Traveling in winter on the train from Dresden, Germany, the mostly overcast countryside zipped by as the train quickly moved along on its way to our destination in Prague, Czech Republic. Occasionally the sun peeked out from the clouds and lit up the houses and the industrial areas we traveled through. At first I thought my images might be impaired by a too slow shutter speed and the reflection in the train windows, but I quickly decided to use those problems to my advantage. The photos I ultimately made (and named “Views From the Train”) clearly indicate movement, low light, and reflections; qualities that mirror both the literal and metaphorical aspects of the country we traveled through.
On The Cover
This month’s issue features the work of a number of photographers who have created their own personal projects and applied great energy, effort, and skill to them. The owl photo is by David FitzSimmons from his Curious Critters book. We also kick off our US trade show coverage this month by highlighting the battle of the D-SLR titans and their new flagship cameras, plus continue our Image Tech series with a lab review of two fascinating mirrorless cameras.
Traveling by plane these days is certainly no joy, a bad situation made worse for photographers who never check their precious gear. Traveling on regional jets, and especially international flights, means not being able to lug large backpacks or roller cases filled with gear on board. And with flights so jammed airlines have gotten even stricter about carry-ons, despite the fact that their policies now make everyone want to carry on rather than shell out the extra bucks. It’s getting pretty nasty out there.
While it might seem odd to have fall colors in late winter, we thought we’d take advantage of the crop of image ops available when the contest began (those luscious fall hues) and to have a bit of color to fight off the winter blahs right now. In any case, readers sent in a host of images from all around the country showcasing the fantastic colors and richness of that very special season. Editing from all the photos received was tough, but we found numerous images that we hope that for you, like for us, was a reminder that seasons do change and that gray and cold (at least here in the Northeast) is not how it always is outside. Please note that while we did not limit the post-processing allowed on these images we tended to choose those where processing enhanced the image and did not overwhelm it.
Hiking through the mountains in the Poudre Canyon above Fort Collins, Colorado, I happened upon a small clearing. Up against a mountain and surrounded by a grove of aspen trees, I found this very old abandoned cabin. The sight of this stopped me in my tracks. I immediately felt chills and a sense that I was stepping back in time. I took very slow steps as I listened to the wind move through the cracks of this home from the past. I felt as though I was trespassing on a family from long ago. I stayed long enough to capture this image with the sun setting the front aglow.
On The Cover
In this month’s issue we cover wedding and portrait topics, including tips on lighting, posing, and gear. We also have bonus lighting gear tests, as well as a look at a new Canon 13” printer and a test of a new breed of a Nikon interchangeable lens camera, the 1 series. We also have a new series of camera lab tests, Image Tech, starting with the Olympus E-PL3. Look for more Image Tech reviews to come in future issues.
Fill flash, when applied appropriately, can bring out details, enhance color, and open shadows that might not be accessible if shooting with natural light alone. Our assignment for this month’s Picture This! was to bring a touch of fill to subjects that would benefit from this “taste” of light applied to a subject or scene. In most cases readers responded by using fill to highlight natural subjects, florals, birds, and the smaller creatures that inhabit the planet. Details became vivid, colors popped, and all the delight of nature’s design came to the fore.
The invention of the Kodak handheld camera in 1888 gave post-impressionist artists a new source of inspiration. Snapshot: Painters and Photography, Bonnard to Vuillard is the first exhibition to focus on how the new technology energized the artists’ working methods and creative vision. Presenting over 200 photographs along with over 70 paintings and prints from renowned international collections, the exhibition is on view at the Phillips from Feb. 4 through May 6, 2012.
I captured this image on a backpacking trip to the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in Michigan one wet, stormy morning. I’ll never forget rounding the corner to the beach at dawn, instantly getting blasted by 25 to 30 mph winds and standing in awe of the massive 15- to 20-foot waves that were plowing into the shoreline. I decided to start shooting what was becoming an amazingly intense sky when all of the sudden a rainbow—than a double—materialized in the frame. I never moved the camera when the rainbows showed up—they were compositionally perfect in the viewfinder!
On The Cover
This month, in addition to our usual run of product reviews, we are presenting you with a bit of software magic, as we share new tools and tricks we uncovered in the latest image-editing applications. We are also featuring an assortment of photo essays by photographers who realize the power the black-and-white medium holds.