Volume IV Issue 3

BOOKS

sunrise-from-jeffrey-point.jpgI’m currently working on three new books: Our First Family’s Home: The Ohio Governor’s Residence and Heritage Garden ( Ohio University Press, Spring/2008), Missouri Botanical Garden (MBG Press, Fall/2008), and Digital Garden Photography (Timber Press, Spring/2009). The Ohio Governor’s Residence book is in the detailed design phase, and I was impressed with some initial layouts that I reviewed recently from Ohio University Press. I have made eight trips to

St. Louis during 2007 to obtain photographs for the Missouri Botanical Garden book, and will be returning in mid-February and mid-April next year to complete the photography for this celebratory book on

North America’s oldest botanical garden. Finally, much of my time during winter, 2007 and early spring, 2008 will be devoted to completing the writing for my second book with Timber Press, Digital Garden Photography.

In the meantime, check out my books already published and available for purchase, signed to you or the person you designate, from my website:

www.ianadamsphotography.com/book/allbooks.php

2008

OHIO CALENDARS NOW AVAILABLE

hughes-covered-bridge.jpgSince 1989 I have worked with Browntrout Publishers, the world’s largest producer of calendars, to showcase the natural, rural, and historical beauty of the Buckeye State in several large-format wall calendars. The 2008 calendars are now available.

Wild & Scenic Ohio and Ohio Nature include images of Ohio’s diverse natural areas, gardens, and wildlife. Ohio Places includes photographs of barns, bridges, historic sites, rural scenes, towns and cityscapes throughout the Buckeye State. These calendars are available from your local booksellers or directly from Browntrout Publishers, Inc. at www.browntrout.com. For additional information on my 2008 Browntrout

Ohio calendars visit my website at:

www.ianadamsphotography.com/portfolio/calendars.php

NORTHEAST OHIO PHOTOGRAPHS ON PBS 45 & 49 WEBSITE

I enjoy many of the programs aired on public television, including our local Kent, Ohio Channel 45 & 49. PBS 45 & 49 recently launched a new website, which features one of my northeast Ohio photographs included as a background image on their new Home Page. If you click on the link at the top of the photograph, you’ll be directed to a page that shows the entire photograph, with a link to my website. Each month a new seasonal photograph will be featured. Here’s a link to the new PBS 45 & 49 website:

www.pbs4549.org

OHIO NATURE PHOTOGRAPHY SHOW

clifton-mill-lights.jpgEight of my Ohio photographs are included in a photography exhibit organized by fellow Ohio photographer David Fitzsimmons. The show, entitled Ohio’s Natural Landscapes – A Photographic Journey Of The Buckeye State, comprises 48 color photographs taken by six Ohio outdoor photographers: Ian Adams, David Fitzsimmons,
Steve Maslowski, Jim Roetzel, Randall Schieber, and
Art Weber. The final two locations that will be hosting this photography show are Fellows Riverside Gardens in Youngstown, from November 16 through January 6, 2008 and Aullwood Audubon Center near
Dayton, from January 19 through March 16, 2008.

JPEGs of the 48 photographs and biographical information on the photographers may be found on David Fitzsimmons’ website: www.fitzsimmonsphotography.com/ohio_natural_landscapes_exhibit.htm

WORKSHOPS , SEMINARS & SLIDE PROGRAMS

So far I have scheduled eight photography seminars/workshops and four slide programs for 2008. More will be added over the next few months. Here are some of the highlights during early 2008:

The Holden Arboretum in Kirtland, Ohio will host a Winter Ice Photography Workshop on Saturday, January 19. After a classroom session with tips on winter photography using digital cameras, we’ll hike through the woods to Stebbins Gulch, a deep canyon with frozen waterfalls and icicles up to 30 feet long. You’ll need warm clothing and waterproof boots, and the hike and scramble in and out of the gulch can be quite strenuous, but the reward, if conditions are seasonably cold, is some of the best winter ice scenery in northeast Ohio. This workshop is not for beginners – you should have a basic understanding of photography and be comfortable using the controls on your digital camera. There will also be an evening review session at Holden on Wednesday, January 30 to share and critique participants’ photos taken during the workshop. Call Vonna Zahler at (440)-602-3833 to register for this workshop.

Also at Holden, on February 10, from 2-4pm, I will be presenting a slide program, New England Places. From the windswept heights of the Adirondacks and New Hampshire’s Mount Washington to the rocky coast of Maine, from Vermont’s rugged Northeast Kingdom to Massachusett’s fishing villages, New England and upstate New York offers magnificent scenery, bucolic charm, and some of the finest fall color in America. Enjoy a virtual hike up Mount Katahdin, the northern terminus of The Appalachian Trail, visit scenic Acadia National Park, some of the northeast’s unspoiled fishing towns, and several of America’s most photogenic lighthouses along the rugged Maine coast. Call Marian Williams at (440)-602-3811 for more information or visit Holden’s website at www.holdenarb.org

Another one-day Holden workshop, The Beauty of Trees, on April 19, will provide tips for photographing the beauty and variety of trees with digital cameras, followed by an afternoon field session to explore Holden’s woodlands and display gardens in search of images of tree buds, flowers, bark patterns, and emerging spring foliage. We’ll meet again on May 7 from 7-9 pm for a review and critique of photos taken during the workshop. This program is designed for beginners and intermediate photographers.

Part of my last newsletter was devoted to observing and photographing dragonflies. This will be the theme for my slide program, Gossamer Wings: Observing & Photographing Ohio’s Dragonflies & Damselflies on March 29 in

Columbus,

Ohio at the annual meeting of the Ohio Odonata Society. I will be providing tips on finding and photographing these elegant creatures, as well as sharing photographs of many of Ohio’s resident dragonflies and damselflies. Contact Steve Chordas at (614)-421-7159 for more information.

The following week, on April 5, Ohio’s Public Gardens & Arboretums will be the subject of my slide presentation at the Akron-Summit Main Library in
Akron, Ohio. This program showcases many of Ohio’s finest public gardens, including Cleveland Botanical Garden, The Holden Arboretum, Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens in Akron, Kingwood Center in
Mansfield, and Inniswood Metro Gardens and Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus. Call Cheryl Luck at (330)-643-9075 for more information.

The University of Akron’s Workforce Development and Continuing Education group will hold another two-day Digital Nature PhotographyWorkshop on May 2-3. The workshop includes a half-day field photography session in Cuyahoga Valley National Park and 1½ days of intensive classroom instruction on the basics of digital nature photography. For more information, call (330)-972-7577 or visit the University of Akron’s website at: www.uakron.edu/ce/schedules/photog.php This workshop is especially suitable for beginners in digital photography.

Experienced photographers may wish to join my Hocking Hills Photo Tour on April 24-27, sponsored by Cuyahoga Valley Photo Society. The Hocking Hills includes some of Ohio’s most rugged scenery, and the emphasis will be on field photography sessions focusing on rock canyons, waterfalls, wildflowers, ferns, and flowering trees and shrubs. Evening sessions will cover digital workflow, using Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, creating Powerpoint slide programs and color inkjet prints, building and maintaining a photography website, and tips for marketing your photography. More information on this photo tour, which is limited to 15 participants, can be obtained from the Cuyahoga Valley National Park Association, (330)-657-2909.

PHOTOGRAPHING CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

For the next several weeks, Christmas lighting displays make attractive subjects for outdoor photography. Here are a few tips to improve the quality of your Christmas light photographs with a digital camera:

  • Use a tripod. Photographs of Christmas lights usually need time exposures of several seconds or more, and it’s very difficult to handhold a camera without movement for this length of time.
  • Turn the camera flash off.
  • If your camera provides it, shoot in RAW mode. This allows you much more control over color rendition, during the raw conversion process, than a JPEG file produced in-camera.
  • Set the white balance to “automatic”. This is the default setting on most digital cameras.
  • Set your sensitivity setting (ISO) to the lowest value (usually 100 or 200). Higher ISO values, particularly when long exposures are made, tend to produce digital noise in the image, especially in the shadow areas. If your camera has a noise reduction system, make sure it is activated through the menu options.
  • Use the aperture-preferred (A) setting and the multi-segment metering method, which is usually the default metering mode on most digital cameras. Bracket your exposures to provide a choice during the raw conversion process. Adjust the aperture (f/stop) to the largest value that will provide the depth-of-field you want to achieve in the photograph. Don’t use f/16 if f/8 or f/11 will provide adequate depth-of-field, or you will need a very long exposure that will create more digital noise.
  • My favorite lighting for photographing outdoor Christmas lighting displays is a clear blue sky just after sunset. The dark blue sky provides a more attractive background than a black sky, at least to my eye.
  • Cold winter evenings will deplete your camera batteries rapidly, so be sure to take extra charged batteries for your digital camera (s).

These tips for photographing Christmas lights are based on my book, The Art of Garden Photography, pages 137-140, updated for digital cameras.

FIXING LENS “CREEP”

lens-creep-ring.jpgLens creep occurs when a camera lens is pointed down (or up) and the weight of the lens causes the front of the lens barrel to “creep”, due to gravity. Zoom lenses which use a single ring to zoom (push or pull the ring) and focus (turn the ring) are notorious for exhibiting lens creep, but even two-ring zooms, such as my 18-200mm Nikkor zoom, may also creep when pointed down at the ground. This is very annoying, as the lens creeps out of focus unless you hold the zoom ring in place. Attaching the extra weight of a filter, especially a heavy filter such as a polarizer, makes the problem worse. Lens creep also tends to occur more as a lens gets older and the internal zoom mechanism loosens up. You may be able to get the manufacturer to tighten the zoom mechanism, or even replace the lens during the warranty period, but before you resort to these drastic measures you may want to try the following simple, inexpensive solution.

Visit your favorite local department store or bike dealer and buy an inner tube for a bicycle tire. I bought one for a 16-inch tire that cost less than $3. Now take a pair of sharp scissors and carefully cut a band out of the inner tube, about ¼-inch in width. Stretch the band over the lens barrel, so that it covers both the fixed, immovable barrel of the lens and the ring that you turn to zoom the lens. Adjust the overlap to taste – the more you cover the zoom ring the greater will be the friction. On my 18-200mm Nikkor zoom, I cover about 1/8-inch of the zoom ring (see photo). Adjust the position of the band so that the friction doesn’t impede zooming the lens, but is enough to stop the zoom ring from turning on its own when the lens is pointed up or down. Make sure that you stretch the band over the zoom ring, and not the moving barrel of the lens itself. Cut a wider band if you need more friction and a thinner band if you need less friction. A single inner tube is enough to make dozens of replacement bands if the rubber eventually wears out. And the black color of the inner tube doesn’t stand out on most lens barrels.

It’s also a good idea to cut several extra bands and keep them in your camera bag – just in case you forget where you stored the inner tube!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

2007 has been a busy, productive year at Ian Adams Photography, and as this newsletter describes we have an exciting array of book projects, workshops and other photography activities planned for 2008. During the next several months, I will be completing the manuscript for Digital Garden Photography, as well as conducting a few workshops, slide programs and photo trips to add spice and variety.

I would like to thank my clients, family and friends for their encouragement and support during the past year, and wish you all joy, peace, and a wonderful holiday season.

Best wishes,

Ian & Fuji

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