February 26, 2010

Kathryn Kolb Critques Motion Photographs

I learned a lot on Monday night during the Roswell Photographic Society's monthly critique. Kathryn Kolb pointed out positives and negatives about members' photos. Critique's theme was motion. Kathryn is a free-lance photographer living in Atlanta. She is also director of the new Serenbe Photography Center, located in Palmetto Georgia.
At the beginning of the critique Kathryn told us she would measure the images on the following:

Does it match the category (in this case motion)?
Does the image work or not?
Was it successful in communicating what the photographer intended overall?
Is this an image we've seen before?

Interesting enough there were many shots of "moving water" presented that weren't good illustrations of motion. I haven't really thought about that, but it clearly made sense during the review. The water was frozen in time, so it did not show motion. Some of the best motion shots were of a girl swinging, a swirling coke bottle, a train leaving the station and movement through a car tunnel. Kathryn said the swirling coke bottle formed a circular read on the photograph, which keeps the reader's eye in the shot longer, which made it better.

One shot that stuck out to me was a basketball "moving" outside of a picturesque barn with elements of the barn in the image. Kathryn suggested this shot worked more as fine art than as a movement shot because the ball, though blurred in motion, really served more as a design element in an image that was basically "still life."

Kathryn spoke about the weight of the subject. She explained that the item of emphasis needs more weight in the shot because the areas within a photograph have different visual "weights" and that the item of emphasis needs more weight than secondary elements in the shot. She said, "When there are equal weights we don't know what you want us to focus on." She also added that people in the photograph add emotions to shot.

Here is one of my motion images titled "Before the Game," which was not in the critique. And, certainly benefits from my new found knowledge from Kathryn Kolb.

February 24, 2010

Color Negative in Curves using Photoshop

I loved this photograph on the left for many months before I knew what to do with it. I thought it needed a little punch, but I wasn't sure what to do. Recently, I hit upon the color negative feature in curves and loved what happened to this ordinary scene taken in Tennessee at my parents' farm. Now, this image titled Family is one of my favorite canvas works.

Picturing This: How to: Open Photoshop. Pull in a photograph. Click on the background in the layer panel. (Click on window/layers if layers are not visible.) Left click on the 'Create a new fill or adjustment layer' icon shown here with the red arrow. Left click on [Curves]. In the Curves preset box select 'Color negative RGB' and your image is reversed. I also played with hue and saturation to obtain the image on the right above. Show me your images, if you try this photoshop trick.

Picturing This is a new feature on MagMoment blog about art, craft and photography. This feature will delve into photoshop topics and also send other random art and craft tricks your way.

February 21, 2010

Weingarten Pallette Series' Links to Painters

Lumiere Gallery hosted an amazing video conference with photographer Robert Weingarten on Saturday. Of course I was was right there taking notes. He spoke about his various series. I thought the discussion about the Palette Series would make for a nice post. These photographs were shot between 2004-2007. The works are close up photographs of contemporary painter's work spaces.

His original question was whether the palettes' hues resembled the location of the artist or weather of the day. He set out to discover whether there were any correlations. And, Weingarten determined their palettes were pretty random, artists painting what they wanted to paint. View their photographed palettes at Lumiere Gallery or on Weingarten's website.

I thought it would be fun to look at the paintings behind Weingarten's palette series artists. Here are the links to some of the painters he specifically mentioned during the video conference.

Jasper Johns
Ed Moses
Richard Estes
Chuck Arnoldi
Eric Fischl
David Salle
Robert Kushner

Also, pictured to the left is my palette. I use styrofoam plates and popsicle sticks to mix my paints together.

** Send me your palette photo at hazel at hazelberger dot com by March 1st and I will include in an upcoming post with your shop link. **

February 19, 2010

Lumiere has Weingarten on View Now

What a fun stop on my way home! I rushed into Lumiere Gallery to take some notes on the current show and ended up spending almost one hour. I had a  nice chat with Tony Casadonte @LumiereGallery on twitter. Tony is the Gallery Director and very charming, yet down to earth.

But back to the Robert Weingarten show, which should not be missed and is in Atlanta at Lumiere Gallery until March 20, 2010. The works are for sale and range in price from $4000-$50,000. The smallest is 11x14" and the largest 40x60". The links below are to Weingarten's site and inlcude more work than is at the gallery. The works at the gallery may not be on the site as well. The links are just meant to inspire and motivate you while giving you the flavor of the photographer.

At Lumiere there are
15 photographs from the series 6:30 AM
13 black and white Amish photographs
13 works in the palette series
11 images from the landscape as a symphony series
2 images from Portrait Unbound the new exhibit at the High Museum. (which I will review next)

As a special highlight, the gallery is hosting a video conference with Weingarten on Saturday, Feb. 20 from 1 -2 PM. This will be a nice opportunity to learn more about photography and the artist.

By far my favorites were in the 6:30 AM series. The sunsets were all about color and clouds. These 15 works were all taken during 2003 from Weingarten's home in California overlooking the Santa Monica Bay. I am so jealous! His series stems from Alfred Steiglitz's coment that "no photographer should travel anywhere for a picture if he cannnot find one close to home." Of course, Weingarten can take a beautiful, breathe taking photograph from anywhere. I imagine...

My thought and recommendation has always been to take the photogaphs in your own yard because no other photograph lives there. Your yard/neighborhood can become your niche or in to the world of photography or any medium.

February 16, 2010

No Time to Stuff Shells

Last night my daughter requested stuffed shells. I only had a few minutes to prepare dinner though, so I improvised with this original creation. It uses the ingredients for stuffed shells without the work.

No Time to Stuff Shells
by Hazel Berger

Cook penne pasta (or another small pasta) according to package directions. Do not overcook. While the pasta is cooking, mix together the following:

2 eggs
1.5 lb ricotta cheese
1/2 C grated parmesan cheese
1 T dried parsley flakes
1 T dried basil
1 t salt
1/4 t pepper

Cover bottom of steep casserole dish with ricotta mixture. Pour drained, cooked noodles on top of ricotta. Cover with the following in order.

1 C mozzarella cheese
1 jar of Prego Heart Smart Roasted Red Pepper and Garlic 26 oz jar mixed with 1/2 jar of water
1C mozzarella cheese
1/2 C parmesan cheese

Bake at 350° for 35 minutes. Cover casserole with tin foil, if cheese starts to get too dark.

February 15, 2010

NCAA Lacrosse Duke vs Bucknell

I attended my first lacrosse game this weekend. It seemed faster than football and soccer. But the ball was hard to find in a player's cage. The game kept my interest. Duke and Bucknell seemed pretty evenly matched as the game was officially tied until an overtime was played. Duke scored in the sudden death playoff and won 12-11.

Each team had 10 players on the field at a time. There is a white/pink colored ball about the size of a tennis ball that is tossed around with these sticks pictured. Three players guard the goal in addition to the goalkeeper. Three attack the opponent's goal and three midfielders play the whole field. These college teams were made up of about 40 players each. The game seemed agressive, but not that physical. The four quarters went by quickly. This game was played at McEachern High School and the stands were fairly full for it to have just snowed in Georgia and all other activities at the cobb county schools were cancelled.

February 11, 2010

Impressions on our Children

Last night I attended a play in Atlanta titled "Brownie Points" written by Janece Shaffer at the Theatrical Outfit downtown. The play tackled motherhood, friendship, race, history, dealing with our pasts, anti-Semitism, class lines and being nice all in one and a half hours. Yes, Janece did an amazing job of making it work. But what was her message? In my mind, the play was heavy. After a long day of children and working, I wasn't really in the mindset for thinking. I believe that plays and stories in general are more effective when the message is less obvious. There seemed to be message packed into every line. Yet, she and the actresses (They were amazing!) did their job of making me think.

After the show, the audience, facilitated by Gail Evans, Georgia Tech professor, discussed racism in our society today. So, I will write about my own African American world. My son is very curious about black people and busy learning about rap music. He studied rap's history and has filled me in on the battles of the east coast and west coast. But the impression I have (through his information and his radio stations) is that two major figures in black history today think they are above the law. In that both T.I. and Lil Wayne, major players in the rap world, have/are going to serve time for possession of weapons. These aren't people I want my children knowing or associating with (white or black), yet they love the music. I'll admit Dead and Gone (T.I.) is catchy and enjoyable. But, T. I. is singing this song because he is going to jail. It's interesting to note here that also Tiger Woods and Michael Vic have not set the best examples for our children of late. (I acknowledge there are plenty of negative actions by white major players (Bill Clinton and  Bernard Madoff) as well, but since we are white, I am speaking about the black impressions my son is experiencing right now.)

What would I do if I had the ear of so many children? But better yet, why aren't our children interested in other things? Like going on a brownie, girl scout, cub/boy scout or 4-H camping trip?

My youngest had George Washington and George Washington Carver mixed up and thought our first president was black just recently. Think about this. What a great idea that our 1st, not the 44th, president was African American. What a different world we would live in! Perhaps Janece's point and question is what to do about all these negative impressions on our children. Maybe this is why the camping brownies were missing from the production. Hopefully Barack Obama (and Michelle) will set the solid example for our white and black children and white and black adults.

"Brownie Points" is running through Feb. 28, 2010. Take a look. http://www.theatricaloutfit.org/.

February 08, 2010

Do YOU care?

It's that time of year when caring is paramount. But caring should be part of our EVERY day. This is one of the challenges of parenthood. Raising children that care. How to teach it?

This is my latest that I created around caring. I love making treasuries because I can make a statement with other people's artwork. I did add my Adopt a Pet plaque because I am so crazy about my dog I found recently. I did not want her to go to the pound, so I brought her home. What a good choice! But it was a caring one.

Children learn from example and setting them daily is the best way to get the lesson across. But first of all I make it a point to be caring in my relationships. I care that my daughter forgot her sleepover bag and was willing to take it to her. I care that my son forgot his homework and drove it to school. I care that my youngest is sad and try to discover what's up through caring conversation. I care that my son's team is playing and go to basketball games. Give it a shot.

Lemons and Tangerines Treasury

My poster sketch was saving my treasury I forgot to capture as a jpg and post here. Found it today. Just for history's sake. Here are the artists.

This treasury is made up mostly of poe team photographs.  I searched Etsy for "POE Team yellow' and "poe team orange." It's amazing what you can find. Etsy must be a decorator's heaven because they are so looking for a certain color this or that.

There are two treasuries on Etsy. One is the West Treasury and one is the main Treasury. The West has 222 treasuries at a time and the Main 333. Once they fall below these numbers we can add a treasury. Only one per artist.

February 05, 2010

John Mariana Speaks at Roswell Photographic Society

This past Monday John Mariana presented highlights from his two books to the Roswell Photographic Society's members. John showed us many photographs and illustrated the before (photoshop) and after versions of many shots. One of his suggestions was to darken the corners of the photograph using the burn tool.

I didn't realize that you can really change a photograph in camera raw before bringing it into photoshop. He showed us the sliders on the different screens within raw. Pictured to the right is a flower photograph that I altered only using camera raw. Not bad... I will note that you cannot view the photograph without the "layer" if you don't have layers, so this means you have to start over if you can't remember what you did to the photo.

Another tool John pointed out was the ability to change the color within the photograph using the targeted adjustment tool. This looks cool and could save a lot of time pulling out highlights in shadows for example. He used many other buttons duing our meeting, but I think it might be easier to buy the book then decifer my notes.

February 04, 2010

Southeastern Flower Show Opens Today

The SE Flower Show opens today and I am so honored to have four images in the show. But best of all, I have received a third place for my image titled Joy, pictured to the left. And, two of my flowers, Waltzing and Spring received honorable mentions.

The Flower Show is Thurs., Fri., and Sat 10 AM until 8 PM at the Cobb Galleria. There are 105 images in the photography exhibit, chosen from 400 submissions. It was judged by Larry Winslett and Marianne Lambert. Following is the list of winners.

P-6 - Landscape

1st Phyllis Hlavac Middle Prong River - Best in Show!
2nd Tom Query Forest Primeval
3rd George Bradfield Grand

Honorable Mentions:  Kim Bates Trunks and Shadows; David Dennard Tree; Gail Stewart First Light

P-9 Flowers (this class is double the size of the others)

1st Alan Thiese Night Blooming Cereus
2nd George Bradfield Bud & Bloom
3rd John Enslow Bedazzled

Honorable Mentions: Hazel Berger Waltzing; Hazel Berger Spring; David Foster Backlit Tulip; Valerie Gruner Coneflower; Rita Songer Poppies; Murphy Townsend White Tulip; Murphy Townsend Orange Dahlia; Brad Wilson Cypripedium parviflorum; Anne Wisgo Interlude

P-11 Travel

1st John Mariana Tyrolean Village
2nd Anne Wisgo Caution
3rd Leslie Clements Margarita Island

Honorable Mentions: Leslie Clements Zapote; Roy Gordon Tuscan Landscape; Jerome Roberts Ghosts of the Past

P-13 People and Other Critters

1st John Clemmer Wet Hawk
2nd Pamela Keene Maasai Elder
3rd Hazel Berger Joy

Honorable Mentions: Kim Bates American Icon; David Dennard Dog; John Enslow Waipu'ilani; Brad Wilson Thread-waisted wasps

P-12 Water Features

1st. Jennifer Clements Naples Botanical Garden - Most Creative Image!
2nd Debbie Paulding Cypress Party
3rd Roy Gordon Biltmore Reflections

Honorable Mentions: Karen Beedle Fall Ripple; Al Levine Flow; Gittel Price Water Crystals

P-16 All Things Green

1st Meg Dreyer Untitled (Green 2-for i.d. purposes)
2nd Brad Wilson Froghouette
3rd Ted Maloof Swampscape 3

Honorable Mentions: Kim Bates Beyond Green; Brad Wilson Green Tree Frog