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Dodge/Burn with Photoshop Blend Modes

In Learning Center, Post-Processing, Tips and tricks, Tutorials by jfischer1 Comment

When most photographers think of Dodging and Burning they immediately think of portrait retouching. Adjusting the contouring of the face and other body features to sculpt the lights and shadows. However, the technique can be used on almost any photo where objects need to take on an increased depth through the addition of contrast. While global and even localized contrast can be used to bring punch and detail, it can not reshape or refocus the light like a little bit of dodging and burning can do. Regardless if it’s a …

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Show and Tell: Ketetahi Falls

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

Tongariro National Park, home to the major volcanoes of New Zealand’s North Island. And where there are mountains, there will be streams of water flowing down from the high elevations, and where there is flowing water, with a little luck there will be a waterfall or two. Ketetahi Falls is one of the smallest named falls within the National Park, but that makes it no less picturesque and worth a visit. Located at the end of the popular Alpine Crossing hiking trail, most hikers pass it right by in the …

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Astrophotography Lenses – Beyond the f-number

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Tips and tricks by jfischer3 Comments

Just getting started in Astrophotography?  Please check out my introductory article, ‘Astrophography – Seeing the Light in the Darkest Places’ first before you dive in here.  It’s been recently updated for 2017! Astrophotography is a wonderful, and at the moment wildly popular, style of photography. From the peace that comes from sitting in the still darkness taking in the sights of the night sky, to the wonder of seeing far more than the eye can behold light up the back side of your camera’s screen after each click – there …

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Show & Tell: Downpour

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischer1 Comment

Leaving Dallas on a Sunday evening, pointing my truck to the western sky I headed out to Montague for what was planned to be an astrophotography shoot.  The skies were clear, the winds were light, nearly ideal weather for shooting the night sky.  However once I passed through Denton and left the DFW metroplex a light gray shadow appeared on the horizon. By the time I was approaching Montague the gray shadow was now an ominous monster of a storm. The original plan was to meet up with a few …

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Landscapes 201 – Preparing for the Shoot

In Landscapes, Learning Center, Tips and tricks, Tutorials by jfischer2 Comments

In Landscapes 101, I discussed 10 top tips to kick start your thinking on how to improve your landscape photography regardless if your subject is your local park or Arches National Park in Utah. In Landscapes 201 will break this down further by diving into much more detail on a number of these tips. This series is geared towards preparing for a major photography trip to a landscape photography destination, be it Olympic National Park, the beaches of Mexico, dark skies of West Texas, or deep in the Smokey Mountains. In …

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The Plight of the 50mm Lens

In General, Learning Center, Tutorials by jfischerLeave a Comment

Go ask almost any forum filled with Photographers “What is the first lens to buy after the kit lens?”, and the answer is often ’50mm’, ‘Nifty Fifty’ and so on. The 50mm has no shortage of fans. Simply Google ‘Why every photographer should own a 50mm’ and you’ll get dozens of articles from some of the biggest photography websites around. However, go back into those same forums you started at, and ask ‘What’s your least used lens’, and amazingly, the 50mm also gets mentioned a fair bit. And this got me …

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Show & Tell: Rocky Coast Long Exposure

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

When myself and a group of six other photographers started discussing where we wanted to go on a Pacific Northwest photography adventure one name kept coming up: Thor What does the Norse God of Thunder have to do with Oregon?  It is the name of a geological formation on Cape Perpetua on the central Oregon coast. I had been there once before, two years prior, and while I was happy with the photos at the time, having researched other photos at the location told us one thing – sunset was the …

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The PNW Chronicles – Central Oregon Coast

In PNW, Travel, Trip Reports by jfischerLeave a Comment

What I consider the Central Oregon coast and what locals might consider it may in fact be slightly two different regions, though I’m sure there’s a lot of overlap.  What we can probably agree on is that the cities of Lincoln City, Depoe Bay, Newport, Waldport, Yachats and Forence would be considered on the central coast.  I’ve spent most of my time in the stretch around Newport as my parents, until just recently, had a summer home there.  Both of my two major photo trips to Oregon have included several …

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Show & Tell: Creative Canoe

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

Early this year, at Tyler State Park, I finally found one of those ‘wish list’ locations and opportunities that had lived in the back of my mind for a good long while. A nice stacked line of canoes in the early morning light. Making use of the amazing 70-200’s compression, I took a sequence of photos down the row of canoe bows. Shadows in hues of blue, the morning light in hues of gold. What more could you ask for? How about a little creative editing? Golden light, shallow depth …

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Star Trails – Astrophotography in Motion

In Astrophotography, Learning Center, Tutorials by jfischer1 Comment

Photography, as they say, is about capturing a moment in time. Some moments are a fraction of a second, like a batter swinging for the fences, or a Kingfisher as it dives for its breakfast. Other moments might capture a full second of time, such as a waterfall flowing over Niagara Falls. Some moments are longer yet, such as letting light flow through the camera long enough to capture eddies in a river, or soften a raging surf into a misty fog. When you start dragging out the length of …

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The PNW Chronicles – North Oregon Coast

In PNW, Travel, Trip Reports by jfischerLeave a Comment

You can’t think of the northern Oregon Coast without thinking about the iconic sandy shores of Cannon Beach with its iconic Haystack Rock standing like a beacon but actually is a safe haven for hundreds of sea birds.  However there is much more to see and explore along the northern end of the Oregon coast than just Cannon Beach.  That said, don’t pass up an opportunity to spend an evening on the beach! All roads lead to Cannon Beach.  In this case that’s more or less true.  Highway 101 heads north and …

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Show & Tell: Cascading waters in Oklahoma

In Learning Center, Show and Tell by jfischerLeave a Comment

When most people think of Oklahoma, they do not immediately think of rolling hills, tall trees, and most of all – waterfalls. However, there are pockets of the state that defy the generalizations most people have about Oklahoma. McCurtain County in the south eastern corner of the state is just such a pocket. And at Beavers Bend State Park you can indeed find cascading waterfalls – if the timing is right.   Bound and determined to shake the ‘curse’ of my last two trips to Broken Bow and Beavers Bend, …