Writing with Light

Fine Art

ONE

“I love the peace the sea gives me as if I’m made from the salt itself”

Israel, Tel Aviv, beach, wave, sea, long exposure, fine art


Wave III

You can probably guess by now that I love being at the beach, I love the water and I love photographing the water especially doing long exposures. This is another of my Tel Aviv, Israel seascapes. I love capturing the waves in their different forms and the long exposure calms an otherwise raging sea.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Israel, Tel Aviv, beach, wave, sea, long exposure, fine art


Wave II

“The waves broke and spread their waters swiftly over the shore. One after another they massed themselves and fell; the spray tossed itself back with the energy of their fall. The waves were steeped deep-blue save for a pattern of diamond-pointed light on their backs which rippled as the backs of great horses ripple with muscles as they move. The waves fell; withdrew and fell again, like the thud of a great beast stamping.”

Virginia  Wolf

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Israel, Tel Aviv, beach, wave, sea, long exposure, fine art


The Wave

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Tel Aviv, Israel, water, sea, wave, long exposure, black and white, BNW, fine art photography


Wind Beneath My Wings

Birds flying high
You know how I feel
Sun in the sky
You know how I feel
Breeze driftin’ on by
You know how I feel
It’s a new dawn
It’s a new day
It’s a new life
For me
And I’m feeling good
I’m feeling good

Michael Buble

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Israel, Tel Aviv, Mediterranean, sea, beach, Kite Boarding, Fine Art, travel photography


The 5 Best Things About My Trip to Israel & Tel Aviv Kite Boarding

I’ve just returned from 2 weeks in Israel and while I’m still trying to shake this jet lag, here are the top 5 best things about this trip:

#5 – Shakshuka is the Middle East’s greatest breakfast invention (go ahead…Google it 🙂 ), but really it’s great any time of the day.

#4 – Tel Aviv! it’s one of the best cities in the world. If you don’t believe me check out Lonely Planet’s annual “best cities” rankings. I’ll do a separate post on Tel Aviv soon.

#3 – Using my new Canon 5D Mark 3 – love, love, love it. More on that later.

#2 – The beach.

#1 – Seeing my SON!

At this time of the year, with blustering winds and cresting waves, kite boarding was the sport du jour.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to purchase a print.

Israel, Tel Aviv, beach, kite boarding, waves, hotels, fine art, travel photography


After the Rain

There’s something about walking through Central Park after a rain storm that’s both calming and mysterious.

Click on the image to see a high resolution version (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

New York, Manhattan, Central Park, path, trees, light post, rain, texture, buildings


Saturday Skate in Central Park

Walking through Central Park on a mild January day my husband and I stopped to watch the ice skating. I knew standing there that I wanted to create an image that I could turn into a digital painting. The skaters in their colourful jackets, the buildings in the background…it was in front of me but the image I wanted to create was in my head.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

New York, Central Park, ice skating, winter, city, fine art, buildings, skating


2015 My Year in Review

Every year Jim Goldstein runs a project on his blog, JMG Galleries, where he encourages photographers to post their best pictures of the year. It’s a great project and I’ve participated every year. When I started participating about 4 years ago I thought, “what a great way to have pictures seen by a whole new audience.”

That was me when I first started blogging but now there are so many other reasons that I participate. Yes I still like that fact that I may reach a new audience but more than that I find this to be a difficult and yet rewarding exercise. It’s tough to cull through your work and pick what you think may be the best of the year. It really gives me a chance to go though my images (some that I haven’t looked at for almost a year) and decide whether they’re good enough to make the cut of the top 10 or 15.  I try to review my images from a technical perspective and from a creative one. Certainly I’m drawn to certain images due to the circumstances of where and when they were taken. The picks may not always be perfect and certainly wouldn’t win any awards but art is subjective and what one person views as a masterpiece another make look at and dismiss entirely.

It’s been a busy and rewarding year both on the photographic front and from a family and work stand point. I’ve taken on a new role at work which was unexpected at the beginning of 2015 but I am loving it. The only downside has been that its been so busy that my photography had to take a bit of a back seat.

From a photography perspective I’ve continued to sell prints and license new work which is always very exciting and rewarding. I won’t make any specific commitments for the new year because I know that my day job will still be taking up a lot of my time but learning new photographic techniques and honing my craft is something that I know will always be important and I will find and make the time to do it.

If you have a chance jump on over to Jim Goldstein’s site here in or about the second week of January and he should have a list of year in review post listed for your viewing pleasure. There’s always a great list of photographers on there, you won’t regret it.

As always you can click on the images to enlarge them or to Purchase a Print.

Cuba, Havana, Old Havana, street photography, travel photography, black and white

Cuba

water drops, gerber flower, refraction, milkweed, macro photography

Refracted Water Drops

Havana, Cuba, Cuban Cigars, Cigar, Stogie, travel photography, cigar aficiondo, black and white

Cuba

Hilton Falls, Ontario, Milton, conservation, waterfall, long exposure, trees

Hilton Falls, Ontario

Boston, skyline, Fan Pier, sunset, blue hour, travel photography, harbour, lights, Charles River

Boston

Muskoka, Lake Rosseau, Ontario, Muskoka Chairs, dock, sunset, nature

Muskoka

Lake Ontario, Toronto, Beaches, sail, sailboats, water

Lake Ontario

Old Montreal, Quebec, night photography, long exposure, historic

Old Montreal

Jerusalem, Israel, street photography, black and white, monochrome, man, beard

Jerusalem, Israel

Israel, Jerusalem, Western Wall, Orthodox, Man, Walking, Motion, black and white, travel photography,

Jerusalem, Israel

Tel Aviv, Israel, sunset, beach, family, photographer, golden, water, sea, Mediterranean

Tel Aviv, Israel

 


The Bridge Path at Ein Afek

Nature reserves are abundant in Israel and on any given day are explored by tourists and locals alike. The nature reserve at Ein Afek just north of Haifa is no exception.

On the northern slope of Ein Afek lies a two-story building from the crusader period (history abounds everywhere in Israel) and from there you can hike through paths surrounded by dense foliage and riverbank flora. The path leads to a bridge path that snakes its way over the lake.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Israel, Ein Afek, nature reserve, path, bridge, lake, fine art


Sail Away

Sometimes you don’t have to travel very far to find beauty. Last weekend we headed down to the Beaches in Toronto. We found a spot on the rocks where we could look out and enjoy the lake. People were going by in canoes and paddle boards but in the distance the sailboats were gliding smoothly through the water.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. This was taken early in the afternoon on a hot, sunny and hazy day. A texture overlay in post created the ambiance I envisioned in my head.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Lake Ontario, Toronto, Beaches, sail, sailboats, water


Say Cheese!

I’m channeling my inner Andy Warhol…or maybe not 🙂 This was a display of cheese making kits at Eataly in New York. Yes we ate there and yes it was delicious.

After processing and making adjustments in Lightroom I processed this image with Topaz Simplify. You can download a free trial and it’s on sale for $39.99 until the end of this month by using the coupon code maysimp, just click here.

Click on the image to see a higher resolution version or to Purchase a Print.

Eataly, cheese, display, art, New York


Beware of the Dog

Every so often I get this boost of creativity and feel inspired to do something different, even a little outrageous with one of my images. This was the case with this image that I captured when we arrived at San Quirico D’Orcia in Tuscany

IMG_5035

RAW file

This is the image straight out of the camera. I haven’t done a thing to it. What I love about this scene is the layer upon layer of the buildings and how the converge. As I stared at it on my computer screen I wondered what it would look like if the buildings were slanted and those stone walls started to squeeze together. I used the “pinch” artistic filter in Photoshop, at about 55%, to bring the stone walls in and the back buildings forward forcing the centre door to inch closer. That looked pretty cool but I still wanted to make it a bit more ominous looking. I had a black and white image of a dark and cloudy sky and used that as a texture overlay using the blending mode “multiply” at 100% opacity. I then used a layer mask to bring back some of the detail in the walls and selectively lighten certain areas.

As you can see from the original image Fido was nowhere to be seen. He is from that village. I captured him only moments earlier standing on one of those high walls. I used the Quick Selection tool to select only him from the image he was in, created a new layer from the selection and then dropped him into this image.  And there you have it…Beware of the Dog!

I don’t do these often but its fun experimenting. I would love to know what you think.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Italy, village, San Quirico D'Orcia, Tuscany, composite, fine art, dog, travel photography

 


Sunflower Sunshine

I love sunflowers. In full bloom they exude happiness and light and much like a photographer they follow that light. I came across this beauty in a sunflower field in the hills of Tuscany.

Click on the image to see a full resolution version (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Sunflower, nature, flower, flower photography, yellow


Into the Drink

Here’s something a little different from me. I’ve never done any composites in Photoshop but I thought I would try my hand at it. This image was taken in Monterosso just before the rain started. I loved the scene and the composition but the light was flat and grey when I brought it into Lightroom.

I started tweaking it a little bit and then thought this would look good if the clouds were darker and the feel was more ominous. I then brought the image into OnOne Perfect Effects and started working on getting that ominous look. I was happy with the way it was shaping up but it was still missing something. I then jumped over to PS and added my final touch. Can you guess what it is?

Click on the image to view a higher resolution (it really looks better) or to Purchase a Print.

Monterosso, Cinque Terre, Italy, boats, beach, pirate, fine art photography, travel photography


The Bistro

When I come home from a trip and first download my images I always look at each image quickly to get a sense of how I would process the image to truly bring out the essence of the scene. Some are quite simple and others just call for a more artistic interpretation.

The Bistro is one of my favourite images from Paris.

Click on the image to see a higher resolution version which really brings out the detail or to Purchase a Print.

Paris, France, bistro, street photography, restaurant, sidewalk cafe


Gone Swimming!

What’s better then riding your bike along a beach promenade? Locking it up and going for a swim, of course.

The wedding that I attended when I was in Israel was an afternoon wedding. The venue was on the beach with a spectacular panoramic view of the sea. As the wedding was winding down and guests were starting to leave I did what any photographer would do…go for a photo walk. Ok so I was in a cocktail dress and heels but I wasn’t going to let this opportunity pass me by. I kicked of my shoes, grabbed my camera and off I went and came upon this scene.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Israel, Hedera, beach, Mediterranean, sea, bicycle, swimmers, texture, travel photography, fine art


Hidden in Prospect Park

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! Here’s another image that I took in Prospect Park in Brooklyn and decided to create a more artful version. As I did with “A Tree Grows There” I once again turned to Topaz Simplify to create the final image. I also wanted to let you know that Topaz Labs is running a promotion on Topaz Simplify. Until February 28th you can pick up this incredible plug-in for 50% the regular price. That means you’ll only be paying $19.99 which is an incredible price for this powerful tool. If you want to try it out first you can do that as well by downloading a trial here.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York, trees, house, Topaz Simplify


The Lonely Path

This is another lovely little pathway I stumbled upon when I was exploring the Rockwood Auto yard.  I posted the first one last week, which was shrouded in fog (you can see it here). The fog was a bit less dense in this area but the colour of the leaves on the one tree in this section just drew me in. I used a texture overlay to give the final image more richness.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Ontario, forest, path, autumn, fall, changing colours, trees, fine art, texture, fog


Santa Barbara Harbour Abstraction

Before we hit LA we spent 2 days in Santa Barbara and I absolutely fell in love with the place. The beautiful harbour front, the quaint downtown area and the friendly people made me wish we were staying longer.

I took this image of the harbour from the wharf while we were waiting to be seated for lunch.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Santa Barbara, California, harbor, sailboats, abstract, pacific ocean, surreal, wharf

Speaking of lunch, if you’re ever in Santa Barbara you must go to Brophy Bros. After checking in to our hotel we asked at the front desk if they could recommend a good local restaurant. We were sent to Brophy Bros. I have to tell you the baked clams were the best I have ever had. And the oysters. And the shrimps. Ok…I’m making myself hungry and I really want to go back.

Santa Barbara, California, restaurant, Brophy Brothers, Brophy Bros., seafood, wharf, clams, sign


Simplicity

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend. The weather on Saturday was just beautiful and it made me start thinking of the warmer days ahead (I hope). I took this image this past January while in Jamaica. It was a beautiful day at the beach when the sea and the sky just converge. I love the simplicity and serenity of moments like that. I used a texture overlay to give the image the appearance of being on a canvas.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

sea, sky, blue, abstract, fine art, Jamaica


Forest Impressions & Topaz Detail

Sometimes you have your posts planned out in advance and other times you have to seize an opportunity that comes along and share certain things with your readers. Forest Impressions is an image that I made a couple of month ago when the fall colours were at their peak. I really enjoy creating these types of images, using long exposures and moving, shaking or panning the camera to see what types of effects I can create. I used a texture filter right in Photoshop to give this image its final look.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really looks better) or to Purchase a Print.

long exposure, trees, fall, autumn

TOPAZ DETAIL 3

About a week ago Topaz Labs announced the release of its newly revamped Topaz Detail 3 plug-in. As much as I wanted to take sometime and write a review of this new release, time just wasn’t on my side and I always want to try something before I pass on the information to you. On Friday I received an email from Topaz Labs letting me know that while the initial promotion period would be over on the 16th they were going to extend the 30% off promotion to affiliates only.  I took this opportunity to download the software over the weekend and really give it a test run.

As with other Topaz plug-in’s Detail is very intuitive and I was pleasantly surprised with its capability. The entire engine of the plug-in has been completely redesigned and the results are outstanding.  I dug into my archives from Italy and here’s the result.

Topaz Detail, Venice, Travel photography

Before Detail

Topaz Detail, Venice, Travel photography

After Detail

Topaz Detail, Venice, Travel photography

Before Detail

Topaz Detail, Venice, Travel photography

After Detail

Click on the images to enlarge and really see the difference. I love how subtle the changes are and how it just gives the final image that added punch that it needs.

The discount period has been extended for 2 days only, Monday Dec. 17th and Tuesday Dec. 18th. Use coupon code “getdetail” Topaz Detail retails for $39.99 but with this discount you get it for only $27.99 which is an absolute steal for a plug-in this powerful. Click here to getdetail.


Yellow Rose of Friendship

The yellow rose signifies friendship and caring so I thought it appropriate to share this image with you today and wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Click on the image to enlarge (it really does look better) or to Purchase a Print.

Black Friday Special – All prints & products in my gallery are 20% Off. Use discount code Thanks2012

yellow, rose, flower, macro photography, texture

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Which Gerber? Another Close Up View

This is another image that I shot at my Close-Up Photography workshop last weekend. After processing the RAW file in colour I felt that this image would be a good candidate to make into a fine art B&W image. When I posted the first image I took at the workshop (which you can see here) I was asked by some of you which lens  I used and my settings.

Everything was shot with natural light and the use of reflectors.

This image was shot at f/2.8, 1/8s ISO 100

After I processed the RAW file in colour I felt that this image would make a good candidate for a fine art black and white conversion. So know I ask for your opinion, which do you prefer 1) Color 2) Antique B&W (created with OnOne Perfect Effects) or 3) B&W created with Topaz B&W Effects Don’t forget you can save 15% on all Topaz products by using the discount code “ELPhoto” at checkout.

Click on the images to enlarge (they really look better) or to Purchase a Print.

macro, flower, gerber

macro, flower, gerber, black and white, antique

Created with OnOne Perfect Effects

macro, flower, gerber, black and white

Created with Topaz B&W Effects