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Apple 3Gs iPhone_Shooting Melbourne Architecture

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Welcome back folks. After around 2 weeks without a computer I’m finally up and running and back on line. I have to say the first few days without a computer were a little surreal. I read a book, went for a few walks and undertook some very useful project planning. Except for a terrible flu, which lasted for 10 days, I enjoyed the change in lifestyle. But, now that I have my computer back and have re-installed most of my frequently used applications, I’m glad to be back blogging again.

Today’s post features a series of images made with my Apple 3Gs iPhone during a location shoot as part of an introduction course in photography I was running in the city of Melbourne. As you can see I’ve opted for a slideshow by which to display these images. I hope you enjoy it.

It’s helpful for me to make images during classes and workshops. I find it helps motivate participants and provides them with unique perspectives and approaches to otherwise familiar subject matter. While they tend to be preoccupied with Shutter Speeds, Apertures and ISO I’II always try to bring them back to the light and how they might better tune into what’s going on around them.

All images were processed in Adobe Lightroom 2.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

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Inner Courtyard_Angkor Wat_Cambodia

Hasselblad 500CM body and Hasselblad 150mm Sonnar f4 lens with Kodak Ektacolor Gold 160 Professional film

Hasselblad 500CM body and Hasselblad 150mm Sonnar f4 lens with Kodak Ektacolor Gold 160 Professional film

Here’s another old image, this time from a photographic adventure I undertook in 1992. The above mage is a detail from an inner courtyard at Angkor Wat near Siem Reap in Cambodia. The variations in tone and the repetition of horizontal lines drew my attention to this particular architectural element and determined the composition.

From memory I spent around 5 days exploring the area, including some remote sites 20 or so kilometers out from the main tourist area. I understand that today hundreds of thousands of overseas tourists visit Angkor Wat every year. During my visit the numbers were substantially less and I was able to wander through the various sites and, on most days, would have been lucky to see more than a hand full of other western tourists. The peace and quiet of these ancient ruins and the hot, humid conditions seemed to embed the locations with somewhat of an eerie presence. The fact that, while very much a diminished force, the Khmer Rouge were still active in the area only added to the intensity of the moment.

The original color image, made on 120 color negative film, was scanned prior to rendering into black-and-white in Adobe Camera RAW and Adobe Photoshop CS4.

For those undertaking a trip to southeast Asia including Cambodia, particularly Angkor Wat, in your travel itinerary is well worth considering. I eagerly await my next visit.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Architectural Concerns

Canon G9 camera

Canon G9 camera

One of the concerns an architect has when designing a building is the need to design a space through which people can move. Depending on the era in which they’re designed and constructed, major metropolitan train stations may feature either grand or contemporary facades. But, as they are designed for the prompt passage of large crowds of people, they are often relatively bare and somewhat sterile environments inside.

The above image features a side entrance to Federation Square in Melbourne, Australia. The site features undercover galleries and exhibition spaces, shops, restaurants and bars, a tourist information centre and a large paved open-air area for people to meet, congregate and move through.

I was particularly taken with the strong design aspect within the façade and surrounding area. The wall, steps and bike stands display strong repetitive forms and the colors within the stone provide welcoming warmth to the visitor.

Processing was conducted in Adobe Lightroom 2.0 and Adobe Photoshop CS4.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Abstraction through Reflections

Canon G9 camera

Canon G9 camera

I’m doing some work for a very good friend of mine, a doctor who needs a camera/lighting system that members of his staff can use to photograph patients both before and after certain procedures are undertaken. As the staff members in question are amateur photographers there’s no chance of using a DSLR and either portable or studio flash to achieve the desired results. Similarly RAW shooting, with the need to process the images on the computer, is not an option. The idea is to be able to produce quality images with little more than a point and shoot approach. As you can image this is quite a challenge, but progress is being made.

Prior to this job I’d probably taken no more than 6 frames on a point and shoot digital camera. I don’t own one and have never felt the need to use my mobile phone as a camera. I guess that makes me old school. While I embrace technology I still prefer to use the tool designed for the job, rather than some hybrid device. This preference may well change in years to come, but that’s where I am today. And that’s not to say I won’t pick up an i-phone and new Leica camera down the track.

So, with little or no experience using digital point and shoot cameras, I needed to spend some time orientating myself to my friends Canon G9 camera. I was working with a group of students photographing architecture in and around Federation Square in Melbourne, Australia. Several of the students commented that they were concerned about an assignment they had for another subject dealing with abstraction. It seemed to me that the guys were looking for some inspiration. And as movement is often the best way to activate both the thinking and creative process, I whipped out the Canon G9 and, within a few minutes, had motivated nearby participants to action and had produced several publishable images which I’II share over coming days. I only wished I’d shot in RAW, rather then JPEG, but that’s just one of the possible consequences of someone else messing around with your (or, in this case, your friends) camera.

The original file was processed in Adobe Lightroom 2, prior to final creative effects being applied in Adobe Photoshop CS4.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Pic of the Week_In Through the Out Door

Canon 5D camera and Canon 24-105mm f4 L series IS lens

Canon 5D Mark II camera and Canon 24-105mm f4 L series USM lens @ 32mm Exposure Details: 1/60 second @ f8 ISO 100

This image features the front of an old building in Maldon, Victoria. I was initially drawn to the dark, roughly textured wood and the graphic design elements of the windows and door. While the scene looked good in color, I felt the red painted door was too dominant. I’m happy that the black and white rendering has ensured the door doesn’t overpower the other focal points within the scene.

The title to this image will I hope cause folks to ponder what the image may mean. Ultimately we all find meaning where and how we can. There is power in names and titles and if the title to this photograph makes you stop and think about it a little longer and in a different way than you otherwise would, then the power of that photograph, as a thing unto itself, and its impact on you is strengthened.

Processing of the original color image was conducted in Adobe Lightroom 2 with final adjustments in Adobe Photoshop CS4.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Chalk Sticks_Melbourne_Australia

 

Canon 5D camera with Canon 24mm f1.4 L series USM lens

Canon 5D camera with Canon 24mm f1.4 L series Aspherical lens

Architectural delights like these columns, known to locals as the ‘chalk sticks’, are great fun to photograph. Situated at the beginning of the Tullamarine Freeway in Melbourne, Victoria these columns are particularly colourful against a brilliant blue sky. Perhaps it’s the sheer simplicity of these structures that makes them so successful. They are both a wonderful welcome and farewell from the city of Melbourne for folks coming to and from Tullamarine International Airport.

I employed a Polarising filer to enhance overall color saturation and deepen (darken) the color of the blue sky. Further enhancements to color and contrast were achieved in Adobe Lightroom 2 and Adobe Photoshop CS3.

I hope you enjoy the image and that it inspires you to get out and about and make the most of the light, regardless of the weather you’re experiencing, in your own neck of the woods.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Golden Rock_Kyaiktiyo Pagoda_Myanmar

 

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Portra 160VC film

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Portra 160VC film

At just 5 1/2 meters high the tiny Kyaiktiyo Pagoda may not sound that significant. But, given its position atop a large gold-leaf covered boulder (known as the golden rock) and perched, delicately, on the edge of a cliff on the top of the mountain, you may begin to appreciate this truly splendid Buddhist icon.

The 10 km hike up the mountain ascends over 1,000 meters and is quite arduous, particularly when you’re loaded down with camera gear. I managed to get some of the way up in the back of an incredibly crowed pickup truck. It was exciting and I would gladly have taken the ride all the way if allowed. Maybe the experience that followed was meant to be earned, as in all pilgrimages.

Arriving just before sunset on my second last day in Myanmar and, despite the rush and associated fatigue of the trip, the site of the golden rock and the atmosphere that surrounded it made that day a highlight of my time in Myanmar (Burma). It is a most serene location and, despite the fairly large crowds, the beauty of the location and the devotion of the pilgrims was an experience I will long savour.

I was fortunate to be able to photograph the golden rock at sunset and, again the next morning, at sunrise before driving back to Yangon and my flight to Bangkok. After a short rest I travelled onto Laos and more adventures.

The above image is actually made well after sunset and illumination was provided by a series of artificial lights, such as those on the bottom left of the frame. The warm color cast by these lights further emphasized the golden color of the rock and pagoda. The exposure was quite long, in excess of 30 seconds. Naturally a tripod and a cable release was required to reduce camera movement during the long exposure.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

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