Scenery?

No need for a tripod for a long exposure to smooth out the water when it’s frozen!

A straight forward scenic photo, with a little processing enhancement to take the boredom away. It’s rare that I take or share shots such as these, mostly because I don’t do them well. I like scenic photos when done by others but I generally prefer more close-up subject matter. Plus I am just too lazy to go beyond accessible areas where there is good scenery. This photo was taken from a public area in Burlington where thousands of other people probably have the same photo.

I think I’ll stick to abstracts.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

My test, your pleasure

I wanted to test a recently acquired macro lens and, as it’s still a little yucky around, I decided to try it out at the Phipps Conservatory. A little jump start on spring. Nothing artsy, just flowers.

Man, if I only had the time

I took a short trip to Vermont over the weekend and spent most of my time behind the wheel of my car. It was a WAY longer drive than what I was thinking and I probably bit off more than I could chew, so to speak. But I wanted to see one of my photos in a gallery exhibition and it was worth the time.  My wife and I enjoyed a few days out of town and we got to see some new things and scenery. It’s too bad the time of year was a little less than satisfactory, a month later may have been more ideal as winter was just starting to wane and things were still a little dull and brown. It was a shaky trip to make driving north after the winter we had and I had to be sure we wouldn’t run into any early spring snowstorms, because that would have made the drive no fun at all. But the weather cooperated and all went well.

The one bummer was that I didn’t get to enjoy much photography as my time seemed very limited and rushed. That was too bad as the mountain scenery was beautiful, even with the mud and leftover snow. I probably saw a gazillion photos in my head of scenery and old trucks and barns but stopping to take any of them would have been difficult at best. Plus I would have wanted to explore every area to its fullest which would have eaten up all of the short time we had. If I ever get a chance or have a reason to return I at least have an idea of what the area has to offer and I’ll make sure I save time to explore.

Todays photo of some old bottles was taken somewhere in a small town in New York. We drove past this old antique store on the way to Vermont and I saw the old bottles lined up in the window. I told my wife if I remember on the return trip I would like to get a shot of them since I’m a sucker for old glass. I did remember on the way home but the light on the return trip was bright and overcast and the store window reflections of the street were too distracting, so I had to shoot right up against the glass with a wide angle lens to avoid the reflections. The resulting composition was a bit of a compromise because of that and I would have preferred to shoot the other way, from inside the building looking out, but it was early on a Saturday and the store was closed (although it didn’t look like it’s ever open anyhow).

I went with a contrasty antique look for this one as I think it worked better than the color.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

 

 

Over the couch

For some reason, this image reminds me of an abstract painting that someone from my past had hanging over the couch. I know it wasn’t a painting of glasses but there is something about the colors and shapes that strikes a chord. May be it was a friend or a friends parents or someone in my family, or maybe just in the Kmart frame department, I don’t know, but it’s in my mind somewhere.

Regardless, I kind of like it. I like the warmth because I usually have a tendency to render glass subjects on the cooler side. Sort of a still life, I guess, because there really isn’t anything else to shoot right now.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

Gold in them hills

My photo, “Can’t Wait” was chosen as a Gold Selection winner for the North Valley Art League International Juried Photography Show, which opens Tuesday, April 29, 2014. It is an honor to be chosen but the hard part is still ahead of me – writing an Artist Statement! I’ll try to do my best with that but, as anyone who has spent much time reading this blog can attest, I ain’t no writer. :-)

Still, it’s always fun to be chosen and I like the process of getting a print ready and shipping it out. I have been using Digital Silver Imaging for my black and white printing. I like the archival qualities of the traditional silver gelatin prints for any B&W image that I intend to put up for sell. Plus they do a great job of matting and framing. I did buy some equipment earlier in the year with the intention of making my own mats and frames but it’s rare that I am in a “crafty” mood to take on such a task. Unless I really need a weird size, I think I’ll leave up to the professionals.

As for the image, it is a rare shot for me. I don’t normally do architecture photography and certainly not modern architecture. I do like to shoot abstracts and I would put this in that category as I feel the abstract elements overtake any architectural elements. Or maybe not. That’s the beauty of my work, I think one way and shoot another, with an end result usually going another way.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

When the going gets tough

I take a selfie.

Another Sunday and I thought I better post something. It’s been a while and I haven’t done anything exciting photographically for some time. I’ve been caught up in buying some new gear and not even having the chance to thoroughly test it out.  Between the never-ending winter and just getting some things done domestically It’s been tough to get out and test gear the way I would normally use it. I have tested things initially, to see if it actually functions, you know, the proverbial brick wall tests. Boring stuff.

One of my “just out of the box” tests that I did was to shoot a pair of reading glasses on the table with my newly acquired $25 Helios 58mm lens. It worked great and is a really sharp-shooter, if I say so myself.  And it was while looking at that test shot I got the idea for a self-portrait of sorts. I flipped the glasses picture upside down and took a quick “selfie” to add to the photo. Not sure if works completely and I experimented a lot in processing and found that I liked this version the best. The frame maybe not so much, but the harsh yellowish tint and grain add a punch that fits the subject.

 

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

I’m still here sir. (Warning: dead animal)

As I enjoy yet another blast of winter weather, I thought I would take a moment and stop in on my own blog. It seems like forever since I’ve posted but I’m still around, still trying to perform photography. I use “trying” in the loosest sense since I  haven’t done any real shooting in quite some time. I know I shouldn’t use the weather as an excuse, but getting motivated to slosh around in the snow, ice, and cold has been tough this winter. I mean I have to do it all day long for my normal job and I’m pretty well done with it by the weekend and my only motivation is to sit around with my wife and enjoy a nice glass of wine or craft beer in a warm restaurant.

There have been a few glimpse of better weather and it does change your outlook and bring thoughts of “hey, this isn’t too bad, I feel like heading out to take some photos!”. But winter quickly rears its ugly head again and it’s back to hibernating. Now I know I have always said that if I lived in some beautiful place it would be easy to take beautiful photos but, seriously, even if I lived in the Rockies with grand vistas I think I would be tired of snow photos by now.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

So, I’m still around and I will still be contributing to the blog as time marches on. The spring equinox is only a few weeks away, so there is hope! In the mean time I have been re-evaluating my gear, making some changes, and looking into having a dedicated website to better showcase my work.

In a blogging note, hello to all the recent followers that have come on board. I hope I can entertain you enough to stick around. Plus, I am going to try to get rid of those pesky ads. It sucks that it cost me money to stop them but that’s the way it goes, until I go somewhere else.

 

See through

Winter is sticking around a bit too much this year and I’m feeling like I have cabin fever even though I get out of the house every day. Maybe it’s “camera” fever, where I am not being able to do any shooting. I thought about doing some indoor still life stuff but I don’t have the lights or props to do anything useful. But I did find a still life that I shot last year, around this same time of year actually, outdoors! What a difference a year makes.

These bottles were sitting outside an “antiques” store ( I use the term lightly because I would just call it junk) and I was able to take a few photos while onlookers probably wondered why I was twisting around on the sidewalk taking pictures of dusty old bottles. I totally forgot about this photo until tonight but now I want to hit the streets and start finding some more junk. If only that pesky ice, snow, and slush would go away.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

I see a light

As I continue to work on my “business” of photography (printing, matting, framing, submissions to competitions/galleries) and not actually going out to shoot, I find it harder and harder to come up with something to show here. I do actually press the shutter on occasion, as can be seen by todays photo, but I haven’t seriously set out to do any photography in quite a while. The ugly, bitterly cold winter doesn’t help any, of course.

I have just been lying low and getting things done that I normally don’t take the time to do. Throw in keeping busy at my day job, an old house, other hobbies (guitar) and the time for real photography dwindles -  and by then it’s dark again. :-) But as I have begun seeing an interest in my work lately, I am beginning to see the light that my labors have not gone unnoticed. One of my photos (the same one in Black and White Magazine, by the way) was recently chosen for the PhotoPlace Gallery Black and White Exhibition and will be on display at PhotoPlace Gallery In Middlebury, Vermont during the month of April. Being chosen for that and inquiries for other exhibitions and sales have fueled me to want to get back out there, knock my brain around and do some shooting as soon as I can.

Until then, Here’s a shot of a hot teapot. My wife had the pot on the stove and when I walked into the dark kitchen the first thing I saw was the red-hot glow of the boiling water and I immediately thought to grab my camera, which happened to be in the kitchen also. Just a fun shot, nothing more, but it brightens up a Winters day.

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

 

Into the frame

I was only going to photograph the snow against the sky (I do that when I can’t find anything else to shoot) and this little deer came running across the frame. I’m far from an “action” shooter so my reflexes aren’t too swift but I did manage to grab a shot before it ran out of view.

With the contrast of the snow, deer, and sky I immediately thought it would make a good black and white image. It does for the most part so I experimented with different contrast to keep it graphically simple. While processing I realized it worked best as a square composition, something I’m “freeing my mind” towards. When I had a black and white image that fit my vision, I thought I was done but for some reason wondered what I could do with it in color. That’s when I played around with some Nik software and came up with this. I ended up liking it more than I thought I would.

I know it’s a little “Instagrammy “, but that seems to be what’s all the rage! ;-)

© David Guidas

© David Guidas

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