Sunday, January 31, 2010

BOOK REVIEW: Other Realities by Jerry Uelsman

Other Realities by Jerry Uelsman is an outstanding coffee table book by this distinguished photographer. Progressive Rock fans will recognize his work on the cover of Dream Theater's "Train of Thought" CD. While the book is 95% photographs, Jerry does offer some great nuggets of insight into his thought process of creating the Surreal. "...I find the seeds for creating a new syntax for the eye." Words to live by for those of us intent on MAKING PHOTOGRAPHS rather than TAKING SNAPSHOTS.

I am inspired by his work but I wouldn't and couldn't copy his work. His dreamlike photos are a tribute to my favorite surrealists, Rene Magritte or Salvadore Dali. You can see my Fine Art montages here.

You can purchase Other Realities here.

Jerry's website:


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

PHOTOSHOP: Improved Contact Sheet Capability

Making a contact sheet is an "old-fashioned" film era technique that gave you an "all in one" sheet view of your "roll" of film. You can do this this in many photo editing / organizer programs but with the release of CS4, Adobe has given Bridge a 1000% speed increase in generating the Contact Sheet.

Here is the short version of the procedure:

Open Bridge and select the photos you want in the contact sheet(s). It could be hundreds. If you set for 6 x 6 as suggested below, 72 photos from your card will print 36 each on 2 pages, etc.

Go to the OUTPUT module (MAC: Command key + F6; WIN: CTRL +F6)

Select PDF then


On the same screen view, you will see Layout section. You will want to start perhaps with a 6 x6 view. This will give you the look and feel of the old style 35mm contact sheets with 36 per page. Note the check box settings below.

Adobe TV has this on a short video (less than two minutes) Click Here.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

Equipment Deals - Canon 5D Package

Through Adorama this week:

Save $260.00
Regular Price $3499
Sale Price $3239
After $60 Mail-in Rebate - Sandisk 16GB Extreme IV CF Memory Card Free, Slinger Camera Bag Free, Additional Canon LP-E6 Battery Free
Free Shipping
Click here to purchase or get more info.

Combination package: Get a Canon printer for $47 after $400 rebate. Printer and Camera package must be purchased in the same transaction. Click here for more info.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Photographing La Paz, Mexico

Photographing La Paz, Mexico on the Sea of Cortez, is a photographers delight. Almost as many subjects in the air as in the sea. Birds are plentiful, such as Pelicans, Boobies (Gannets), and Frigate birds.

We were based at Club Cantamar for SCUBA diving. In addition to underwater photography equipment, you should bring your long "Bird Lens." To shoot close Pelicans, you probably need at least a 400mm Zoom lens with image stabilization (IS) set for following them in flight. 300mm will mostly keep you on the edge of frustration with our winged friends. Some IS lenses let you switch IS modes to compensate either for camera shake for a still subject or a moving subject you are following while panning. The image below was captured near sunset in mid flight.

La Paz is known for its colony of 400 California Sea Lions living on the island of Los Islotes. You can shoot them on the surface or of course, from underwater using SCUBA or just snorkelling. I think this is the world's best shallow dive. You can spend over an hour in six to eight feet of water. The Sea Lions here are very used to people and are mostly friendly and love to play.

Reasonable caution and common sense should rule the day, particularly during breeding season around March. You really don't want to get between a 600 pound Bull and its potential mate. Other than that, the guides will advise you on their behavior and you should have a blast. October and November are great months to visit as the pups are now big enough for the "parents" to let thm go out to play without too much attention. More on the Sea Lions, Whale Sharks and other marine life in other posts. Click here to see more from La Paz. Click here to see more birds.