I've been studying photos by famous photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson and find it interesting in many portrait photos he made he didn't fill the frame with the subject. Click here and you will view an example of what I'm talking about. He seemed to find something in the background that he wanted included with the photo. The photo of Adam here was an attempt to get the same composition as Henri would; the wine bottles being a target to include in the frame. I think composing portraits like this can make images more interesting. Not every shot needs to be like this though. Sometimes your subject needs to fill the frame. Especially if there is nothing interesting in the background.
In Nashville it's all about music. Every day and every night, on Broadway or in a bar on Broadway, music is being played. During my recent trip to Nashville I came upon this lady playing and singing. Celebrities I had the privilege of hearing live there was Vince Gill and Rick Springfield. Not my flavor of music, but I respect great musicians. I've added this photo to my People Gallery.
The photo was made last Saturday at Grimey's record shop in Nashville, TN. This was one of my practice shots to be sure I had the right camera settings in a low light situation. Rick Springfield was there writing his autograph on stuff for his fans. He's the blurred man sitting at the table in the background. The photo turned out to be cool to me. So I share it with you.
Joe is a friend of my oldest step-son, and he's a cool young man. Very animated and creative. The photos here are from a photo shoot I did with him weekend before last.
Last night in Charlotte, NC I saw Tom Keifer in concert. If you're not familiar with who this is, he's the frontman for the 80's band Cinderella. The venue Tom played at is Amos' Southend near uptown Charlotte. It's a small venue and to me perfect for concerts; because I like the small venue concert halls. I enjoy Keifer's music which has a blues influence. Good pure rock n roll. During the show I made some photos with my iPhone that are not perfect but cool none the less. I hope some day to do concert photography with my DSLR.
Recently, Historic Brattonsville District hosted a Civil War reenactment which I attended to make photos. Brattonsville is located south of Rock Hill, SC off Highway 322. During my visit to the event I was speaking to one of the actors and he mentioned Tintype photography. This type of photography dates back a long time ago that takes an image and puts it onto a thin sheet of metal. That's my best description. You can search in a browser to find more information about this type of photography. Upon the actor mentioning this, I remembered I had a TinType app on my iPhone and began using the app along with my DSLR. It was fun to use and many of the images turned out well. The app is made by Hipstamatic and only functions on iPhones. I'm sharing seven images here. Scroll down and enjoy.
Last Sunday during the USA Women's soccer club defeat of Japan in the World Cup, I made this shot of this family looking out the window from inside Catawba Brewing Co. It's my favorite photo of the week. The lighted sign makes the photo pop. I did't use any presets like I sometimes do. My equipment was my Nikon D5100 and Nikkor 55-200mm lens. I may have shot in Automatic mode.
Black and white photography is not something I work with often. Color photos are my preference. Black and white shots are more forgiving when it comes to processing them. This shot of Rachel turned out well in black & white.
When I first started making photos, landscapes and things nature were going to be my focus. I did this for awhile until I began looking at street photography closer and experimenting. My theme for photography quickly turned to capturing life on the streets. But, from time to time I step out of that zone and make nature photos.
There's a lot of talk in the street photography scene that you want to make as many photos as you can. I'm not into that. I want to create art. If you're just blasting away with your camera, you're not thinking about what you're doing. Make interesting photos. I'm not innocent of practicing that. I used to blast away at everything. Looking back on my early photos of life on the streets, I discovered I was making more bad shots than good ones. I'm more focused now and creating better shots.
Street photography for me is ever evolving. I never stop learning and never stop practicing. Lately my interests have turned more towards making street portraits, both candid and posed. People are beautiful, interesting and the photos tell better stories. They are more interesting to me than landscapes and flowers. Go with your heart when it comes to photography and don't be mindful of what others think. Make photos for yourself and no one else.
Every two weeks I make a business trip to Asheville, NC, known as The Land of the Sky. But this isn't about the city. When I visit there, I hit the streets with my camera to make photos. During the warmer months individuals and bands perform on the streets for money, of course, to make ends meet. If I make photos of street performers, I give them money. That's my rule.
The man in the photo is one street performer I've come to know. His name is Michael. When I met him for the first time last spring he told me he is homeless. He plays to get money to buy food, cigarettes and a night on a couch somewhere. For six dollars he can rent a couch for the night. The last time I saw him he said he usually talks the price down to five dollars. There are places in Asheville the homeless can visit to shower and wash clothes. So he takes advantage of that.
The autumn and winter past he was absent from the streets. He went to Tampa to see about a job that didn't work out for him. Now he's back. His desire is to work in a tattoo parlor but it's hard to get in to a parlor in Asheville. He's a good dude and I hope the best for him.
Shooting with film never crossed my mind when I entered into the realm of digital photography. I didn't know film photography still existed. Digital was the way to go and that's all I focused on, until I began rubbing elbows with other street photographers. They all began with digital photography, then somewhere in time film captured their hearts. As it has mine. What peaked my interest were the blogs about using film in street photography. The mystery of shooting film is one of the highlights blogged about. Meaning, when you shoot with film you don't have an LCD screen to view an image after made with a DSLR camera. With film, you see nothing and you must wait to have it developed before you see the end result.
Wanting to give shooting film a go, I put the word out in social media that I was looking to buy a film camera off of anyone who wasn't using theres. A friend of mine responded by giving me for free a Canon EOS RebelG that he doesn't use now. This film camera is a good one. I'm forever grateful for my friend helping start out with shooting film.
From time to time I post on my website photos made with film. My preference is Kodak Portra 400. I've dabbled a little with black and white film, but I love color. After you read this take a moment to view the photos in the Film gallery.
Meet Ellen and Sam. The couple lives in a run down house that sits literally by the highway going through a small town called Gerton, located in the foothills of North Carolina. On my way from Fairview, NC heading to Forest City, NC, I came upon their home and noticed a large sign by the home saying, 'Stop! Meet Sam!'. As I passed I saw Sam sitting on his front porch in a well worn recliner as he gave a friendly wave. I’m thinking, “I need to turn around and meet Sam.” Turning my car around, I parked and made a short walk to the house. There I spent some time chatting it up with Sam and eventually met his wife (she came outside with beer in hand). Sam considers himself to be the original hillbilly of North Carolina. Making photos of them is quite welcomed. I made several shots before hitting the road again.
Sam was born in the very house he and his wife live in and has lived there all his life. Ellen is from Ohio. I forget how they met. Sam’s family had owned as much as 300 acres of land in that area. He’s down to owning just nine acres now. Many years ago the family sold off most of it. The area of Gerton is not heavily populated. The closest grocery store is about twenty minutes away in Fairview. Having no vehicle, Ellen hitch-hikes to the grocery store; to and from.
It was quite interesting and entertaining to meet the couple. I'll be heading back to visit them again.