Category Archives: Black and White Photography

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks – Excerpts From a Photo Shoot

This week’s excerpts from a photo shoot take us to Flagstaff, Arizona (the railroad tracks that run through Flagstaff to be exact). Flagstaff sits in northern Arizona up in the high country with lots of pine trees. It is very different from Phoenix which sits a few hours south. It is also situated on a very heavily traveled transportation corridor connecting Southern California with points east. The corridor is served by Interstate 40 (following the historic Route 66 which goes through Flagstaff) and also a major rail line serving both freight and passenger train service. It seems like there is a train rolling through every half hour.

We were up there the first week of January with our Seattle child and her fiancé spending time in Sedona (southwest of Flagstaff) and Flagstaff. On one of our outings, we were checking out a microbrewery which sits along the railroad tracks and after a great lunch and drinks, the gift shop beckoned the rest of our group. Shopping and me don’t really mix…I’m an in and out type of shopper, but since I always have my camera nearby, I thought this would be a great opportunity to take some shots while the rest of the group browsed. Off to the tracks I went and took the following shots between trains.

Full disclosure at this point…this photo shoot was designed to be a black and white series, as that was how I was seeing the final result in my mind when I was snapping away. For those out there that aren’t as wild about B&W Photography as I am, for you I am starting and ending the series in color.


 

The first shot is of the tracks heading west, with the current train station on the right.

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 1

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 1


 

The second capture starts the black and white series with the same capture. I would like to point out a building in the shot that stands out better in the B&W version. Let your eye follow the sidewalk in front of the train station towards the hill in the background. If you go straight up visually to the top of the hill, you will see a small white dome structure. This is the Lowell Observatory, built in 1894 and its claim to fame is the discovery of Pluto.

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 2

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 2


 

The third capture is still looking west, but with the composition of the shot centered on just the tracks. I love the depth that is created by taking these shots centered between the tracks (on these tracks, not advisable and believe me I was quick about it as I said earlier there is a lot of train traffic).

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 3

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 3


 

The fourth shot is from me turning completely around and now I am facing east.

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 4

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 4


 

The fifth shot is in the same location with me stooping down and pulling in a tighter shot.

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 5

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 5


 

The sixth and seventh pictures are the original train station and number six creates that vintage, historic look with B&W, but I love number seven because of the beauty of the color of the stone.

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 6

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 6

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 7

Flagstaff Railroad Tracks 7


 

Thoughts? (P.S. – as I said in my B&W post two weeks ago: it’s ok if you prefer the color…no offense taken, I admit I have a penchant for B&W)

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

Tsu: KirtWallGallery

 

River Walkway in Rockford – Black and White Photography

Anyone that has been following my work, knows that I have a love for black and white photography. It may be because I started shooting with black and white film in college and developed my own prints or it could be because there is a certain dramatic element that can be portrayed in black and white vs. color. The subject matter must be just right and the contrast in shapes and subjects plays an important part. I am attaching five differ captures displaying each in the original color and the final black and white print. I want to note that when I did this shoot, I saw each shot in black and white and that was my original intent.

The setting is a wooden walkway along the Rogue River in Rockford, Michigan. This was a typical “Kirt wandered off from the group to get some shots”, scenario. As I wasn’t into shopping in the village and knew it would take a little bit of time for everyone to agree on a restaurant for lunch, I excused myself and these shots are the result (part of the result…more to come from another area of the river).

I also want to note if I had been at this location during peak fall colors, we wouldn’t be having this discussion on black and white photography with these shots.

What I like about these pictures, is the depth the walkway creates as it winds along the river between the trees. Since it is winter, the branches create a separate element of contrast. I shoot in RAW format, so I can adjust the detail and contrast to give an edgier look, which I did. I am going to frame three of them in my office, so would appreciate any feedback on which three.


 

Rockford 1

Rockford 1

Rockford 2

Rockford 2


 

Rockford 3

Rockford 3

Rockford 4

Rockford 4


Rockford 5

Rockford 5

Rockford 6

Rockford 6


 

Rockford 7

Rockford 7

Rockford 8

Rockford 8


Rockford 9

Rockford 9

Rockford 10

Rockford 10


 

 

Thoughts? (P.S. – it’s ok if you prefer the color…no offense taken, I admit I have a penchant for B&W)

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

Tsu: KirtWallGallery

 

Black and

Black and White Floral Blooms – Featured Art Prints

I have a penchant for black and white photography. I am drawn to it and have often wondered why. I finally realized what it was a few years ago. Good black and white photography highlights certain elements more than color photography. These elements are shapes, contrast, texture and lighting. We see these same things in a normal color shot, but in a black and white capture, they are highlighted because there isn’t any color to distract. Because of that, only certain captures work successfully in black and white.

I’ve attached a series of six prints from my Black and White Photography 2 Gallery that highlight this aspect. The subject matter is floral blooms. We are drawn to flowers initially by their color, but we appreciate the beauty of them via shapes and textures that take center stage in a B&W format. Following are six wall art prints that work very well as black and white photographs.

The first one is called Camellia. With this particular capture, I  used a filter that gives the print a grainy look, creating a vintage feel. Notice how the shape of each petal becomes a prominent factor. You also see subtle shading on each petal with a stronger lighting coming from the upper right (taken outdoors with sunlight).

The second one I’ve titled Orchid Pyramid. It is almost a complete opposite in relationship to lighting. These blooms were taken using a shadow box, which diffuses the lighting creating a soft, subtle look. Again, the other elements take center stage such as the shapes of the petals and the contrast of the center of each bloom with the other petals.

The third print is titled Orchid Blooms and is a series of blossoms on a stem using indirect lighting coming from a window. You see the strong light as it makes the middle bloom almost glow. Notice the delicate shapes and the intricate veins of each petal.

Prints 4-6 take us into the world of roses. These particular shots come from a public garden in Portland, Oregon. The rose bushes were over 5 feet tall with huge blooms (very healthy, happy plants).

The fourth print is called Rose Bud and highlights the strong lighting, which emphasizes the shapes of the petals in this rose bud. See the contrast in texture between the delicate petals and the leaves and branch?

The fifth print I’ve titled Rose Blossom and it allows the viewer to really see how delicate the petals are and the intricacies of their shapes wrapped around each other. The lighting is a little more subdued, allowing the shapes to become center stage.

The last one is titled Red Rose Bloom. It highlights the beauty and the delicate nature of the rose petals. The shading you see in the B&W version allows your eye to really see the delicate simplistic nature of the many petals entwined together to form this bloom.

Do you see the way the shapes, contrast, texture and lighting become much more relative to this type of photography? I also think the beauty of fine art black and white photography is that these prints, when framed and matted work in almost any type of room décor. Thoughts?

I invite you to visit my Black and White Photography 2 Gallery to enjoy these prints and many more.

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

The Barns – Featured Art Prints

This week, I wanted to feature a series of art prints from my Black And White Photography Gallery. I’m going to refer to this series as “The Barns”. I love black and white photography because you can create interesting moods with a monochrome approach. The subject of the print must possess enough contrast, lines and shading to help the photographer present the story they are trying to tell. Since I shoot in digital, it allows me the ability to play with the final subject matter so much more than when I used film. I shoot in RAW format to allow me the most options in presenting the final print. When I see shots I’ve taken that I think would look great in black and white, I adjust the picture to a monochrome status and then start playing with the level of detail, the amount of contrast and brightness to create an image that I think tells a story.

The setting for these shots is Eastern Iowa in the wintertime. There isn’t any snow on the ground, but it is cold and the trees are barren. The overall look of the countryside just speaks “Black and White” to me.

The first shot is a large barn with interesting cupolas on the roof. I thought it made the overall architecture of the barn that much more interesting. I played with the contrast, lighting and detail to allow the clouds to become a more important element of the shot.

 

This next print has become one of my favorites, simply because I love the hand pump. It just sits there in the yard right in front of the stables, but speaks volumes to me about life on the farm. I love the combination of elements between the stables and that simple little hand pump.

The third shot is the entire barn and stables from the previous capture. The location is the Amana Colonies in Eastern Iowa, south of Cedar Rapids and west of Iowa City. In this photograph, I wanted the clouds to add to the texture of the presentation. I had to play with the same three elements to get the right balance, as the clouds required a higher amount of detail and contrast to get them to pop like this.

The fourth picture is the same structure, but from the side. In this one, I downplayed the clouds because I wanted the focus to become the rough texture of the siding of the barn. I love the rough grain of the wood and wanted that to dominate this particular photograph.

The last one is an old hay barn located near the large stables and barn. I was going for the rough texture and age of the wood siding of this hay barn. I love the depth of this shot as you can see through the entire barn and I was lucky enough to get it with an empty hay wagon sitting inside. Thoughts?

I invite you to visit my Black and White Photography 1 Gallery to enjoy these prints and many more.

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

Tsu: KirtWallGallery

Covered Bridges in Black and White – Featured Art Prints

I have attached four prints of covered bridges in the state of Oregon, from my Black and White Photography One Gallery. These particular bridges are located in the west quadrant of Oregon north of Grants Pass up to Cottage Grove south of Eugene. They were a quick detour off of Interstate 5 (which winds its way up and down the entire US West Coast from Canada to Mexico) done on a rainy day in early spring.

 

The first shot is of the Grave Creek Covered Bridge, which was built in 1920. This bridge is located 14 miles north of Grants Pass, Oregon right off of Interstate 5.

 

The next shot is the Neal Lane Covered Bridge, which spans Myrtle Creek and is located north of Grants Pass also. The bridge was originally built in 1929. This bridge I lovingly call the “Short Covered Bridge” as the span of the bridge is only 42 feet.

 

 

The third capture is the Stewart Bridge, which spans Mosby Creek and is located east of Cottage Grove (Cottage Grove is along Interstate 5 between Grants Pass and Eugene). The bridge was originally built in 1930.

 

The last print is of the Dorena Covered Bridge that spans the Row River. It was built in 1949. It is located further east of Cottage Grove than the Stewart Bridge at the upper end of Dorena Reservoir.

I think this presentation in black and white captured the mood of a cool rainy day and the age of the bridges. Thoughts?

I invite you to visit my Black and White Photography One Gallery to enjoy these prints and many more.

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

Tsu: KirtWallGallery

Airplane Curves – Excerpts from a Photo Shoot

This week’s photo shoot is from the air show I referenced in last week’s photo shoot on the classic cars. The air show was the main attraction, but they also had a classic car competition, thus the shots last week. I’m kind of following the same venue with another classic era shoot in that I love the lines and sculpted curves on airplanes. I especially appreciate the look on the older models and always seek that “artistic” way of capturing shots.

From that perspective, I am focusing on one plane in particular from that show as it represents all of the classic elements I seek in photographing airplanes. As I did last week, I am attaching each shot in color and then again in black and white. The black and white really pulls out a vintage aspect in each of the photographs. (If anyone recognizes what model this particular classic is, let me know. I was thinking it was a DC-3, which was one of the initial work horses in passenger aviation, but those had single tails and this has a twin tail.)

Airplanes Curves 1

Airplanes Curves 1

This first shot is on the tarmac and the pilot is going through his pre-flight routine before firing up the engines.

Airplane Curves 2

Airplane Curves 2

Same shot in black and white. Creates a vintage look, but also focuses the eye on the lines and curves of the nose and engines.

Airplanes Curves 3

Airplanes Curves 3

This next shot is the plane taxing out to the runway.

Airplane Curves 4

Airplane Curves 4

Again, the black and white makes it look like a picture right out of aviation history. You can almost imagine the passengers waiving good-bye through the windows (love the curtains!).

Airplane Curves 5

Airplane Curves 5

The last shot is the plane doing a low-level flyover before heading out to the other end of the Phoenix metro area to an airport over there that houses a number the old classic airplanes.

Airplane Curves 6

Airplane Curves 6

The black and white photograph looks like a postcard from an airline in that era… Thoughts?

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $60.00 – free shipping!)

Follow my work:

Facebook: TheWallGallery by Kirt Tisdale. (Page likes are always appreciated!)

Google+: TheWallGallery

Twitter: KirtWallGallery

Instagram: Kirttisdale

Tsu: KirtWallGallery