Technically Proficient Photographers – Lend Me your Ear!

I have recently become aware of a concerning issue with presenting my photographs in the digital medium and I am begging for someone to help me.  I have noticed that there are dramatic differences in color temperatures and overall contrasts depending on what web browser or photo viewing software is used to view my images.  Take this one for instance.  I primarily use Firefox for my web browser and using it the image looks exactly as I finished it in Photoshop, nice and warm with contrasts that make it pop a bit (trust me, that day was anything but warm with temps in the high teens).  If you have the means, view this image in Firefox and Internet Explorer.  Can you see the differences?  In IE, the temps are much cooler and the image is overall muddy with low contrasts.  I have also seen differences in software used to view JPEGS.  In “Windows Photo Viewer” the image is exactly as I processed, but in “Quick Time” it is just as I described in IE.  Most disturbingly, every mobile device (ipod, smartphone, etc…) in which I have viewed my images has also displayed them in this cooler, mushy form.

I am very much a novice in terms of working with file formats, image modes, color profiles and everything related.  I am hoping someone out there can help me with this as you can see this looks to be a major problem.  If you can give me some incite, I will be eternally grateful.  I will even offer up your choice of one of my daughters.  Well, I don’t have any real daughters, but we do have four cats, and they are quite cute I assure you.  😉

Here is some info about my settings and workflow in case it might help: Convert from RAW in LR3 (ProPhoto RGB, 16-bit), move to PS CS6, work in TIFF (RGB, 16-bit), save as JPEG.  I am reasonably comfortable that I am working on a well-calibrated, acceptable quality monitor on a Windows platform.

Thanks for anything you can provide!

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“Warm Flight”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera, EF500mm f/4.5L USM lens, ISO 400,  f/5.6, 1/1600 sec
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Cold Origin of Life?

Fire and Ice

by Robert Frost

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

Will the world ultimately end in fire or ice, desire or hate?  I don’t know, but a multitude of fascinating theories exist for the origin of life on earth.  I’ve recently read an interesting theory that suggests ice-cold conditions were more conducive for the origin of the first complicated molecules.  Although cold temperatures are a detriment to most life on earth, several potential problems are alleviated by this as well.  An interesting read if you like.  Pictured below is the main boil of water that is released from Big Spring located in the Missouri Ozarks

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“Cold Origins″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF17-40mm f/4L USM @ 19mm, ISO 100,  f/14, 1/6 sec

The Marvellous Gasteromycetes

No worries.  Although the biology, terminology and classification behind the fungi is a course of study that is as beautiful as any human language, I will not try to fill this post with all that specialized nomenclature, especially since I am a novice at it myself!  This particular group of fungi are polyphyletic (similar or convergent in nature, but no recent common ancestor) and have been grouped together based on their habit of passive spore dispersal.  While most other fungi have mechanisms that forcibly discharge their spores, in this collection of orders the spores are passively dropped and released by rain drops, wind, insects and other animals.  These fungi go by the names of earth stars, puffballs, and earth balls.  The palate-pleasing truffles and the oh-so fascinating bird’s-nest fungi are also included in this grouping.  The phallic (order Phallales) stinkhorns spores are spread by flies and other insects that are attracted to the rotten smells they exude.  The bizarre jelly and “ear” fungi are also placed in this group.  Finally, the economically important rusts (Uredinales) and smuts (Ustilaginales) also fall in this category, often finding conditions in our modern monocultures perfect and in little time can cause severe declines in yields of cereals and legumes.

The photo here shows the “Acorn Puffball” (Disciseda sp.).  In nature, the spores are forced through the ostiole (opening) when struck by rain drops or falling leaves or other matter.  Often they may separate from their base and roll across the landscape ejecting spores as they move along.  In this photo I used a small twig to push on the side of one of the fruiting bodies that discharged the cloud of spores I hope is apparent.  This took some time and patience to get just right.  I did not have any artificial light source, so reflectors and trial and error with exposure settings had to suffice.  These guys are most often found in dry habitats like desserts, dry grasslands, pastures and dry woodlands.

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“Acorn Puffball, Autumn 2012″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM, ISO 400,  f/13, 1/6 sec

Pee-a-wee!

“At 3:40 this morning (sun rose at 4:09) a wood pewee sang over and over with perfect regularity a song of five drawling notes – pee-a-wee, pee-wee – both phrases ending on a rising inflection.  The syllables and the pauses between them were so regular that I could time by my breathing.  Pee-a-wee corresponded exactly with an inspiration, then, with a short pause the pee-wee finished at the end of expiration.  Then a longer pause – just as long as the rests between breaths – and after this he repeated his song with my next breath.  I was breathing, I suppose, about 16 times a minute, and the bird slowly fell behind, but he fell behind not from any irregularity, but because his rate was slightly lower than mine.”

-Arthur Clevland Bent

“Life Histories of North American Flycatchers, Larks, Swallows, and their Allies”

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“Eastern Wood Pewee”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera,  EF400mm f/5.6L USM lens, ISO 640,  f/5.6, 1/500 sec

Fellow Voyagers

“It is a century now since Darwin gave us the first glimpse of the origin of species.  We know now what was unknown to all the preceding caravan of generations: that men are only fellow-voyagers with other creatures in the odyssey of evolution.  This new knowledge should have given us, by this time, a sense of kinship with fellow-creatures; a wish to live and let live; a sense of wonder over the magnitude and duration of the biotic enterprise.”

-Aldo Leopold-

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“Fellow Voyagers”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera,  EF400mm f/5.6L USM lens, ISO 400,  f/5.6, 1/800 sec

A Few Holiday Swans

I don’t have much to say today, I just thought I’d share a few random Trumpeter images taken recently.  My best wishes to anyone paying a visit during the holidays.

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“Flyby”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera, EF500mm f/4.5L USM lens, ISO 640,  f/7.1, 1/2000 sec

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“Beating Traffic”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera, EF500mm f/4.5L USM lens, ISO 640,  f/5.6, 1/1600 sec

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“Warm Friends”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera, EF500mm f/4.5L USM lens, ISO 800,  f/6.3, 1/640 sec

Black & White

I have been coming to a realization lately that although it is nice to try and continue to know, understand and discover ourselves, it may be of detriment to actually try and define ourselves.  We as humans love the definition.  It puts a nice bow on the subject at hand and we can then go on to define the next potentially scary or perplexing item.  However, if we hang a much to determinate definition on ourselves then it doesn’t leave too much room for change or growth.  By definition we become somewhat of a fixed, static entity.  As fond as I am of Tolkein’s Middle Earth stories, I am becoming less and less engaged in stories of black and white, good or evil.  As time goes on I am finding myself far more interested in stories with characters of the in-between.  One recent example is the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George Martin, but there are other better ones.  Any suggestions?

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“Black and White Warbler, Autumn 2012”

Technical details: Canon EOS 7D camera,  EF400mm f/5.6L USM lens, ISO 800,  f/5.6, 1/200 sec