Thursday, August 31, 2006

We Have A Winner!

I am a member of the Wedding Photojournalist Association (WPJA) which is an organization for wedding photographers who shoot weddings with a very "hands-off" style. Other than a time set aside for portraits we have very little influence on the events of a wedding. Our job is to observe and record, not to make a wedding into a photo shoot where the photographer controls every aspect of the day to make it more photogenic. We watch for things to happen instead of imposing our viewpoint of what should happen at a wedding.

We also present the majority of our images as straight photographic representations of what the camera recorded. There are times, though, that an image is beyond what the camera can handle or when the photographer sees something in a picture that can be enhanced through post processing. This process can be digital in a program like Photoshop, or it could be one of the many photographic process like Polaroid transfers or darkroom manipulation. The WPJA is for straight photographic images only, but there are many members who use post processing in one way or another. For that reason, the AGWPJA was created. AG is for "Artistic Guild," meaning that artwork has been done after the fact to make an image be more that it was to start. The only way to become a member is to first be a member of the WPJA, then to place in an AGWPJA contest.

This image took third place in the AGWPJA Summer 2006 contest, making me a member of the AGWPJA.

I remember seeing the yellow glass words "Church of God" being lit from the other side by the Sun. I wanted to get them in a picture. I took my spot beside the man on the left and waited for a scene to come together. The girl on the right moved to that spot so she could talk to the man on my left. Click! There was my picture. My patience was rewarded. I knew when I took the picture that the outdoor scene was much brighter than my indoor scene. In an unmanipulated print, all of the attention would go to the big white spot in the middle and the impact of the words and girl's face would be missed.

I usually move to a different spot or find some other way to make an image that will need little or no work in Photoshop but it was not possible in this case. The foyer was too crowded, and the church was filled to well beyond capacity.

Bene' and I both shoot in the raw file format on our digital cameras. This format takes all of the data that the image sensor can record and saves it. The images must be processed in software to make the .jpg files for printing or computer viewing. Because of the greater amount of information in these photos, several different copies of the picture can be made. In this case, I made one where the sign was how I liked it, one where the girl was properly lit, and another for the outdoor scene. I combined all three of these in Photoshop. While I was in there I got rid of a stop sign and bus that detracted from the image.

See more of our wedding photography here and here.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Wedding Weather

A large part of our photography business is weddings. Georgia seems to have the perfect climate for outdoor weddings, and we are photographing more outdoor ceremonies every year. Indoor weddings are not immune from the effects of rain or extreme temperatures. You still have to get from place to place, and that means being outside in your wedding dress and tuxedos.

Obviously, most brides are concerned about the weather on their wedding day, whether it is in a park, church, parent's yard, or a resort on the lake. I just found this service from The Weather Channel that will help you track the weather for the day of your ceremony.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Providence & BBQ

We went to Providence Canyon this weekend and learned a few things. The most important was never go to Providence Canyon in the Summer. It was too hot and the trees were so full that you couldn't really see the Canyon. We had fun anyhow. We had never been there and needed to get out of the office for a couple of days.

We were very hungry after hiking the 3 mile trail, so we drove in to Lumpkin, hoping to find some lunch. We found it at 4-Way BBQ. Here is the owner, John, looking out over the 4 way stop that gives his place its name.

This was some very good BBQ at a unique place. You walk up on the porch and sit in a rocking chair to order. The food is take out (as you might have noticed) or you can eat on the porch.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

My Space on myspace

I recently started a myspace page.

Myspace gets a lot of bad press, but there is nothing wrong with the service they provide. The problem is with parents who do not know what their children are doing online. If you have children who are on the internet, you need to know what they are doing. If they have a myspace page you need to check it every day and follow the links to their friends. Not knowing how it works is no excuse, your child figured out how to do it, you can too.

Now go start a myspace page and add me to your friends.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Gift For A Child - Heart Gallery

I was in Macon this morning to photograph 5 children for the Heart Gallery. If you are not familiar with Gift for a child - The Heart Gallery, please visit their Web site for more information.