And here’s another fresh batch of cookies for ya! 🙂
Here’s my bestie Rene Smith up atop Lord Snort! He was spinning quite fast, so it was a fun photo to take. We had early entry this year, so we were able to visit a lot of the art before it was covered with too many people. This is actually the site of a small tragedy, as one guy lost all of his fingers while trying to jump onto the head as it was spinning around.
Fallen god-statues sink into the playa, a little deeper every day & night.
Did you know art cars on the playa get to be friends? It’s true! Our car Kalliope has become rather close with the amazing steampunk octopus, El Pulpo Mechanico. I think El Pulpo keeps Kalliope (and the rest of us!) warm! 🙂 They had many meetings this burn…
After the Billion Bunny March to protest humanity, I saw this scene… there are literally thousands of scenes like this all over the desert — it really is like a parallel universe.
Here’s another photo I made with the new 2017 software… and, yes, I know every time I mention it I upset 80% of the audience that is on Windows. And yes, I PROMISE we are working on the Windows version now… and the good news it will have all the same features as the 2017 Mac version 🙂
Daily Photo – A Warm Hut on Coronet Peal
Can you believe that I live 10 minutes from these amazing ski fields but I haven't skied all winter? Well, actually I'm more of a snowboarder, but I haven't done that either… been really busy with all kinds of crazy stuff going on. I find that if I have a spare day or two that I prefer to go out and take photos and experiment artistically. It seems a waste to live so close and not take advantage of it… like, for example, I went up there to get this photo but not to partake in other wintery activities!
In honor of Burning Man, I wanted to re-share my recent article about How to Survive at Burning Man that I published right before the most recent burn.
New Burning Man Photos from 2016!
I took over 11,000 photos this year. It was the best ever! 🙂 I’ll start sharing the photos throughout this next year with you in little batches. Here’s the first batch of four! 🙂
These beautiful letters and words make their way to the playa every year. This year there were four “words” around a tree: # EARTH @ and HOME. I waited for the night to fall before getting this one…
The Space Whale by Matt Schultz. I love this artist and team so much. Their team (The Pier Group) does some of the most amazing work on the playa. You may remember the two giant heads (Embrace) from a few years ago and the pier to the pirate ship several years ago.
I visited my friend many times, especially at night as whale songs cooed between physics lectures; the scene was mesmerizing and otherworldly! And no, this isn’t the last photo of the Space Whale you’ll see!
As I was driving away after the burn, I went back past it as the team meticulously deconstructed the whale. Each of the intricate pieces of stained glass were carefully removed to wrap individually in canvas so they wouldn’t break. It occurred to me that so much of the “art” is not so much as the final work as much as the dance of building it and taking it back down out of the white desert.
Now you can zoom in on Instagram, and this one is worth it hehe 🙂 While shooting at the letters from photo 1 above, these five beautiful German girls stormed onto the scene. Every one of them was taller than me and rather stunning. I said, Hey Ladies, let’s take some photos! They were ALL GAME and it was on… naturally posing this way and that. They were all super nice too — it was their FIRST Burning Man and they looked like consummate veterans… so awesome.
I shared this photo back with all the guys in my RV and we had endless debates over which one was the prettiest over wine, cheese, and crackers. Honestly, the discussion must have gone on for over an hour. It was a heated debate, but, ultimately, we all decided on the same one. Which one? Hmmm?
We were blessed with the most amazing clouds this year. I’ve never seen anything like it in my last seven years. Here’s the temple on one of the final sunsets before it burned down. More on the temple later and why so many people cry their hearts out there…
Sep 28+ — Berlin private art show (leave a comment or signup for our newsletter if you want one of the 5 limited tickets available)
Here’s a photo of Cologne that I took last time I was there when all my camera gear was stolen! Hopefully, this time it will be a smoother trip! 🙂
Daily Photo – Amazing Cologne
I loved everything about Cologne… except for my train ride back to Dusseldorf.
My whole camera bag was stolen! Can you believe it? I was distracted and before I knew it, my whole camera bag was swiped in a grab n' run! What a bummer! I still was holding my tripod and A7r, so I didn't lose those, luckily. But I did lost an A7ii, two Leica lenses, and a Sony lens. Ouch! Oh well, it's just stuff… But kind of inconvenient now, you know? Ah well…
I filed out a police report and everything. We're checking on insurance now to see what was covered… fingers crossed but I have low expectations!
This makes me want to go back to Central Park in the Autumn. There are so many colors, and I'm pretty sure this is the best time to shoot — the late afternoon light when the park lights are just coming on. I worked on this photo about 10 different times to get it right… this is one of my “tester” photos for the new Aurora HDR 2017 Presets!
Here’s the highlights from that beautiful morning. I almost flew the quadcopter too, but it was just too windy… I may have never seen it again. Then again, I did crash it a few days later when a propeller fell off and the whole thing went down dramatically in a river in Kerala.
Daily Photo – A beautiful sunrise on the southern tip of India
I look like I may be alone here, but I assure you I was not. There were literally thousands of Indians that were there with me watching the sunrise. It was crazy! This is a famous pilgrimage location for all Indians, to come here and watch the sunrise. I was amazed how many people there were when the sun finally came up. We had all gotten there in the dark of night so it was hard to tell how many people were around us.
There was one scary point when we lost Scarlett in a crowd of Indians… then her little white body magically appeared about a minute later! I was not worried… Tina was MORE than a bit worried! 🙂
I’m currently zooming through season 3 of House of Cards on Netflix. What a great show… I’m still on my Kevin Spacey kick. I’d love to meet that guy one day!
Daily Photo – Hiking in Argentina
Up there on the hill, you can see three of my Russian hikemates. I don't know if hikemates is a word or not, but I kinda like it. Anyhoo, these were some serious hikers… I wasn't exactly out of shape, but they made me feel like it. And there was this one guy, Yuri. I'm not sure I ever saw him eat. Well, unless you count drinking cognac as “eating.”
At some magical point today, Aurora HDR 2017 will become available for Pre-Order! I’ve been working on this thing like crazy, and I can’t wait to get it in your hands. Below are two videos where I talk more about it. One is an overall preview and the next is a hot tip.
What do you get with the Pre-Order?
Pre-Order Bonus Items:
Trey Ratcliff Deep Dive video and RAW files
1 Year basic subscription to SmugMug
60-day KelbyOne membership
25 Square Prints from Parabo.press (free global shipping)
What’s the history and the deal with Aurora HDR 2017?
A few years ago, I called up MacPhun to see if they wanted to collaborate on the ultimate HDR program. They said yes, and we built the original one over a year ago. It went gangbusters and has over 650,000 downloads. Yes, it’s only Mac so far, but there is a Windows version in development. Anyway, we listened to all the feedback and ideas and made this new version. As usual, I’ve been testing it all along the way…
What are the updates?
There are over 20 updates, but here are the latest ones.
New Luminosity Masks controls
New Zone System allows selective masking of specific areas of an image; new controls provide extensive fine-tuning, allowing users to make brightness adjustments in more precise areas.
New tone-mapping engine
The improved algorithm is quicker, reduces noise, and handles tone, contrast and details in all areas of your photo for more realistic, sharp and natural tone-mapping results.
New batch processing
Automatically recognizes brackets, and adds support for sub-folders and Batch preset – the single most requested feature since the launch of Aurora HDR.
New Polarizing filter
Emulating the polarisation filter added to a lens, this feature gives colours more depth with a single swipe, and cuts haze – perfect for landscape photographers.
New powerful one-click presets
Including Signature Pro presets by Trey Ratcliff, Captain Kimo and Serge Ramelli, to yield fantastic results instantly.
New ways to work with Layers
Support of different Blend modes for Layers and Textures, with new options for Darken, Color Burn and Lighten.
New enhanced Top & Bottom Adjustment panel
Top and Bottom Adjustment includes new contrast, vibrance, and warmth sliders, adding an extra level of selective control.
Faster RAW processing & DNG support
Time-saving image processing, and improved DNG handling.
Introducing Aurora HDR 2017
Here’s a fun video I made that shows some of the new features.
Tip Video: Batch Processing
Here’s one of three new tip videos that illustrates the new Batch feature. To see all the videos and more, pop over to my Youtube Channel!
You’ll see some of Burano in this video below! I never made it to Burano until my 4th trip here, but now I recommend it to everyone to see right away!
Daily Photo – Sooth Duck on the water
I forgot where I first heard this funny line… it refers to ducks look really smooth on the water, but underneath their little duck feet are going crazy. One night our team came back from Burano to Venice on these awesome boats. I couldn't believe how smooth the water actually was… reminded me of that saying.
Here’s a quick live show I did while at the airport in Auckland on the way to Burning Man.
Daily Photo – Night Falls on the Palace
While in Abu Dhabi I didn't want to leave anything on the table so I tried to scoop up every shot I could. Even though I'd love to go back some day and take my family, I may never get that chance. If you see one of these shots at night, you can be pretty sure I got the exact same perspective at sunset and in the daytime. I would find a shot that I like and then add it to my list, to make sure I ticked each box three times!