Again: No Deleting

As I said in 2016: Today, I present to you an excerpt from my classes at Sheridan College and from my private classes. The subject: “Should I habitually delete my bad pictures?”

And the answer, my photographing friends, is a strong “no”. Deleting, whether “from the camera”, “afterward”, or “instead of formatting”, is always unwise!

So why is that? Let’s look at all three reasons in turn.

[A] Why not delete from your camera?

Well,

  • First of all, it is a waste of time. When you spend your time deleting images, that means that you are “chimping”, i.e. looking at the images instead of looking at the things you are photographing! You should use the time you have on location to be at that location.
  • Also, by all this looking you are wasting valuable battery power; power you may well need later on in the day.
  • And you are losing learning opportunities: why exactly were they bad? The EXIF data usually shows you why—and without the image you may never know.
  • It may be As Good As It Gets: The bad image of uncle Joe may be the last image you have of him.
  • You may be mistaken: Often, you cannot really tell how good or bad the image actually is.
  • And finally, when you make a habit of deleting, you will delete the wrong image soon enough. Guaranteed. Law of nature.

[B] OK. So why not delete afterward?

This too is simple once you think it over…

  • Statistics, is one reason. “How many pictures do you take with wide angle lenses? What proportion if your images is out of focus? How many photos has your camera taken? All these are questions you cannot answer if you have deleted bad images.
  • As before: maybe it’s the only picture you will ever get of this person, even if it is out of focus. I would love too have an out of focus or badly composed picture of Lee Harvey Oswald the day before he shot the president.
  • Processing techniques improve with every iteration of Lightroom/ACR. Maybe that terrible image will be usable 10 years from now.
  • They don’t matter. The drawback of “they get in the way and slow things down or make my photos hard to work with” no longer holds at all with modern image resource management tools like Adobe Lightroom.

So you use 1TB of your 8TB drive for bad stuff. Who cares! Storage is cheap today.

[C] OK then. But why not “delete the card when importing”, or “delete after use”?

  • Because formatting is much, much better than merely marking as deleted (that is all that happens when you “delete”) . It removes lost clusters, fragmentation, and all the other disk error that occur naturally over time on every disk, even virtual disks. Formatting fixes all these and is much safer. It actually deletes.
  • “Deleting when importing” is also unsafe because “what if the import fails”?

But remember, friends, do not format until you have made at least one backup of your images: one main copy, and one backup on other media. All hard drives fail—then question is when, not whether.

So my conclusion: there are lots of reasons to not delete your work. Leave all the bad images intact; format card after backup.

Trust me on this. You will be happy you listened, one day.

Next question.

Q: Should I format the memory card? And where?

A: Yes. After you copy the pictures to a computer and make a backup, and only then: put the card back into the camera and format it. Yes, in the camera, not in the computer. And every time. After your pictures are backed up.

‘Nuff said.

Michael

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Lake Hayes with no Wind

Quadcopter Panorama

This was taken with the DJI Phantom. I believe it was four different photos that I stitched together. I’ve started doing this more and more. I wish the quad could take vertical (portrait) shots that I could stitch together. I don’t always like how wiiiiiide the final shot becomes when you stitch them together. Well, I take that back. I suppose it depends on the medium. A giant print of this on a wall would look pretty sweet, I think. But it doesn’t read well on a phone or a tablet in the vertical position. I guess I shouldn’t think about the medium of display so much… but it does cross my mind.

European Highlight Video!

Here’s, probably, one of my favorite videos we’ve made around here. Thanks again to Olya and the whole team for making this video and the European tour possible!

Daily Photo – Lake Hayes with no Wind

This is Lake Hayes in Arrowtown, New Zealand. I try to come here at least once a week to have a run around the lake. It’s 8KM around and a little bit hilly. It’s always gorgeous, as you can see. Maybe half the time, there is no wind at all, so you get this incredibly glassy reflection. This was taken in the middle of winter, where the colors are the blandest… but, as you can see, “bland” colors in New Zealand are pretty electric!

Lake Hayes with no Wind

Photo Information


  • Date Taken2017-06-27 04:05:00
  • CameraFC6310
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/400
  • Aperture5.6
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length8.8 mm
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramProgram AE
  • Exposure Bias

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Creative: August Self-Publishing Project, Chapter Nine

I’m inside out. Yesterday another unexpected day. The carefully conceived plans, gone. Just get in the Jeep and take in as much as possible. A new ranch. An incredible place, not that high but so vast and so empty all I could think about was disappearing into the hills. Antelope, elk, bobcat, mountain lion, hawk, eagle, rattlesnake, ground squirrel and two massive Bighorn’s cresting a hilltop a mile away. Spotting scope resting on the tailgate, trucks pulled over, engines off. Just observing.

They fear the eclipse here. Well, they fear the people coming for the eclipse. No matter what else happens, just know with absolute certainty, people from the city do not belong here. They never have and they never will. This place, and all others like it, are meant to be left alone, open, vast; strategically sparse to keep in rhythm with the mechanisms of The West. Interlopers like me with romantic visions have no real place. We are meant to keep moving. So are you.

I find myself holding a package of beef. “Who is cooking the burgers?” “You?” he asks. “Ahhhh.” “Goodbye,” he says laughing and walks off, so I man the grill, cooking meat for men and women who eat meat everyday. I’ve been married to a vegetarian for twenty-one years. I manage and there are no complaints, other than I didn’t cook enough.

The plains light is harsh, but still has that slight edge of contrast and saturation you only get at high altitudes. Minus 2/3 on the Fuji and forget about the rest. I get seconds of opportunity then spend most of the day in the backseat of the Rubicon. “Okay Squirt,” he says using my childhood nickname, “this one’s on you,” as we arrive at the first gate. It’s a test. Do I remember how to do it. One gate is stubborn but I use my shoulder like he taught me forty-years ago and we pass through. “It’s amazing how much you kids learned by those few months a year all those years ago,” he adds. “You remembered how to do it.”

There is water up top. Enough for grazing. Decisions are made, coded in terms of pasture size, landscape features and past inhabitants. The original, one-room schoolhouse still stands, protected now by the wire. Squatters cabins old corrals and irrigation tools slowly fading into the long grass and wind of this little altiplano.

They hassle me about my man bag until I tell them they selling price. Then they hassle me a bit more. A part of me feels bad even being here because I know our presence, sister and I, throws them from their natural routine. It would take years to even begin to blend in here, and I would be lumped in with a category of people I want no part of. The only way would be to come alone for long periods and ask for nothing, change nothing, influence nothing and just shut the Hell up and observe.

A topic that always rankles me, and them, is the concept of “people of money,” who come here and do what they do. F%$# things up. Money brings greed, arrogance and opinion, many of which are based on romantic notions of centuries past. It’s just plain ugly when people of money meet people of the land. Doesn’t matter where. I’m not sure I’ll ever get over this, and if even I ever have real money I will do everything I can to avoid infringing. Not that I’m worried about ever having real money.

Now we prep for the eclipse. Truthfully, I want no part of it, and we’ve spoken about getting up high and being alone even if it means we avoid the path of totality. Fine by me. Not sure I’m going to watch it anyway. Maybe we would be better off to consider it a moment to ponder what we are doing with our lives, our culture. A moment to think about everything but ourselves, but I fear it will become little more than media sensation and Instagram fodder for who can have the hippest experience. #blessed God I’m so sick of it all. One week here and the delusions of online life seem nothing beyond silly.

Flights are changed, backroads studied and now we wait.

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Tuefelsberg, the Devil’s Mountain, the cold-war listening station

More and More Video

I took today’s photo with a drone. I also got a lot of video… I’m just kind of collecting cool video from all over the place. At some point, I’ll find time to make a new compilation video of some of these amazing places. Anyway, lock this place into your memory, as you may see it again in a future video! 🙂

Daily Photo – Tuefelsberg, the Devil’s Mountain, the cold-war listening station

How cool is this abandoned place? I had never heard of it until our most recent trip to Berlin. There’s a hill here that rises up about 80 meters. There’s also an abandoned Nazi military-technical college. I bet that was gonna be quite the party school. Anyway, on the very top is this listening station. Now it’s been taken over by graffiti artists and there’s all kinds of crazy stuff happening inside. It’s right out of Fallout. There are creepy people milling about, strange shut-ins, etc – the whole thing is wonderfully post-apocalyptic. You can buy a ticket to get in, but they make you leave (quite forcefully) after sunset.

Tuefelsberg, the Devil’s Mountain, the cold-war listening station

Photo Information


  • Date Taken2017-05-23 21:10:03
  • CameraFC6310
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture2.8
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length8.8 mm
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramProgram AE
  • Exposure Bias

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Ed Ruscha on Stephen Shore’s America

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Stephen Shore, Second Street and Matheson Street, Kenora, Ontario, August 15, 1974
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Fort Worth, Texas, June 2, 1976
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, 2800 South Hayden Street, Amarillo, Texas, August 17, 1973
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Sixth Street, Orlando, Florida, November 7, 1977
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Room 38, Curly Redwood Lodge, Crescent City, California, September 1, 1974
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan, July 8, 1973
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Third Street and Hancock Street, Ithaca, New York, August 11, 1977
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Kelly’s Barber Shop, Key Largo, Florida, November 11, 1977 © the artist

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Stephen Shore, Market Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, July 4, 1973
© the artist

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Stephen Shore, Ginger Shore, Aspen, Colorado, June 20, 1978
© the artist

From this large collection of wide-ranging photographic subjects, no attempt was made to select images that displayed either civic America or variety, but rather ones that had a distinct voice on their own. Looking at one picture you could hear a pin drop. Another would roar with noise and yet another would hum along quite ordinary-like.

I seem to have favored scenes that were oblivious to the camera or forgot it was even there.

Ed Ruscha is an American conceptual artist. This feature is adapted from the Aperture book Stephen Shore: Selected Works, 1973–1981.

Stephen Shore: Selected Works, 1973–1981

Stephen Shore: Selected Works, 1973–1981

Stephen Shore’s Uncommon Places is indisputably a canonic body of work—a touchstone for those interested in photography and the American landscape. Remarkably, despite having been the focus of numerous shows and books, including the eponymous 1982 Aperture classic (expanded and reissued several times), this series of photographs has yet to be explored in its entirety. Over the past five years, Shore has scanned hundreds of negatives shot between 1973 and 1981. In this volume, Aperture has invited an international group of fifteen photographers, curators, authors, and cultural figures to select ten images apiece from this rarely seen cache of images. Each portfolio offers an idiosyncratic and revealing commentary on why this body of work continues to astound; how it has impacted the work of new generations of photography and the medium at large; and proposes new insight on Shore’s unique vision of America as transmuted in this totemic series.

$80.00

The post Ed Ruscha on Stephen Shore’s America appeared first on Aperture Foundation NY.

Source: http://aperture.org

Creative: August Self-Publishing Project, Chapter Eight


Ignore the boring font and basic design. In a hurry here people.

Okay, up early and not a lot of time. I’m juggling family, vast distances, local friends who are accommodating and the complexity that crowds are having on my immediate future. I’m attempting a Plan A, Plan B and Plan C for the next three days, which isn’t easy around here. I might be sleeping along the road, on a ranch, here in Laramie, up at Tie Siding, or some unknown location that has yet to present itself.

I wanted to illustrate the spread idea I was talking about, “Live Booking,” if you will. These are SAMPLE spreads because I’m in a hurry, but just think about how easy and fun and strategic this could be. What I have been doing is focusing on ONE thing. Stills. I was thinking I could do both stills and motion, and I’ve done a LITTLE bit of motion, but primarily I’m doing stills. My second focus is on notes. Writing, and recording quotes. And when I say recording I mean pen and paper. My audio rig is in my bag and won’t return. Not only it is too much to do, and do well, but none of the people I’m working with have time or patience to sit around while I rig my audio over and over. I also don’t have the ability to carry these things when I’m jumping from vehicle to vehicle. Truck to truck to Razor to on foot.

Okay, these spreads are again just samples, but they literally took two minutes to mock up. All you need is a solid still and a solid quote or observation. You do this several times a day and you have a book on your hands. When you return you put finishing touches and you go to print. BOOM. Simple and efficient. And fun. Working this way makes a LONG day of logistical challenges seem like a productive day, and I don’t know about you but I’ll take any perceived mental victory I can get.

What I learned yesterday.

1. Less is not only more it is the only option.
2. Even on a challenging day photographically, I can save my lack of imagery with good observations, notes and quotes.
3. I need a second body because there is no changing lenses out here.
4. I love this place.
5. I will return here much more in the future and will eventually create a serious project of depth and higher quality. But, it will require both summer and winter time and the winter here will kill your ass if you aren’t careful.
6. THIS IS A TOTAL BLAST.

Source: http://shifter.media

Reflections on the Louvre

A little doctoring

In this one, I did kind of a fun technique where I took the bottom half of the photo and flipped it horizontally and reflected it. Most of the reason is because there were a ton of tourists and I was too lazy to remove them. The other is that I thought it looked cooler with a fountain on each side. I went in and made a few other smaller changes so the reflection was not perfect.

Daily Photo – Reflections on the Louvre

On the final day in Paris, our bus was pulling out to go to the next destination. Since one of our partners was Flixbus, they liked us to get photos of the bus in all these cool locations. So we stopped here for a moment to get some photos. After those, I ran over here to get a few quick photos of the Louvre. I can’t be there and not take at least a few!

Reflections on the Louvre

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-05-08 15:45:04
  • CameraX1D
  • Camera MakeHasselblad
  • Exposure Time1/60
  • Aperture16
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length30.0 mm
  • Flash
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

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Ricardo Rangel | Mozambique

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His biographers note that Ricardo Rangel (1924–2009) was the first non-white journalist in colonial Mozambique. He was definitely one of four or five photographers working there on its independence in 1975, and he had indeed contributed some of Mozambique’s most iconic images, even though many of his colonial-era photographs were banned or destroyed by Portuguese censors.

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His best-known work outside Mozambique was a series of evocative studies of bar-girls he made in the 1960s. Under Portugal, the Mozambican capital Lourenço Marques (named after Vasco da Gama’s navigator, who sailed into its broad bay in 1544) was a thriving port, and its red-light district at the Rua de Araújo attracted South Africans and Rhodesians escaping their puritanical regimes at home. With tongue in cheek, Rangel called his work on the Rua de Araújo, “Pão Nosso de Cada Noite” (Our Nightly Bread), a pun on the Lord’s Prayer.

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In 1970, Rengel co-founded Tempo with four friends, who left the daily Noticia, the main mouthpiece of the colonial government. Tempo, although initially subjected to colonial censorship, stopped submitting to censors after the Carnation Revolution in Lisbon. The coup that ended the legacy of the eccentric Portuguese dictator Dr Antonio de Oliveira Salazar was a godsend for Mozambique. After all, the reactionary Salazar was asked in 1968 (seven years into the Angolan revolt) whether he saw independence for Portugal’s African colonies, Angola and Mozambique, in the future; “It is a problem for centuries. Within five hundred years.” In many ways, small and backward Portugal could not afford to lose her colonial subjects: it extracted raw materials at highly extortionate prices from its colonies; Mozambique grew cotton for Portugal rather than food for its people, making a small plantation owner class rich, causing frequent famines, and making Marxist Leninist armed opposition Frelimo popular.

Soon even Portugal grew tired of an attritionary guerrilla war, which saw 60,000 Portuguese soldiers deployed to protect a European settler population that gradually dwindled to just 100,000. Independence was quickly granted, leaving the whole mess to Frelimo. As one observer noted, “No revolutionary movement can have come to power in a more favourable climate of public opinion than Frelimo did”. There was no organized opposition, and the media was compliant, with many leading journalists toeing the Marxist line. In Samora Machel, it had a charismatic leader, although Time magazine, ever acerbic ever cynical, called him “a one-tune medical orderly from Xai-Xai”. Machel arrived in Lourenco Marques (soon to be renamed Maputo) to a crowd of over 100,000 people, a scene vividly photographed by Rangel, who also documented the Portuguese troops and families packing their homes and departing (below).

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But appearances were deceiving. The Portuguese retreat was hasty and petty. When the Carnation Revolution weakened the colonial government, many white settlers abandoned their plantations fearing a Frelimo assault. Now upon independence, the remaining settler farmers drove their tractors and farm equipment off the cliffs rather than surrendering to a potential communist takeover. The civil servants burnt schematics, maps, and government papers. Many took all of their possessions back to Lisbon, even lightbulbs. In a country of eight million, where natives were forbidden from most jobs (even from driving buses), there existed only 1,000 administrators (blacks and some whites who stayed on). Frelimo struggled to run a country twice the area of California, where 80% lived in rural areas and 90% were illiterate.

The government also overreached. Machel’s repeated denunciations of “demon alcohol” quickly made him unpopular, as did bans on discos and miniskirts, and confiscations of religious properties. The Frelimo thugs took control of factories and businesses. The country’s neighbours long relied on Mozambique for economic reasons: South Africa for its migrant mine workers and electricity from Mozambique’s Cabora Bassa dam, and landlocked Rhodesia for transit of 80% of its exports through Mozambican rail lines and ports. Now, with a Communist government imposing price controls, these links were threatened. Machel threatened to shut off Rhodesia’s transit trade, and the white settler regimes responded by funding an anti-Communist insurgency, instituting a disgruntled former Frelimo cadre at its head. The ensuing war would drag on until 1992, killing one million people and displacing five million.

For more, Norrie Macqueen’s excellent account The Decolonization of Portuguese Africa: Metropolitan Revolution and Dissolution of Empire.

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I have started a Patreon. In their words, “Patreon is an Internet-based platform that allows content creators to build their own subscription content service.” I had tremendous fun researching and writing Iconic Photos, and the Patreon is a way for this blog to be more sustainable and growth-focused. Readers who subscribe on Patreon might have access to a few blog posts early; chance to request this topic or that topic; or to participate in some polls. Here is the link to Patreon: http://ift.tt/2qApHf0

 

 

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Photoessay: Hagia Sophia, part II

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(continued from part I)

Hagia Sophia is not only an incredible piece of engineering and architecture – but also one of faith. Constructed in its current form between 532 and 537 AD, it has served as church and mosque (and now museum). Even today, you can’t help but be inspired, humbled and in awe of the work behind it; given its sheer size, it would still take a significant effort to build with modern construction techniques, and that’s excluding the huge amount of specialised handwork required for decoration and outfitting. I’m pretty sure very little of what we build today at that scale will still be around in 1500 years. The question of faith is quite interesting, too: the sheer resources and determination to construct something of that size places huge demands on the population of the city and its rulers. There was probably no economic return model, either – unlike say the European market towns of the Middle Ages. What impressed me the most wasn’t so much the sheer size or unsupported internal volume (though this was still significant) – but the detail given to every surface. Not all of it was completed by 537, and renovations and restoration have been pretty much ongoing non stop thanks to wars, earthquakes and simple entropy – but it’s nevertheless what makes it a truly colossal undertaking, and because of this I think of the renovations as much a part of the building as anything else. Other buildings like the Pyramids might be larger, but they simply don’t have the same kind of finishing requirements, or continual evolution and sense of being an active, alive part of history rather than merely a passive observer. (And I can’t think of anything modern except perhaps the Sagrada Familia that comes close, and even that is still not finished after more than a hundred years.)

I had the opportunity to shoot it for perhaps a few hours total; nowhere near enough time to do justice to the structure (and obviously not around the scaffolds, tripod restrictions etc.) – even so, there are so many images this photoessay will be split into two parts. Enjoy! MT

This series was shot in Istanbul with a Hasselblad H6D-100c, 50, 100 and 150mm lenses, and post processed with Photoshop and LR Workflow III (and the Weekly Workflow). Get more out of your voyages with T1: Travel Photography.

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Ultraprints from this series are available on request here

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More info on Hasselblad cameras and lenses can be found here.

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