Today was the launch event for the 10th Anniversary Edition of Kansas City Voices. This is a publication of Whispering Prairie Press. I was able to talk for about ten minutes about my photographic work and there was a lot of interest in my approach to creating my art. The cover shot used for this years edition was my picture called Herman. Herman was a homeless man who lived in a junkyard on the east side of Kansas City. I feel the photo speaks for itself or maybe it is better to say, it tells the story. I noted that I took the photo with out the aid of flash, reflector or an assistant. I shot pictures as he was being interviewed and then worked with the image in my digital darkroom until it I felt it was finished.
I talked briefly about my process at getting to the heart of a photo. One example I used was a very recent work called Ghost. It has garnered a lot of comments. What I started with was a shot that at fist I felt it was just a blown shot. You can see it here.
To me it was a trash shot until I noticed my step granddaughter peeking out from behind my daughter who is trying to get a costume on another one of my granddaughters. It’s Halloween just before the trip out for trick or treating. Her look intrigued me so I started with Lightroom cropping and composing the piece as I wanted it. I took the shot with my old Nikon D70 and it was a RAW image file so I had a lot of options open to me. The first draft of the piece ended with this version:
I used tools to adjust the bokeh. This was a difficult task given the apparent flatness of the image. After several attempts I got what I wanted and went on to bring out the “ghost” that I was seeing in the image. She’d done a good job on her makeup so I went to various tools (I call them toy tools) until I settled on VintageScene to start the finishing work. Once I was done I brought it back into Lightroom where I used Photoshop to clean up things and tighten adjustments. I use Lightroom as my tool to keep track of photos and files so it is important to stay with my workflow process.
I ended up with the piece below:
This is my piece I call Ghost. The important part here is that I caught this and created it from a throw away shot. Sometimes you don’t really know what you photographed until it sits on the shelf awhile. So be patient.
As to the launch event, It was great fun and a chance to meet other artists and writers from Kansas City. Buy a copy of this publication and support them with a donation.
Nice wizdom buddy
On the move! Sent from my iPhone
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