Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Different Mood

I was playing around tonight with my China photos from last Christmas. I really like this photo, and have come up with three different versions....the bottom two are the ones I posted before, and the top photo is my newest version...which one do you like best?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Colorful Alleys of Antigua

I couldn't get enough of the textures and colors in Antigua. It was like being a kid surrounded by chocolate at every turn. My buddies thought I was nuts taking photos of all these walls, doors and shop fronts...but I couldn't control myself....

Monday, August 27, 2012

Black n White Tornado

I have posted the color version of this photo before, but was playing around with Nik's Silver Efex Pro 2, and came up with this version...I think it looks really cool.

I received my Nikon D800 today, but I don't have a memory card(s) for it yet, so can't use it....gotta get on that!!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Walk On The Tracks

We were told before going down to the tracks to take photos, that the area was not really a "good area", and that the people were a bit dangerous...but we went anyway, and although the people were not as friendly as in other parts of the city, we had no problems and were still greeted by the big Indonesian smiles we are always used to seeing....this guy, on the other hand, looked deep in thought as he walked down the tracks...he did give us a big smile after I took his photo, though...

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Back Side of That Old VW

Here is another view of that rusted VW we found near the airport the other day. Amazing how nature takes over, heh?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The 2012 Scott Kelby World Wide Photowalk

It's official, I will be leading a Photowalk in Jakarta for the Scott Kelby World Wide Photowalk on October 13th. I will be doing the walk in the morning, and then leave for Papua the same night for my dive trip in Raja Ampat.

If you are in the area, I would love for you to join can sign up for my walk HERE

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Urban Decay

As a photographer, I have always liked graffiti. Today, I took my daughter out for some photo hunting. We found a great spot to wander around and take old abandoned house, we think, that was taken over by graffiti artists. Kayla took my old Nikon, I had the Leica, and we walked around having a blast taking photos of each other and the graffiti.

Back to work tomorrow...the fun always has to end...

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Old VW Bug

My buddy called me, and said, "Hey Scotty...the other day I spotted this old VW Bug in a field near the airport...lets go out and photograph it". With the traffic almost non-existent, we decided today or never. What a great little find...I guess this is where little VW bugs go to die. I own a '66 VW that I drive to work every day, so in a way, it was kind of sad to see this poor guy lying in a field with vines and grass over taking its shell...but sure makes for good pictures!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Five Day Weekend...Woo Hoo!

Tomorrow is Indonesia's Independence Day, and Sunday is Idul Fitri. It is not often that the two occur on the same weekend. So, I have tomorrow off from work, and also Monday and Tuesday. We were thinking of going somewhere, but it is actually one of the best times to be in Jakarta. 


Seriously, the city does not seem so large during this time. I can actually reach places in minutes when on a regular day in Jakarta, it would take hours. I will enjoy it while I can. Soon after Idul Fitri, the people start returning from their village bringing along with them cousins, brothers, sisters, etc...the population of Jakarta increases which means the traffic gets even worse.

Oh yea....yesterday's post....which photos did I choose to enter? I chose number 4 and number 8. My reasoning was this...people love clown fish, and that photo would probably receive a bunch of for the Sweet Lips...well, many people associate Raja Ampat with large schools of Sweet even if they were not my favorite photos, I think they will get the most votes...wish me luck!! The winner is chosen on Sept. 20th....but I don't even know if my photos will make the cut to the final few for voting...we shall see.

I can't remember if I have posted the photo below before or not. I had to kayak out to this sand bar to take this self-portrait. The current was raging between the island and the sand bar, so it was not an easy trip...and it was really HOT!! I set up my tripod, and then would run to the kayak to pose...doing this about 6 times worked up a heavy sweat....the things we do for a photo!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Raja Ampat Entrance Tag Contest

I just entered a contest for the new 2013 Entrance Tag for Raja Ampat.  All divers are required to purchase one of these tags when diving in Raja Ampat. The tag is 5cm in diameter and is attached to the diver's BC (Buoyancy Compensator). It would be pretty cool if one of my photos was on the tag, and that is what the contest is all about.

The problem I had was choosing which photo to submit. The rules stated that I could only enter TWO photographs or graphic designs, and I had narrowed my photos down to EIGHT (pictured below). Can you guess which two I chose to submit??

These were the eight that I had to narrow down to TWO...which two do you think I chose in the end?

Below are the actual tags from previous years...

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

No Texture Needed

I didn't add any textures to this photo, but this would be the type of wall where I would get up close and take a photo for a texture to use in other photos. This would be a good archaeology many coats of different paint were used on this wall, and how many years separated each coat of paint?....scientists in years to come will be studying this wall...ha ha....

Monday, August 13, 2012

Living On The Tracks

It has been a while since I played with some textures. This is my newest creation. It looks somewhat like a collage of photos, but believe it or not, those people live literally next (within inches) to the tracks.They casually sit while big trains go whipping by them every 10 minutes or so.

I used four different textures in this photo....masked some areas, and played with the order of the layers and the opacity of each layer...isn't digital photography fun??

Friday, August 10, 2012

Another Guatemala Portrait...A Tutorial

I did some work on this photo. I love the result. I will tell you what I did as I think it will help you enhance your portraits...the original is the bottom photo.

*Note: You might think I am "faking it", and I am...the finished image is really nothing like the original...but isn't that what we do as artists? We fake it? Sure is fun to play...

1. The original photo, as you can see, was cropped big time. With an 18mp camera, I have that luxury...after cropping, I still had a 10mp image...plenty big enough for a nice sized print. I usually don't crop this fact, I try to get the composition correct in camera the best I can. However, in this situation, I didn't want to get right in this guy's face to take his photo. I asked him if I could take his photo, and he let me, but I kept my distance so I could get a more natural expression on his face. I find that once you get permission to take a photo, and you get close, they start to "pose", and no longer look, I backed off with my 35mm lens knowing that when I got home I could crop closer for a nice portrait...but it is not really a good idea to make this a habit...try to get it right in the camera.

I also cropped using the "rule of thirds" for a more pleasing composition. Took out the blue on the left as well.

2. After cropping, I liked the contrasting colors in the background, but thought it lacked, I went to my collection of textures (I have around 300 or so now), and added two textures. Changed the blend mode of those two layers to overlay, and masked out the textures on the man and the ground.

3. I then saved the image, and went back to LightRoom. I added a vignette to darken the corners a bit, darkened the shadows, and increased the saturation just a have to be careful increasing the saturation as you don't want to turn the skin tones to something that looks un-natural.

4. I reopened the image in Photoshop, and applied Unsharp Mask at around 150%. Then masked the entire sharpening out, and painted in the man's face, hat and clothes, then reduced the opacity slightly. If you are going to post your images on the web or print them for your wall, you must over sharpen...they won't look very nice on your monitor, but the web and printing will soften the image.

Have a great Weekend!! See you back here on Monday!!

The finished image...

The original photo...

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Guatemala Man

This guy just screamed character...his clothes, his hat, his smile...he should be the Guatemala Poster Guy.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Need A Clay Pot?

There were so many pots on the ground, I didn't know how you could pay for one....what do you do? Throw your cash across the pots to the three guys sitting in their chairs? What if you wanted a pot in the middle of the pile? Would be tough to reach it....

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Busy At The Market

You think of your own job, and the routine you follow every day...that is what I was thinking when I saw this market...I was wondering what their routine was every day...grab some flowers at 3:00 in the morning, dress in your most colorful outfit, bundle up all your stuff, and head to the market...gotta get there early to get the best spot on the sure to have small money for change....

I wonder if they take a break for lunch...and if they do, who watches over their flowers and fruit? Maybe the same women sit in the same spots day after day...I wonder if their is a pecking order for the best spots? Ah, the questions of life...

Monday, August 06, 2012


Sorry about no post last Friday. I am back to work hoo...vacation over. It's now back to the routine.

Continuing with my Guatemala photos...this was at Chi Chi Market where everyone and their sister were all trying to sell me a blanket...the last thing I need in tropical Indonesia, but the colors are sure nice!

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Exchange of Smiles

Through out all my travels, I have found that people are basically the same everywhere. We have different cultures, like different foods, have different ways to make money, but when it comes to providing for your family, emotions, laughing and looking for fun...we are all the same. So evident in this photograph...

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Walking In Antigua

My buddies and I taking a walk in Antigua. I had to photoshop myself into the there was nobody around to take our bout dem textures, heh?