Friday, June 24, 2016

Soaring landscape and grain; The Grit Fits

          Re-shooting something when I know there’s another opportunity, to see if I can find a better image than what was made before.

          Four Peaks, snow, saguaros; hot and cold in one. A description of Arizona compressed in one 300mm/2.8, 1000 ISO frame.

          In one frame you see the warmth generated by the colors in the frame. In another there is a sense of puffy softness to the saguaro, like a stuffed animal, maybe, and an otherworldly color to it, with a cold, cobalt sky behind the mountains, suggesting a more accurate coldness of the time of year that the image was made.

          The deep shadows, the distant, tangled, prickly forest makes it an image to linger inside.

          I made the image at dusk, or perhaps even darker than dusk, with a higher ISO that adds a grainy grittiness that usually feels out of place to me in a landscape of beauty, pattern and comfortable light. There’s a smoothness and an uplift that, like with a song filled with major chords, overcomes the grit that, in my mind, suggests an imperfection of execution, some perceived shortcoming of technical practice.

          The grit fits.

          It serves more as an expressive reminder that amid this explosion of visual notes in the higher register of the scale, the warm, glowing, fuzzy leafless giants preside over the hardened, bristling, rocky substrate of the desert. It’s a reminder that this inviting, comfortable colorful fuzz is actually a tough, sharp, perforating defense against forge-like heat that sears its skin against further assault.
It’s also a sort of illustrator of the that these centenarians struggle against every storm and every parched period that seek to contradict and topple their strength in an often unforgiving and unwelcoming environment.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Keeping it simple: learning, photographs and technological health care

Surgical robotics.

          One of the many beauties of photographing for clients, is the constant growth, not just of experience but of knowledge. With nearly every assignment, I'm learning about a new technique, practice or product.
In healthcare many of the advances are subtle or hidden unless you're a patient. The assignments teach me about many things I would have missed.  Sometimes it's a new robot, or a new method of hip replacement or advancements in managing chronic back pain.

          I'm always trying to visually tell this piece of the story while changing up from what I've done in the past.

          Sometimes the most important thing is keeping it simple; doctors and equipment.

         When I'm working on these images I often have a short amount of time to accomplish my final frames for my clients.  Most of the doctors I photograph are specialists and leaders, they are consulted as experts on a particular topic, which also makes them very popular and very busy in their practice. As specialists in the Valley of the Sun, they are at a premium (it seems there's a shortage in many specialties). I'm surprised I don't walk into some of these offices and operating theaters to find docs on roller skates!

          If I'm able to get an hour to work with someone, it's rare, so I try and get to the, um, heart, of the matter, quickly, add some nice indirect light and critical shadow to better define an object, and get as many options into the camera in the time I have, while always looking for something even a little different that that which I've done before.
The heart workshop

Start simple, get a nice image "in the can."
And then try something else if there's time. I've photographed so many
CT scanners over the years, I found something a little different.
Technology and back pain. This one, shot for a possible magazine cover, thus the extra space.

One Hip Surgeon


Monday, June 13, 2016

Light and Granite

Julie, Josh and crew. We added a little light to the forklift driver's face by using a simple
bar clamp, to attach a radio-triggered flash to the forklift's upright.
          Spent some time in Tucson a couple weeks ago doing a couple of business images at A&E Recycled Granite for Local First Arizona.

          Helene and I had a great time working with the owners, Josh and Julie who were patient with the process while being ready to move, clean, adjust or clamp down, anything in order to help make the photograph just a little better.

          These folks take all the leftover granite from other projects and turn it into of a variety of brick, tile and veneer products used all kinds of design projects.


I've never met a ladder I didn't want to climb to change the perspective of my image, or a white wall that I wanted to bounce my White Lightings off of in order to fill a part of the room with soft side-light.
When in doubt, clamp a flash in a hidden space? Why not?

In the small space of their backshop, I wanted to show industrial activity.
I added a small camera strobe on a stand from behind the wet saw to
highlight the dust and water coming off the blade.