Learning to Love the Landscape

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It’s mid-April of 2015 and I’ve noticed a trend in my photography that separates it from all previous years- a greater emphasis on travel and epic landscapes.  This year in Hawaii and California I’ve visited redwoods, a volcano + corresponding plain, a rainforest, climbed on top of waterfalls, been on snowy mountains and played in sand dunes.  I’ve swam in the ocean and hiked locally in our Arizona canyons and mountain parks like Papago, the San Tans and Sabino Canyon.

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Why this is a change for me is, I never was a landscape guy.  All my favorite photographers worked with either people or animals.  Maybe I could chalk it up to wanting to experience the world a bit more than I did when I was young- I’m also keen to stay healthy and not just melt into a pile of sludge in front of the tv.  I need to be physically active and being out in nature is a great way to keep fit while indulging our photographic habits.San Fran (21 of 292)-Edit

The other change is, I’m finding the market for artsy model images has its limits in who wants to buy them, where they can be displayed, etc.  Elegant epic landscapes tend to have a wider appeal and serve better when I’m trying to put together a workshop.

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If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

New music video – “Survival Mode” by Artificial Human

Every video I make is a challenge in both concept and technical execution, but this one was particularly tricky; I had a song from 2013 I really wanted to make a music video for, but the footage I had of the singer Lacheln was from a few months before we even did this song.  This footage had gone untouched on various hard drives over the last two years, basically because I didn’t have a decent enough computer to do anything with it until now.

Though the song is about the wars of offense and defense we have with our loved ones, I was always a fan of music videos that had an alternate theme to them that wasn’t actually in the song.  After a chance encounter with a bat wandering around in daylight, I filmed a variety of animals at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo and at the Maricopa County Fair in Phoenix.  I would assume animals are much more cognizant of the “circle of life” than people and make decisions based on survival needs.  You don’t see animals wasting their money, do foolish self destructive things in the way people choose to.

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

Shots from the Seattle Zoo

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During my San Francisco trip last week, I had a flight delay in Seattle and decided to take a trip to the Woodland Park Zoo.  One of my first published images was from that particular zoo, and of all the places to spend a couple hours, I typically have the best opportunities for the kind of photography I like at a zoo rather than walking streets or in random nature areas.Seattle Zoo (111 of 135)

One of the best shooting subjects happens to be the most statistically dangerous animal, the hippo.  Woodland Park has two who were pretty active during my visit.  Each image was shot with the Fuji X-T1 with the stunning 55-200mm lens.  Processing animals and nature in Lightroom is a pleasure as there’s no retouching to eat up time- these were perhaps 20 seconds each to edit.Seattle Zoo (73 of 135)

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

Trish + Cat

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Shot with model Trish Davis in February, 2015.  This particular shoot I focused mostly on instax and filming a video with the model, but I made sure to squeeze in a few traditional shots with my Fuji X-T1.  The cat climbing to the top of the chair was complete random happenstance that really elevated this photo for me.

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

 

New video art “Shapeshifter”

“Shapeshifter” is another slice of video art featuring a model, this time my old friend Percolate.

There were a few things I did differently with this one:

1. it was shot in my backyard largely on my Fuji X-T1, as opposed the GoPro Hero 4 Black Edition;  the main reason was manual exposure control which I have on the X-T1.  At nighttime, and inconsistent lighting conditions resulting from me swinging the lights, the autoexposure on the GoPro would’ve gone haywire.

2. I also composed the music the night before I shot any footage, rather than scoring a soundtrack or using a pre-existing piece of my music and plopping it into the piece.  It’s a small distinction but the turnaround time for this video was much shorter, about 4 hours over 2 days, than the week or so I spent on “Unity” and “Exile” thinking about the footage and what shape it should have.

3. I had a bit of a storyboard to my usual scribbled shot list, and a few shots done as a mockup for the model to see before we shot the video.

There were cosmetic differences of course, but the 3 items above were key process differences that helped this get made.  The more I plan and prepare, the less time I have to spend trying to sort out a mess of footage after the fact.

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

Glass Olive Goes to Jail

Glass Olive in prisonThis image was shot in December 2011 of model Glass Olive in the Mesa Territorial Jail, actually part of a Natural History Museum but nevertheless authentic.  I’d overlooked it for many years because it was dark and the subject was out of focus- but while searching for portfolio images, I came across it and responded to the overall vibe it had.  Having not been in jail, I can only imagine that everything feels dark and unfocused to the prisoner.  A slow burning image to be sure, and thankfully it survived my occasional culling of the Lightroom catalog.

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.

 

Stretching the Art Legs

promo boxHere comes the travel!  I love stretching my legs and getting deep into shoots, making videos, meeting other creatives, collaborating, working with old favorites and new talent.

San Francisco is a city I’ve been to a couple times but shockingly never did anything creative in.

Portland is hosting Photolucida Portfolio Reviews and I’ve got a lot of days in a row in a city where I’ve been fortunate to meet a lot of creative talent.

In Palm Springs, I’m attending the Palm Springs Photo Festival, but it’s under the guise of taking my very first pro workshop with portrait legend Frank Ockenfels III.

Then in May… it’s a full on art making trip to NYC.  I haven’t been in close to two years and it’s a bit more difficult to get to the East Coast, but thanks to my inlaws moving to Arizona, it’s not a question of “who will pick the kids up from school?” any more…

If you’re a creative talent in ANY of these cities, drop me a line and let me know who you are!  dbmillerphoto (at) gmail.com