This site has moved to another blog called, ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY. There will me no further posts to this site. The new site will continue so show my regular shooting progress, but will also contain other topics on photography, such as hands-on equipment and software reviews, historical information on photography, and much more.

When it was set up, the DAILY STOCK SHOT PROJECT was supposed to be a one year project. Last year I extended the project another year due to the popularity of the site, but now it is time to move on.

If you wish to continue following, please visit my new blog at ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY and save it as a new link.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

This close-up of a spur was done with available window light and the 85mm Nikon macro lens on a D7000.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Sometimes, as an exercise, I go out with only one specialty lens on the camera.  I pick a focal length I haven't used in awhile just to shake myself up.  Today I selected the Nikon 80-400mm zoom lens and put it on the D7000 camera where it has an equivalent focal length of 120-600mm.  Here the top of the Empire State Building is juxtaposed with the roof ornament of an older building on Broadway.

I set my ISO high, mostly around 800, because very long lenses amplify motion blur significantly, even with vibration reduction turned on, and I intended to hand hold the camera.  A high ISO would enable me to use a very high shutter speed to prevent motion blur.  Even with that, I would take several shots of the same scene just to insure that one would come out sharp.  This turned out to be a wise move, for even at 1/500th second many images were blurred. The high ISO is not as destructive of image quality on a bright, sunny day as it is in low light.  This photo is of the Flat Iron Building reflecting the golden glow of the sun, which is also picked up in a reflection in one of the windows in a foreground building.

Long and super-long telephoto lenses have a compression effect on subjects.  I wanted to use this to my compositional benefit by choosing some popular New York buildings and showing how they relate to their environment.  This shot, for instance, is of the Empire State Building framed by the arch of Washington Square some thirty blocks away.

Here an abstract pattern of the Empire State Building lit by the late afternoon sun is reflected in a modern sky scraper.

This super tight close-up of the Flatiron Building reflecting the setting sun reminds me of shots I did of classical Greek temples.
The steeple of a church on Fifth Avenue is compressed through the "telephoto effect" against the top of the Empire State Building.  The focal length for this image was approximately 350mm.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

While wondering about I found these old, crusty, falling-apart books and thought they would make a good stock background photo. Fortunately, I had the Fuji X100 with me and, setting it to macro mode, made several variations.
There was one book with its cover missing.  I placed it in the middle of the composition in hopes that a designer can use it as a place to add a specific message later on.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

For this shot we wanted the over all scene to be sharp but the person in the background to blur as he walked by. To accomplish this I needed a slow shutter speed of 1/8-1/15sec to create the blur in the person walking.  Our studio is lit by daylight so I used a neutral density filter to reduce the exposure, and then asked the foreground model at the computer to hold still.  Shot with a Nikon D3s camera on a tripod and 78mm on a Nikon 70-200mm zoom with f/2.8 aperture.

Friday, January 27, 2012

I found a beautiful piece of rusted metal to use as a photo background.  Here are a couple of the first photos taken with it.

To take the photos I used a Nikon D7000 with the 40mm macro lens set at f/8 to keep everything sharp.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

This is just one more in the series of illumination photos I did yesterday.  Here the light is off to the left shining through the glass globe and into the models face.  Since glass cannot be lit that way, I placed a white card behind the globe to pick up the light and reflect it back through the glass and into the camera.  Two assistants released smoke into the scene from behind to lend atmospheric haze.  A further light behind the model adds detail to his hair.  Camera was the Nikon D3s with the 70-200mm zoom.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Today we did a series of images of someone working on various computers and tablets where they were lit by the glow from the screen.  Here are two samples, each was accomplished with a different method.  The top photo is actually a composite of two images.  With the camera on a tripod I took a shot of the model with a direct light shining in his face as though it was from a computer screen.  Then we turned out the light and placed the computer monitor in the scene.  Later in Photoshop I combined the image of the monitor with the image of the model and added the screen glow to the monitor to complete the effect.

lighting for this scene was completely different.  I placed a tiny Nikon SB-R200 flash on the computer keyboard and aimed it at the screen where I had taped a white sheet of paper to reflect the light back into the model's face.  Then it was a matter of balancing the exposure of the light from the flash with the ambient light until the scene looked like it was shot at night. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Homage to Kodak, which declared bankruptcy this past week.  I have many fond memories preserved on the thousands of rolls of Kodachrome film I have shot over the years. 
Kodachrome II film was the mainstay of my early photography career.  It was manufactured from 1962-74 and had an ISO film speed (then called ASA) of 25.  I shot this film in Nikon FTn and F2 cameras, as well as in a Leica M2.

Monday, January 23, 2012

A fairly simple stock photo taken in a church pew.  Despite how it appears, the scene was quite dark and required a 1/6th second exposure after boosting the ISO to 800. I balanced the camera on the seat and used the built-in self-timer to trip the shutter.  Taken with the Nikon D7000 and Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8 zoom lens.  Having a wide aperture lens is always handy in situations such as this.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

This will be the last blog photo of the eye glasses...promise!  A photo of the hand holding the glasses was combined with a second photo of the eye chart in focus to create the focused letters within the glasses.  Application of the Photoshop warping tool gave a rounding effect to the sharper letters along the sides of the glasses frames where they would have normally been distorted by the optics.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

This model was in the studio today and I couldn't resist just one more photo with the eye glasses. Because the glasses were so over-sized for her face, I kept the theme of the photo more in a humorous vein. Photographed with the Nikon D7000 and 50mm f/1.4 lens.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Of course this is the most obvious conceptual use for a photo of eyeglasses.  Photographed with the D7000 and 50mm Nikon f/1.4 lens wide open to emphasize the out-of-focus areas.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Here is a shot of the glasses in a conceptual medical situation with finance suggested by the calculator.  I also took a photo of the scene without the calculator.  Photographed with the Nikon D7000 and 40mm macro at f/5.6.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Yes, one more of the eye glasses.  I decided to continue for a full week and this is the fourth day.  Three to go.  We had a model in the studio for a shoot today and I added this shot to the schedule.  Photographed up close with the Nikon D3s and 105mm Nikon macro lens with wide open aperture.  At this distance the depth-of-field is practically nil.  So getting in really close with a long lens and wide open aperture can be tricky.  I had to position the film plane of the camera to be parallel with both the iris of the eye and the rim of the glasses -- both important story-telling elements --  to keep both sharply focused.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Continuing right along with the eye glasses theme, I did this photo with a legal pad.  Camera was the Nikon D7000 and 85mm macro with soft window light.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Here is yet another photo I just did using my new eye glasses as a prop.  Hmmm...I wonder how many ideas I could come up with where I incorporate the glasses.  Shot with the Nikon D7000 and 85mm macro with a wide open aperture and strong window light creating the shadows.
This is another variation of the same scene.  I switched to the 40mm macro and an aperture of f/6.3 to add some depth-of-field to the shot.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Here is another photo I took of my new glasses.  I envisioned a very dark image with a monochromatic color scheme so I shot it by harsh window light with no fill light to create strong, graphic shadows.  I added the vignetting later in post-processing.  Photographed with the Nikon D7000 and 85mm Macro lens set to f/11.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Bought myself a new pair of glasses.  To photograph them I used one of my favorite close-up combos, a Nikon 50mm f/1.4 lens fit with a close-up filter and used wide open for an extremely shallow depth-of-field.  Camera was the Nikon D700.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The gang's all here!  This image is an assemblage of photos I have been taking in the studio over the period of a year.  Each model was photographed individually on white with the idea of combining them into groups later on. In a project such as this it is important to always use the same lighting and camera setup so the final image looks natural when combined.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

This is another photo of the model from yesterday's shoot.  I just got around to processing it.  The softness was achieved with a technique I have used since beginning my career -- rotating a prism in front of part of the lens and using a wide open aperture to further blur the image.  The prism causes some refracting lines in addition to the blur effect.
This photo was taken today in a real hospital where I was visiting someone.  I always have a camera with me.  In this case it was the Fuji X100 in macro mode.  I like this camera because it is so small and light to carry, and very unobtrusive.  It also produces very high quality images even at an ISO of 1600 used here.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Today we had one model in the studio for the entire day.  Janet, our stylist, prepared over a dozen different sets for the many scenes we did.  Here are just two of them, a florist shop and a painter's studio.  Both were set up in the exact same corner of our photo studio.

The day was bright and the sun low in the winter sky so we needed to scrim the windows that surround our studio to soften the light.  I used the Nikon D3s the entire day, as I usually do for model situations such as this, but I change lenses constantly to give a different perspective and depth of field in each scene.
Here is an example of the difference a lens choice can make.  The top photo was taken at 112mm with a Nikon 70-200 zoom set to f/2.8.  The middle photo used the Nikon 24-70mm zoom set to 62mm and f/2.8.  To achieve a very shallow depth of field resulting in an extremely soft background the bottom photo was taken with the Nikon 135mm defocus lens set to f/2.  A tungsten hair light was used in the rear off to the left in all the shots to simulate warm sunlight coming from a window.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Old technology often makes for good stock photo concepts applicable today.  I found this old 78 record in a used record store and liked the character of the aging paper jacket.  I did a number of variations of the record using the Nikon D3x camera.
The top photo is a presentation of the entire record and will probably be used as an element in a larger design.  The bottom image incorporates a red background with sufficient space for a designer to use the photo large and add copy over it.  When shooting stock photos like this I find it important to remember that my photo is only part of another design project.

Monday, January 9, 2012

I found this bottle of organic milk while passing through the local farmer's market and brought it back to photograph in a still life with some cookies.  Photographed with the Nikon D7000 and 40mm macro lens.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

This image is for a series I am doing on American monuments.  I waited to take this shot close to noon on a winter day when the sun would be low in the southern sky so there would be little shadowing and a deep blue sky to the north of the building.  The photo was taken with the Leica M9 and 90mm Elmarit lens at f/8 and processed later as infrared black & white.
This is another photo taken several years ago for the same series.

Friday, January 6, 2012

I took this photo with early morning window light while my friend, Marg, was pouring herself a cup of tea at breakfast.  Camera: Nikon D7000 and Nikon 40mm macro.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I was in the Wall Street area today where I had an opportunity to photograph in the offices of a financial tradering company.  I wanted to use an unobtrusive camera outfit so I took the Nikon D7000 and Nikon 16-85mm lens, and set the ISO to 1600 for the indoor shots.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

It's that time of year again when everyone is back to thinking about dieting -- and so too stock photographers.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I saved this champagne cork from New Year's Eve so I could do this extreme close-up when I returned.  Taken with the Nikon D7000, 85mm Nikon macro lens, in the soft window light of my small home studio.

Monday, January 2, 2012

On the last morning of my weekend trip the rising sun broke through an early morning fog and created this fitting scene for the dawning of a new year.

Considerable post-processing in Photoshop added an eerie atmosphere to the scene.  Both images were taken with the Nikon D7000 and Nikon 17-55 lens.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

It rained during the night and a haze fell on the forest early this morning.  This low angle image was taken with a Sigma 8-16mm zoom set to 8mm and f/22 on a Nikon D7000 set for ISO 100 -- the combo yielding maximum sharpness and depth-of-field.