Tag Archives: art

Projektor Ebook Available

Projektor Ebook Available

 

I have been able to finish up a lot of the interior space for Projektor, the new studio art book using humans as a canvas for projected art. Personally I think this is one of the best art books I have done to date and I am really excited about seeing the finished PDF’s on the interior design.

 

The sample blurb for the book is:

 

“Welcome to Projektor, an art book using projected images upon human canvases. The idea of projected images goes back to the early days of photography, but saw a lot of use in the early 1900’s. Bauhaus images used projections, polarization, montage, collage, and other techniques to develop unique works of photographic art. Since then the use of this has gone somewhat out of favor, but is still an important aspect of early photographic techniques. This book recreates some of the techniques but using modern digital equipment as part of the process. “ Projektor Self Blurb

 

Personally I am very excited about this book, it has been long in development, and long in hiring the right people to do help with the project. As I tend to go more for project style art work, very organized photo shoots with a limited number of participants it is always fun when you hit the nail on the head right out of the gate. The link to the ebpub at 4.99 is right here. 

 

I hope you love this book as much as I loved doing it, and enclosed are some sample not safe for work pictures by the way so if you decide to go any further in the entry be aware that someone somewhere is going to get offended, and while we can’t stop that, this isn’t Facebook either. You can hit up my ISP, but my ISP and me have already talked about hosting this kind of content on the site.

 

I would really love to get your feedback on the book, and while the cost of production on this one was more expensive than I thought, you can order the hard cover book here (and sorry hard cover self publishing prices as well) for 24.95. Click on the Lulu link below to capture it and purchase it for your own fine art nude collection of books.

Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.

We are thinking about putting the print editions up on ebay as well, see what we can do with this, we do so few print editions of anything anymore preferring to do kindle editions that it might just be worth taking the more popular kindle editions and doing a physical book of them as well. We will have to see.

 

Lillias Right – Projektor

 

Projektor Lillias Right
Projektor Lillias Right

 

Lady Aera – Projektor

 

Projektor - Lady Aera
Projektor – Lady Aera

 

Justine – Projektor

 

Projektor - Justine
Projektor – Justine

 

I hope you enjoyed the preview images, if you go get the book remember to do a review for us, that is super important to get your feedback either on Amazon or on Lulu, or in the comments below. We will listen and use it to improve our products over time. If you look at our first books and what we are producing now, there is a huge difference, and that is due to user feedback.

 

 

New eBook Demons with Poetry by Mikhail Lermntov

New eBook Demons with Poetry by Mikhail LermntovNew eBook Demons with Poetry by Mikhail Lermntov

 

We make picture books, usually for the kindle, although some of them we will print up from time to time. This year we are kicking off some changes in how we do eBooks based on the feedback we got from customers over on Amazon. There is nothing better than a good review, and even a marginal review can offer some good insight into the book.

 

You can purchase the book Demons here.

 

The biggest issue (3+ reviews) was that we didn’t include any text in our picture books. Rather we just focused in on the art, but that was not quite what people were looking for we started going through some of the older books, finding amazing stuff written around the turn of the century, the 1800’s to be precise and we found this amazing author Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov, a Russian poet and play writer. He is a lot like Edgar Allen Poe, and you know if you are into horror Goth hopelessness then Poe is your guy.

 

We had been working on a number of demon pictures, and decided to marry the two together.

 

The book of poetry that was used for this book was written in 1918 with the original poetry written before 1840. The document we used scanned by the Internet Archive. The book in its entirety reads like a play, and in some ways was probably meant to be a production piece. The Publisher of the original book was Douglas and Foulis of Edinburg after being translated by Robert Burness.

 

Mikhail Yurievich Lermontov was a fascinating person to read about. Essentially a rebel he was exiled on multiple occasions by Czar Nicholas for being irreverent. He seems like the kind of person that would do well in this day and age.

 

By no means did we use the entire book, we picked and chose what we thought would work best as an accompaniment to the pictures we had produced. There is something elegant about Victorian Poetry that sums up that age of steam, science, and the holding onto fairy tales, demons, faeries, and other assorted phantasmagoria that ran rampant through the common person as the age of science began to take root and take hold of mans thinking. As the Witch Craft delusion began to fade, so did the mystery of the countryside. Along with the loss of demons, we also lost the fae and the magical countryside.

 

You can read the book in its entirety from the Internet Archive at https://archive.org/details/demonthe00lermrich and it is worth working through the archaic language to understand that this was written 170 some odd years ago, and printed 100 years ago. It is worth reviving older books long past copyright so that the art, the words, the emotions and the feelings can be translated into more modern language while retaining the wonder, fear and hope of a long forgotten age.

Creating a Picture Book using Amazon Comic Creator

Creating A Picture BookCreating a Picture Book using Amazon Comic Creator

If you try to make a picture book and get it published the more pictures you add the more expensive the book. It is so easy to price yourself out of the market with publishing anywhere that I know a lot of photographers have basically abandoned creating picture books for themselves. Previous versions of the Kindle, and the problems with creating an e-pub also mean that our pictures basically sat on our hard drives or in places like Smugmug or Flickr where we were lucky to sell anything.

The good part is that when Amazon moved into the comic book market allowing independent comic book creators to self publish to Kindle directly, that opened the door to photographers using the same tools to create an awesome picture book along the way.

Some caveats, your pictures need to be 800 X 1260/1280 in size, and have a max size of 126K, so you need to set your DPI at 96 to make sure you can keep your pictures at the right size to work with Amazon Kindle. Over the last couple of days I have gone through my archives of China and some of the cooler photo shoots to create books for Amazon Kindle. The fun part is that one of them sold within the first 24 hours of being posted so I am really hoping to see how sales go with Amazon Kindle.

The book I used for this project is FU We Are: Seattle Punk Rock, a picture book about the Seattle Punk Rock scene I have been trying to get published for the last two years. It took an hour or so to build it for the Amazon Kindle system, without having to argue with publishers who are becoming increasingly gun shy about taking on projects that might not have any economic output. Now given the price of publishing, I can understand that. The Seattle Punk Rock book is somewhere on the order of 130 pages, and there isn’t a popular band in there, but there is a lot about the Seattle Punk Rock scene.

Even if you never sell a copy you are only out about 2 hours of your life, and using Amazon Comic Creator for picture books is about as easy as anything I have encountered in online printing anywhere for any reason. No haggling, no pain, easy to use, there is also a really handy video of about 15 minutes that walks you through the whole process. I did pre-stage everything for this, but honestly, set aside an hour or two to make this happen and you will have your kindle ready picture book uploaded and for sale very quickly.

 

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Rolf Armstrong Pinup Artist from the Art Deco Age

Rolf Armstrong Pinup Artist from the Art Deco AgeRolf Armstrong Pinup Artist from the Art Deco Age

We always want to find something inspiring and wonderful when we are doing art. Ideas of those that have gone before us and cut new ground are often something that we use when we are working with our own ideas. Sometimes we simply need an idea book, and today I am going to propose getting to know Rolf Armstrong. He is one of the original Pinup painters, and his work is simply the staple of what happened later with Vargas and other pinup artists from the 1940’s on through the 1960’s.

Rolf was quite simply one of the most popular pinup painters of the Art Deco age. He spent some time in Seattle, Michigan, and went on to school in New York and Chicago. Paris and then onto other places as a war started and raged across Europe. He was also on the board for commercial artists during World War 2, eventually to die in 1960. His work is storied and he usually worked with live models to keep the ideas fresh in his head.

His work was often found on sheet music, magazine covers, and World War II propaganda. He started the ground work for what would later on become one of the staples of art and photography, the classic Pinup. Truly a visionary, he has some of the most amazing art work you can follow along for your photographic art idea books. Or even if you are a painter, the style, vivid vibrant colors, and posing are all there. Truely the originator of an art form it is always good to know a little art history when you are looking to be inspired for your next art or photographic session.

The good part is that there is a lot of data about his work online so you don’t need to go out and purchase any books. There is an amazing Pinterest of his work right here, along with the obvious Google Image Search function to help you out. He makes for a good place to start your pinup idea book if you are interested in the Art Deco style like I am. He is a good artist to start with and take a look at his work, his life, and the times that he lived in. His World War II art inspired thousands of bomber girl pinups that lived and died over the skies of Europe and the Pacific.

Have fun looking him up and learning what you can learn about some of the very earliest pinup work out there.

 

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Taking pictures of Belly Dancers

Taking pictures of Belly DancersTaking pictures of Belly Dancers

Form, motion, expression, belly dancers can be some of the hardest pictures to take. Mostly because no matter how you have your camera set you need to set the lighting and the speed of the camera so that you can catch motion. Motion has always been a problem for me, and I have this thing about mutant hands where the hands blur out or elongated fingers tend to get in the way. I have friends to thank for that as they tend to critique my pictures quite honestly. And when you find someone who will critique your pictures honestly they are someone to cherish a lot.

I had the opportunity to do some fantasy belly dancers in the studio and ended up with a dozen or so pictures that I ended up really liking. I’ll reprocess them over to a fantasy feel over the next couple of weeks. The setting on the camera was 1/300 running under stage lighting rather than flash, with an ISO of 200 because I wanted to be able to pop the colors and I needed to be a bit above 100 ISO when it came down to the lighting. Flash might have worked better, but wanted to see what i could do against the black background and flash has a tendency to bring out all the details that I wanted smoothed out. I still wanted to capture some motion rather than single events in time. It was important to me to capture the motion of the veils flying through the air, but keep the belly dancer in focus and in perfect focus.

That is going to be the challenge with doing live motion dancing pictures. Belly Dancers rely on the expression of hand and veil; you want to capture both of them. But you do want the veils a little motion wise while everything else is in focus. In all not that bad a photo shoot and my model was amazingly cool to redo some of the movements so that I could try to do what I was trying to do. If you get the opportunity to do something like this I would love to see what you create. Belly dancing has a wonderful history of being something that entices and teases. You always want to know what is underneath, knowing full well that well it is just a performance, and you will not see all that you want to see. Sometimes pictures that are more teasing are always going to be the best ones because it leaves so much to the imagination. One cannot argue with imagination.

 

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Broken Doll Horror Themed Photo Shoot

Broken Doll Horror Themed Photo ShootBroken Doll Horror Themed Photo Shoot

As part of Crypticon Seattle’s 2014 show, I was fortunate enough to be able to do some advertising copy for them, and they said it would be cool to help them out and help me out by doing a blog post about doing advertising copy. This is just one of the galleries from the photo shoot, and it was awesome having a very bendy flexible model to work with for this shoot.

The idea was a broken puppet that would be forgotten and broken in a corner, with a ton of clarity to help set up the idea that this is a grim dark gritty issue.

It gives you a nice visceral feeling, and in some comments on facebook we definitely got a reaction about the ideas of women, horror, victimization, and everything else that would go along with that. In all it was a great way of seeing how people would consume and if possible get them to react to the picture. We are constantly flooded with images of sex, violence, horror, that getting people to react to anything is a small miracle. There is a long way to go with women in horror and coming up with some kick ass strong archetypes. But really the boyfriend gets chopped into bits and the movie ends up with fire, flame, and generic general mayhem.

Crypticon Seattle is one of the biggest horror conventions in the Seattle area so it is always interesting to see what their volunteers are up to when it comes to arranging a photo shoot. I was glad I got to participate in this one as it just ended up being a lot of fun, and there are a ton of smaller galleries to work with and for them to pick something for their advertising campaign. When I see the final proofs of what they are using I’ll post that along and see where we go from there. You know ad people, once they get their hands on an image it does not matter what the photographer intended, everything changes. And we so rarely get to see what the original image looked like. So here you are a super bendy flexible model to work with as a broken abandoned toy in a corner. We should all take better care of our toys, all the time.

Here is the gallery to go along with that as well so have some fun with it.

Broken Doll Horror Themed Photo Shoot

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On One Perfect Photo Suite 7.5.1 Review

On One Perfect Photo Suite ReviewOn One Perfect Photo Suite 7.5.1 Review

The only reason why I know about this software is a hat tip from a photographer over on Google Plus, so G+ is an amazingly vibrant photographic community and we share a lot of information about what we use and how we use it. I have been mucking about with the trial demo version of the software now for about 20 days and I have to say that I am going to buy it.

Getting me to buy more software is a pain, I have a work flow that works for me, Camera to Lightroom, to any kind of touchups that I want to do in Photoshop.

On One fit perfectly into this work flow, and it did change to Camera, Lightroom, On One for effects and art work to Photoshop for conversion over to JPG and usually sharpening and embossing.

Usually software is not something I bring right into a work flow to see what happens with it. But as I got more and more comfortable with the artistic and portrait touches I could do with it, for those pictures I want to bring into an art effect with this software made perfect sense. Not all pictures are ever going to end up on the art side of the work flow. Often Lightroom is just enough to work with when cranking out modeling pictures or working with landscapes and then working effects in Photoshop. On One perfect photo suite seriously cut down the amount of time that I am working the same effects in Photoshop, but opened up a whole new avenue of working with photos that I would have originally only have done back in a real dark room with a real wet process.

I was even able to recreate some of the pictures nearly exactly in Perfect Photo Suite that I was able to create in a wet process in a dark room.

Usually this is what I would create in a Dark Room using a wet process
Usually this is what I would create in a Dark Room using a wet process

Would I recommend it, yes, it seems to do a lot of really interesting art and general effects that can enhance a picture for publication. It does not do everything you can do in Photoshop, but it creates some clean edges when masking pictures, creating silver effects in black and white images, some refocusing effects, and then the huge pool of art and other effects that you can use to put a different spin on a picture.

For example in one picture I was able to put a flame effect on the hem of a skirt to bring out the idea of movement on the stage.

 

Burlesque dancer with flame effect on hem of skirt
Burlesque dancer with flame effect on hem of skirt

Honestly you could and probably will spend 200 to 300 dollars on software that will do less, is harder to use, and does not do what you want it to do right off the bat. There is almost no ramp up speed with the On One Perfect Photo Suite. The software has saved me hours working on some of the art pictures I have been working with. So check out the smaller gallery below. All of these were made with On One. I was not compensated for this – really just a hat tip from a photographer, a quick painless free 30 day trial download, and my 2 cents for what it is worth.

 

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