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My adventures in photography from the edge of the map.



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Moose in Wildflowers II


Purchase a fine art print of this image for a limited time at 1/3 off my regular list price.  Just click the image or here.

Leading Lines and Thinking Outside of the Box

If you take a class on photography composition fundamentals, you'll probably hear something to the effect....

"never cut your image in half with a horizontal line" or something like that. There are exceptions of course, mirror images, other things, but the basic idea is that major splits in the scene are distracting and visually unpleasing.


Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. Unpleasing that is. Doing it randomly or accidentally isn't a sure path to success, but exploring options always results in more usable results rather than less.


One way to put tension in your photos is to blatantly break compositional rules such as the one I've just mentioned. Not everyone is going to go for the result, but it's a good way to explore alternate compositions. Find an example of the rule and then try to break it as many ways as possible.


Other compositional "rules" will tell you to compose leading lines in the scene to bring the viewers eyes into the scene, not away from the scene. There is more than one way to do leading lines as well.


This scene leads your eye into the frame from front to back, not from leading lines that draw you in to the center of the frame from the edge of the frame. It's that third dimension of depth. Layer upon layer from front back composed to bring your eye to each portion of the layer. Grass, Water, Sand, Sky... in that order. It's just not obviously pushing your eye along a line. As a matter of fact, the horizontal lines of the top of the dunes, the shore of the creek, the blades of grass, in this scene, are in direct opposition to the natural tendency of ones eye to want to follow the progression.

Thus.... tension.

My advice. Don't be a cow. Don't follow the herd. Explore what you've been led to believe is not acceptable. Find a way to make something work when it shouldn't. There's no substitute for originality.


There are no rules to breaking the rules.




Adobe Camera Raw Updates for Photoshop CS6 Coming To An End


It's been a fun ride with Adobe over the past 10 years.  With their change in business model to the "Creative Cloud", at some point we knew they would stop supporting their last stand-alone version of their product.

In the near future, I'll be exploring alternatives to Photoshop and Lightroom.

As George Harrison once wrote.... "All Things Must Pass"




Adobe LR 6.1 bugs (Stand alone version)

After a little over 2 months of using Adobe LR 6.1 (standalone) I've found the following bugs.
Exporting images to a directory that is open in Adobe Bridge CS6 will result in the image export being deleted after export. LR6 and Adobe Bridge don't coexist very well when looking at a directory.
Random crashes. LR 6 can crash at any time, without notice, without reason. I've had at lest two editing sessions interrupted and edits lost. It also crashes in the library module, crashes when doing preview builds, crashes when exporting files, crashes when converting to DNG. It doesn't matter, it will eventually crash no matter what happens.
LR 6 frequently gives a server error message when starting up. The problem seems related to hard drives that have gone to sleep. At startup, when looking at hard drive directories on a HDD that has gone to sleep, this message will occur. Happens with internal and external drives. I found a work around using a free program called KeepAliveHD, which allows you to write a small text file to any disk drive at regular scheduled intervals, which keeps the drive from going to sleep. Nothing else I've done seems to prevent the problem.
Performance issues with Graphic Cards. I've tried it using Intel Chipset cards and ATI cards, and this portion of LR is not done cooking. I found it best to disable the “Use Graphic Processor” function found in the performance tab. All it does is increase the likelihood you'll have trouble and it may very well cause your performance to degrade. As it sits now, it's a useless function.
There's a bug in exporting EXIF data. LR generates incorrect EXIF and inserts it into the file when uploading from LR.
Random display blanking. I've found this problem will most often occur when using a dual monitor setup. It can occur in a single display setup though. Most often the problem appears after exporting an image.




Why I'm dumping Adobe Lightroom 6

I've been a Lightroom User since it was first released. I've been a firm supporter of the product up through version 5.7. I am also a Adobe Photoshop user currently running the last stand-alone version of CS6. I've never subscribed to the Creative Cloud.


Some of you are probably running Adobe LR version 6. It came out a few months ago. I waited a couple of months then purchased the stand-alone upgrade. Since then, Adobe have issued one update to the software.  For the first time since I've been an Adobe Lightroom users, I feel like I've been taken advantage of.


For those of you who haven't upgraded yet, I'd advise you to save your money. The only real features it added were HDR and Panoramic merge, which, if you've been using Photoshop, you've already had this capability. The CC version of LR 6 gives you an even newer editing tool called DeHaze which is Adobe's way of enticing you to give them money every month to keep doing what you've been doing.  Stand-alone users won't see these additions to version 6, only CC users.


Since installing LR 6, I've been having frequent crashes, most often when scrolling through the library thumbnails, but on occasion in the develop module. When I say "on occasion" that means just about every time when starting it for the first time, it will crash at some future point during use. After the crash, it reloads and runs more stable. Weird. I'm on a Windows 7 PC, which may be part of it. It may also be related to the graphics chip-set in my motherboard. It give me no clue. It is quite annoying.


Personally, I'm at the tipping point with Adobe photo editing software. I can't help but feel as though each successive update to their stand-alone software is nothing more than updating the annoyances.  Even more so, the visual push for me to move to the Creative Cloud is ever present.  I'm tired of it.


Photoshop CS6 on the other hand, runs rock solid. I'm avoiding Creative Cloud at all costs. I don't like someones hand in my pocket at all times. I'm good with this last stand-alone version.


As for Adobe Lightroom. I've elected to uninstall LR 6. And revert to LR 5.7 or what ever the last version was. It's still loaded on the computer. I backed up all my catalogs from the upgrade. It looks like this is it for Adobe products and me. I just can't go where they want me to go.