365.185 Abstraktes Bild

On the back of the camera, this looked like Captain America somehow.

In the computer, it looked fairly dull, at first, but then began to transform: a discotheque; a growth of some foreign mold or crystal; superman’s skin, even; there were others.

In the end, it just became an abstraction, and I’m fine with that.

D7000. EL Nikkor 50mm f/2.8, on 100mm extension. ISO100, 1/25th (AP Mode), f/2.8, -2EV. Levels, mid-contrast, definition, and some other slight pushes in Aperture.

And now I need to clean this mess up… Insofar As I planned on shooting the same thing with the same tools all week, I didn’t put my toys away a single day: for shame. This place is now a wreck. Yuck.

But I made some pretty pictures! So that’s win, I suppose.

365.145 Water of Life

“He tried to focus on her, but past and future were merging into the present, blurring her image. He saw her in countless ways and positions and settings.”

Not much to say about this one… I read that passage last night, dogeared the page, came home from work today and made this picture.

Does this capture the quote? I think it does, but maybe you feel otherwise. It’s ok either way.

And actually, I do have something to more to say…

When I first had the idea to try illustrating a novel, I started writing down important things—or things that I saw as important—or memorable scenery, and I planned to go back later and shoot, say, a stillsuit, or the pain box, or a desert storm, or folding space, or etc.

But now I see that there is another, more interesting way to approach this series of illustrations, and that is what I’ve done here: mark passages that appeal to something within me, and illustrate the feeling, rather than the thing.

Maybe that’s a key to photography itself: if we want to do more than make bad catalogue photos (not that there’s anything wrong with bad catalogue photos: the world is in constant need of such photos), we could strive to capture a feeling, perhaps an emotion or thought or intuition or whatever, but capture that which lies beyond the object itself.

I’m sure I heard this somewhere before, so it’s likely that this strikes you as banal.

If so, apologies, but perhaps it bears repeating for relative n00bs like me.

D7000. EL Nikkor 50mm f/2.8, extended by 100mm. ISO100, 1/250th, f/2.8. SB-700 at 1/128th fired from about 8″ away and triggered by a set of Cactus v5s. Heavy processing in Aperture, mostly to bring out all the variation in the big orange swath in the upper left.

^Herbert, Frank. Dune. (Radnor, Pennsylvania: Chilton Book Company, 1965; Berkley Medalion Edition, Sixth Printing, 1977), 361.

365.144 a ceremony

“Paul felt the diminishment of his self as he advanced into the center of the circle. It was as though he lost a fragment of himself and sought it here.”

After numerous failed attempts to capture the morning light in the way that I wanted, I strapped on the EL Nikkor and returned to my project to illustrate novels with macro abstractions.

Good times, but I wonder if I captured it… and I wonder if I shouldn’t leave the narrative to the viewer, if I should enforce it on you or let you discover it for yourself. I think this is an issue most arts have, and I would like to expound on this, but I’m feeling a bit out of it at present. Perhaps later, if I come up with something worth saying.


D7000. EL Nikkor 50mm f/2.8, on 100mm extension. ISO100, 1 second, f/2.8. Moderate Aperture enhansements.

^Herbert, Frank. Dune. (Radnor, Pennsylvania: Chilton Book Company, 1965; Berkley Medalion Edition, Sixth Printing, 1977), 314.

365.127 Apocalyptic, perhaps

Another Macro shot of the Collier Kaleidoscope, and another day where I have very little to say about this particular shot.

One thing that did cause some photographic consternation today (and the bulk of the day was rather consternating… I’m not sure why, but it’s drawing to a close, so gogo): Photoshop CS5.5’s inability to photomerge abstract images like this.

I took a set of 20 shots, fed them into Photomerge, and got the ‘some images could not be merged’ message. Some were pretty much solid grey, so I omitted those and tried again with 10 images: Fail. Ommited the ones that were mostly a gradient, and tried again with 6 images: Fail. Tried with 4 shots: Fail. Tried with 2: Fail. Maybe CS6 will get a bit smarter…

This shot wasn’t a part of the panorama, but it’s representative of the most complex images in the lot, but Ps5.1 couldn’t do anything with them. I tried to arrange them by hand, but Ps wouldn’t show me where I was moving the individual frames (this may be due to the relative age of my aging mbp, I guess).


But I got this one, so go me, I guess.

D7000. EL-Nikkor 50mm f/2.8, stacked on 104mm extension. ISO100, 1/4, f/2.8, minor levels adjustments in Aperture.