Burnside Photographic "The question is not what you look at, but what you see." – Henry David Thoreau

March 13, 2015

Flat Light

Flat Light – Images by Frank Burnside

 (Frank Burnside)One of the frustrations of the web gallery platform I’ve been using for quite a while is that it doesn’t offer a way to provide a verbal context for the images. Perhaps the photographic purist would opine that “The images should speak for themselves!” Well of course they should, but I have often been asked “Where is this?” or the more perplexing “What is this?” I’m also not thrilled with the available “themes” on the site where the images are hosted – which dictate the design and layout of the images and or a slide show.

But more than that, while photography is my number one way to enjoy a day, I also enjoy writing, so here I am, back on my old WordPress site. And while it’s not perfect, it’s where I want to be.

Today’s images were taken in “flat light” (as the title implies). Light is the photographer’s medium, just as sound is a musician’s. One might think of light ranging from complete darkness to the brightest sunshine, but it is not merely the intensity of light that makes or breaks an image, but the color and quality of the light. I like to think of light as flat, soft or hard. Flat light, though it can be bright, does not cast a distinct shadow, and tends to mute colors. Soft light is gentle, without glare, but as bright as you’d like it to be. Hard light is bright, casts very distinct shadows and creates a lot of contrast in one’s images.

The first image, of the Sun, was as bright as it got for the hour or so that I was out walking.

November 27, 2013

Two Shorts

Driving Home

Back in the “Good Ol’ Days,” when you went to the movies, they used to play what they called “shorts,” prior to the “Feature Presentation.”  You might get a couple of cartoons, the Weekly Newsreel, and maybe a little travelogue to some exotic place.

With the weather we’ve been having, I haven’t been too keen on the idea of a long walk in the woods, which is my usual source of inspiration. But that doesn’t mean I’ve been completely without source material.

Here are two “shorts,” which are completely unrelated.  The first six images were taken driving home from a trip to Stroudsburg last Saturday, and the last four were from a short (and very chilly) walk in Frances Slocum State Park.  The transition should be obvious.


November 22, 2013

Gray Day

Looking across the lake.

It was a gray day today, but it wasn’t raining, which it’s supposed to do starting about now. Then it’s supposed to get cold, and then it’s supposed to be cold and rainy.  Better get out and about.

A gray day isn’t such a bad thing for photography, with the obvious exceptions of such things like weddings and sporting events. For the nature photographer, the colors are more subtle and the highlights and shadows are muted, which can make for beautiful soft images.

I went back to Frances Slocum State Park – it’s nearby and I haven’t been there for awhile.  Nothing has changed; it was all new.

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