On Stretching Out The Stylistic Eye

By | 2011-12-21T10:44:54+00:00 Dec 21st, 2011|

I will be the first to admit my sincere love of post processing. While I have an immense appreciation for the PJs out there who grab those fleeting moments in life in an unadulterated and unedited way, I do also get so much joy from just opening up an image and going to work with fusing my imagination into the shot.

That is my #1 reason for why I love photography, and art, in general. Whenever you enter a subjective arena, the concepts of right and wrong or good and bad become a very shady grey. It’s on me to master the technique of capturing the image using my camera and lens but it doesn’t stop there.

As a digital photographer, I also have a massive arsenal of software tools that allow me to graft my imagination and creativity onto the image. If there is a particular mood I am in at the time, I can sway the shot to reflect that. Or if there was a movie that really resonated with me in terms of its stylization and cinematography, I can use those muses, too.

The key is to not get pigeon-holed into doing the same thing over and over, ad nauseam. Change things up. Try different techniques. Study the works of the photographers in your circles, especially the ones who really get you jazzed. What is it about their work that resonates? Don’t just passively sway your eyes across their images. Spend some time. Soak it in. Think about it!

And don’t stop there. Strike a conversation about it. Pose questions. Try to gain something and learn something. We’re here, all of us, because we have an innate desire to share. We shouldn’t just stop at sharing our work. There is knowledge behind the work. And this is the sort of knowledge that needs to be shared. It’s how a thriving community can continue to thrive.

All of these images that we all share – they are gifts to each other and for each other. Let’s treat them as such.

In terms of the image below, I took it during the 2011 Kelby Worldwide Photo Walk in Port Townsend, WA with +Ray Ketcham, +Stuart Sipahigil and my two crazies, +Nicole S. Young and +Jacob Lucas. The primary leading lines were created based on how I ended up framing the dock in my frame. I used a Lee Big Stopper 10-stop ND filter to get my long exposure, allowing me to further convey motion of the clouds.

I decided to go with a blue-toned B&W conversion – heavy on the contrast, heavy on amplifying the whites (mostly to wipe away the water). I added more contrast to the sky to bring out the clouds and give a sense of directionality.

The dock was processed in Perfect Effects 3 by +onOne Software, adding the Tonal Contrast effect to pop the texture of the wood.

In album Pic Picks Over The Years (94 photos)

 

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15 Comments

  1. Kerry L December 21, 2011 at 9:09 am - Reply

    Serene, isolated, love this.

  2. Steve Boyko December 21, 2011 at 9:19 am - Reply

    Great photo and narrative. Definitely we all need to change things up.

    I really appreciate your description of how you processed the image and your decision-making along the way.

  3. Manuela Azevedo December 21, 2011 at 9:25 am - Reply

    Amazing shots!

  4. Paul Costanza December 21, 2011 at 9:30 am - Reply

    Great stuff…, it was onOne and your Webinars that started or at least kicked started by path! Thanks for everything and Happy holidays!

  5. Andreas Kaspar December 21, 2011 at 9:31 am - Reply

    Wonderful captures.

  6. rajdeep randhawa December 21, 2011 at 9:36 am - Reply

    what a fantastic collection. love the framing..tones nd edit. love it brian. you rock.

  7. Karl Williams December 21, 2011 at 9:51 am - Reply

    With you all the way – the camera should be a means to an end rather than an end in itself. To those who would say "Ah yes .. but what did it look like in reality", I would answer "Does it matter?"

  8. Daniel sax December 21, 2011 at 12:03 pm - Reply

    +Brian Matiash did you use a ND filter? and what stop?

  9. Brian Matiash December 21, 2011 at 1:56 pm - Reply

    +Daniel sax Yup, I used the Lee Big Stopper 10-stop ND filter for this shot.

  10. Daniel sax December 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm - Reply

    Thanks +Brian Matiash I've been wanting to buy a ND Filter but don't which one to buy!

  11. Kirk Norbury December 21, 2011 at 2:28 pm - Reply

    wow amazing shot! :)

  12. Brian Matiash December 21, 2011 at 2:53 pm - Reply

    +Daniel sax The Lee Big Stopper is somewhat hard to come by so if you're hard pressed, the B+W 3.0 10-stop screw on ND filter is an excellent alternative.

  13. Peter Talke December 22, 2011 at 5:05 am - Reply

    Brian, Happy Holidays! If you have a chance, please add +Talke Photography to your circles! Thanks! Have fun! Pete

  14. Luis December 26, 2011 at 5:13 pm - Reply

    impressive result! love the blur of the clouds. Lee filter is really the tool to use in these kind of shots!

  15. Adam Allegro December 27, 2011 at 3:26 am - Reply

    Beautiful Brian. Love the soft B&W processing. Great focus and soft bokeh. I agree, post processing is always something I look forward to. I think it really needs to be a positive experience if you want to get the best out of your photography. Well done!

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