For several years I’ve been part of a really excellent and creative photographic group called Foto-Buzz. As well as weekly articles and videos on creative and technical aspects of photography they run a monthly challenge, the kind of thing to get you out of your comfort zone. Typically I have tried to force a fox into most of the challenges, but every now and then I embrace the moment and try for something different. As part of re-invigorating this blog I thought I’d pick a few images from the past year just to show that I have been active (if not particularly visible).

Small Dogon/Tellem statue

The above photo was taken for a challenge called ‘Spooky’. To be honest, I don’t think this image is spooky at all, but I liked it. It’s a small wooden statuette of a Dogon/Tellem figure. I went in close with a macro lens and backlit with a small video light using a 100mm macro lens. It’s processed entirely in Lightroom. I pushed all the contrasts to extremes, and cranked up the white balance to ‘very hot’. I then painted in and over sections to adjust how strong the effects come through. This is made much easier now that Lightroom has very decent masking tools.

Sell-by dates

The challenge here was ‘good enough to eat’. I took it literally and found some stock cube packs with sell-by dates and photographed them. Most of the initial processing was done in Lightroom, but the geometric shapes are created in Photoshop using layers and masks which are inverted. It’s a very simple but effective graphic technique.

Eye of a fox

The challenge here was ‘Eye Spy’, and frankly there was no way this was going to be anything but a fox. It’s one of my favourite recent images and was deliberately set off-centre, capturing only part of the second eye. Once again it’s processed entirely in Lightroom by converting into black and white and then fading areas almost to nothing, enhancing texture in other areas and finishing by painting in darks and lights as needed.

I’m currently struggling to come up with an idea for the latest challenge ‘Texture’, and only have about three days left to get something in.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Nice set of photographs and I like a redo of the site, even though I, personally, would prefer thicker, bolder font in the headline 🙂 But that’s just my graphic designer attempt, please do whatever you like 🙂
    Nice to see you back. I was trying to revive my blog in past few years but I’m struggling.

    1. The headline proved really tricky to get to a decent size and colour. That was one of the parts of the redesign that took far too long. I also couldn’t get text to show as black for some reason. I’d change it and the change would revert back to grey as soon as I pressed save. Really frustrating. Finally got it to work with some custom CSS. The main thing is that it’s upright again and should stay that way for a while. Having done the work, I’m now trying to be disciplined enough to actually use it and post some content.

    2. Darko, I hope you are able to find the time to start posting again regularly.

      1. Adele, I made two posts about our trip to Haida Gwaii last year and I started working on a final, third one but then our move to Campbell River came into focus and I couldn’t find the energy to do it. Maybe soon 😉

        1. Looking forward to it!

  2. I did really like your spooky, mostly because I found it spooky but loved the processing too

    1. Thanks Jayne! I see it as a friendly figure (it sits quietly in the corner of my den). The fiery effect in the processing was something of a surprise, but I do like it when something unexpected emerges.

  3. Nice creative shots! And I know what you mean about being active but not posting – that was me for a good few months. Then I looked at how many unposted photos had accumulated on my computer…

    I love close ups of fox eyes. The black and white seems to emphasise the character within even more.

    1. Thanks Adele! It was seeing your blog re-emerge in such fine form that got me thinking about doing more again. I need to get some variety though, which is not my strong suit.

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