Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Spring Colors

It’s quite common to see the fall color pictures took by several photographers around the globe. Spring time photography follows the similar path with special care aiming towards flowers and budding flora. Surprisingly we see very few photos of spring season though several photographers try to click the buds, leaves and flowers which start blooming at spring. Most photographers try capturing these budding moments using their Macro lenses to get one on one magnification and colors. It is best to capture these cool, soft and vibrant colors of spring during dawn or dusk to capture the eye pleasing images.

I tried to capture some pictures of spring colors with my little known knowledge and techniques using my gadgets of photography. Mostly these colors of flora are seen in Colorado and I guess there might be several different eye pleasing colors seen in other parts of world during spring.

Few pictures I took on Spring Colors are shown here:

Click on each picture to see in large format

This is one picture to show the spring setting with neighborhood and vegetation. Notice different shades of green, white and red trees with spring flowers and Rocky Mountains in backdrop with shining snow during spring.

This is one more picture showing different shades of Spring Colors in close proximity within neighborhood. Can anyone imagine shades of Purple to dark green within one home?

These are few photos showing Purple flowers of Oklahoma Redbud tree. The Oklahoma Redbud is one of the first trees to flower in early spring, blooming petite purple-pink flowers in large clusters.

Pink/Red shades of Profusion Crabapple tree. This tree is with bright color and beautiful to see during spring along the drive ways and in neighborhoods.

These two pictures are showing spring flowers of Siberian Crabapple tree. Siberian Crabapple is one of the best trees for adding color to neighborhood landscape during spring. 

Few pictures showing Lavendar color flowers during spring. Veronicas/Fringes, Moss Phlox and Speedwell plants with spikes and clustered flowers are common and widely seen as ornamental bush plants in neighborhoods.

These pictures show Lynwood Gold Forsythia flowers during spring. Contrast Yellow color with nicely bloomed flowers completely on stems gives a beautiful and dramatic appearance during spring.

These are few pictures showing different spring flowers and a Tulip. Tulips are first plants to bloom during spring.

Spring is also seen with budding leaves and glowing foliage with light green shades.

Mix of White flowers with Red spring leaves of plum/pear trees are beautiful to see.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Vertical Photography

This is an Interesting topic in photography. It creates lots of doubts and questions the user to judge the pictures to classify the art into vertical or horizontal frames. We come across several structures, buildings and monuments spread across globe, both ancient and modern during our visits to tourist centers and we try to capture them into our cameras using the best techniques we know. Encompassing these huge structures into single frames using different types of lenses and options available in cameras is somewhat technical and challenging. Taking pictures of tall structures from ground to show their heights or taking shots of landscapes from summit showing the depths of land features like valley, beaches, rivers etc. goes into Vertical Photography. Normally we turn the camera sideways to cover the topic and take Vertical Pictures. Usually the camera lens is designed to cover Horizontal frames and hence we hold the camera here in normal position. Experts also call taking pictures from high altitude by placing camera airborne (Aerial Photographs) as Vertical Photography. Knowingly or unknowingly several photographers click Vertical pictures during their life time of taking pictures.

I am categorizing these pictures into Architecture since I covered mostly structures and buildings of historical and modern times.

Few pictures I took on Vertical frames are shown here:

Click on each picture to see in large format

This picture falls under both categories of vertical and horizontal since, I tried to cover the total height of Bahai Temple/Lotus Temple and at the same time I tried to show entire structure in single frame covering all petals. You can compare the size of structure with birds flying over structure and people near the structure. 
Exposure time: 1/200, ISO: 100, F-stop:  1/10 and lens focal length at 55mm.

This picture shows the Vertical Structures of modern times the Office Complex at Denver Downtown built and covered with Blue Glass. Looks like Seven tall structures are placed adjacent to each other in a mirror effect.

I tried to cover the vertical details of Loretto Chapel of New Mexico from base to ceiling in this picture using my handheld point and shoot camera. Had I used the special lens, I could have covered the complete details of ceiling in a single frame. Good example to know what we miss if we don’t use special lenses for huge structures to cover in-doors in vertical photography.

This picture is good example to cover vertical structure at outdoors. I captured the temple entrance structure of Mangalagiri in India, from base to top showing 11 tiers one above each and at top covering 11 spikes of temple which is typical south Indian temple architecture.

This is another picture of modern architecture showing vertical structure. Mostly Uniform pattern is adopted in modern construction giving special emphasis to square windows.

Nice example for Vertical Photography showing several sections of structure. Here the camera position is placed horizontally to cover the details of Vertical structure taking shot from base which is unconventional in vertical photography. Ancient structure seen in this picture is Hawa Mahal in Jaipur, India and has 953 windows covered in 5 levels of structure. Exposure time: 1/250, ISO: 400, F-stop: 1/40 and focal length at 18mm.

This is a tricky shot I took at Taj Mahal, India. This picture shows the vertical column of a structure on one side of the monument. In and Out pattern of marble carvings show 3D depth on structure but in reality the design is laid on single marble sheet/wall giving us the Illusion of angled corners in structure. Truly it is flat marble sheet showing us this effect. It is viewed only in Vertical angle from base to top. Superb architecture is seen at Taj.

Another trick shot showing the depth of perception in Vertical Photography. Camera is placed in angle to cover the pathway showing all entrances in a single shot.

This picture shows the ceiling of a monument which I took lying flat on the floor and positioning the lens towards roof. In this picture if you look at circles it shows the depth. If you look at center it shows the projection and makes you feel that this picture is took from top. Tricky isn't it?

Do you call this Vertical photography since I covered tall structure of building or Horizontal photography since I covered wide area of structure?

I took this picture at New York Rockefeller Center. Tall structure of GE building (70 floors & 870 ft. tall) was captured using simple point and shoot camera of 6 mp at dusk from base to top. Good example for vertical photography.

One more picture of tall structure from ground to sky view of CN tower in Toronto, Canada. This structure is 1815 ft. tall and it took some time for me to cover entire structure to capture in one frame using point and shoot camera with only sky as backdrop.

I took these two pictures from flight. Since we are talking about Vertical Photography, I thought I should show these under this category. Though this type of picture taking is called vertical photography they cover details of wide area and hence can be categorized into horizontal photography too…

In this picture you can see details of river with Islands, harvested crop lands, yet to harvest crop lands, settlement area, roads, canals, lakes and islands.

This picture shows (built-up area) vertical line-up of residential homes of a city.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Object Photography

One more interesting area to explore and earn expertise in photography is Object Photography. This is easy and difficult at the same time to click several objects we see around us at home and outdoors. It depends on the object you intend to click, the situation the object is and most importantly the amount of lighting falling on the object. Objects can vary from pin (small) to plane (big) from ground to air and living to non-living.

For Indoor shooting on Objects you need well balanced lighting mostly continuous, either direct from both the sides or from top or in an angle and object being on Shooting Tables or in Light Cubes. Objects are generally placed against plain backgrounds and mostly in Softboxes. For outdoor shooting on Objects follow the rules of good photography aiming more on object and its settings surrounding the object. Focus more on object with simple and plain backgrounds.

Few pictures I took on objects are shown here:

Click on each picture to see in large format

I took this picture with my iphone in a museum in a closed environment without flash. Directional light from top over smooth texture of pot and the Pueblo setting of Native Americans shown within pot are clearly seen and the quality I got with less resolution is fine and I am happy with the result. The object being in close range to lens and sufficient light falling on object allowed us to get a simple picture in phone camera.

I took picture of this Idol – Lord Ganesha, indoor against plain background with bouncing light. I had to adjust the focal length carefully to get optimal features of Object with limited available light. Arranged f-stop at 5.6 and ISO at 200 with focal length being 80mm. Exposure time was 1/6 seconds. I guess, I got a good result.

Look at the glow I got on these objects. I took pictures of these ornaments with continuous light falling in an angle with high ISO (1600) and with no flash. I tried to capture minute details of objects like carvings and twines. You can note the difference between two objects when they are placed against different backgrounds in object photography.

This is a picture of Fluorescent Light Sticks taken at night. Glow of multiple colors radiating bright lights against dark sky attracted me to click this shot which is good example for object photography outdoors at night.

This is good example for an Object seen at outdoors during balanced daylight in an open field with simple background. This looks like normal picture of any other subject but notice the emphasis given to Wheel Cart. The smooth texture and soft color of wheels is captured.

To highlight the object and subject behind the object, I used centered gradient technique in post production. I noticed the bird moving around these pumpkins and when I found the correct situation, I framed this picture. F-stop: 1/18, ISO: 400, Exposure time: 1/200 and focal length: 120mm.

This picture shows Red Baneberries of Colorado. I chose these fruits as objects in outdoor since they pose contrast Red color against green background reflecting as standout objects in a separate entity. The glistening surface of berries shows how healthy and ripe the fruits are. Though these are not edible they are very attractive and beautiful.

This is one of my favorites. I wanted to capture the prismatic glass and its reflectance with burning lights inside the vase in a transparent and clear tone. I am happy that I got good glossy glass piece in Object Photography. I took this picture without flash in a room using ceiling lights.

This is top view of candles, shells and sand. I used them as objects and clicked the snap at ISO 200, f-stop at 1/4 seconds and exposure time being 1/60.

This is another example for Object Photography in dark at night. I took this picture without flash.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Holiday Lights

Another field which is to experiment and have fun in photography is taking photos of Holiday Lights decorated within the city neighborhoods. Taking pictures of holiday lights till few years back was difficult because of the film cameras which were not that sensitive to lights and darkness. It was difficult to capture an image in low-light and at night. Now, things have become easy due to increasing technology in DSLR’s which solved the problems of low light photography. Today, many DSLRs can be set to ISO speeds of 1600, 3200 and even higher settings with little noise.

Many photographers today are depending on auto-exposure with their point-and-shoots, Cell phone cameras and SLR’s which are giving good results even in low light. It is very important to note that holiday lights usually look good when shot without added light. Truly, the good point, when it comes to take good pictures of lights is to turn off the flash. With good care, proper settings and proper angles and by avoiding the camera shake while taking pictures (use tripod or place camera on stable platform) you can get good Holiday Lights photographs.

I am not giving the technical details for each picture since most of the rules followed to snap these shots are changing depending upon location, decoration and time. I tried to capture lights decorated on homes and trees in some neighborhoods during holidays. Thanks to those wonderful people who decorated their homes excellently and making the neighborhoods colorful and beautiful and giving me a chance to work on this topic.

Few pictures I took recently on Holiday Lights are shown here:

Click on each picture to see in large format

Here comes Lord Jesus..

and Santa for Christmas...

I used 35mm lens with ISO speed of 1600 and set f-stop at 5.6 with exposure time at 1/3 seconds.

Beautifully decorated lights at every corner of home.

Wonderful decoration of lights at Littleton Downtown.

Simple and Elegant...

Right Lights...Bright Lights...White Lights...

Lovely presentation with colorful lights and themes.

 Santa...Sure to Land Here...

 Worth Watching...

Beyond Expressions...Lovely Decoration and Excellent Arrangements..

 Once on a Blue Tree...

Colorful De-Lights

Gigantic Decoration...Compare with the size of a street light and bus in background.

Business Rules...Make Beautiful the Surroundings...

Nice to drive through street full of De-Lights...

Warm Welcome at a neighborhood Entrance...

City Administrative Buildings are Beautifully and Colorfully decorated.

Christmas Tree presents...Gifts...

Happy Holidays... Lights...