Pay”, but I was introduced to him through hi older blog (when he and Sarah were in South America) A picture each day 2009 – 2010, an amazing look at Guyana and it’s remote areas.

(16) Cindy – Like Bob, I can’t just stick to the 15, I had to add one more and then some… Cindy is last but certainly not least…  her photos and writings have to be experienced, I can’t even begin to describe them please check her out.

Although I only had 15 spots, I hope that others won’t feel left out, I have found that each blog I follow and comment on has something to show me, something to teach me, and something that makes me think to myself “that’s interesting, now I wonder…”   There are those who I am new to, those who don’t blog as often, and those who didn’t make the list simply because I’d need to go for another 15 people  🙂  I think that if you check some of these out you’ll see others popping up as commentors, who should have been mentioned, like Nigel, Cheryl, Martina, Christos, Kim, Jolene, Sandra, Jonathon and many others.  I’d have loved to include Tricia in that list of 15, since her blog inspired me to start my own, but she is one who is very guilty of not posting 🙂

Now since this is my blog and since it’s about my photography I can’t conclude without including a photograph 🙂  Enjoy, and I hope you continue to appreciate the other bloggers and readers who make all of this fun!

This one was taken with the Sigma 10-20 Ultra-wide lens, processed to monochrome using Nik HDR Efex to retain that trunk detail, it’s a single image, so not what I truly consider an HDR, just tone-mapped slightly.

2011 Deck – Week 13

Another tough week, one day of actual photography, and even that was “forced”.  Yesterday, another blogger whom I follow, Bob Zeller, posted a blog along the lines of an award for “Versatile Bloggers”.  While I don’t see myself that way I was very honoured to be included in the company of he other bloggers in Bob’s List, if you get a chance check that out, quite impressive.  I will follow this up in my next post;  hopefully, I can be as magnanimous as Bob was  🙂

This week’s Deck photo was originally to be of my Alma Mater, Saint Stanislaus College (a High School actually), but I was more taken by my images of the church that I attend.  They are both on the same street, Brickdam, and Nikhil and I walked it looking for things to photograph.

This is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, seat of the Bishop of Georgetown, His Lordship Francis Alleyne OSB, and is commonly referred to as Brickdam Cathedral.  It is the central church of the Roman Catholic Diocese in Guyana and my parish for all of my life, although I now live outside the geographical area of the parish, we still attend mass there.  It is bordered by Brickdam, Hadfield Street, Camp Street and Pollard Place, the current concrete structure replaced the original wooden structure that was destroyed by fire decades ago.  Although it is not photographed as often as the St George’s Cathedral, it has its own appeal and beauty.

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

Some people may notice, while others may not, this image, while not a true HDR image (I only used one exposure) was processed in Nik’s HDR Efex to get the most out of both the clouds and the building, I tried to be as subtle as I could without losing the detail that I wanted.

On the corner

Although Nikhil is no longer pressured on a daily basis for a photograph since he completed his first 365 project, we still manage to go for a photo-walk every now and again.  One of those walks took us into Campbelville, and although it was mostly for him to get some Nas-inspried photographs, I came away with a few goodies  🙂

One was also somewhat inspired by an image I once saw from a controversial photographer called Ken, although my photographs may never become as “professional” as Ken’s I learnt a lot from reading his blogs and rants 🙂  So, I titled this one “Ken”, it was taken at the corner of DeAbrue and Duncan Streets (north-west corner)

 

Ken

The second one, I wish I had spent more time on, the scene reminded me of a photograph I once saw from Errol Ross Brewster, and I am ashamed I let the rain chase me away from this spot without getting more out of it, but there you go, the Canon T1i isn’t weather-sealed.  This is at the corner of William and Middleton Streets (north-east corner), it is a single image, but I used HDR Efex Pro to recover some detail in the clouds, in the shot it was totally blown out.

 

The House on the Corner