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Landscapes by Karan Kauchhur - 8x11

Landscapes by Karan Kauchhur – 8×11

iNstaKaRan

I’ve not picked up my camera in about 3 months now, thanks to my stupid injury in September. Actually the injury was pretty serious, but the way I got injured was pretty stupid. I was walking down the stairs and missed a step and twisted my right ankle. Got two torn ligaments and my foot looked like Hulk’s foot.. except that it wasn’t green but Blue/Black. Was decommissioned for 2 months and bedridden for a month. So, I have not really created an image in a long time.

Mostly sitting around at home I was trying to figure out ways to do more with my time. So, I installed Instagram and started recycling my images with it. I’m not in particularly impressed with the App, but it does give a whole new twist to the images. Its pretty good with regular cellphone shots, no denying that. However, I gave it a try and was decently satisfied. So if you guys are on Instagram do connect, My id is instakaran.

instakaran

Interview with Ian Plant, A Nature Photographer

Ian Plant is one of the most fascinating and inspiring Nature Photographer I have come across. His photography and articles have been published in various magazines, books and other media. He also holds many photography workshops ( at-least one I intend to attend in the coming months), if you are looking forward to one as well then you can check out his website.

Ian Plant's Dreamscapes
Below in a small Q&A with him where he has answered a whole chunk of questions always troubling my mind.

KK: When you look at a photograph ( your own or your fellow photographer’s) what are the first 3 things (or more) you look at?

IP: The first thing I look at is composition. Composition is the primary aspect of a photograph that is under the creative control of the artist. The second thing I look at is the mood of the moment captured. Photography is all about capturing, as Henri Cartier-Bresson put it, the “decisive moment.” Because of the nature of the medium, photographers must react to the world around them. The mark of a great photographer is recognizing when there is a pleasing convergence of elements in the natural world. The third thing I look at is color and light. Although these are important to nature photography, they are usually more a product of the efforts of Mother Nature than of the artistic vision of the photographer!

KK: When you compose a photograph, are you always sure that this composition would be the best or do you take multiple shots from different perspective and decide later when you download it to your computer?

IP: I try to take as many different compositions of a promising scene as time allows. There’s no such thing as the “best composition” for most scenes; rather, there are often several or many different interpretations that have merit. Digital cameras give one the freedom to easily experiment, so my advice is to take advantage of this and shoot as much as possible. Sometimes I am convinced I have found “the one” when looking through my viewfinder only to be disappointed when I review the image more carefully back on my computer. It pays to take the time and explore other possibilities!

KK: Being a Nature/Landscape photographer, you need to be at the right place at the right time. How do you figure that out?

IP: I find it is important to develop a “weather sense.” Checking weather forecasts and satellite images helps, but nothing beats spending a few days or more on location observing the local weather patterns. Sunset and sunrise are always good bets, but developing an understanding of the local patterns can really help fine-tune one’s timing. Weather is extremely important to nature photography, as it adds mood, drama, and light. Learn the weather and you will have an advantage.

As for being in the right place, scouting a location looking for interesting compositions is the best thing to do. I spend as much time on the ground exploring as I possibly can in order to find the best opportunities, in order to return when I think conditions will be best to bring a scene to its fullest potential. There’s also something to be said for dispensing with a “right place/right time strategy,” and rather just wandering about reacting to changing light as it happens. I often do this, chasing the light rather than sitting on a specific location waiting for something interesting to happen.

KK: Do you have a favorite quote about photography? taken from others or your own?

IP: I guess I have two quotes that I often repeat, one from Ansel Adams and the other is my own. The Ansel quote is: “There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.” Developing a clear artistic vision and learning to effectively convey that vision to others is very important. The second quote, my own, is: “Don’t have rules, only tools.” There are lots of so-called “rules of composition” out there. Never forget that they shouldn’t be treated as ironclad rules, but rather as tools that should be at your disposal. If you need to break a rule to make a great image, then do so!

KK:  Are there any photographers you are inspired from? If so, please could you share their name and how do they inspire you?

IP: “Growing up,” photographically speaking, I studied the work of many of the latter-day film-era landscape masters, such as David MuenchJack DykingaTom Till, andCarr Clifton. The most significant influence on my work probably comes from my good friend and Arizona legend George Stocking. My discussions with him about composition, use of light, and all things related to photography has had a profound influence on my development as an artist. Of course, for most of those conversations we were completely drunk, so I’m not sure if it has been an entirely positive association!

KK: What is your advice for the new folks trying their hand at photography as a hobby or planning to go pro?

IP: My advice is simple, whether photography is a hobby or a profession: immerse yourself in it completely. Take photographs of everything that inspires you or catches your eye. Study the work of others you admire, and think critically about their work and your own photographs. Get out and shoot as much as you can. There’s only one way to see how deep the rabbit hole is: just plunge in and go for it!

Thank You Ian for your precious time answering my questions.

Varina – Nature/Landscape Photographer

Varina Patel is an avid photographer specializing in Nature and Landscape photography. With an eye for the details and love for the nature She and her husband travel together to the most beautiful locations on the planet and capture the most visually stunning photographs. You can follow her on Facebook, her Website and her Flickr stream . There you will find a lot of resources and ebooks to learn from and also you can keep a track of when they are doing the next workshop. She is also part of the team of Visual Wilderness which is a very informative website on everything related to photography right from travel to gear to articles and videos, etc.

Varina

 She was way too generous to answer a few of my questions and I have posted them below: 

KK: When you look at a photograph (your own or your fellow photographer’s) what are the first 3 things (or more) you look at?
V  : Each photograph inspires a different response – but if I have to generalize, I’d say that I usually notice the light first… whether it’s a spectacular sunset or a more subtle scene shot in the shade.  Light is the most important element in the image, and it can make or break a photograph. Composition is probably second. And then distracting elements start to stand out to me.

KK: When you compose a photograph, are you always sure that this composition would be the best or do you take multiple shots from different perspective and decide later when you download it to your computer?
V  : I generally know before I shoot that a specific image will be a favorite – but I do take multiple shots from different perspectives. Sometimes a photo will surprise me by being better than expected.🙂 I’m my own worst critic, and I thousands of images have been tossed before they’ve been given a second look. I’d rather have a few good shots than a million mediocre ones.

KK: Being a Nature/Landscape photographer, you need to be at the right place at the right time. How do you figure that out?
V  : It’s not easy – but with a bit of research and planning, you can make the most of your time at any location. I don’t care as much for “icon shots” as I do for great light… so I chase storms. I watch for storm fronts, and try to place myself strategically to capture storm clouds, beams of light, and sunsets in the best conditions. I’ll work with whatever is in front of me, as long as the sky is looking good. And when the sky doesn’t cooperate, I make the most of my time by shooting details and macro shots.

KK: Do you have a favorite quote about photography? taken from others or your own?
V  : I don’t have a favorite photography quote – but this poem by Lord Byron expresses my feelings about wilderness photography.

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more,
From these our interviews, in which I steal
From all I may be, or have been before,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal.

-Lord Byron

KK: What is your advice for the new folks trying their hand at photography as a hobby or planning to go pro?
V  : Knowledge is far more important than equipment. Rather than spending your money buying the best equipment – take a few classes. You can also find excellent resources online. Post photos in forums and ask for honest critiques – and LISTEN to them. You won’t always agree with the critics, but learn everything you can from them. My photography is far better because I listen to my critics – and I’ll never stop learning.

  Pearl in the Storm

Thank you Varina for your time.

Jay Patel – ” I just like to photograph”

It took me most of last evening to come up with a write up for Jay. Quite honestly I am lost for words. The photograph below pretty much is an evidence of how visually engaging and stunning his photography is.

Saltworks

Like I said, I am lost for words. Jay’s work has been published in numerous magazines, books and he along with his wife have written several ebooks (available for download on his website). He is also an important team member of the website – TimeCatcher. Together his wife and him run several photography workshops and webinars throughout the year. You can find more information on that on his FB Page and his website.

I personally have been really inspired by his work and thanks to him my resolution for the next year is to “Follow the Light” .. no not the white light to the pearly gates.

Follow The Light

Jay has been kind enough to answer my questions. Even though the questions are mostly same, the answers are very photographer specific, and that has given a lot of insight to me about photography. Below are Jay’s answers:

KK: When you look at a photograph ( your own or your fellow photographer’s) what are the first 3 things (or more) you look at?
JP: I break down the photograph into 3 basic elements: Technique, Artistic value and Impact. Technique includes exposure, ISO, use of filters, blending software and processing. Artistic value is defined by how the photograph was composed. And impact is best defined as the WOW factor. Sometimes a photograph can have perfect technical and artistic side, but yet the photograph may lack the WOW factor. For a good photograph all three elements have to work together.

KK: When you say “Artistic Value” or the “Wow” Factor. Isn’t that just your perspective? I mean a different person may like a photo that you may not like, since everyone has slightly different sense of composition, perception and idea. Or are there any rules to this “Wow Factor” ?
JP: There is technical side to photography and then there is artistic side. Artistic side is always subjective and it includes both composition and impact. While what makes is say WOW is not ALWAYS the same thing that makes others say “WOW”. So if a photograph will have greater impact if can make more people say WOW than the ones which dont make more people say “WOW”.

KK: When you compose a photograph, are you always sure that this composition would be the best or do you take multiple shots from different perspective and decide later when you download it to your computer?
JP: I will choose multiple composition from a location. The number of composition will depend upon the location and the light available to work with. While shooting during golden hours your window of creating composition is limited by available window of light. Besides just the rules of composition we use Gestalt principles to compose our photograph. We have 3 Ebooks that explains in detail the rules of composition, gestalt principles and tips to improve your photography by helping the photographer “See Differently”.

KK: Being a Nature/Landscape photographer, you need to be at the right place at the right time. How do you figure that out?
JP: We view light as our primary photographic subject. So, we both prefer the right light over the right location. We frequently stop to shoot on the side of the road, or on the trail to a fabulous location, because the light was right in that spot. We encourage our student to follow the light rather than be fixated on a location. While we look at the weather, cloud covers and storm fronts often times we will shoot when the light is right from any place.

KK: Do you have a favorite quote about photography? taken from others or your own?
JP: Not really….I just like to photograph.

KK: Are they any photographers you are inspired from? If so, please could you share their name and how do they inspire you?
JP: I am rarely inspired by a photographer, but often by photographs. So, I dont have any specific names…but anyone who is passionate about photography inspires me to reach new levels.

KK: What is your advise for the new folks trying their hand at photography as a hobby or planning to go pro?
JP: Learn everything you can. Equipment doesn’t matter if you don’t know how to use it… so worry less about what you are shooting with, and more about what you don’t know. Read everything you can, invest in classes rather than fancy equipment, and ask for those honest critiques we mentioned before.

Thank you Jay for you time..

Interview with Paul Marcellini

Paul Marcellini is an award winning nature and landscape photographer from Florida. I came to know about him when I was doing a project in Sarasota, and was looking for inspiration and places to check out for my own photography. I was really impressed with his photographs of Everglades, and that was one of the reasons even I made a trip to the glades in spite of the thunder and lightening and the heavy storm that day. His photography has inspired me in many ways. You can follow his Blog here ..

Below is the Q&A with him:-

KK: When you look at a photograph ( your own or your fellow photographer’s) what are the first 3 things (or more) you look at?
PM: I look at composition, mood, and exposure.

KK: When you compose a photograph, are you always sure that this composition would be the best or do you take multiple shots from different perspective and decide later when you download it to your computer?
PM: No, sometimes I am surprised that the last minute composition is the one I prefer, over the initial one.

KK: Being a Nature/Landscape photographer, you need to be at the right place at the right time. How do you figure that out?
PM: I am out mostly during good light(around sunrise and sunset) but sometimes you get lucky. It takes a lot of persistance.

KK: Do you have a favorite quote about photography? taken from others or your own?
PM: Not photo specific, but I have always liked: “The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do.” – Walter Bagehot

KK: Are there any photographers you are inspired from? If so, please could you share their name and how do they inspire you?
PM: I definitely take inspiration from Marc AdamusGuy Tal, and Michael Anderson.

KK: What is your advice for the new folks trying their hand at photography as a hobby or planning to go pro?
PM: Keep your day job as long as possible. =)

Thank you Paul for your time…..