If you are expecting a photography related post, you might be disappointed this time. If you are interested in learning about me, my past and present, I invite you to read on.
Every summer I have the luxury of taking my daughter to my birth country, Hungary, for a few weeks. We used to come for four weeks, then five, and in the past few years it has been a six week long vacation. I know many other families who spend a few weeks, sometimes months in Hungary. Plenty of them seek deep cultural experiences for their children and themselves: folk music concerts, folk camps, visiting numerous museums, etc. I also try to include some of these in our trips. But my main goal is to have my daughter experience the culture I grew up in. Of course, the country has greatly changed in the past twenty plus years. It is impossible to show her what it was like when I still lived here. What I am able to have her experience is this: she can spend time with parents and other family members, especially her cousins. She can socialize and talk with Hungarian kids of her own age, which is nearly impossible at home, in Southern California. We need to come „home” to be able to do this. We take public transportation in the city instead of driving to every place. We eat simple but home made food that my daughter describes as the „best in the world”. I think you get the point.
In the Spring of 2013 I've attended two workshops at the Orange County Great Park in Irvine, CA. You can read about my thoughts about former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro visit in my previous post. As part of the workshop series we were also asked to submit any or all of our images, which were then juried by The Legacy Project. I am happy to announce, that two of my images were chosen to be displayed at the exhibition entitled A Different Point of View. Please read the formal announcement for dates and other info. If you are visiting the Great Park during the Summer, come see our images of the places usually hidden from the public view.
We live just a few minutes from the Orange County Great Parks in Irvine, California. The parks hosts many interesting events from the Sunday Farmer’s Market to gardening classes – just to mention our most favorite ones. During our visit there in March I picked up a flyer about photography workshops lead by The Legacy Project*. The opportunity to attend a few of these events was awesome, because in addition to learning more about photography and the history of the park, we could also visit and photograph areas that are closed to the public. I was able to attend two workshops; one with Clayton Spada and one with Robert Johnson. During the two days we visited Hangar 295, Area 396 and one of the runways of the former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro. I was really taken back by what I saw. The Air Station closed in 1999, 14 years ago. Now, only a fraction of its original buildings remain, and soon they will be all gone. I feel lucky that I was able to capture some of its last moments.
One question I hear a lot in the Fine Art circles is: "What are you working on now?" or "What projects do you have in mind for the future?" Let me show you what is keeping me busy lately.
While I was creating my "Hidden Within" series (read about the creation process here), I experimented a little bit more with one of my images, and I liked what I saw. I was curious to know what happens when I use even more symmetry in my images, and also utilize the wonderful blending modes in Adobe Photoshop CS6. The results were very pleasing to my eyes, even if they 'had no eyes' ... not all of the images had easily recognizable creatures in them like the ones in the first series, although you can find some if you look carefully and use your imagination. Would you like to find some? I'll give you two hints. An easy one would be the four scientists with their cats, and a harder one is a chipmunk. Double hint for the last one: stand back from the screen for this one.
I have been asked a lot lately about the creation of my Hidden Within thematic images. Let me share the major steps of the process with you.
To begin with, I took pictures of the bark of many California Sycamore trees. I looked for trees with colorful peeling patterns, and made sure, that my images were as sharp as possible.
After importing the raw images into Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4, I made some changes: digitally sharpened them, enhanced the colors and reduced any noise. Finally, I cropped any part of the picture out that was not tack sharp. Due to the curvature of the trees, the images usually had a narrow unsharp part on the sides.
Next, I opened my cropped image in Adobe Photoshop CS6. I also opened a new document with the desired final image size and a transparent background. From the Sycamore image I cropped a part that was one fourth of my final image (half the length and half the height). This is a trial by error step, where you don’t know if you cropped at the right place until you move the piece into the final document, and see the result.
[Article by Bob Killen Fine Art Photography]
Calumet University, the photography and visual arts education division of Calumet Photographic, presents Merging Harmonies, an exhibition of personal themes from three graduates of the CAL U Fine Art Photography curriculum. The exhibition is open to the public at the Calumet Gallery, 1430 S. Village Way, Santa Ana, CA 92705, from April 26 to May 26— with an artist reception on April 26 at 5:30PM.
The artists, David Nelson, Gizella Nyquist, and Pamela Lagoni, present fine art photographs immersed in individual and revelatory discovery. Each artist has investigated a personal thematic with camera and fine art postproduction skills to produce prints that are visions beyond documentation. While the subject matter is unique to each artist the unifying power of light binds them into a common text of uncommon views that explore visual metaphors.
I'd like to welcome you to my website and blog.
In the past I had planned starting a blog many times, but due to my many interests I could never choose a topic (or two) to focus on. Therefore, I neglected the idea until now. What has changed? I feel that I was able to pick out a few of my interests and start sharing them with anyone who is willing to follow me. What did I pick and how are they connected to each other? The answer to the second part of the question is simple: photography.