Latest Posts

Watching her learn is fun

My wife has slowly been learning how to video. Here is a link to an example of her work in progress at White Sands National Park. The video is raw and some of the video was captured with a dirty sensor. When I have time I am going to have to remove those sensor spots. That is not as easy in video as it is with digital photographs. Still, the video is rather enjoyable to watch. I have to admit I have really enjoyed watching her learn how to video. Both my wife and I are not exactly young in age. Yet, in so many ways we are still young at heart. Learning new things helps keep life interesting. Also being around someone who is enjoying experiencing new ways of looking at life is enriching to me. Getting out, though not around other people, sure has made life easier during the pandemic. I am so lucky to have a love one around me during these trying times.

CLICK HERE TO SEE VIDEO

Notes: All the video clips were captured using either a Nikon Z6 or Nikon D850 cameras. The point of this learning exercise was to do the video and post processing as simple as possible. Therefore the time-lapse clips were process in camera. Post processing was accomplished on an iPad using the Adobe’s Rush App. In this case the editing and merging clips were rather simple and hurried. One could do the same edits with free Apps such as Apple’s Movies. Hope you enjoy. – CLG

A Simple Stuck At Home Photo Project.

Macro photography is not my forte and yes, this photo is rather cliche. Nevertheless taking this viola flower photo was rather fun and easy to do. Wish I had a different color background and a spray bottle to mist the flower. Tonight I just might raid the wife’s fabric stash that she using for her various sewing project. Ace Hardware is open so I might also stop by the store and pick up a bottle to spray flowers.

Anyway, this photograph was from a single candescent light. The viola was placed in a pan of water that was wrapped in black fabric and the same black fabric was used as a background. The water with the black fabric underneath helped create the reflection of the flower. Moving the light source around will create different degrees of reflection of the flower in the water. To keep the flower from falling over I weighed it down with a paper clip.

The camera I used was the the Nikon D850 and the lens was a AF-S Micro NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8. This combination of camera and lens is great, especially if your goal is to create a print that will be rather large. Also to create this photo I used focus stacking that was post processed in Adobe Photoshop. You don’t need to do focus stacking to create amazing results. But without it some of the flower would not have been in focus. Also you could get as basic as using the camera on your phone and get fantastic results.

Since taking this photo my imagination has been going crazy with different ideas to create a different and/or a better image. I am discovering the key to creating interesting macro photos is to just keep trying new ideas. Yes, let your imagination flow. Hopefully, I will have more to share with you soon.

Hang in there. Things will get better. – CLG

Stuck At Home, Keeping Your Photography Skills Sharp

On Instagram the photographer Joe McNally, posted a wonderful idea of how to keep your photographic skills sharp while waiting out the Corona Virus. Here is the the link: https://www.instagram.com/tv/B-w8pN7AJSt/?igshid=1gt4aes1pu3xn Joe McNally is famous for his flash photography. If you want to check out his images go here: https://portfolio.joemcnally.com/index

I have a pretty good collection of tabletop photo books. On this Easter Sunday I am enjoying and studying the book “Bill Brandt Shadow & Light.” As I turn the pages and admire Brandt’s wonderful black and white images I am getting the overwhelming urge to get out and capture the world through my viewfinder. Also, photo project ideas are starting to race around in my head. In my To Do app I have started a brainstorm category and am listing all my photo project ideas and types of creative photography and videos I would like to do. I can’t wait to start getting back out into this wonderful world of ours. I bet that will happen sooner than I imagine.

One of my brainstorms was trying to do a little ink and water videos. It was fun yet very amateurish. Here is a link to the result: https://adobe.ly/2Vl86Gk Now I figure if I am going to showcase something that I still need more practice I might as well go all the way. If you turn the volume up really loud you can here me trying to pound out the song “Bottle of Wine” written by Tom Paxton. Hey, A few months ago, because of my neurological problems I couldn’t even finger a cord. Everything is getting so much better. Camera used for this project was the Nikon D850 and a 60mm Macro Lens. Peace, Love and Victory.

Oops, it doesn’t seem the sound for the video uploaded. That is probably a good thing. Nevertheless,I will see if I can fix that.

Happy Easter. CLG

RAW and JEPG – Just A Friendly Reminder

Please note that I started creating this post over a year ago. That was before I got sick. Well, I came across it yesterday and started to delete it. Though it is incomplete I think it gives enough food for thought to those just starting photography to check out shooting RAW. For those who are homebound and have not used RAW before this might be the perfect time to play around with it.

I have a few friends that continue to snap images in the JPEG format. They think it is easier than shooting RAW and really don’t want to take the time to do any post processing. As a photographer it is hard for me to wrap my brain around their logic. In today’s photographic world it just doesn’t make sense.

When shooting JPEGs you are so limited in your ability to get the best photo possible. You are kind of stuck with what you shoot is what you get. When shooting in the RAW format, unless you severely overexpose your photo, the possibilities to improve your photo are numerous.

Below is a facsimile of the original RAW photo. It should be noted this is what a JPEG photo would look like from the camera. It is kind of nice but also rather bland. There is no detail in the trees. The sky is rather boring and throughout the photo detail is somewhat muted.

RMNP Orginal RAW Example Photo: Rocky Mountain National Park

Now after a little under one minute of post processing the RAW photo here is what you can get. Plus all these edits can be reversed and or changed and there is no damage to the original photo.

Rocky Mountian Park after Post ProcessingSame photo after post processing in Raw

Big difference between the two photos. Maybe the second photo is kind of over done. Nevertheless, you get the point and no, you couldn’t do the same thing if the original file had been a JPEG.

Just a few years ago shooting RAW could be time consuming and to have the proper software to use all the features of the RAW format could get expensive. That is not true today.

  1. Most SLR and Mirrorless cameras that have the ability to shoot RAW also has the ability to post process within the camera from RAW files to JPEG or TIFF files. Then saving both file formats.
  2. Most DSLR and Mirrorless cameras that have the ability to shoot RAW files also has the option to simultaneously save photos in the RAW and JPEG file format.
  3. At one time the only way to post process RAW files was to do it on a computer. Today most of our phones and tablets can import and view RAW files.
  4. Today you don’t need a computer to post process RAW files. Most phone and tablets have the ability to post process the RAW files. As an example you can do limited editing of RAW files in Apple’ Photos.
  5. On the iPhone and or the iPad there are numerous apps that you can purchase for a onetime fee that will do about everything and more than you will want to do with a RAW file. While I mostly use Adobe products, my favorite App in this regard is Affinity Photo. Price for Affinity Photo on iPad is $19.99. As I update this they have a special of 50% off, $9.99. Don’t know how long that will last. Nevertheless there are plenty of other apps available to process RAW files and for creative photography that get fantastic reviews.
  6. You can use your camera in your phone or tablet to shoot RAW. On the iPhone and iPad I use Adobe Lightroom to take pictures in the raw format. I have an Adobe subscription service. If not a professional that can get rather expensive. There are other apps out there that also allows you to use the iPhone camera or iPad camera to photograph in RAW that will be much less expensive. I haven’t used any of these and don’t know how good they are. I advise doing some research on these apps before purchasing.

If you are going to be shooting RAW and printing large photographs it is still best to do so on a computer. It is much easier. For those who aren’t in need of 16 by 20 inch prints or larger you can get a lot accomplished with just your phone and tablet.

I haven’t taken the time to list all the reasons it is best to use the RAW file format in your camera. This is just to get you started thinking about the possibility of using RAW when you are photographing. To learn more do an internet search “Benefits of shooting RAW.” In doing so you will find a lot of useful information.

Stay Healthy. – CLG

April’s First Blog

New April Blogging

April in a canyon

Being a nature photographer takes patience, perseverance, and talent. Except for the talent part, these also apply to the spouse of a nature photographer! My name is April Getchius and I’m married to Craig Getchius, a photographer. Traveling with him to some of the most beautiful places is the best part of my “job”. I act as his “mule” helping him carry equipment, running back to the car for a filter or a lens. We often joke that he really knows how to show me a good time! There are times when we sit for periods waiting for the light to change, waiting for animals to appear, or waiting for the time lapse to finish. Yet, somehow, these times, which some would say are boring, often provide some of the best memories for me.
With the self-isolation we are all experiencing now, Craig has resurrected his CLG Photography Blog and I’m going to contribute now and then. It may provide a slightly different perspective and a bit of recognition for the significant others that support photographers everywhere!
Craig and I are based in Colorado and have so much beauty at our fingertips! We have traveled the area a great deal and have seen amazing vistas, beautiful animals, and gorgeous skies. Craig has been expanding my role from “mule” to assistant videographer. He’s teaching me about photography, lighting, F stops, and more. It has been so much fun.
One of my favorite times is when he taught me how to “paint” with light near Rocky Mountain National Park. It is amazing what impact a simple flashlight can have and the drama it creates. I’ll write about that at a later date.

My assistance can be invaluable in a pinch! On a recent trip to White Sands National Park, Craig had an issue with the sensor of a camera. It had dirt on it and was presenting spots on the photos and videos. We were in a remote location in New Mexico (think scenes from “Breaking Bad”) with not so much as a Best Buy within miles. Craig didn’t have his equipment to clean the sensor but my maternal experience kicked in! “How about using one of those baby nasal aerators to blow the dirt off of the sensor?” Well, off to Walgreen’s we went (because there IS one of those on every corner, even in remote New Mexico!). The baby section had just what we were looking for and it worked – at least in the short term. Two heads can be better than one!
I will write more of our experiences – good, bad, funny and frustrating- all from my perspective. I hope you enjoy. – ADG

Not Doing Nothing

Not Doing Nothing

I must admit for awhile this pandemic kind of got me down. Sitting around the house all day and not getting out and about is not my idea of a good time. When my wife and I first started self isolation I let boredom control my life. That is easy to do. If you have nothing you have to do it is difficult to self-motivate.

My wife is kind of a “lets get this done now” sort of person. She was finding all sorts of things to do. Sewing, reading, exercising and cooking were just a few of her projects. I, on the other hand, just kind of daydreamed the day away while sitting on the couch.

After days of living like this and getting fatter as my wife cooked away a lightbulb went off in my head, enough is enough.  I started making daily ToDo list in the TicTic app and as I completed a ToDo and checked it off my list my brain started to reawaken. I started being happy again. Best of all I felt there was purpose to my life. Below is a typical daily list

  • Exercise
  • Take a walk
  • Email Sarah
  • Delete a hundred in Lightroom
  • Do a time-lapse of a flower
  • Write in my journal
  • Do something creative
  • Relearn iA writer and use it to blog

Just before the pandemic, eagles were spotted at a lake near home. So, when no one is around, I drive to the lake with my Nikon D500. Every time I do this I am determined to capture the best eagle photo I have ever taken. Of course the wildlife photographer’s curse of traveling to a location and your subject is not there has been the norm. Hey, I got a picture of a couple of birds. It is a start.

I also have been reviewing old slides and negatives from the time I first started photographing. Using the Nikon D850, a Nikkor 60mm macro lens and the Nikon ES-2 Film Digitizer Adapter I’m able to post process those old negative and slides into pretty good digital photos. Wow, the memories really do come flooding back. Here is an example of street photography from way too many years ago:

Finally, I have practiced some one light still life. To view an awesome still life photo of a pepper check out Edward Weston’s “Pepper No. 30, 1930.”  Here are a couple of mine:

 

Yes, I can do better. Nevertheless, I am now excited about life. It works for me. CLG

Random Thoughts

I have taken a lot of landscape and nature photos and sold a few of those as prints. Nevertheless my stock collection of birds is really weak when it comes to eagles. So I have written down on my computer notes and in my notebook the following “MORE EAGLE PHOTOS”.

A few weeks back, driving in the car I saw on the side of the road an eagle sitting on top of a rather tall tree. I started to drive on when I remembered my note “MORE EAGLE PHOTOS.” So I turned the car around, parked it, and tried to get a good photo with the Nikon D500 and Nikon’s Nikkor 200 to 500 lens. Considering my physical health. I did fair. While for now it is a keeper hopefully soon I will have a lot better photos of the Bald Headed Eagle and this one will only be seen in my accomplishments notebook.

Note to myself: this proves you should always have a camera within arms reach. Also proves that because you can’t always carry around all your photo equipment probably the shot you take you will wish for a different lens or camera. You have to make do with what is available. Finally, keep taking notes and review them every day. Yep the old Boy Scout saying is still true: “Be Prepared.”

Okay about my health

A few post back I mentioned that I was going to use this blog to inform people about my battle with my neurological problems. People told me it would be therapeutic and I thought it would be neat if my words would help others who are experiencing similar problems. Well that is not going to happen. I’m just too uncomfortable writing about myself. Probably my friends advice would be a good idea for others, It is just not my cup of tea. I will mention from time to time how my illness is affecting my photography but that is about it. This blog is about my love of photography and hopefully some of my posts will show that and be helpful to others in that regard. That is all for now. Thank You, Craig Getchius

Another Photograph From Rocky Mountain National Park, From the Past

Here is a photo from Rocky Mountain National Park that I have never been able to figure out what to do with.  The greens in the photo is kind of unusual for the park. I think the light is kind of interesting And I like the clouds.  The photo breaks the photographic rule of thirds.  But I like it.  I still think this could be a special photo if I figure out the proper way to print it and tweak the post processing. It does look a lot better when you see it big such as ten and a half by sixteen.  I hope you like it. – CG

RMNP98-070728

Rocky Mountain National Park late afternoon.

Been playing around with Nikon’s new Z 6

I have to admit that so far I kind of like it. With my current neurological problems this camera size and light in weight sure helps me capture images more easy  than any camera I have used before.  That includes Fuji’s. On the camera I have the new Z 24 to 70 mm lens. Some of my photos have been rather soft but that could just be user error. I’m slowly learning the ins and outs of this camera. I know it is going to take time. I’ll let you know more about this camera and if it’s a good fit for me after I have used it for awhile.

Below is a photo from this new camera that of course has been reduced in size and quality for the internet. After that a time lapse from the Z 6. I have to say time lapse is one area that the Z 6 really shines. Again the video has been reduced for uploading to this blog. More as I learn and become more comfortable with the camera.

Thanks for dropping by. C. L. Getchius