Send your comments and questions to: hal (at) halgage (dot) com

February 29, 2016

February has been a very productive month for teaching. The Lightroom 6 classes went well. The International Gallery of Contemporary Art in Anchorage (IGCA) hosted my classes (thank you very much), and all the students said that they got a lot out of it. My goal is to crack open that blank wall that is Lightroom when you first open it. Once I give people the skills to access and understand the tools in the program, the light bulbs turn on. It's gratifying the see artist get back to work by lifting that impediment called software!

I also gave my winter night photography class coinciding with Fur Rondy and the interesting activities that go with our winter festival. Besides the annual attractions of the carnival and the opening night fireworks, I also prevailed on Arctic Fire to preform their fire dancing routines for us. We also found a dark location and did some light painting. This class is always fun and a pleaser for the interesting and wild photographs that everyone gets to make. I don't make photos while I teach, but we did have a couple bonus nights that get me opportunity to make a few snap shots. You can also see student photos posted from the workshop page.


January 28, 2016

I have been remiss on keeping this blog current. Originally, my intent was to use this as a place to post questions from photographers on cameras, techniques and software, but it immediately branched out into other topics related to photography. This entry will be back to the Q and A format with questions that have been piling up.


Q: Lots of people write asking is it safe to upgrade Lightroom?

A: After the 6.2.x debacle, Adobe came to their senses and posted an update that works and doesn't crash or "dumb down" the program. As of November 2015 Adobe released the 6.3 (CC 2015.3) update. I'm happy to say that fixed all the woes associated with 6.2. In January 2016 Adobe put out another update which among other things adds a Boundary Warp slider in Photo Merge Panorama window. If for no other reason this makes this update worth downloading. Boundary warp is kind of a mash-up between Image Transform's warp tool and Content Aware Fill in Photoshop. In the past I found that doing my panorama stitching in Lightroom left me with a Sofie's choice between having to crop more than I wish to or taking the stitched file into Photoshop to warp or Content Aware fill in the empty spaces. in the case of the latter, why not just do the stitching in Photoshop, too? With Lightroom's Boundary Warp I'll be able to get more stitching done in Lightroom without having to resort to Photoshop.


Q: Andrea writes: How do you get those photos of luminous foliage and striking portraits?

A: Infrared photography. I use a specially modified dSLR camera (other types of cameras work, too) that records light in the infrared spectrum that the human eye cannot see. The files that the camera makes are in color, but all the colors are mixed up (blue skies are brown, green foliage is blue). Generally, I use these files to make B&W images. Depending how much the subject reflects infrared light determines the contrast with its surroundings; e.g. live foliage reflects a lot of infrared light, so does human skin, so they look very light and luminous. Water, rocks, the sky, even the human eye don’t reflect much infrared light so they look dark. The effect isn’t for everything, but for somethings it’s just magical. The company that I used and had a very good experience with is Life Pixel. I whole heartedly endorse them. If you take the time to prowl their website you can get all your questions answered. They have a variety of types of infrared conversions to choose from and a list of what lenses work best with the conversion (not all lenses are created equal). They also have customer service that you can call and discuss what you want in more detail. With shipping both ways and lens calibration, it can to run in the $600-$700 range. Be ready for that. But, I have found it worth it.


Q: Robert writes: What’s the best way to migrate from Aperture to Lightroom.

A: Below are a couple links that show good working methods for preparing your Aperture library for transfer to Lightroom. As they explain, there are some things that by their very nature cannot be transferred between the two programs. But on balance it’s not too painful nor do you loss much (if any) data.

Here are my caveats to the recommendations for the two websites:

I would be careful of writing metadata (IPTC) info directly to files. Sounds like an OK thing to do to jpegs and tiffs, but I don’t like the idea of altering a RAW file. For the jpegs and tiffs, I recommend that you follow the instructions to write metadata into them. But, I would select out the RAW files (usually accomplished by doing a search by file format) and write the associated metadata for those files as XMP files.

As recommended, be sure to follow the instructions for importing your keyword list into Lightroom before you import your image files. It’s only really an issue if you do nested keywords.

If you use color labels and flags in Aperture, it sounds like neither transfer into XMP. Do a search for color labels (one color at a time), and put a keyword in for that color. Do the same for flags. Once in Lightroom, do the same searches and tag the files with the color label. Flags are not recommended. They don’t write to XMP thus they are reliant on your Lightroom database which can get corrupted. Better to translate that information into labels or stars, which are written to XMP.

On the issue of multiple catalogs (Lightroom) vs multiple libraries (Aperture), there is no good reason to have multiple catalogs in Lightroom. I firmly recommend avoiding multiple catalogs. Use Collections instead.

If you use Projects or Albums in Aperture and you wish to keep that structure in Lightroom, the only way I can see to do that is to import by Album/Project. Once you start the import in Lightroom, you assign all those images (during import) to a Lightroom Collection by checking Add to Collection (in the file handling window of the import screen) and creating a collection name.

When doing your import to Lightroom, do not follow the suggestion to make Smart Previews during import. If you need or want them you can do that later, selectively. Otherwise, you’ll create a HUGE preview file on your internal hard drive.


Q: Dick writes: For some reason, when I open Photoshop all my palettes are missing? How do I get them back?

A: Type the tab key. The tab key is a short cut in Photoshop to make your palettes and bars temporarily disappear so you have more screen area and less clutter for viewing your image. It is a toggle, so typing it again brings them back.


Q: Joanie writes: My web person is updating my website and has requested me to send her images. I understand how the export process works, and I have plugged in the numbers you recommend (jpg, sRGB, quality of 50, size in pixels, resolution of 72ppi), but when I email them she says the files come over way too small. What am I doing wrong?

A: I suspect that the problem resides not in Lightroom, but in the your email browser. If you are on a mac that probably means that you are using Mail as your email client. If that is true, when you drag and drop an image(s) into an email window, Apple automatically embeds the file and resizes it. The window does offer you the opportunity to send the file as small, medium or actual size. None of those choices really mean anything to you. Sending files this way will most likely cause the file to be resized arbitrarily. This doesn’t mean you can’t use Mail to send files, you just need to do it a different way.  Before putting the files in your email window, (if there is more than one file, first gather all the images in a folder}, right click on the image (or folder)—control click if you don’t have a right clicking mouse—and select the option for compressing the file (folder). The zip file that is created contains (all) the image(s) as a compressed file. Drag and drop that file into your email window and send away. On the other end, all the recipient need do is double click on the zip file and it will decompress into the folder that you initially created containing any files that you sent. Now the files that you send are exactly as you made them.

Additionally, if your recipient is a Windows user, make sure that she is seeing and using the files at 72ppi and not 92ppi.


Q: Ken writes: When I sort my Lightroom library by date, I have a few images that are clearly out of sequence. I have photos of my dog when she was a puppy in the 2010, but the date shows it was made in 1980, etc. So I know the date is wrong. Why did this happen and how can I fix it?

A: Yes, that can happen, especially with old files. There are a lot of possible explanations: the date and time on the camera was not set properly, files saved as jpegs may have picked up the creation date from when they were last saved or modified, or plain-ol'-corruption. It is possible to change the creation date, but if it’s a RAW file I would just leave it be. Changing a RAW file is not a good move and can lead to corruption. For other file types (jpegs, tiffs, psd) you can find a choice in the EXIF metadata for changing creation dates. If Lightroom won’t let you change a creation date, go to the Catalog Settings>Metadata and check the box for Write Date and Time Changes to Proprietary RAW files (again, do this at your own risk).


Q: Steve writes: How do I know what lens to get if I want to buy a wide angle for example? What does wide angle even mean?

A: Here’s a primer on lenses.

Lenses can be broken up into three broad categories: wide angle, normal and telephoto (and specialized categories like macro). A “normal” lens is a focal length that is approximately the measurement of the diagonal of the cameras sensor. It has a field of view about like the area that the eye concentrates on: 46°. On most cropped sensors that’s about 20mm (on a full frame it's 50mm), so that 18-300 that you might have is normal to telephoto. Every time you add 20mm to the base, normal focal length for your camera you add a power of magnification: 20=normal, 40=2x, 60=3x, 80=4x, 100=5x etc. Every time you half the normal mm you have twice the field of view: 20=normal (about 46°), 10=twice as wide (90°), etc. A standard wide angle for a cropped sensor is about 10mm to 12mm (full frame is 24-28mm). Super wide would be in the 6mm to 8mm (8 to 20mm).

As you may know, lenses are measured in millimeters (focal length). That number comes from measuring the optical center of the lens to the sensor plane when the lens is focused to infinity. All lenses project a circle of light (image circle) onto the rectangular sensor. There are two factors to consider. 1) how much of the scene is projected in that circle, and 2) how big that circle is. The field of view (the first factor) is expressed in the millimeter (mm) of the lens. The smaller the number, more of the field of view (more of the scene) is projected. The larger the number the less field of view is projected (smaller amount of the scene is seen by the sensor). In a sense, wide angle lenses (smaller mm, often called a short lens) packs in a lot of the scene in a given size circle. A telephoto lens (large mm, also called a long lens) magnifies the scene and thus has less of the scene in that same size circle.

The size of the circle is due to how the lens is engineered. As sensor sizes get larger the lens needs to project a larger circle to cover the sensor without vignetting (darkening) the corners. That takes a higher degree of engineering and makes a lens more expensive. That’s one reason why lenses for full frame and medium format cameras are more expensive and lenses for cropped format cameras are usually cheaper. Nikon calls its line of lenses specifically for cropped sensors DX. It is important to note that these lenses will not work on full frame cameras.

That brings up the differences between various size sensors. Because the scene projected by any-one mm of lens is always the same, how much of it is “seen” by the sensor is what determines the field of view that is recorded (and seen by you through the view finder). If a sensor is small (cropped format), a given mm of lens will appear less wide angle and more telephoto since less of the projected image is covering the sensor. As the sensor gets larger, the same mm of lens appears to record wider field of views (thus making telephotos appear less magnified). This is why smaller sensor cameras require smaller mm lenses to get a wide angle field of view, and larger sensor camera need larger mm lenses (telephoto) to get an equivalent magnification (as its smaller sensor brethren).

Aperture is another factor in the making of a lens. The smallest f stop (largest aperture) denotes the most amount of light that can pass through the lens. F stops are arrived at (basically) by dividing the diameter of the front lens element by its focal length. In order for a lens to pass more light (often referred to as a faster lens), it needs to have a larger ratio between front element and focal length. Generally, the larger the front element the more expensive the lens. Faster lenses are great in low light photography and they make focusing the lens easier.

Getting close up is a matter of focus distance. The term “macro” is a vague label which just refers to getting closer to a subject. How close a lens can focus is another engineering issue. As a lens focuses closer, less surface area of the lens element (the internal glass guts of a lens) is used. To maintain quality (sharpness and resolving power), lenses that focus closer have to be much better made and thus are usually more expensive and specialized. Zoom lenses that purport to be macro often don’t focus all that close. The best macro lenses are specific, stand-alone single focal length (also called prime) lenses. “Regular” lenses don’t focus all that close and thus can be engineered to deal with other optical issues and generally are less expensive. All lenses with close focus capability will be designated as macro. Unless it notes it, the lens is not a macro.

So, the 4 things to consider when buying lenses are:

What field of view do I want? (wide to telephoto)

How “fast” of a lens do I want pay for?

What format of camera do I have (or will have in the near future)?

How close do I need to focus with this lens?

Generally, people buy three types of lenses:

A wide angle (prime or zoom, I like zoom lenses).

A telephoto (prime or zoom, depends on how serious you are about things like wildlife photography, faster prime lenses offer higher quality, but are far more expensive).

A macro lens (usually a prime lens in the 60 to 100mm range. There are also wide angle, and telephoto macro lenses (they’re kind of fun, too but more specialized).


Interested reader writes:

Q: I have a photo that I added a black and white adjustment layer to [in Photoshop]. When I saved it [and it automatically reimports in to my Lightroom Catalog], the preview still shows it as a color image in Lightroom. When I export it [from Lightroom as a new file], it is black and white, as it should be. Why it the preview still in color in Lightroom?

A: This is more of a Lightroom issue than it is a Photoshop one. Sometimes Lightroom isn’t quick on the update of reimported files. First, I suspect that if you switch into the Develop Module, it will show the current state of the file. Switching to the Develop Module creates a high-res preview (and one that is the most accurate, too). If the preview does not update to show the current state of the file, you will need to force the file to rebuild the preview. Go to Library>Previews>Build Standard-Size Previews (a dialog box will give you a choice to rebuild for one—the selected image—or all images in your library).  If the errant preview continues to persist, a discard and rebuild is in order: Library>Previews>Discard 1:1 Previews, Library>Previews>Build 1:1 Previews (you’ll be given the same dialog box as above).


Gayle writes:

Q: When I go to export an image in Lightroom, I set it up with the format, quality, color space and resolution correct for what I want, but when I put in the [re]size for height and width (8w x 10h) I get an output file that is about 7x10. If I just choose to size the shortest size I get about 8x12. Why can't I get an 8x10 even when I specify those dimensions?

A: I can understand your frustration. It’s a round peg in a square hole thing. The problem goes back to the standards of camera sensor size and standard print sizes. The aspect ratio of your camera is 3:2. The aspect ratio of an 8x10 is 4:5. If you render that out to 8” on the short side the long side comes out to 12”. If you render 3:2 making the long side 10” you get about 7” on the short side. So, as it turns out, you can’t make 8x12 or 7x10 fit into an 8x10 print without either cropping the long side or making the short side shorter (giving you white borders on the top and bottom of the 8” side)! If you want the print to be “full frame”, meaning you want all the image to print, you’ll either have to have the image printed as a 7x10 on a sheet of 8x10 paper, or print on a sheet of 8x12 (or larger) paper.

The export function of Lightroom can size your image during export, but what it can’t do is crop your image on it’s own. That requires an aesthetic choice. The simplest solution is to crop the image with the crop tool in Lightroom. To get the proper aspect ratio, open the crop tool (R). In the pull down menu located in the crop tool’s drop down drawer (next to the lock symbol), select 4x5/8x10. The crop will show what your image will look like in your preview window. You can move the crop area around to best fit what you want. Once cropped, you can go to the export window and select Resize and choose longest side and type in 10 inches. The resulting file should be perfect for sending to your printer of choice to make an 8x10.

There is a second method, and probably the better method when sending files to be printed outside of your system. This method requires a lot more work on your part, but will greatly increase the likelihood that the image you see on your screen looks like the print you have made. The most important part is the color management and profile. If you go to Costco’s website (or most other online printers) and to their photo center, you will find a place to download their printer profile. Once downloaded, it should have info on where to put it in your system. Once there, restart your computer. Now you’re ready to setup for printing.

In Lightroom find the image that you wish to have printed. Select the Print module.

On the bottom left of the screen:

Page Setup: in the Paper Size pull down, choose 8x10 or if none, choose Manage Custom Sizes. In the dialog box that opens, click on the “+” at the bottom left. Click on the “Untitled” that was created in the above list and change it’s name to 8x10. In the window on the right type in 10 for the width and 8 for the height. If you want the print to be borderless, type in zeros for all four borders. Click OK. You have now created a paper size. That will always be in your system and you won’t have to do that again. If you wish to make other sizes that are not listed, repeat the above.

In the panels along the right side of the screen make these selections:

Layout Style: Single Image/Contact Sheet.

Image Settings: check Zoom to Fit.

Layout: Cell Size: slide the sliders all the way to the left.

Print Job: There is a little tiny pull down at the upper right (by default it says Printer). Select JPEG.

Final Resolution: 300.

JPEG Quality: slide to 100.

Color Management: use the pull down to find the profile for the the service that you are using. If it’s not listed choose Other. That should take you to a list of your installed color profiles. Select the one for this job (Costco). It will now always be in your drop down list.

Intent: Relative.

Click Print to File, choose where you want it saved (probably the desktop). Send the file to the printer.

As usual, long answer to a simple question. But it’s good to know about the best method to print as well as the whole aspect ratio thing.




January 23, 2015

Happy New Year to one and all.


Richard Murphy: A Narrow Road to the Interior Winter

Photographs and Journal Entries from a Year in Fairbanks, Alaska

It seems rare these days that the First Friday Gallery Walk in Anchorage, Alaska (my hometown) offers up a visual and intellectual treat. Not that good work in the arts isn't being done in Alaska, quite the contrary. Rather it's probably more to do with the never ending compulsion of galleries to fill space at any cost. The first Friday of January brought a welcome relief from the all too common visual assault I have been witnessing recently. An exhibition of work (a traveling show first mounted in Fairbanks and now in Anchorage) by retired Anchorage Daily News photo editor come Academician—Snedden  (UAF) and Atwood (UAA) chair of Journalism residencies. Those and other distinctions (Pulitzer, NPPA Editor of the Year) bodes well for expecting thoughtful and considered work. I don't think anyone was disappointed.

Although a journalist by trade and temperament, for many years now, Richard has been creating art that stretches the meaning of documentary. He seems to compulsively keep a thorough and quite personal journal that he (at least in part) freely shares with his audience in the form of snippets and quotes pasted on, collage form, to his art pieces. This and the combination of collaged and inset photographs to the main image, is how Richard creates his narrative visual works. The pieces are unambiguous in narrative, but open enough for the viewer to fill in the blanks and flesh-out a rich and personal story. That signature style is evident in the works of this current exhibition. But, in addition to those "visual journal entries," Murphy has decided to explore new territory.

In this day of digital "art," I find work to all too often be prematurely cliché; that is "Photoshopie." The use of digital (as in most big changes in media, note: photography itself tried to be more like painting before finding it's on legs to stand on) tends to be more wiz-bang and for effect than for true self expression. Being of this conceit, I'm pretty critical of digital (read: computer manipulated) images. The second grouping of Mr. Murphy's exhibition falls squarely in this arena. With trepidation, I reviewed, scrutinized and otherwise perused this new work. With little deliberation, I found the work compelling and thought provoking.

Richard Murphy comes with an extensive background in film and the "wet" darkroom aesthetic. For all of us that came to digital from conventional photography we have holdovers and wistful memories of working with film negatives and chemistry (just saying it brings back memories of odoriferous open trays of chemicals in a warm and humid darkroom). I would guess that Richard is no different. Although not novel, his use of displaying a negative image along side a positive one, eludes to the relationship of the positive and negative printing process that dominated photography for over a century. Because in conventional photography the negative is reversed left to right, Murphy's motif of matching up negative and positive to create a symmetrically paired diptych reinforces this idea and gives the viewer a new and in concept, different image as a whole. Murphy has stated that in these particular images one of his interests was in the ambiguity of the relationship of what is perceived as white. Living in a black and white world, like one found in the far north, one lives in a high contrast landscape. The truncated tonal scale of the winter landscape is part of it's silence. So much so that playing it forwards or backwards gives nearly the same results.

The other images in this group are in somewhat the same vain. Combining Murphy's penchant for collage and the negative/positive concepts described above, Murphy montages the images via computer manipulation. Although not journalistic, Richard keeps with the motto: be true to the image. Murphy keeps his use of computer manipulation to a minimum, only using it to lay one image over the other in collage style. The inner image (the positive) is a true record from the camera with no more adjustment than would normally be done to a fine print, ala Ansel Adams. The image under the first (showing around the edges of the top image), is in negative. In a few images the unintended result of similar tones merging at the edges between the positive and negative images, adds to the wonderment of the relationship of positive and negative.

Lastly, the final "grid" pieces harken back to the day of darkrooms and contact sheets of negative strips. Each framed piece consists of 9 photographs arranged in a grid (rows of 3 across and columns of 3 down). The relationship between the images horizontally is one of time. All are aerials and photographed in sequence (at least each row is). The two remaining rows below the first are arranged in space (similar subject, different location). Playing on past works by artist like Hockney and Levy, Murphy follows an established history of photographers trying to add the dimension of time to still photography. Richard adds to that his sensibilities of the narrative. As the plane flies forward and the landscape below slowly recedes, Murphy sees pathways and corridors of human and animal traffic and their daily adventures and tribulations.

The last in this series is more of an orphan. The subject is a series of frost patterns on his bedroom window. Although using the same grid motif, it lacks an obvious sense of time like the others in the series. Maybe the images (each individually beautiful) could be considered a document of the cold winter months he spent in Fairbanks.

As a whole the show sticks together nicely and is a visual treat. Richard never disappoints when it comes to visual story telling. This show can be counted among his very best.

Richard Murphy: A Narrow Road to the Interior Winter. will be up the month of January, 2015 at the Peterson Gallery at Alaska Pacific University, Anchorage, Alaska.




December 3, 2014

Happy Holidays.

Mass Storage and Hard Drives

I have been working overtime trying to clean up my catalog (in Lightroom) and my library of images. You might understand the distinction between the two already, but just in case let me review. Your library (also called your archive of images) is located on a hard drive (preferably on an external hard drive). This is the collection of your actual image files downloaded from your camera (or other device). Your Lightroom Catalog is a database referencing those images in your library along with thumbnails and larger previews of those images. The distinction is important. When you do a backup of your catalog in Lightroom, you are backing up the database information contained in your catalog (thumbnails, some metadata, ratings, flags, etc.). That does not include your library of image files. To backup your image files (along with your XMP processing settings), you must perform a backup (copy to a separate hard drive) outside of Lightroom (preferably using a backup/copying program).

All that leads me to todays topic: external hard drives. Choosing the size and type of hard drive(s) or enclosure depends on the size of your library. Two things to keep in mind when deciding on the size of your storage device: choose one that is at least twice the size of your library (three or four times for growth), and one that you can afford to buy two of! The extra space is as much for the health of the drive(s) as it is for growth. Drives that are more than 3/4 full will slow down and are more prone to crashes (failures). Try and keep at least 25% of a drive free if possible.

Once you have a size in mind and a budget, start shopping around. Currently, the fastest interface on the market is Apple’s Thunderbolt. Only the newest Apple computers have that interface (unfortunately, Windows hasn’t adopted it, yet). Next up is USB3. Most current computers (Mac and Windows) sport this interface, and it’s pretty fast (about half that of Thunderbolt, but about 3x as fast as USB2). For a drive that you will be reading and writing to on a regular bases, you want the fastest interface you can get. The second drive (remember, buy 2 drives of the same capacity) needn’t be super fast. You can save a little money buying a slower interface (USB2, Firewire, etc). But, for convenience sake you’ll probably just buy 2 of the same drive.

For those of you that have more than a few terabytes of image files, You’ll want to start thinking about multi drive enclosures. These enclosures have multiple bays for installing raw drives. Once populated with drives (in most instances, they must all be the same size), the enclosures can be “upgraded” with newer, larger drives in the future.

RAID. For an added level of security and piece of mind, there is a system for on-board redundancy. A true RAID enclosure has multiple hard drives and a hardware controller that configures the drives into what the computer sees as one huge drive. Additionally it can be configured to duplicate (mirror) your data across the multiple drives. This makes your precious image files safe from up to one hard drive failure. If a drive in the array fails, simply pull it out (usually without even shutting the enclosure down, called hot swapping), and replacing the drive with a new drive. The RAID system then “rebuilds” what was on that failed drive and you’re back in business without any data loss. Of course there are no free lunches, this type of RAID consumes from a quarter to a third of your total storage space making the total usage storage space less than the sum of the drives. No biggy, just buy bigger drives! It’s only money, right!?! Also, for the highly paranoid out there who are going to ask, “what happens if 2 drives fail at the same time,” there is a RAID for that, too. It’s usually more specialized and more expensive and consumes more of your total storage space, but it’s available.

If you go the option of enclosures, you might consider buying the enclosure and the raw hard drives separately. You’ll probably get a better deal and you can choose the brand of drives to use. I’ve tried them all, The problem with giving buying advice is that drive manufactures are changing their designs (and quality) constantly. Lately, I have been using Hitachi drives, but they just spun off their drive division to a new company: HGST. So far I’ve had luck with them, too. My intuition about them is backed up with this nice piece written up by Backblaze (the online cloud storage service). It’s a wild and woolly world out there. Your instincts are probably as good as anyones.

Even with double redundancy, RAID is not an alternative to a second backup drive (enclosure). You should always have your data stored in at least two places. If it’s of any benefit to you I’ll outline my storage system. I have a 4 bay Thunderbolt enclosure with 3 terabyte drives totaling 12 tb of storage configured as RAID 0 (one drive, no redundancy) as my fast working drive. This is the drive that I read and write to when working on images. That backs up to a 5 bay Thunderbolt RAID 5 (redundant, hot swappable) populated with 4 tb drives totaling 15 tb (20 tb less the overhead for the RAID 5 redundancy). I also have an old Firewire 4 bay enclosure populated with 2 tb drives set to RAID 0 (8 tb of storage). I keep this as a third backup. I keep it off-line until I do a backup. It is also portable and I can store it off-site for added security. Oh, and my library is currently about 6 tb (109,000 image files).

Keep your images safe and as my old friend, Barry McWayne used to say, make images of Homeric and lasting value.

UPDATE: further reading on the subject at BackBlaze.




October 2. 2014

Due to a lack of participation, my October Lightroom classes have been canceled. I hope to have classes rescheduled in February, 2015. Stay tuned. If you aren't already on my mailing list, drop me a line: workshops (at) halgage (dot) com.




September 4, 2014

Just returned from giving a workshop on the Denali Highway (that 138 mile undeveloped, rustic, but well maintained gravel road connecting Paxson on the Richardson Hwy and Cantwell on the Parks Hwy). The enthusiasm of the participants was invigorating. I had the chance to touch on a number of topics ranging from camera handling techniques and technical aspects of digital cameras, to aesthetic issues like how the rule of thirds is different for vertical vs horizontal compositions, and working with complimentary or analogous color combinations. In the evening, after a great meal (at the two lodges we stayed at over two nights), I had a chance to give a short introduction to Lightroom and give some tips on processing RAW image files. We had two nights of clear skies and northern lights. We were a little early, but still have great colors and we couldn't beat the weather. We had everything: puffy clouds, rain, snow, and sunny brilliant blue skies.




August 27, 2014

Welcome to my new website. It's been way too long in coming. With this new design I have integrated my commercial and fine art work into one easy to navigate site. Using Adobe Muse I can easily update and add to this website as needed. Keep an eye out for new series and published work and other updates on a more regular basis.

Many people have asked if there were a way to follow some of my activities, one being my in-progress documentary series on Dip Netting on the Kenai. That series now has it's own home on my Personal Work page. I'll use this column to recap what's been happening with such projects as that.







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