Today was Non Photography Day! The aim of the day is to enjoy the moment instead of trying to record it for posterity. Luckily I wasn’t doing anything wildly interesting visually today!
Paul Butzi writes that he is half-sympathetic to the cause being championed by Becca Bland. I have to admit she has a point too, but it’s a hobby, and a safe, enjoyable one at that. If I had something interesting to photograph I would have!
Maybe we should call “enjoying the moment” by another name? Call it “taking a non-photograph” instead. Enjoy the sun, and the peace and quiet or watch the world go by as you sit down with your lunch.
Did you take a non-photograph today?
Last year Ray D’Arcy and his team asked thousands of people all over Ireland to send in photographs to Today FM on October 1st. It was a huge success with over 20,000 photos sent in and eventually whittled down to 2,000. I had a few photos included which you can see in the US Book category on my blog.
30,000 copies of the US Book were sold, and yesterday, Childline were presented with a cheque for 306,000 Euro. That’s a great achievement and hopefully similar projects involving the public will happen again!
Her photos capture emotional children who are distraught and frightened. Tears run down their faces, hands are held to eyes to hide tears. She apparently works them up to this state herself. Who would do that to a child?
She is taking babies, toddlers under three years old, stripping them of their clothes and then provoking them to various states of emotional distress, anger, rage etc. — so that she can then take photos of them this way to “illustrate her personal beliefs.”
Well done Thomas for standing up to her.
You may have seen this already, it’s on delicious, but it’s something I’ll read over later so I want to mention it. This airbrush tutorial is very detailed, showing each step with accompanying screenshots.
The result is quite a stunning image in the Playboy tradition of perfect skin and tones. Fake but it’s what people want!
I posted a similar touch-up tutorial a few months ago, but it concentrated on general techniques for giving a portrait more punch.
PSPI has long been the best way of running Photoshop in the Win32 version of GIMP. I’ve waited for a Linux version with anticipation and it has now been ported! Not all plugins will work, but I tried the trial version of PTLens and once I pointed it at the .dat file it worked perfectly, if quite slowly.
As well as the efforts to run Photoshop actions in GIMP this is a great addition to the GIMP arsenal of plugins and tools to aid photographers!
Need Photoshop plugins? This article reviews 10 free Photoshop plugins. I installed the Virtual Photographer one. It works quite well, although the preview window is a little wonky and don’t move the window or it won’t redraw.
Jakub ‘jimmac’ Steiner has published several demos of the GIMP in action.
Subjects such as defining shortcuts, image templates, transformations and paths and more are covered. Use the mirrors, because I haven’t downloaded the videos myself yet!
A new Noise Ninja release candidate is out now for Linux, Mac and Windows!
I tried the Linux version, and despite having a strange file selector it worked really well! You can try it for yourself, but the unregistered version saves images with a watermark. I’m going to test it on a few more images and may purchase it myslf.
Make sure you download a camera profile for your camera. The 20D one works well!
Nuggets of Gold
Flickr Interestingness uses a secret algorithm to decide what is interesting, but is biased against users who consistently get a lot of attention. Up until last month I would add my photos to many groups in the hope of attracting attention and eyeballs and yes, a number of my photos are in the interesting list but it was getting harder for me to get high results.
Last month I got married, took the month off and hardly touched a computer. Most of the photos published that month haven’t been added to any group so I think that helped me when it came to publishing this photo.
There are a number of photo groups on Flickr where members are encouraged to leave comments on the photographs of other users. If you look at my Swan photo again some of them are listed down the right hand side. That’s a good way of getting attention. Don’t even consider posting to these groups if you haven’t got time to participate yourself. For every photo you post, you may have to leave comments on up to 5 other photos. It’s extra work, but viewing other people’s work is inspiring and always a good way to improve your own technique.
The thumbnail looks good. The swans have these bright orange beaks and are looking into the camera. It screams “Click Me!”
I uploaded the photo to Flickr around 10:30am Irish time but I didn’t add it to any groups until much later in the day when the US is awake. I have consistently noticed that photos I add to Flickr groups early in the morning don’t build up the same number of views as quickly as when they’re posted later on in the day.
One other factor that interestingness is judged upon is where traffic comes from. If someone links to your photos from outside Flickr like happened here that will help a lot. I have seen this a few times and each time it made a noticeable difference to how high a particular photo went.
And then add some Flickr magic to finish off!
What backup medium lasts 50 years and will be as easy to restore in 2056 as it is now? Mike Johnston writes that computers and backup systems are too complex today and that, “we shouldn’t all need to gradually become full-time archivists” to hold on to precious memories for decades. There are some great comments, and Mike has summarised a few of the ideas expressed in a follow up post. I may even purchase that DAM book.
What is that medium? I don’t know, but it was prompted by Mike’s story when he was cleaning up a bench in a darkroom:
“On the floor behind it, in all the dust and spiderwebs, I found a strip of three 120 negatives. The picture in the middle was of a nude woman in one of those 1940s-style pinup poses that hide as much as they reveal.
Naturally, I cleaned off the negative and made a print of it.
It wasn’t a very good picture, and the negative had been underdeveloped. The point is that it was at least 50 years old at the time, and it had lasted all that time—not only without pampering, but in the absence of human care of any sort.”