James C Photography: Blog https://jamescphotography.com/blog en-us (C) 2021 James C Photography (James C Photography) Wed, 07 Apr 2021 01:09:00 GMT Wed, 07 Apr 2021 01:09:00 GMT https://jamescphotography.com/img/s/v-12/u640325041-o424156660-50.jpg James C Photography: Blog https://jamescphotography.com/blog 80 120 JamesConn.art a new website discussing crypto art assets and NFTs https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2021/4/jamesconn-art-crypto-art-assets-NFTs  

James C Photography has launched a new website for digital artists, art collectors, and crypto enthusiasts who want to learn about the dynamic art and crypto art industry. The site offers information regarding the revolution within the art industry as artists digitize their physical art and create unique digital artworks to be bought and sold on blockchain.

 

It is time to pivot. The pandemic has been hard on small businesses and my business has been no exception. The numbers don’t add up anymore, so it is time to make a change. Shifting from a service based business of portrait photography to one of producing and selling artistic assets has been in the long term business plan since the beginning. This is the time to make that change. 

 

Crypto currencies are surging. With the stimulus needed to prop up the United States economy, inflation is on peoples’ minds. Shifting money from inflation sensitive fiat currency to cryptocurrency seems to make the most sense. Traditionalists see the volatility of crypto and want more stability, investing in crypto assets such as NFTs and crypto art ensures a more stable financial instrument. 

 

Previously created physical artworks are being digitized in 2D, 3D, AR, VR, and programmable artworks. New pieces are being created with the intent to take advantage of the unique nature of the digital aspects, such as video, animation, and programmability. With this change, James C Photography will be rebranded as JamesConn.art where we will be discussing some of the techniques being used and new technologies that promise to revolutionize the space. See the new website at  https://JamesConn.art and enjoy the posts that have been created and are now publicly available. 

 

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(James C Photography) blockchain crypto art invest in crypto james conn jamesconn.art nfts https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2021/4/jamesconn-art-crypto-art-assets-NFTs Wed, 07 Apr 2021 01:08:36 GMT
Bitch You Lost meme https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2020/11/bitch-you-lost-meme Bitch You Lost memeBitch You Lost meme

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(James C Photography) https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2020/11/bitch-you-lost-meme Tue, 10 Nov 2020 02:03:13 GMT
$10 Million Increase to California Arts https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2020/1/10-million-increase-to-california-arts    The California Arts Council’s mission is advancing California through the arts and creativity. The Council administers grants to support the state’s arts and cultural communities through the development of partnerships with the public and private sectors to enhance the cultural, educational, social, and economic growth of California. The grant programs support arts education in school and community settings; system-engaged youth; recently incarcerated individuals; local and community economic development; recent immigrants and refugee communities; native communities; veterans and their families; and various arts service organizations, and are designed to serve populations and communities who are underrepresented in the arts and have reduced access to arts programs. The 2019 Budget Act provided $10 million ongoing General Fund for grants made by the Council.

   California Cultural Districts were established in 2015 through Chapter 396, Statutes of 2015 (AB 189). These districts leverage the state’s artistic and cultural assets, and celebrate California’s diversity, helping to grow and sustain grassroots arts and cultural opportunities, increasing the visibility of local artists and community participation in local arts and culture, and promoting socioeconomic and ethnic diversity. The Budget includes $9 million one-time General Fund to support the existing 14 cultural districts and the addition of cultural districts in underrepresented areas, such as the Central Valley and Inland Empire. The Arts Council will coordinate outreach and engagement with non-governmental organizations and the philanthropic community in this effort. The Budget also includes $1 million one-time General Fund for the Arts Council to develop disaster preparedness guidelines and best practices at the county level to protect and preserve artifacts during a disaster.
-excerpt from the governor's full budget summary 2020-21

Thank you governor Newsom for expanding the arts program and giving us Californian artists more chance for grants.

 

Gavin Newsom apportions 10 million dollars to support the California Arts Council

 

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(James C Photography) art program budget cac california california arts council the arts https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2020/1/10-million-increase-to-california-arts Fri, 17 Jan 2020 06:51:44 GMT
Abstracts for the End of Spring https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/6/abstracts-for-the-end-of-spring Here are my latest abstract smoke art pieces created at the end of spring. Let me know which you like best.

blue ice abstract artIceabstract ice

nearly white smoke snowflakeAbstract smoke snowflakea snowflake with a hint of yellow in the highs and purple in the lows

Abstract design of smokeAbstract design of smokesmoking white design

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(James C Photography) abstract artwork abstract photographic art James Conn JamesCPhotography nonrepresentational Orange county smoke art unusual abstract art https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/6/abstracts-for-the-end-of-spring Tue, 26 Jun 2018 00:47:27 GMT
Available Light Photo Session with Krista https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/3/available-light-photo-session-with-krista One of the most difficult things to do in photography is to create great images without having control over the light on your subject. The only way to do this is to move the subject around the light until it falls on them in the best way. This shoot was chosen for the sheer challenge of it. 

We went to Long Beach again after dark to shoot with available light. Available light refers to any source of light that is not explicitly supplied by the photographer for the purpose of taking photos. In this case, we found a mixture of sodium vapor, LED, and incandescent lights. The different lights have varying colors and render  the spectrum of colors in incomplete ways. Locations had to be chosen not for their interest but for the quality of the light in the area. The blue tile location had fewer mixed lights and more overhead light direction. This gives a more natural looking daytime feel. The overhead lights were LED and a bit blue in color. In front of Krista are sodium lights that are warm yellow-orange. This warm and cool combination really added interest from the color. Color combined with the excellent posing Krista provided created some stunning images.

 
Woman posing pinup style in front of a blue tile backgroundBlue Tile Pinup with Darling Krista 1Pinup like dress on this beautiful woman with stockings up to her thighs Beautiful woman posing on the sink in a dressBlue Tile Standing on sink with Darling KristaPinup like dress on this beautiful woman with stockings up to her thighs while she stands on the sink and poses
Woman posing long legs and arms covering herself in front of a blue tile backgroundBlue Tile Pinup with Darling Krista 2Pinup like dress on this beautiful woman with stockings up on her long legs Beauty posing pinup style in front of a blue tile backgroundBlue Tile Pinup with Darling Krista spreadingParting her legs slightly this beautiful woman sits atop of the sink
Her long legs and arms leading the eye to her beautyReclining pose of the of beautiful Darling KristaBeauty posing on the long bench in front of the foliage in Long Beach Long Beach brick road on which the beauty poses in ballet styleDarling posing in ballet dance style on the brick roadHer long appendages lead the eye to her beautiful pin up style dress

 

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(James C Photography) available light beautiful woman in long beach james conn jamescphotography long beach photographer pinup portrait photographer in long beach https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/3/available-light-photo-session-with-krista Sun, 11 Mar 2018 15:00:00 GMT
Quick Portrait Session with Darling Krista https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/3/quick-portrait-session-with-darling-krista With our busy lives, there isn't always time to do a full shoot. In these cases a quick portrait session can meet your needs. Darling Krista was kind enough to join me for this session. We stopped at the Pike in Long Beach to create some images. Being there at night there was little light and the street lamps were less than ideal. We made the most of it and still came out with some great images. The available light is a sodium vapor lamp, which is a typical street lamp. It gives off a warm yellow-orange color. Rather than correcting this is post, I decided to keep it and play up the warmth by placing the lamp between myself and Krista. This flooded the lens with the light creating a little haze and a decrease in contrast. I think it added something special to the close up portraits. What do you think?

Young beauty in a dress clutching her chest in from of a wood plank wall.Sweet portrait of this beautyIn the glow of the sodium vapor lamp, Darling Krista holds her hands close to her heart. Young beauty in a dress touching her hair and face in from of a wood plank wall.Beauty grabs her hair in the glowIn the glow of the sodium vapor lamp, Darling Krista grabs her hair and thinks about being naughty
Sodium Glow Portrait 3 Young female in a dress sitting on the back of a green chair while fixing her shoe.Sodium Glow Unusual PoseUnusual posing from Darling Krista sitting backwards in a chair. Not the right way to sit in a chair.
Young female in a dress sitting backwards on a green chair in from of a wood plank wall.Posing challenge 2Unusual posing from Darling Krista sitting backwards in a chair.  

 

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(James C Photography) available light photography beautiful james conn jamescphotography long beach pike portrait photography portrait session quick photo session sodium vapor light https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/3/quick-portrait-session-with-darling-krista Thu, 08 Mar 2018 08:04:08 GMT
abstract smoke photography fine art https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/2/abstract-smoke-photography-fine-art It has been a while since I've posted some of my abstract smoke art. Daily life has a way of chipping away at my creative energy, but energy must be given to artistic expression. I took the time and was really rewarded with the most creative and intricate work completed yet. I just want to share this in hopes that it can do the same for you as well.

Coral reef in blue, black, and white smokeFine Art Abstract Coral ReefAbstract smoke photograph resembling a coral reef.

Coral reef in blue, purple, black, and white.Fine Art Smoke Photograph Coral 2An abstract fine art photography of smoke resembling a coral reef

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(James C Photography) art near me available digital artwork fine art photography jamescphotography photography prints https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2018/2/abstract-smoke-photography-fine-art Sun, 04 Feb 2018 02:05:42 GMT
Huntington Beach Dumpsters on Parade 2017 https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/10/huntington-beach-dumpsters-on-parade-2017 Yesterday, I had the pleasure of assisting at the Huntington Beach Dumpsters on Parade event. This event is put on by the Huntington Beach Public Art Alliance in order to help beautify the HB downtown area. They selected 30 local artists from a list of submissions to paint 30 dumpsters which are visible from public areas. They provided up to $200 reimbursement to the artists for their painting supplies and grand prize of $2500 to the juried contest winner.

The artists pushed their dumpsters down Huntington Beach's Main street at 10 a.m. to the pleasure of all in attendance. After the procession, each artist had a booth on Main street in which they could sell their artwork. This was a big win for the local community and the local artists. I hope to see more community events supporting the arts in the near future. If this interests you, please contact your local city counsel and suggest doing a similar event in your city.

Supporting local artists and their community.A good turn out for the HB art eventHundreds show for the Huntington Beach Dumpsters on Parade event. Supporting local artists and their community. Art designs for HB dumpsters on paradeLocal artists submitted dumpster proposalsLocals vote on which proposed art designs will be painted on HB dumpsters
Supporting local artists by the Huntington Beach Local Art AllianceThe procession of dumpstersThe procession of dumpsters down Main street in Huntington Beach Huntington Beach supports these local artists and give them a chance to showcase their artwork.Artist's children ride in the dumpstersThe artist's children ride in the dumpsters as they are pushed down Main street in Huntington Beach.
Artists begin pushing their painted dumpsters down Main street in Huntington BeachCarefully maneuvering these painted masterpieces down Main streetManeuvering these painted masterpieces down Main street was a task for some as they put hours into these dumpsters Darling Krista supports the local Huntington Beach art sceneLocal artist Darling Krista poses next to her dumpsterLocal artist Darling Krista (seen on the left) poses next to her dumpster which took a full weekend to paint

 

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(James C Photography) dumpsters on parade huntington beach art huntington beach community huntington beach public art alliance james conn jamescphotography supporting local artists https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/10/huntington-beach-dumpsters-on-parade-2017 Sun, 08 Oct 2017 19:02:38 GMT
Who Owns the Rights To My Photos, Copyright Usage https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/8/who-owns-the-rights-to-my-photos-copyright-usage Pertains to the use of photographs and their copyrightLaptop with the Copyright symbol on the screenWell laid out desktop with a laptop displaying the copyright symbol

From time to time I find my photographs on other peoples' social media accounts without permission. I brought this up to a few of my fellow photographers and their opinions were mixed on what rights others have to use our photographs and conversely what rights we have. This led me to research the subject of photography and copyrights.

I decided to make this post in FAQ format so that it is easy to read and digest.

 

  • Who owns the rights to my photos? The photographer! In general, copyright gives the author of the photos copyright for each picture from the time the photo is taken through the author's lifetime plus 50 years. The photographer can license, sell, and resell any photos as they see fit.
  • Do I need to register my photos with the U.S. Copyright Office? No, you do not need to register each photo with the U.S. Copyright Office, but it does make your case stronger in case you need to pursue legal action.
  • Do I need to register each photo with the U.S. Copyright Office? You can, but I would suggest doing a group-register. Currently you can register a maximum of five hundred previously published photos at a time. They need to have been published in the same year. You can register an unlimited number of unpublished photos at once. The fee for group-registration is currently $30.
  • Is it necessary to place a copyright symbol© on my images? No, It may have been necessary to place a copyright © before March 1, 1989, but this is no longer required. Despite this, it is wise to place a copyright on your work to enforce the idea to those who may be on the fence about stealing your work.
  • Does copyright cover the concept, idea, or techniques behind my photo? No, copyright only covers your work. If someone else photographs the same concepts or ideas with the same techniques and even if the photo looks very similar, there has been no copyright infringement. This also includes making substantial changes to your work creating a new artwork.
  • How long can I wait to register my photos? You can register your photos at any time. If you register you photos within three months of publication allows more legal options.
  • Are there any exceptions to copyright? Yes, under copyright law “fair use”doctrine, libraries, schools, and non-commercial broadcasters can sometimes use your pictures without permission. The stipulating is that the use is limited to educational and noncommercial activities which do not diminish the future market potential of the photograph.
  • Can I take a picture of a copyrighted photograph? Yes you may take a picture of a copyrighted object under the “fair use” doctrine if it is for comment, criticism, research, or teaching purposes. However you may be infringing if you use it for commercial purposes.
  • Can I place a copyright symbol on all my photos even if I don't register them with the Copyright Office? Yes, the symbol is official since you own the copyright of the work with or without the symbol on the artwork.
  • If I'm hired to work for a company as an employee, do I own the copyright to the photos taken on the job? No, this is considered work for hire. The copyright belongs to the company.
  • If I'm hired for a job as a contractor, do I own the copyright to the photos taken on the job? If you signed a work for hire agreement then no you do not own the copyright. If you were contacted to get a specific picture, then you may not own the copyright. If you were given an assignment from a magazine, you likely own the copyright to the images you produce. Since this is such a gray area, make sure to discuss with those hiring you and read all contracts you sign thoroughly.
  • If someone infringes on my copyright, how much time do I have to take legal action against them? The statute of limitations on copyright infringement is three years. After that you have no recourse for damages.

Note that this post does not substitute for legal counsel. Also copyright law does change from time to time so do some research on your specific topics and for your local region.

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(James C Photography) business copyright office group registration james conn jamescphotography photography and copyright law understanding photographic copyright https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/8/who-owns-the-rights-to-my-photos-copyright-usage Sat, 05 Aug 2017 00:15:45 GMT
Adobe Lightroom Mobile Gets an Update https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/7/adobe-lightroom-mobile-gets-an-update I use Lightroom on my computer on a daily basis. Truth be told, the mobile version was nearly useless to me. There were some essentials tools missing from it that made it so. With the latest update, one of these tools is now available. If you were on the fence about Lightroom mobile before, it is time to reevaluate.

The most notable tool now available is the Lightroom Adjustment Brush. This tool allows the user to apply local adjustments to specific areas of an image without effecting the rest of the image. There is also an erase option that acts much like an brush on a masking layer. This adjustment brush is the most powerful tool in the Lightroom arsenal, one that I use when editing is required but Photoshop is too time consuming. 

Screenshot Adobe Lightroom Mobile Adjustment Brush Tool in action showing maskingAdobe Lightroom Mobile Adjustment Brush ToolScreenshot Adobe Lightroom Mobile Adjustment Brush Tool in action showing masking

Next change is the addition of the Details tab. This includes adjustments for sharpening and noise reduction. While it is still not as fully functional as the desktop version, it is still a huge addition. An adjustment to sharpening can really make your images pop, especially when used selectively on your subject to make it stand out from the rest of the image.

Screenshot of Screenshot Adobe Lightroom Details section for sharpening and noise reductionScreenshot Adobe Lightroom Mobile Details tabScreenshot of Screenshot Adobe Lightroom Details section for sharpening and noise reduction

Lightroom mobile now supports raw editing from a spread of cameras and possibly your camera. In addition, there were also changes to the iPad and Android interfaces (which are rather minor in my opinion).

That's it for this update. Let me know what you think of the updates and how you use the new tools.

*Images from Adobe (All rights reserved)

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(James C Photography) adobe lightroom mobile adobe suite james conn jamescphotography mobile photo editing photo manipulation update review retouching https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/7/adobe-lightroom-mobile-gets-an-update Wed, 26 Jul 2017 18:16:53 GMT
Top Instagram Hashtags in June https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/top-instagram-hashtags-in-june Social media (specifically Instagram) is ruled by the hashtag. You may have the best pictures and content and still not get noticed without the right tags. This last month I spent some time researching the top hashtags to use by photographers in the US and on Instagram. Here is a short list of these top creators: Selena Gomez, Zendaya, Rehahn, Dmitry Chapala, and Zalando.

While the following list is filled with some of the best hashtags for portrait photographers, do not use these without some thought. Make sure that the tags you use are applicable to your content.

#SmilePowerDay
#SmilePower
#SmileDay
#SmileMore
#SmileBig 
#FathersDayWeekend
#FathersDay2017
#ILoveMyDad
#selfie
#SelfieDay
#NationalSelfieDay
#NationalSunglassesDay
#SunglassesDay
#SunglassesFashion
#SocialMediaDay
#SocialMediaDay2017
#SMDay
#summervacation
#summerholiday
#portraitpage
#portraitphotography
#portraits
#portraits_ig
 

 

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(James C Photography) Instagram JamesCPhotography June Social media best of business hashtags photography photooftheday portrait top https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/top-instagram-hashtags-in-june Sun, 25 Jun 2017 18:51:46 GMT
Passing of a Loved One https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/passing-of-a-loved-one I have been reluctant to share this post due to the very personal nature of it, but I think it shows a very important part of life that we rarely discuss and even more rarely memorialize in photographs. Death and the effects on our family. My grandfather passed away about a year ago. The family gathered around to support each other and celebrate the life that he lived. It was a bittersweet time as he led a great life, but we all feel the significant loss.

Dark portrait and background while grandmother lit by the sun holds it together.Grandmother after FuneralA dark portrait in tone dealing with the grief of death of a loved one.

I took this portrait of my grandmother after the funeral reception. It was a very sensitive time for all of us but her especially, having lost a husband of decades. The portrait was created with a dark atmosphere to show the darker emotions of sadness and loss. From that darkness the sunlight highlights her face as his memory will continue with her. Her hands are held together in a structured manner as she was "holding it" together and being strong for all of us. Her smile puts a nice face on the image but from her eyes one can see that something is missing, that the light is dimmer following such a significant loss.

This is a difficult time and many of us want to avoid such difficult and stressful situations. Death however will come for us all. Let us memorialize such feeling through our art. Express ourselves rather than dismissing such feelings. I hope to continue to use my art to deal with my emotions and help others begin down this road as well.

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(James C Photography) JamesCPhotography art emotions grief loss memorial photography portrait self-expression https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/passing-of-a-loved-one Wed, 14 Jun 2017 18:42:02 GMT
Art Battle OC https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/art-battle-oc Art Battle OC at Art Supply Warehouse

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(James C Photography) https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/6/art-battle-oc Mon, 12 Jun 2017 03:56:36 GMT
Top Instagram Hashtags in May https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/top-instagram-hashtags-in-may Social media (specifically Instagram) is ruled by the hashtag. You may have the best pictures and content and still not get noticed without the right tags. This last month I spent some time researching the top portrait photographers in the US and on Instagram to find the best hashtags. Here is a short list of these creators: Joe McNally, Eric Lafforgue, Peter Hurley, Rehahn, Dmitry Ageez, and Martic Schoeller.

While the following list is filled with some of the best hashtags for portrait photographers, do not use these without some thought. Make sure that the tags you use are applicable to your content.

#fashion
#fashionable
#fashionblog
#fashionista
#fashionpost
#fashionstyle
#filmisnotdead
#filmphotography
#fineartphotography
#ig_masterpiece
#ig_mood
#ig_shotz
#igshotz
#instaghesboro
#makeportraits
#passionpassport
#photooftheday
#picoftheday
#portraitoftheday
#portraitpage
#portraitphotography
#portraits
#portraits_ig
#profile_vision
 

 

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(James C Photography) Social media best of business hashtags photography photooftheday picoftheday portrait top https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/top-instagram-hashtags-in-may Tue, 30 May 2017 07:24:20 GMT
Nudes at Mormon Rock https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/nudes-at-mormon-rock I don't typically photograph nudes, but once in a while I get a request with a good concept. This one brought me to Mormon Rocks. There are giant sandstone rocks that have been eroded by the elements creating interesting features.

While it was a challenge to work in the bright sun, with the use of a large reflector several stunning images were created. Here are some of the images.

Standing in front of the large sandstone rocks the nude figure partially coveredImplied nude at Mormon RockStanding in front of the large sandstone rocks the nude figure partially covered Next to the large sandstone rock the nude figure faces the bright worldFacing the light nudeNext to the large sandstone rock the nude figure faces the bright world
Nude figure curled up in the small sandstone stone caveCurled up in stoneNude figure curled up in the small sandstone stone cave The nude figure holds her legs sitting in front of the small sandstone cave photographyHolding Herself Together NudeThe nude figure holds her legs sitting in front of the small sandstone cave
The two nude figures walk down the railroad tracks in the hillsWalking Down the Tracks NudeThe two nude figures walk down the railroad tracks in the hills The two nude figures stand side by side with their entangled arms raised highThe Strength of TwoThe two nude figures stand side by side with their entangled arms raised high

 

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(James C Photography) Mormon Rocks art fine art implied natural light nude photography portrait https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/nudes-at-mormon-rock Fri, 19 May 2017 00:29:31 GMT
Simple Exposure Triangle - Photography Basics https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/simple-exposure-triangle---photography-basics In photography, exposure is the amount of light in an area. It is how much light gets on the film or on the digital sensor in your DSLR. This amount is determined by a concept of the exposure triangle. The three points are the shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. There is a balance between the length of time the film or sensor is exposed (shutter speed), the amount of light coming through the lens (aperture width), and the sensitivity of the film or sensor (ISO). 

Shutter speed controls the length of time that the film or sensor is exposed to light. Shutter speeds are typically measured in fractions of a second, for example (1/15th of a second), 1/30, 1/60, 1/125. Slow shutter speeds allow more light into the camera sensor and are used for low-light and night photography, while fast shutter speeds help to freeze motion. 

Aperture is the diameter of the opening inside the lens diaphragm. Typically this can be changed to allow or alter the amount of light coming through the lens. This is displayed in f-stops (f/1.4, f/4, f/32). This has a side effect of changing the depth of field.

ISO is the sensitivity of the film to light or the simulation of that idea on a digital camera sensor. The higher the ISO the more sensitive the film is to light (that is getting the correct exposure is faster with more sensitive film). 

Here is an illustration to show the balance:

The balance of exposure in photography is between shutter speed, aperture, and ISO.Photography Exposure TriangleThe balance of exposure in photography is between shutter speed, aperture, and ISO.

When you take a picture you must figure out how much or how little light is needed. This is called metering and is typically handled through your camera system (we will go into that at another time). If there is too much light in your image, you should lower the shutter speed or ISO or reduce the aperture. If there is too little light in your image, you would work the reverse. The exciting things come from balancing these three to get the artistic effect that you want. If you want to capture a fast moving subject, you need a fast shutter speed. Then the image may be too dark so you must balance that shutter speed by opening the aperture and/or increase the ISO. These are the basics of exposure in photography. Next time, I will discuss the pros and cons of using the different points of the exposure triangle and what artistic things you can do with them.

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(James C Photography) ISO Photography aperture camera digital SLR exposure exposure compensation f number film speed lens shutter speed technology topic https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/5/simple-exposure-triangle---photography-basics Sun, 07 May 2017 04:15:16 GMT
Bad Photography Phrases https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/3/bad-photography-phrases Here are the phrases that irk me an my fellow photographers.

"Canon or Nikon?" - Honestly, the brand of camera that is used doesn't matter. Each brand is competitive. Each has pros and cons. It matters more what level of camera (point and shoot, entry level DSLR, full frame DSLR, Medium format, etc. And far more important is the experience and the knowledge of the photographer wielding the camera.

"I'm a natural light photographer." - Usually code for, I don't have the money or experience working with studio lighting. Truth is, all photographers need to have experience with natural light and studio lights. Continous lighting and strobe. They are different skill sets but a great photographer will use whatever is necessary to get the images that the client needs.

"Do you have a real job?" - This implies that one cannot make a living as a photographer (or as an artist for that matter). It is a devaluation of the arts despite the fact that art is involved in nearly every aspect of our modern lives. Everything we purchase is in a box designed with, at the very least, graphics if not photos. We watch entertainment on TV, our phones, and our computers. We decorate with art. We are literally surrounded by art. So yes, I can and I do make a living making photographs and artwork.

"I'll fix it in post." - Yes, with the power of our computers, many issues can be fixed in post processing. Photoshop is an amazing tool that can and should be utilized when necessary. But that does not mean that we photographers should get lazy with our lighting, staging, posing, or any other aspects of photography.

"Say Cheese." - It is just a way to make someone smile, but forming the word cheese ends up stretching the lips and making a forced looking smile. A better alternative is to make the motions for saying "Oooo" or "Ahhh." The best way is to connect with your subject to create real emotions that can be captured. Find common enjoyment. Tell a joke. Have them recall their favorite vacation. Use real emotions, it makes all the difference.

"What filter do you use?" - Please... just don't ask. No, we don't use filters. Filters are canned shortcuts to give similar results between photos every time. They are quick, blunt methods to achieve results that usually don't turn out that well. Any photographers or retouchers will not use filters for anything larger or more meaningful than little social media blurbs. Have fun using them yourselves, but don't assume we do.

If you have any phrases that bother you, feel free to leave them in the comments below. And as always, thanks for reading this.

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(James C Photography) Canon James Conn Nikon Say Cheese artist camera brand photography phrases https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/3/bad-photography-phrases Mon, 06 Mar 2017 03:25:42 GMT
BW Portrait Session https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/1/bw-portrait-session I had the pleasure of working with my friend Krista recently. She needed some good black and white headshot portraits. Wanting to keep the cost low, we skipped the studio and went with natural light. As we walked through Downtown Disney, I spotted a nice background and wonderful light. Midday sun is rarely conducive to making good portraits but this is what we had to work with. Rather than shooting her in the shade, I decided to use the harsh light to bring attention to her gorgeous hair. The use of the shadow from her hair to alter the light for her face was perfect. We are both happy with the results.

BW Natural Light Portrait
Krista smirks in this black and white natural light portraitKrista BW Portrait with SmirkKrista smirks in this black and white natural light portrait
Krista is serious in this black and white natural light portraitKrista serious portraitKrista is serious in this black and white natural light portrait
Krista is intense in this black and white natural light portraitKrista intense portraitKrista is intense in this black and white natural light portrait

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county black and white business photography portrait portraiture https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/1/bw-portrait-session Sun, 29 Jan 2017 20:42:34 GMT
Nobody's Thinking About You https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/1/nobodys-thinking-about-you Too often I get stuck in a rut. I worry about the quality of my artwork and about its reception. Perfectionism rears its ugly head. Then fear of failure darkens my day. Nothing gets created and misery sets in. Well I found a great quote in the book "Big Magic" by Elizabeth Gilbert that inspires me to create.

"... realize this liberating truth - nobody was ever thinking about you, anyhow." "People are mostly just thinking about themselves. People don't have time to worry about what you're doing, or how well you are doing it..." "You are free, because everyone is too busy fussing over themselves to worry all that much about you. Go be whomever you want to be, then. Do whatever you want to do. Pursue whatever fascinates you and brings you to life. Create whatever you want to create - and let it be stupendously imperfect, because it's exceedingly likely that nobody will even notice."

This is a truth that frees me to create. Yes, I still have to please my clients and pay my bills, but my art is done because I love it. Most people won't care so disregard their opinions and create what you love.

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(James C Photography) Big Magic Elizabeth Gilbert James Conn art creativity motivation perfectionism photography psychology https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2017/1/nobodys-thinking-about-you Sun, 22 Jan 2017 01:28:58 GMT
The Addiction of Photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/12/the-addiction-of-photography This article is by Matt Corkum about the purchasing lifecycle of a photographer. Probably the truest thing about photographers. Every single one of us get that "gear lust" at some point and most of us make it out to discover the most powerful tool we own is out mind.

https://www.slrlounge.com/photography-is-a-gateway-drug-the-true-humorous-side-of-the-addiction/?utm_source=SLR+Lounges+News+and+Downloads&utm_campaign=36056dfe21-Newsletter_92b10_8_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c60190ad3d-36056dfe21-414186829&mc_cid=36056dfe21&mc_eid=31af430d9e

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(James C Photography) camera consumerism gear lust humor lenses lifecycle photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/12/the-addiction-of-photography Wed, 07 Dec 2016 21:59:47 GMT
Sugar Skull 2016 https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/10/sugar-skull-2016 I had the pleasure of shooting a Halloween theme with the lovely Harley Shortstacks. Our amazing makeup artist created the sugar skull and the painted top within 5 hours of body painting. The results amazed me and hopefully speak for themselves. Check them out and leave me a comment.

Sugar Skull Bodypaint
Sugar skull body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri. Halloween 2016Gazing Sugar SkullGazing off into the distance sugar skull. Body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.Sugar skull Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.Sitting on rich chair gazing off sugar skull. Body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.
Body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.Eye contact with the sugar skull beauty. Body and face paint.Halloween beauty shot Body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri. Body and face paint. Model Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.Playful sugar skull skirt liftSkirt lifted and having fun with Harley Shortstacks. MUA Terri.

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn Orange county beauty bodypaint facepaint halloween halloween 2016 photography portrait https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/10/sugar-skull-2016 Tue, 25 Oct 2016 01:30:00 GMT
Cost of Photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/10/cost-of-photography I read this wonderful piece about why professional photographers charge so much money.

http://www.modelmayhem.com/education/photography/291-why-do-professional-photographers-charge-so-much

 

In essence, the time spent shooting is less than a third of the time it takes to produce the images and get them to the client. From the time it takes to organize the shoot, get everyone on board, set up the lights and camera, prep the client, shoot, clean up the shoot, import the photos, select and cull for the best, edit the photos, deliver the photos to the client, and follow up.

Then there is the whole cost of doing business. This ranges from the cost of the studio to the camera and lenses. The often overlooked insurance and business maintenance costs. 

The breakdown is rather interesting in detail. I highly recommend reading the article.

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(James C Photography) art cost of doing business money photography photography expenses price https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/10/cost-of-photography Sun, 02 Oct 2016 02:16:47 GMT
Darling Krista's Bikini https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/8/darling-kristas-bikini Had the pleasure of creating some bikini fashion photos for a client with my friend Darling Krista. The wonderful thing about Krista is that she has body awareness. She comes from a dance background and it shows with the flow of her movements. I was happy, the client was happy, and everyone had fun.

 
Darling Krista models bikini fashion for clientDarling Krista models bikini fashion for clientDarling Krista models bikini fashion for client Darling Krista models bikini fashion for clientDarling Krista models bikini fashion for clientDarling Krista models bikini fashion for client
Darling Krista models bikini hiding behind her hairDarling Krista models bikini hiding behind her hairDarling Krista models bikini hiding behind her hair Darling Krista models bikini for a bold poseDarling Krista models bikini for a bold poseDarling Krista models bikini for a bold pose
Darling Krista models bikini showing off the bottom strapsDarling Krista models bikini showing off the bottom strapsDarling Krista models bikini showing off the bottom straps Darling Krista models bikini bottomsDarling Krista models bikini bottomsDarling Krista models bikini bottoms

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county bikini fashion fashion photography photography portraiture swimwear https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/8/darling-kristas-bikini Tue, 09 Aug 2016 01:00:00 GMT
Hierarchy of Creative Needs https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/7/hierarchy-of-creative-needs If you have taken a Psych 100 level class, then you know of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. That each needs to be met to continue up the pyramid until you achieve self-actualization (and presumably happiness). I found this great article on the hierarchy of CREATIVE needs by Ariel Gross. 

Visualization of creative needs in a Maslow style pyramid of needsHierarchy of Creative NeedsHierarchy of Creative Needs by Ariel Gross

While not perfect, this fits pretty well with my experience. I am currently struggling between work and wonder while rarely achieving wisdom by helping others at group shoots.

source: http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/ArielGross/20160322/268623/Ariels_Hierarchy_of_Creative_Needs.php?_mc=NL_GAMA_INSIDEGAMA_24032016&elqTrackId=2d4a6849b9f143b4b62831de62035954&elq=d2a7cb7b90dd49ec8ab8de6a7ab375e4&elqaid=68649&elqat=1&elqCampaignId=20253

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(James C Photography) Anaheim James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county creativity hierarchy of needs photographer https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/7/hierarchy-of-creative-needs Sun, 24 Jul 2016 19:27:07 GMT
Something missing https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/6/something-missing

I have been missing for some time now. Live has overwhelmed me until I became as nothing. My personal life is wrecked. My location uncertain. I have become buried alive in life but feel like I'm missing it. Unable to expend my energy on art, I am left unfulfilled. 

With those points noted, it is time to move on. I will be more often assertive. I will be more artistic. I will make time for the things that give meaning to my life. 

If you feel my pain or my resolve, leave me a comment. I look forward to hearing from my friends and my fans.

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(James C Photography) blog blogging missing life overwhelmed buried alive https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/6/something-missing Fri, 03 Jun 2016 21:25:48 GMT
Light Night Model Portrait Photography Kayla https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography-kayla I had the pleasure of working with these three beautiful models at Lumino studios in Placentia. Each model brought in clothes of their choosing and my task was to create appropriate images to fit the theme. As you can imagine, this can be quite a task. I first had to assess the what mood is brought with the attire.

 

For Kayla, her outfit was like a formal dress or gown. Coupled with the jewelry and her long, loose curled hair, bright beauty photos were needed to match the tone. A plain white background was chosen to create a glowing look around her. For the second set, a rich blue curtain was chosen coupled with a warm silver tufted couch. Poses used to elongate and accentuate her features. Sitting her up tall with her shoulders back gives a certain air about her.

Krista beauty photos
Kayla's sultry beauty look sitting poised showing her eleganceKayla's sultry beauty lookKayla's sultry beauty look sitting poised showing her elegance Kayla's radiant smile sitting poised for this beauty shotKayla's radiant smileKayla's radiant smile sitting poised for this beauty shot
Krista smiling and playing with her earring, jewelry displayed to show her richnessKrista smiling and playing with her earringKrista smiling and playing with her earring, jewelry displayed to show her richness

 

 

 

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(James C Photography) Anaheim Anaheim photographer James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county Placentia affordable photography portrait https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography-kayla Tue, 29 Mar 2016 01:30:00 GMT
Strange Google Searches https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/strange-google-searches This post isn't about photography per se. It is about my photography website and people's strange Google searches. I signed up for Google Analytics and added my webpage to the service. Google crawled my pages and sitemap to record my content as data points. About a month goes by and I decide to check the results.

The highest ranked search for my site is "zenfolio boudoir". This makes sense as Zenfolio is my web host and I do post boudoir photos. Then "headshots" which again makes sense. Then things get weird. "Leave a comment" is listed as content. I'm sorry Google but "leave a comment" is expected on a blog page. Then there was "Caitlin Litzinger nude" followed by "Vanessa Borquez". While I have worked with these talented professionals I have not shot them nude nor eluded to any such thing. Where is this coming from Google? Are people actually searching for these terms and getting my site? 

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(James C Photography) Google Google Analytics James Conn SEO inappropriate ranking search results webpage website https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/strange-google-searches Sat, 26 Mar 2016 06:25:24 GMT
Light Night Model Portrait Photography Krista https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography-krista I had the pleasure of working with these three beautiful models at Lumino studios in Placentia. Each model brought in clothes of their choosing and my task was to create appropriate images to fit the theme. As you can imagine, this can be quite a task. I first had to assess the what mood is brought with the attire.

 


For Krista, the outfit was tight on top but free flowing with the skirt. Through talking with her and watching her move, it became obvious she was a dancer. We put on music and let her flow. Background was chosen as a little industrial reminiscent of an underground dance party. No props her Krista so that she can dance.

Krista Dances
Krista stands poised to jump in this photo  aluminum horizontal lined door behind herKrista stands poised to jumpKrista stands poised to jump in this photo aluminum horizontal lined door behind her Krista twirls while dancing for this photo in front of the horizontal lined aluminum doorKrista twirls while dancingKrista twirls while dancing for this photo in front of the horizontal lined aluminum door
Krista stretches her arms while her long hair is flowingKrista stretches with long hair flowingKrista stretches her arms while her long hair is flowing

 

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(James C Photography) Anaheim Anaheim photographer James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county Placentia affordable photography portrait https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography-krista Fri, 25 Mar 2016 01:30:00 GMT
Light Night Model Portrait Photography Aracely https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography I had the pleasure of working with these three beautiful models at Lumino studios in Placentia. Each model brought in clothes of their choosing and my task was to create appropriate images to fit the theme. As you can imagine, this can be quite a task. I first had to assess the what mood is brought with the attire.

For Aracely, the theme was pinup. The tone then is fun and sexy but very campy. The background and the chair were chosen to keep the photos lively, fun, and bright. Poses were chosen to accentuate angles and curves.

Aracely Pinup
Aracely pinup kicking her feet up in a dress while on an orange chair and a green backgroundAracely pinup kicking her feet upAracely pinup kicking her feet up in a dress while on an orange chair and a green background Aracely pinup thinking and touching her face while on an orange chair and a green backgroundAracely pinup contemplating lifeAracely pinup thinking and touching her face while on an orange chair and a green background

 

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(James C Photography) Anaheim Anaheim photographer James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county Placentia affordable photography pinup portrait https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/light-night-model-portrait-photography Tue, 22 Mar 2016 01:30:00 GMT
High Tide Roller Derby Practice https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/high-tide-roller-derby-practice This last Wednesday I had a chance to meet the girls of High Tide roller derby and witness their practice session. In case you don't know, High Tide Roller Derby is an all women league in Orange County ran for the skaters by the skaters. This league will be strictly flat track, focusing to create a competitive team by going back to the basics. We got together through mutual friends photographer Sam and derby girl Mistress of Mayhem (aka JZ). It was a really a blast to see all the personalities come through as they practice their hearts out. Check out these sports snap shots of their practice.

High Tide Roller Derby
Roller derby girls trying to scoreJammersTrying to get by and score Roller derby girls crouched and readyPrepping for launchRoller derby girls crouched and ready
Roller derby girl speeding around the turnSpeeding around the turnRoller derby girl speeding around the turn Coach giving some advice to the derby girlsCoach giving some advice to the derby girlsCoach giving some advice to the derby girls
Trying to get around the crowdTrying to get around the crowdTrying to get around the crowd Getting airborne to get past the crowdGetting airborne to get past the crowdGetting airborne to get past the crowd
Jammers speeding around the cornerJammers speeding around the cornerJammers speeding around the corner Derby girls lining upDerby girls lining upDerby girls lining up
Taking a hard hit for the blockTaking a hard hit for the blockTaking a hard hit for the block Lining up for another round photoLining up for another roundLining up for another round
Resistance skate training in train photoResistance skate training in trainResistance skate training in train Derby girls Resistance skate training but still having fun photoResistance skate training but still having funResistance skate training but still having fun
Derby girls ready to face off photoReady to face offDerby girls ready to face off Just a blur with the speed of the High Tide derby girls photoJust a blur with the speed of the High Tide derby girlsJust a blur with the speed of the High Tide derby girls

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn Orange county active lifestyle photography roller derby sports sports photography women's sports https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/high-tide-roller-derby-practice Sat, 19 Mar 2016 18:24:58 GMT
St. Patrick's Day https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/st-patricks-day Fun green themed photoshoot and smoke photography. It was challenging to stick to a color theme.

I will have to try it again in the near future.

Shamrock Abstract Smoke PhotoShamrock Abstract Smoke PhotoShamrock Abstract Smoke Photo
Pinup on Green with Orange Chair and Lovely ModelPinup on GreenPinup on Green with Orange Chair and Lovely Model
Pinup on Green with Orange Chair and Lovely ModelPinup Thinking on GreenPinup on Green with Orange Chair and Lovely Model

 

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(James C Photography) Anaheim James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county St Patrick art model photography pinup style https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/st-patricks-day Fri, 18 Mar 2016 00:22:38 GMT
Learning About Myself https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/learning-about-myself I am an Equalizer and an Advisor, or so I'm told by a "StandOut report" included in the book I'm currently reading called StandOut2.0.

The description from the report reads, 

"You combine doing what is best with doing what is right.You put principle into practice. You have that rare ability to combine doing what is best with doing what is right -- and you will take a stand for both. Because you are both consistent and practical, you excel at designing policy to guide actions. People respect you and seek you out for your good judgment. Your need for clinical precision and exact calculation proves invaluable, whether you are serving clients or making high-stakes decisions for the team."

I have to say this is rather true, but it is only when I dig into the details that it begins to really hit home. 

 

EQUALIZER
You are a level-headed person whose power comes from keeping the world in balance, ethically and practically.
ADVISOR
You are a practical, concrete thinker who is at your most powerful when reacting to and solving other people's problems.

 

 

 


An Advisor always needs people to advise. Analysis is fine, and can be fun, but the day you discover that you have no direct audience for your conclusions--sitting by yourself, analyzing for the sake of it--will be a very bad day for you. You are the kind of person who respects experts. Why? Because experts have studied their subjects deeply and can pinpoint which details make the difference, which distinctions really matter. You are wired to appreciate this kind of inquiry. Your strength is your common sense. Warning: Don't come across as a know-it-all. 

I hope I can embrace these strengths and get myself out of this rut.

Personality profile labels me as an equalizer and advisor.StandOut ReportPersonality profile labels me as an equalizer and advisor.

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(James C Photography) Anaheim James Conn Orange county business personality personality profile photographer struggle https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/learning-about-myself Wed, 09 Mar 2016 22:12:03 GMT
Self doubt https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/self-doubt Self doubt plagues me. I assume all artists battle this at times. Is my art worth the effort? Is my art worth being shown? If no one buys it, is it worthless? 

I tell myself that I create art to express myself, but I'm not very convincing.

My anxiety is as high as my chances of failure.

Depression is always lurking around the next setback or disappointment.

All I can do is use this negative energy. Use it for motivation even though it threatens to paralyze me. Encapsulate the emotions by isolating them in a photograph. The best way for me to express these feelings as words often fail.

Black and white photo of my self-tormentSelf-TormentI pull at myself as myself tears me apart. Depressed girl stands alone in the dark.Depression is my moodDepressed girl stands alone in the dark.
Self-torment Depression

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn anxiety black and white depression emotions expression negative energy photography self doubt self-torment https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/3/self-doubt Tue, 01 Mar 2016 21:16:35 GMT
Smoke Abstract Photography 3 https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/2/smoke-abstract-photography-3 I just wanted to share some final edits of my smoke photographs. Leave me a comment or send me a message on social media @jim4good

Smoke Abstract Photography
Butterfly abstract smoke photoButterfly abstract smoke photoButterfly abstract smoke photo Jade abstract smoke photoJade abstract smoke photoJade abstract smoke photo
Bat abstract smoke photoBat abstract smoke photoBat abstract smoke photo Green square smoke photoGreen square smoke photoGreen square smoke photo
Frame smoke photoFrame smoke photoFrame smoke photo Yellow Alien abstract smoke photoYellow Alien abstract smoke photoYellow Alien abstract smoke photo
Floral square abstract smoke photoFloral square abstract smoke photoFloral square abstract smoke photo Red Hearts abstract smoke photoRed Hearts abstract smoke photoRed Hearts abstract smoke photo

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn abstract art abstract photo art fine art photography mandala pattern recognition photography randomness smoke photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/2/smoke-abstract-photography-3 Mon, 22 Feb 2016 16:20:54 GMT
Smoke Abstract Photography 2 https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/smoke-abstract-photography-2 Abstract smoke has been an exhilarating theme to shoot and edit. It has allowed me to be creative at minimal expense but with the greatest amount of creativity. My long term goal has been to be successful at fine art photography, and I think this might be my ticket.  

These images are created from smoke photographs then mirroring the photo and/or inverting it in Photoshop to show the patterns. In the first set, I see a strange alien-like head. Seeing faces in an image is a psychological phenomenon called pareidolia. While this is quite normal, it can seem vary strange when it happens to you. The second set of images are further examples and details of these "faces."

The final set of images are photos of smoke that have been duplicated and mirrored to the point of creating flowery mandala designs. I would love to hear from you and get your perspective on this images. Leave me a comment or send me a message on social media @jim4good

Smoke Abstract Photography
Abstract smoke photograph called 1795a. 'A' for alien as that is what I see in this.1795a Abstract SmokeAbstract smoke photograph called 1795a. 'A' for alien as that is what I see in this. This abstract smoke photograph is an alternate coloring to bring out the alien faces and synaptic connectors.1795a Abstract Smoke (alternative color)This abstract smoke photograph is an alternate coloring to bring out the alien faces and synaptic connectors.
A detail shot of the 1795a abstract to show the face I see.1795a detail closeupA detail shot of the 1795a abstract to show the face I see. This abstract photograph is shifted further into the blue range except the red orbs. 'B' is for bat.1809b abstract smoke photoThis abstract photograph is shifted further into the blue range except the red orbs. 'B' is for bat.
This is an inverted look at the smoke from 1795a. Replicated twice over it takes on a mandala image.1795i abstract smoke photoThis is an inverted look at the smoke from 1795a. Replicated twice over it takes on a mandala image. This abstract photograph of smoke when octo-replicated seems to show flower petals in a mandala design. 'F' for flowers.1794f abstract smoke photoThis abstract photograph of smoke when octo-replicated seems to show flower petals in a mandala design. 'F' for flowers.

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn abstract art abstract photo art fine art photography mandala pattern recognition photography randomness smoke photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/smoke-abstract-photography-2 Mon, 25 Jan 2016 20:04:16 GMT
Smoke Abstract Photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/smoke-abstract-photography In sticking to the abstract theme, I began shooting some smoke in studio with dual strobes. It was interesting to see all the detail brought out of the wisps of smoke due to the strobes. I discovered that my incense sticks with their red outer coating created both red and blue smoke which combines to make purple. When boosting the vibrancy in Photoshop, these photos really popped. 

Combining the experience from the last abstract photography experiment, Dust Abstract Photography, mirroring the photo and/or inverting it creates patterns in the randomness. Sometimes in the smoke I see faces, animals, or silhouettes. This pattern recognition has been important to humankind for as long as we have been around. I think that is what makes this form of photography so interesting. You see what you want to see.

Smoke Abstract Photography
Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsButterfly or notAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsNexus abstractAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns
Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsJade abstractAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsHeart faces abstractAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns
Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsHeart faces diamondAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns Abstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patternsHeart faces abstract repeating patternAbstract smoke photograph created by mirroring forming shapes and patterns

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn abstract art abstract photo art fine art photography pattern recognition photography randomness smoke photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/smoke-abstract-photography Wed, 20 Jan 2016 20:01:00 GMT
Dust Abstract Photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/dust-abstract-photography While in studio, I had a chance to work on a new concept. Photographing the randomness of dust being blown in the air.

I started with a handful of baby powder and attempting to throw that in the air. The results were mostly out of focus. I then changed to shooting the baby powder directly out of the plastic container. This proved better at keeping the cloud of dust within the focal range. I look forward to the next time I can try this type of photography. Here are my results. They have been duplicated in mirror image form. Curves adjustment and black and white adjustment were applied. The double exposure is my body in silhouette and the dragon dust image filling in the darkness. The insect image has more duplication and masking but is from only one picture.

I would love to hear some feedback. Thanks.

Abstract puff of dust in the shape of a goat or ram skullGoat skull abstract photoAbstract puff of dust in the shape of a goat or ram skull Abstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile headDragon Dust PhotoAbstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile head
Abstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile head double exposed with my silhouetteThe dragon photo double exposureAbstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile head double exposed with my silhouette Abstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile head double exposed with my silhouette detailCloseup of the double exposure to show detailAbstract puff of dust in the shape of a dragon or reptile head double exposed with my silhouette detail
Abstract puff of dust in the shape of an insect. Photo was duplicated and rotated to give shapes.Abstract dust photo insectAbstract puff of dust in the shape of an insect. Photo was duplicated and rotated to give shapes.  

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn Orange county abstract photography creative fine art photography meaningful photography randomness https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2016/1/dust-abstract-photography Sun, 03 Jan 2016 00:02:11 GMT
Speedboat Model Portrait Photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/12/speedboat-model-portrait-photography I had the pleasure of working with the beautiful Michelle Thorlund at Lumino studios in Placentia. We had a speedboat brought in to photograph with. Background was changed in post production through Photoshop. 

Michelle Thorlund on speedboat reclining on deck for the photoMichelle Thorlund on speedboat recliningMichelle Thorlund on speedboat reclining on deck for the photo

Michelle Thorlund on speedboat lying on her stomach feet upMichelle Thorlund on speedboat lyingMichelle Thorlund on speedboat lying on her stomach feet up

Michelle Thorlund on speedboat reclining holding her kneeMichelle Thorlund on speedboat reclining holding her kneeMichelle Thorlund on speedboat reclining holding her knee

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(James C Photography) Anaheim James Conn JamesCPhotography Michelle Thorlund Orange county Placentia beauty glamour photography portraiture https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/12/speedboat-model-portrait-photography Sat, 19 Dec 2015 20:00:11 GMT
Lumino Studio Photo Shoot https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/12/classic-car-photo-shoot We had an excellent time working with Yana and Genevieve in studio this weekend. These pictures are just the beginning!

Genevieve in studio for a photo sitting on a white trunk with a white backgroundGenevieve in studio for a photoGenevieve in studio for a photo sitting on a white trunk with a white background

Genevieve in studio with an altered Photoshop backgroundGenevieve in studio with an altered Photoshop backgroundGenevieve in studio with an altered Photoshop background

Yana with a perspective warped hair pullYana with a perspective warped hair pullYana with a perspective warped hair pull

Yana standing tall in ballet poseYana standing tall in ballet poseYana standing tall in ballet pose

Yana fixing her stocking behind the scenesYana fixing her stockingYana fixing her stocking behind the scenes

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(James C Photography) Anaheim Genevieve Zilka James Conn JamesCPhotography Orange county Placentia Yana Goodday photography portraiture https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/12/classic-car-photo-shoot Fri, 11 Dec 2015 00:23:19 GMT
Disney Day of the Dead https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/11/disney-day-of-the-dead I've had the pleasure recently of working with some amazing artists to create unique imagery. This particular post is a brag about our Disney Day of the Dead photoshoot. 

 

Models - Justin Mark (Woody - Toy Story), Ginger Fatale (Sally - The Nightmare Before Christmas), Christina Borquez (Pocahontas - Pocahontas), Alaina Rose Lee (Corpse Bride - Corpse Bride), Belle La Valentine (Snow White - Snow White and the Seven Dwarves), Richie DeLite (Mad Hatter - Alice in Wonderland), and Caitlin Litzinger (Alice - Alice in Wonderland)

Corresponding MUAHs - Bobbie Pins, Patricia Brakeman, Vanessa Borquez, Steffeney Paige, Bobbie Pins, Vanessa Borquez, Steffeney Paige, Steffeney Paige

 

Woody from Toy Story"Reach for the sky!"Model: <br/>Photographer: James Conn <br/>MUA: V<br/>Photoshoot Coordinator: Caitlin Litzinger Pocahontas with staffPocahontas with staffPhotographer: James Conn Pocahontas with staff
Corpse Bride filled with sadnessCorpse Bride filled with sadnessCorpse Bride filled with sadness Sally loves black rosesSally loves black rosesModel: <br/>Photographer: James Conn <br/>MUA: V<br/>Photoshoot Coordinator: Caitlin Litzinger
She sees into your soul; Corpse BrideShe sees into your soulShe sees into your soul; Corpse Bride The ring of the Corpse BrideThe ring of the Corpse BrideThe ring of the Corpse Bride
Snow White full shotSnow WhiteSnow White full shot holding an apple Snow White gathersSnow White gathersModel: Belle La Valentine<br/>Photographer: James Conn <br/>MUA: Vanessa Borquez<br/>Photoshoot Coordinator: Caitlin Litzinger
Snow White CloseupSnow White CloseupSnow White Closeup Alice and the Mad HatterMad Hatter wants no part in thisAlice and the Mad Hatter
Alice and the Mad HatterAlice and the Mad HatterModel: <br/>Photographer: James Conn <br/>MUA: <br/>Photoshoot Coordinator: Caitlin Litzinger Steampunk meets Dia de los MuertosSteampunk meets Dia de los MuertosModel: <br/>Photographer: James Conn <br/>MUA: <br/>Photoshoot Coordinator: Caitlin Litzinger

 

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(James C Photography) Day of the dead Dia de los muertos Disney James Conn JamesCPhotography art bodypaint cosplay facepaint photography sugarskull https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/11/disney-day-of-the-dead Wed, 04 Nov 2015 23:26:25 GMT
Perfectionism problems https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/perfectionism-problems Too often my perfectionism stops me from sharing my work. I look at a recent shoot and I see everything that is wrong with it. I go into post working on every little detail until hours go bye. Then I step back and still see flaws. Defeat washes over me and futility sets in. My work is then buried in my computer and forgotten from my mind. Has anything like this happened to you? 

Working on this issue has been one of my biggest tasks. I would like to share the little inspirations that keep me going.

James Victore is a graphic artist and teacher of personal development. One of his sayings is, "Feck perfuction." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNidcgkvG_g  Stop trying to be perfect because perfection is unattainable. Stop spending hours picking the "perfect" font type. Stop trying to find the "perfect" color scheme. The pursuit of perfection is good but at some point it hinders you. Don't fear that others will point out your imperfection. Too often your perfection stops you from sharing your work. But tell me, what is the point of your work if no one sees it? The only way to be discovered is to show your work.

James Victore led me to the book by Austin Kleon called "Show Your Work." This book goes through all the details of why we must show our art. In this book Austin states, "I realize that the only way to find your voice is to use it." That is to say you must make work (and lots of it) to develop an artistic style.  Then you must get your work out to others daily.

I am my harshest critic, but I shouldn't be.  I must be my biggest proponent.

Summoning the kraken cthulhuSummoning the krakenSummoning the kraken cthulhu

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(James C Photography) Austin Kleon James Conn James Victore JamesCPhotography art perfectionism photography show your work struggle https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/perfectionism-problems Thu, 29 Oct 2015 00:17:04 GMT
Grotesque-selfie https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/grotesque-glitched-selfie As a way to get into the Halloween spirit, I have started working on the idea of grotesque. By grotesque, I don't mean blood and gore. Grotesque is a play on what is unnatural in shape or appearance. It is fantastically ugly, bizarre, or absurd. I wanted to start with an image that is simple like a selfie with a darker overtone. I chose this pose to accentuate the glare from my eyes and the lighting was chosen to give some shadows under the eyes.

Picture of myself in less than flattering lightDarker selfiePicture of myself in less than flattering light

My first attempt was to apply the definition of grotesque to my image. I enlarged one eye, cleared the color from the other eye, turned down my mouth, curved my nose, brought the chin to a point, raised my hairline, doubled my eyebrows, cropped my ear, and shaded my face to make it look more sickly. Then I decided the background could use a melted look as it appears more unworldly. 

Altered photo making myself appear villainous and grotesqueGrotesque selfieAltered photo making myself appear villainous and grotesque

My second attempt is a deviation from the traditional grotesque. Since our digital images are just data, I decided to move the data from the files around hoping to give an interesting unnatural grotesque effect. I found that this type of art is called glitch art. The idea seemed simple enough. Unfortunately, the first attempt was too mild. Going further with the data manipulation ended up corrupting the files and losing the image.

 
Barely moved data manipulated photoPoorly glitchedBarely moved data manipulated photo Failed glitch image where the image becomes corruptBlack and white glitch failFailed glitch image where the image becomes corrupt

Through these failed attempts new ideas came about. Manipulating the data can change the colors and causes the image to jump around. Then in Photoshop I changed the color for each glitched row of the image. This led to my first (fairly successful) grotesque glitched selfie. It was great how the eyes doubled over making them almost black.

Successful glitched grotesque selfie oddly colored and darkenedSuccessful glitched grotesque selfieSuccessful glitched grotesque selfie oddly colored and darkened

Finally I decided to better combine the glitch art style with the grotesque theme. Created through Photoshop is the following image where I moved and rotated parts of my face to unnatural positions. I then colored the changes with the muddled color that came from previous data manipulations. Finally, I changed the background to a pixelated black and white.

Manually glitched grotesque selfie with pixelated backgroundManually glitched grotesque selfieManually glitched grotesque selfie with pixelated background

I hope you enjoyed hearing about my successes and failures in grotesque glitch art. I'd love to hear from you. Leave a comment if you found this helpful or interesting. And let me know of any tricks you use for creating this type of art.

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(James C Photography) James Conn Photoshop artistic photography glitch art grotesque photo manipulation photography pixelated unnatural https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/grotesque-glitched-selfie Tue, 13 Oct 2015 21:47:32 GMT
Gear report https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/gear-report Gear Report

I have been searching for a replacement Lowepro Nova 160 AW for quite some time. It was great to start my DSLR work with, but I now have more lenses than can be carried in the bag. There are just too many reasons to carry two or three lenses per shoot. Well, I think I have found my replacement. The Everyday Messenger by Peak Design. This bag was designed through a kickstarter program to take care of the the needs of the photographer. Now the price is significant at $249, but I think it may be a worthwhile investment considering it holds over a thousand dollars in equipment. The bag can hold up to a full frame DSLR and three lenses plus extras like an ipad, lens filters, phone, and other accessories. It is water resistant and able to secure equipment within by customizable compartments. This is going to be my next camera bag. You can check it out for yourself here: https://peakdesign.com/store/the-everyday-messenger

 

Next up is the Pico time-lapse controller by Mindarin. This controller allows you to control your camera to take photos at specific time intervals. It is programmable by smart phone (recommended) or manually (not recommended as the interface is a single button). Simply plug the device into your phone via program port, set the duration of the time-lapse, and set the interval between photos. There are also advanced features like HDR, speed ramping, and bulb ramping. Best thing of all is the price. At just $50, this is an easy purchase for those of you who love time-lapse. You can find out more here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/846089794/pico-time-lapse-made-simple

That's it for today.

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(James C Photography) James Conn camera equipment camera gear gear lust photography simple solutions https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/10/gear-report Sat, 10 Oct 2015 16:57:45 GMT
Surf Dog Unleashed https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/9/surf-dog-unleashed I had the pleasure of watching the PetCo Unleashed surf dog competition this past weekend. So many happy faces enjoying the surf, sand, and sun. 

It was a blast watching the surf competition. In between the different surf heats, I got to shoot the dogs playing on the beach and in the ocean. Too much fun!

Surf Dogs
Paddleboard surfer and labrador 1 at huntington beachPaddleboard surfer and labrador 1Paddleboard surfer and labrador 1 at huntington beach Paddleboard surfer and labrador 2 at Surf CityPaddleboard surfer and labrador 2Paddleboard surfer and labrador 2 at surf city, USA
Paddleboard surfer and labrador 3 at huntington beach, CAPaddleboard surfer and labrador 3Paddleboard surfer and labrador 3 at HB, CA Surf dog struggling to catch a wave with ownerSurf dog struggling to catch a wave with ownerSurf dog struggling to catch a wave with owner
Competition among surf dogs as they try to catch the same waveCompetition among surf dogsCompetition among surf dogs as they try to catch the same wave Meanwhile along the shore, PomChi mix enjoys a strollPomChi mix enjoys a strollMeanwhile along the shore, PomChi mix enjoys a stroll
Long haired dachshund plays with masterLong haired dachshund plays with masterLong haired dachshund plays with master on the beach. Long dog life vest :-) French bulldog wants to play with English bulldog puppyFrench bulldog wants to playFrench bulldog wants to play with English bulldog puppy
Numerous dogs enjoy the water among the crowdNumerous dogs enjoy the water among the crowdNumerous dogs enjoy the water among the crowd English bulldog puppy longs for attentionEnglish bulldog puppy longs for attentionEnglish bulldog puppy longs for attention
Puggle happily walks the beachPuggle happily walks the beachPuggle happily walks the beach. What a funny face. Puggle held by young owner. Both are happy in the sun.Puggle held by young ownerPuggle held by young owner. Both are happy in the sun.
Two dog teams surf on one board against the other teams. Don't drop in on my barrel!Surf dog tandem heatTwo dog teams surf on one board against the other teams. Don't drop in on my barrel! The boxer tandem team takes the leadThe boxer tandem team takes the leadThe boxer tandem team takes the lead
This tandem dog team enjoys the crowds cheer as the heat is up.Boxer golden retriever team looks to winThis tandem dog team enjoys the crowds cheer as the heat is up. Pug puppy wants to play with another puppyPug puppy wants to play with another puppyPug puppy wants to play with another puppy
Siberian husky dogs lead the pack of lab, retriever, and pomeranianPack of dogs lead by the huskiesSiberian husky dogs lead the pack of lab, retriever, and pomeranian Poodle mix plays with a ball near the waterPoodle mix plays with a ball near the waterPoodle mix plays with a ball near the water
Boston terriers frantically chases a ballBoston terriers frantically chases a ballBoston terriers frantically chases a ball Bulldog with shark fin life vest. Too cuteBulldog with shark fin life vestBulldog with shark fin life vest. Too cute
Dogs go for the goldFinal heat 1Dogs go for the gold Who will win the surf dog competitionWho will win the surf dog competitionWho will win the surf dog competition

 

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(James C Photography) Huntington Beach James Conn JamesCPhotography PetCo Surf City canine dog ocean pet photography surf unleashed https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/9/surf-dog-unleashed Mon, 28 Sep 2015 18:03:35 GMT
Multiple Exposure https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/multiple-exposure I have been getting more and more into the method of creating images via multiple exposure. The idea of multiple exposure and initially double exposure came from film photography. The photographer would take a picture on film and not wind the film but stay on the current frame. Then a second picture would be taken, hence the name double exposure as the film was exposed to light twice. Multiple exposures are any number of exposures more.

In digital photography, multiple exposures are significantly easier. Some cameras have an in-camera function to accomplish this. For the rest of us, Photoshop is the best way to go. You can choose any number of photos you have and combine them in various ways. Let's get into some examples and the methods used to create them.

Let's start with these simple examples:

Double exposure silhouette of a man overlaid in golden clouds with a circular rainbow in the background[Untitled]Double exposure silhouette of a man overlaid in golden clouds with a circular rainbow in the background

[Untitled]

Double exposure of a female model clothed with a hiking trail overlayWearing the PathDouble exposure of a female model clothed with a hiking trail overlay

"Wearing the Trail"

In these double exposure examples, there is a dominant image that overlays on top of an underlying image which shapes the image. To start, I chose an underlying image that has a good silhouette form. A levels adjustment layer is added in Photoshop to increase the contrast to the point of losing data on the image creating just the silhouette. The inside of the silhouette is then painted with black. The dominant image is then opened and place in a layer above the silhouette. The blending mode of this new layer is changed to lighten. The layer is then changed using the transform tool to stretch and move it until the best position is achieved.  It's important in this step to take your time and play with the image to find the way that the images compliment each other. In the case of "Wearing the Trail", I stretched the trail until the path fit the model's body like a dress would. Finally, I chose a background that was appropriate for the image.

Next time I will go into more advanced methods that utilize more that just the underlying silhouette to create more detailed multiple exposure images.

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography composite image double exposure multiple exposure photo editing https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/multiple-exposure Fri, 31 Jul 2015 02:17:51 GMT
Professional Photo Editing part 2 https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/professional-photo-editing-part-2 Professional photo editing require both time and care. Each photo is unique and requires different skills to remove or reduce issues. Common issues like overexposure, underexposure, red eye, color balance, and cropping can be completed quickly. Other issues require more care like reducing wrinkles, skin discoloration, and removing objects. Methods for dealing with these issues include, but are not limited to the following methods: frequency separation, cloning, spot healing, content-aware fill, dodge, and burn. Have confidence that your images will show you at your best.

Below are animated GIFs showcasing before and after touching up the pictures.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography animated gif clone stamp content aware frequency separation healing" photography professional spot touch up touch-up https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/professional-photo-editing-part-2 Wed, 22 Jul 2015 01:45:51 GMT
Updated Pricing Guide https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/updated-pricing-guide At the request of several clients, I have altered the pricing guide for our photo sessions.
Hopefully, this is a little clearer. If in doubt, feel free to contact me about pricing and discounts.

http://JamesCPhotography.com/pricing

~Thank you.

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(James C Photography) https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/updated-pricing-guide Wed, 08 Jul 2015 20:44:10 GMT
LA Murphy Ranch https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/la-murphy-ranch I regularly take hikes to push my body and clear my mind. It is kind of a meditation for me, allowing me to refresh and replenish my creative energy. I was lucky this time to find a group of like-minded adventurers who wanted to explore the Murphy Ranch in Los Angeles. Our group parked near the expensive homes in the hills and began our hike up the trail. The paved road has some tagging pointing to various interests like a water tower that we otherwise would have missed. After the water tower, we began the difficult task of descending the 500 steep steps to the canyon floor. From their we hiked the trail until finding the stables/barn. Part of the building's roof and wall had collapsed. The interior and exterior was covered in graffiti art. Next we came upon the machine shed/housing, or what was left of it. It was really more of a two story heap of scrap metal with a couple walls remaining. By far the most exciting building was the power station. The building is intact and covered with elaborate graffiti. We then explored the gardens and the water tank. Hiking back up the stairs was exhausting, but it was a worthwhile experience.

History: The Murphy Ranch is a ranch built in Rustic Canyon, Los Angeles in the 1930's by Winona and Norman Stephens, who were sympathizers of the Silver Legion of America. The owner of record in 1933 was Jessie M. Murphy. Designed as a base for Nazi activities in the U.S., it was intended to be capable of being self-sustaining for long periods. The compound had a water storage tank, a fuel tank, a bomb shelter, and various outbuildings and bunkers. The day after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, local police occupied the compound and detained members of the 50-strong caretaker force.

Note: The buildings are in a state of disrepair. Caution should be used when exploring the buildings as rusty metal, broken glass, and unsafe structures are all around.

 

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Los Angeles Murphy Ranch architecture art graffiti photography urban https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/7/la-murphy-ranch Mon, 06 Jul 2015 04:25:55 GMT
DTLA by Night https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/5/dtla-by-night I went with a group of friends for a night photowalk in downtown Los Angeles. We started at LA Live and wandered about from there to the Westin Bonaventure, then over the 110 freeway to shoot the traffic. Our goal was to walk to the Walt Disney concert hall and get some excellent photos of the building lit at night. We soon discovered that the building was being used by the production company filming Next Top Model. They were unhappy to see a group of photographers show up and asked us not to take any pictures. After watching for a short time, we finished the night by shooting the Grand Park. Below are a few of the resulting pictures.

 
 

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Photography architecture art artisitic buildings city fineart nightlife photowalk urban https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/5/dtla-by-night Thu, 21 May 2015 03:07:42 GMT
Lingerie Boudoir https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/lingerie-boudoir Pink Lingerie with black fishnet stockings held by garter strapsPink LingeriePink Lingerie with black fishnet stockings held by garter straps Pink lingerie with black fishnet stockings held by garter straps. Pink Lingerie 2Pink lingerie with black fishnet stockings held by garter straps. ]]> (James C Photography) Boudoir James Conn JamesCPhotography Lingerie fishnet garter lighting photography studio https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/lingerie-boudoir Fri, 01 May 2015 02:36:12 GMT East Jesus https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/east-jesus If you are at the Salton Sea, do yourself a favor and visit East Jesus. Located near "Slab City" (Niland, CA), this unique artist community will amaze with their unique sculpture garden. Admission is free, but a donation would be appreciated. We were given a tour by one of the artists. Each artist is given an area of earth in which to create. Some call focus to our rapidly growing waste problem while another call focus to our sustainability issues. To be quite honest, this community feels a little like a burning man camp. Check out the photos and if you have the time, visit East Jesus.

Artist Community of East Jesus
Purple green and blue door that welcomes visitors to the artist community of East JesusDoor to East JesusWelcome to East Jesus. Beware of CRAZY artists Geometric polygon sculpture consisting of triangles building to a massive structure. Each triangle has three Christmas lights in them.Geometric sculpture with Christmas lightsGeometric polygon sculpture consisting of triangles building to a massive structure. Each triangle has three Christmas lights in them.
Robot sculpture made from discarded objects. CRT television for a face, typewriter of a body, wrapped tubing for legs, gun in one hand, and whip in the other.Robot sculpture made from discarded objectsRobot sculpture made from discarded objects. CRT television for a face, typewriter of a body, wrapped tubing for legs, gun in one hand, and whip in the other. Unique building in East Jesus painted with a face and covered in artUnique building of East JesusOne of the unique buildings in East Jesus covered with art
Sculpture of knifes stuck in stone creating an image of a man raising a fist.Sculpture greeting visitors. Fight the powerSculpture greeting visitors. Fight the power VW Beatle body of beautiful white wroght iron sitting on a trailer on a drive way lined with rusted tin cans.VW Beatle body of beautiful white wroght ironVW Beatle body of beautiful white wroght iron
Unique art car with mannequin legs on top. Covered in stickers, flowers, beads, and shells, Unique art car with mannequin legs on topUnique art car with mannequin legs on top. Covered in stickers, flowers, beads, and shells, Art of discarded CO2 canisters aligned in rows stacked on each other several times over. Natural colors from silver to white to various rusted tones.Art of discarded CO2 canistersArt of discarded CO2 canisters aligned in rows stacked on each other several times over.

 

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(James C Photography) East Jesus James Conn JamesCPhotography Niland art desert photography sculpture sustainability https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/east-jesus Sun, 19 Apr 2015 16:19:29 GMT
Professional Photo Editing https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/professional-editing Professional photo editing require both time and care. Each photo is unique and requires different skills to remove or reduce issues. Common issues like overexposure, underexposure, red eye, color balance, and cropping can be completed quickly. Other issues require more care like reducing wrinkles, skin discoloration, and removing objects. Have confidence that your images will show you at your best.

Below are animated GIFs showcasing before and after touching up the pictures.

 

 

 

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography animated gif photography professional touch up touch-up https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/professional-editing Thu, 16 Apr 2015 23:54:03 GMT
Salton Sea https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/salton-sea I recently went with a group of photographers on a photo expedition to the Salton Sea. We went to Bombay Beach and explored the remnants of the once resort spot. For those who haven't been there, it is an unusual site to behold. Located 170 miles east and south of Los Angeles, this spot looks like a post-apocalyptic wasteland. Ruins of buildings and trailers dot the landscape. The remains of fish litter the shore, and their order hangs in the air. Graffiti covers the exterior of the abandoned buildings while rubbish covers the interior. 

Despite all these things, there is still an unusual beauty to the Salton Sea. The sunsets are particularly pleasant. It was unfortunate that we did not have some clouds in the sky, but it was still a great experience.

 

 

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(James C Photography) Imperial James Conn JamesCPhotography Salton Sea desert nature photography wildlife https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/4/salton-sea Tue, 14 Apr 2015 22:49:17 GMT
Desert Flowers Bloom - Anza Borrego https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/3/desert-flowers-bllom---anza-borrego I took a trip out to Anza Borrego last weekend to experience the desert flowers in full bloom.

Check out the photos and let me know what you think.

Thanks.

 
 

 

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography desert nature photography sand wildflowers wildlife https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/3/desert-flowers-bllom---anza-borrego Tue, 17 Mar 2015 19:33:22 GMT
Vitruvian Man https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/3/vitruvian-man I have been working on this little pet project for a few days and want to share it. It is, of course, inspired by Leonardo da Vinci's "Vitruvian Man." The image is made up of 5 photos composited together. The photos were taken in studio with this concept in mind. Honestly, it took about 50 shots to get the angles just right. The photos have been passed through an accented edges filter and several curves layers masked variously. 

The background in created from scratch with variations in color and luminosity to give a more nature look. Then a texture is applied to give it a more natural paper feel. Then I added the shapes and colored them to look as if they were penned and aged. The text of the original work was a translation from Latin to Italian by Leonardo of Roman architect Vitruvius Book III of his treatise De Architectura. I have taken exerps from the same book then translated into Italian and mirror imaged to be backwards as Leonardo intended. Lastly, Leonardo's signature was burned into the image as his images have been burned into my memory.

I hope you enjoy this little piece of artwork. Thank you.

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(James C Photography) De Architectura James Conn JamesCPhotography Leonardo da Vinci Vitruvian Man Vitruvius composite photography proportions of man https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/3/vitruvian-man Wed, 04 Mar 2015 05:17:11 GMT
Valentine's Day https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/2/valentines-day Today, Valentine's Day, is a day of happiness and love for most. Then there are those of us who suffer the pain of loneliness and heartbreak. I created these photographs out of my own despair, as a way for me to visually represent the emotions I am feeling on this difficult holiday.

Heartbreak Rock

Lonely Painful Cave

Drowned in Despair

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Valentine's Day, heartbreak, pain, loneliness, despair art editorial metaphor photography https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/2/valentines-day Sat, 14 Feb 2015 19:25:17 GMT
Editorial Portrait with Seth Hancock https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/2/editorial-portrait-with-seth-hancock This past weekend I attended an amazing workshop with Seth Hancock. Seth is known for his commercial, editorial, and portraiture photography as well as his project "10 minutes with a stranger." The subject of the workshop was "The Editorial Portait - From Concept to Delivery."

The idea was to create an editorial style portrait that we designed. Seth explained editorial as photography that doesn't sell anything in particular (unlike commercial photography), but that it is a way to tell a story with a photograph. The setting for this shoot was influenced by the location, Cafe Club Fais Do-Do in Los Angeles. This club (really a bar with a stage) had seen better days. It was dark and dank. The walls were damaged. Nothing was new. What this venue had, it had in spades, character.

We decided before our subject arrived, that it would be a perfect scene for an aging rock star. With our idea set, we began looking for the best areas to shoot. We decided on the first table in front of the stage and the up-stairs balcony lounge. For props, we began scouring the club. An old menu, a tumbler glass, a crystal decanter, and a (new) pack of cigarettes were used for the shoot.

Lighting was being discussed as our subject arrived. We explained the idea to him. We picked out the best wardrobe that he brought and finished it with my black leather jacket. Completing the lighting in a short time, we began shooting. As the shoot continued, we played with different background lighting to keep our subject as the main focus, but not lose the character of the old club. The real reason for this is an idea that Seth has been enforcing in our minds, believability. Having an old man in a leather jacket and calling him a rock star doesn't really sell the idea. Posing the subject in an old club with a cigarette and a drink in hand makes it believable.

We wrapped up the shoot as our subject needed to leave. But before leaving, we couldn't resist jumping on stage and pretending to be rock stars. Check out the photos from the shoot and our "jam" session below and let me know what you think.

Old rock star editorial old rock star editorial

Old rock star editorial

Old rock star editorial

Seth Hancock

John Calpin

Deyane

Deyane

Deyane

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(James C Photography) James Conn JamesCPhotography Los Angeles Seth Hancock believability editorial photography portrait rock star rockstar https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/2/editorial-portrait-with-seth-hancock Tue, 03 Feb 2015 23:59:48 GMT
Tour of the ARTIC https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/1/tour-of-artic For those of you who live in the Southern California area, there is a new transportation center in Anaheim. It is called the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center or ARTIC for short.

It currently links train and bus routes for 3 million Orange County residents. Future plans include California High-speed rail, connecting San Francisco to San Diego, and the MagLev train between California and Nevada. It is tough to commute in this area, so any advancement in public transportation is good news to me.

I enjoyed a tour of the center, and I have to say, that I am excited for the possibilities of shooting in this building too.

Here is a picture of the inside of the architecturally stunning building.

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(James C Photography) ARTIC Anaheim James Conn JamesCPhotography architecture building photography symmetry transportation https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/1/tour-of-artic Sun, 25 Jan 2015 06:54:02 GMT
Friday Night Nude https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/1/friday-night-nude I had an absolute blast last Friday night. We set up a nude shoot at LA Photo Spot studio. This was my first time in this studio in the flower district of Los Angeles. Gathering information from online, the studio seemed small. In person, it was small but well utilized. There was enough room for 3 sets. 

Lights set up and model in place, we began shooting. It was easy working with the beautiful and professional Stephy C (MM#645515). There were four configurations for the shoot. Two being on seemless white paper, one on a black background, and one low-key using the brick walls.

All in all, it was a great shoot. The model was easy to work with, the lighting was spot on, and concept was solid. Pictures can be seen in the gallery here.

The photography can be purchased from the gallery on a number of canvas sizes. Feel free to pin your favorites on Pinterest or like them on Facebook. Thanks.

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(James C Photography) DTLA James Conn JamesCPhotography Los Angeles artistic control key lighting lingerie low nude photography shadow studio https://jamescphotography.com/blog/2015/1/friday-night-nude Tue, 13 Jan 2015 03:50:18 GMT