General, photography, technical

Throwback Thursday: Yearbook

Last week, I mentioned my yearbook. Today, I want to tell you, how to create one ūüôā

Each December, I copy all of my edited / developed images from the past 12 months into one folder of my hard-disk and rename them to have a naming schema YYYYMMDD-HHmmss- in front of the original file name. Next, I remove all tags and stars from them by using a light-table software to have no filtering at all. Now, I can flip though all of my images and give them stars again. Starting with 1 star for the outstanding images. After that, I can filter again and select all images with 1 star and start again flipping though the already marked images and give a second star to the outstanding images. Repeating this three times I got the top images marked with 5 stars.

You can also ask someone for help: a friend or a family member. But, what are the¬†¬†quality characteristics? An images must be sharp (expect, you’re looking for a kind of abstract images), well exposed (having details in the highlights as well as in the dark shadows), a balances horizon and have a good composition. Although, inexperienced people can’t name, why an image is better than another image, they are often able to rank them.

What does good composition mean? It’s not that easy. You can study for years to try to learn what composition mean. Different teachers stress different aspects. But, there are a few basic rules. Instead of writing my own thesis on this, I have a link to Wikipedia for you as an entry point.

Now, that you have a selection of your images taken during the last 12 months, you can start composing the book.

Here you have several options as well. I’d recommend, first finding a print shop¬†and use their software for composing the book instead of creating a pdf and upload the final pdf. Try to tell a story in your book and align the images along that story. You could i.e. order the images chronologically (like a trip through the year), by topic (flowers, animals, landscapes, people, still-lifes, macro, …. ) or by the main color of the images (reds, yellows, greens, blues, monochromes and in-between the mixed colors like purple, orange, turquoise and so on to describe the whole rainbow in your book).

Don’t put too many images on one pages. Keep it simple. Your yearbook is the gallery of the best images of the year. Thus, put only one image in landscape format or max two images in portrait format on one page. Or one image in landscape mode on the left page and 4 complementary images in landscape mode on the right page. (i.e. a big landscape and 4 details in that certain landscape). Pay attention to have the images of the same size throughout the whole book. That makes the book look more even. Look for matching or complementary¬†images on the two pages laying side-by-side. Choose a neutral background color for the pages like white, black or a grey tone and keep this color for the whole book. Don’t use cliparts and big texts. When necessary use a simple and neutral font like Helvetica, Times or Courier in sizes up to 10 point for regular text and 12 point for headlines (that’s bigger than in your newspaper! – try it with your home printer for a single page).

When you need an advice for a certain kind of software for any of the above tasks, drop me a note and I’m going a bit more in detail and name the software I’m using.

Take care!

 

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art, culture, General, photography, review

Umweltfotofestval “Horizonte Zingst”

This post is a translation from my German blog, where you can find a gallery with some images taken during the festival to give you an impression.

End of May, I was in Zingst attending the annual photo festival ¬†“Horizonte Zingst”. It’s called environmental photo festival, because it is focused on our environment and how we treat it. I was there for the first time, but it was held for the tenth time.

Zingst is located at the German coast of the Baltic sea in the state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It’s a small seaside resort.

For one week, photography rules the town. Many, many exhibitions are held outside as well as inside. More than 120 workshops were organised on so many different topics. And everything took place in a very relaxed atmosphere.

The festival lasts for 8 days, starting on Saturday and lasting ’til next Sunday, while the main time is Thursday ’til Sunday. All days have a full loaded schedule where you can pick the topics of your interest or just sit on the beach and enjoy the great landscape.

Each day, there are several exhibition openings with speeches or at least an interview of the photographer. You can learn the idea behind the images or about her style of work. I’d recommend, visiting the exhibitions of your interest at least twice: first alone and for the second time when the photographer is there. Im my gallery I have some impressions of the exhibitions for you.

Each day there are also lots of workshops you can attend. There are workshops for beginners as well as for pros. You can learn the basics of photography or special techniques and sharpen your skills. In sum there were about 120 workshops held during the week.

On the beach they set up a big screen every evening to show a compilation of what happened during that day, called “Bilderflut” (image flood). In approximately 1 hour you can have a brief overview of ¬†what happened during the workshops and see resulting images of the participants. It’s kind of¬†a news show on television but with 2 anchor men standing life in front of the screen and the movies (short documentaries) are not the screen behind them.

You can attend it while either sitting in the sand, standing on the pier or (if lucky enough) sitting in one of the deck chairs of the beach club, set up only for supporting the Bilderflut.

the media team has a very hard job. 8 guys starting on 7 a.m. each day to film and cut the movies to bring them life in the evening. The result is not only played on the big screen on the beach, but also streamed to the internet. At Facebook (unfortunately nor on Youtube), you can follow the show, even when not in Zingst.

Central point of reference it the Max H√ľnten Haus. Max H√ľnten was a painter, born 1869 in D√ľsseldorf. During the 1920s he move to Zings after having visited The Dar√ü, a wild forest between Zingst and Ahrenhoop. Nowadays the area is a preservation zone. That forest is untouched since many centuries.

Max H√ľnten also was a photographer. At the local history museum they have found 500 glass plates. It’s the same technique Anselm Adams has used. The 500 glass plates were taken during the 4 years lasting world travel of Max H√ľnten from 1910 to 1914. The treasure was the initial impulse to establish Zingst as a location for photography. It’s also the spectacular landscape and the special light here at the coast, that make Zingst a special location.¬†So, the festival was founded and backed by some of the major companies in photography.

As a festival focused on the environment, you can see many images showing the beauty and the ruined beauty of our plant. Photo students, photo journalist as well as established landscape and nature photographers displayed there fantastic images. I really recommend having a look on the gallery in my German post.

Between Thursday and Saturday, the town became even more crowded than the days before. I guess, not only because of the very nice weather and the prolonged weekend (that Thursday we have had a public holiday, so that many took the Friday as a bridging day off). During those so-called core-days, they also have had a photo market in town. Lots of tents holding booths of dealers and the major photography companies. You were able to chat with sales engineers and expert adviser, try gear or even get some gear lent to test it outside in combination with your own gear. What a chance!

I guess, that this wasn’t my last visit in Zingst.

Here I have the “Bilderflut” of the last night (Sunday). It’s twice as long as the shows of the other nights. But, it gives you a brief overview of the whole festival. Even it is stored on Facebook, you can watch it without begin a member of Facebook. Btw. at minute 44:50 you can see on of my images as a part of “Best of Zingst” in the category “Landscape” as #3 out of 15.

Much of fun!

culture, General

Thank you for 500 subscribers!!

followed-blog-500-2xThank you guys. Thank you very much.

This morning I got notified by the WordPress backend about the 500th subscriber. That’s so fantastic.

You keep¬†this blog running since September 2009 and nearly 1000 posts up to now.¬†Your likes and comments are my motivation to continue this work. In the beginning, there were few or even no feedbacks. but, over time the number of feedbacks increased. And I’m very happy about that.

It takes me some time each week for thinking about new themes for the next posts,  introducing you to certain parts of this beautiful planet, taking you virtually along on my trips and investigating some fact about country, region, culture, history, animals or plants. But, as long as there is someone who likes what I write, I like to do it.

So, again, thank you very much for your support!

 

art, culture, General

Happy new Year!

dsc_6831_wHappy new Year for Everyone!

This year lays in front of us, just like an empty sheet of paper. It’s waiting to become lettered. Which are your plans for the future? What will happen unplanned? Which unexpected events might become a more or less important mark on your personal sheet of paper? Which will find their way on mine?

Some plans are already in a state to become realized. Others are still vague. And many, many events are even not in my mind.

I also have a German Sylvester tradition for you. For many decades each year many TV stations broadcast a sketch on December 31st here in Germany. It’s recorded back in 1963 in a theater. Both actors are British:¬†Freddie Frinton and May Warden. The whole story runs in english. In the opening scene a german speaking narrator sums the play up. In the 1960s there were not many people speaking or understanding english here in Germany. So, this was quite necessary for the audience on the TVs.

It’s the story of an old upper class lady celebrating her 90th birthday with her 4 male best friends, just the way she did for decades. Unfortunately, here friends already past away during the past years and left her alone. Despite that, she wants to celebrate her birthday following the same procedure as every year and so, her butler James has to be the substitute for each of her friends. And he does it the best way he can.¬†The broadcasted¬†version is about 18 minutes. Just in case, you have a problem to watch it, thy this version.¬†It’s a bit shorter, only about 11 minutes. But, the story seems to be identical. At least, we have the same actors, but without the narrator. I’d recommend, trying the first link first.

I don’t know, why this sketch is so popular here. But, nearly every one knows the story and (thanks to the narrator) even people without any knowledge of the english language can understand it. Over the years many German comedians have made their own version of the sketch. Some of them are run in local dialects.

During the last about 8 hours of a year, this story runs on most TV stations. Either the original version or one of the dialect versions or even several of them are broadcasted. This movie belongs to Sylvester just like fireworks.

Happy new Year!

 

 

architecture, art, food, General, landscape, nature, photography, travel, world

WPC: Ornate

600_7439-e_wThis week’s topic for the weekly photo challenge by “The Daily Post” is “ornate”

Who is the one, who owns the crown in being a genius of decorating architecture way over the top? Antonio Gaudi!

 

Take care!

(as usual, you can see the photo enlarged, when clicking in it)

food, General, landscape, nature, photography, travel, world

WPC: treat

This week’s topic for the weekly photo challenge by “The Daily Post” is “treat

20150725_202217-610_9895-e_w

Clean water, clean environment, healthy food as well as physical and mental health. These are the true treats. Preserve and patronize them!

Take care!

(as usual, you can see the photo enlarged, when clicking in it)

art, General

A new theme

Today I changed my blog theme after 1,5 years.

Instead of ‘notepad’ I now use the theme ‘Abel’. I like a clear style with columns. And I also like having all those buttons below each post and always accessible for the reader. On the other hand, neither the buttons, nor the categories and tags should eat up notably room. The content is the main part of each post, and not the administration data and metadata.

As far as I can see, all the functionality is still there, but the look is fresher. Both columns changed position, to give more room to the content in the main column, when the browser windows gives the space.

What do you think? Do you like the new style?

Take care!