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Thursday, July 16, 2009

More ridiculous rules for photography!

The Bar Harbor Maine Fine Arts Festival has in their rules...

*Note about photography: Because of the spread of digital and other "mass produced" means, photography does not fall under the guidelines for original, one-of-a-kind or true limited edition art. However, due to "popular demand" it has been decided to allow photography to be exhibited provided the artist certifies that the image will be part of a true limited edition. In other words, a provenance must be included with each individual image certifying that the image will be reproduced in only a limited number edition of 250 or less after which the creator/master files will be destroyed.

Oooooooooh ppppleeeeeeeeeeeeeease! Allow photography to be exhibited!!!!!!This is just another ridiculous rule written by people who don't have a clue about how complex digital photography and digital printing can be at a professional level. They have this stupid notion that you just push a few buttons on the computer and everything magically happens, perfect every time. Rules like this dictate not only how you market your work at their show but it would lock you in to marketing those images in the same manner everywhere else. I don't have a big problem with the 250 part because quite frankly its hard to sell that many of an image, especially when they come in large expensive sizes. However, NO PHOTOGRAPHER DESTROYS THEIR MASTER FILES! I sure don't know any that do. Not a chance in hell that I'm going to start doing it either. Why don't they try and tell Ansel Adams to start destroying his negatives that have all hit the 250 print mark. Good Luck!

OK...I'll quit bitch'n and tell you about these pictures. Tuesday night I went to an opening reception for a photography exhibit that my friend Gary Kelly has at the Gallery of the Uptown Theater in Grand Prairie. If you follow this blog you may remember that Gary and I did a partial Route 66 trip back in January. Many of the images in his exhibit were from that trip. About dusk I pulled my own camera out to do some shooting of my own. The image at the top is from the street in front of the theater looking through the windows where his work is hanging. These bottom two are examples to show you how simple it is to quickly create great images every time. Actually, I'm being a little sarcastic here because learning how to approach an image, knowing what you can do, and then learning how to do it takes some effort. This type of learning curve with digital is never ending by the way.

The image on the left was created from 5 exposures that were processed in Photomatix Pro. Sometimes PP gets it right and sometimes it needs some help. I guess if I always knew the perfect tone mapping settings I would nail it everytime. Didn't nail this one. For one the sky wasn't quite right and some areas lacked the contrast they needed. To make the image on the right, I processed a raw image that had the best sky and good detail in some other important areas. I made another layer from it and masked off parts of it that I didn't want. I also processed another raw image in order to use the part of the marque that said September 26th. Again I masked everything except the part of the marque that I wanted. I also ended up with three different curves adjustment layers that had various parts of them masked. More than likely when I actually print one I will end up tweeking it some more. Maybe someday they will have a "Make it perfect" button in Photoshop and I can just punch it and then print 250 of them out real quick.
So what's the significance of September 26th? A group called Beatlegras will be playing that night at the Uptown. It's also my birthday!