Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wakes Florida

On Friday I had the pleasure of meeting up with fellow Stocksy photographers Suzanne Clements and Gabriel (Gabi) Bucataru at Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales Florida.  We had a great time exploring the grounds, but the music from the tower was a little creepy!

Portland Head Light, Maine

I was going through older images looking for ones with snow in them and I came across this series of the Portland Head Light (Lighthouse).  Some shoots are memorable for one reason or another and this was one of them, especially considering I forgot what I did yesterday. ;-)  

We rented a small beachside cottage in Old Orchard Beach for the winter and while that may sound exotic, the place is a ghost town in the winter (just us and some sea gulls).  We thought it would be cool to experience one of these brutal Maine winters we kept hearing about.  So we parked the RV and moved in late October.  It wasn't until early December before we got our first good snow storm.  Unfortunately, the timing didn't work out for me to go photograph the lighthouse right after the storm, but I figured hey this Maine, it's just getting started...NOT.  It's now February and we need to head back to Florida at the beginning of March and there's barely been a snow flake a flying.

Ironically after months of uninspiring winter photographic opportunities I decided to head down to Boston and attend a one day photography workshop (I think it had to to do with making better prints or something like that?)  That day a massive winter storm decides to head our way, with over a foot of snow in 24 hours expected.  All of the instructors at the workshop were trying to wrap things up early, so everyone could get home or catch their flights out before the airports closed.  I made it back to the cottage in plenty of time before the storm really kicked in.

Here's the what I wrote on our personal blog the next day:

"Feb 12th  Well it's 15 degrees, we're under a winter storm warning, we have about 10 inches of snow so far and still another 6 to 7 hours before it's over.  Now this is why we came to Maine for the winter!!!!!"

Adam & Alex shoveling snow

Anyway, the storm passed later in the day and I wasn't going to miss photographing the lighthouse this time.  I had all my gear ready and I headed out well before sunrise the next morning.  After a brief stop at Tim Horton's drive thru (best coffee ever) for breakfast, I arrived at the lighthouse with nice fresh untouched snow, unbelievably clear skies, not a soul around and freaking cold (6 degrees).

Here's one of the first shots of the morning before the sun came up, with beautiful Blue Hour light.

Portland Head Light, Blue Hour

As the sun rose, I moved around the lighthouse to get different points of view and the best light.

Portland Head Light at Sunrise

The next one is one of my all time favorites and the only one from that day I processed until yesterday (oh yea, that's what I did yesterday) :-)

Portland Head Light at Sunrise

Portland Head Light at Sunrise

onOne Software Announces Availability of Perfect Photo Suite 8

The New Perfect Photo Suite 8 Features:

• Eight integrated modules – Effects, Enhance, B&W, Portrait, Mask, Layers, Resize, and Browse. Each module is designed to target a specific image-processing task. Together, they help photographers enhance, retouch, and stylize images in a layered workflow, replace backgrounds, create high-quality enlargements, and prepare images for use in various capacities. 

• New Module! Perfect Enhance provides essential tools for basic enhancements, such as brightness and contrast adjustments; colorcast, dust spot, and power line removal; and the addition of vignettes. It is an ideal module to start with when using Perfect Photo Suite 8 as a standalone application or when quick corrections are needed.

• New Module! Browse provides convenient and direct access to image files wherever they are stored—whether they are on a computer, an external drive, a connected network, or on a cloud-based storage service like Dropbox, Google Drive, or Apple’s Photo Stream.

• Reimagined! Perfect Effects – As a cornerstone of Perfect Photo Suite 8, the Effects module has been redesigned by adding adjustable filters and customizable presets, making it the most powerful and versatile image stylization tool available on the market today.

• Twice as Many Adjustable Filters to create the most sought-after looks, including:

• Dynamic Contrast – Adds stunning clarity to images and makes them pop by exaggerating the levels of contrast, without sacrificing highlight and shadow detail, creating halos, or affecting saturation. 

• Lens Blur – Includes the best parts of FocalPoint technology to create bokeh, tilt-shift, and selective focus effects after the shot. 

• HDR – Gives images the edgy look of high dynamic range. Settings are adjustable and create effects that range from subtle to surreal.

• Vintage – Turns photos into a nostalgic memory with retro-style filters. 

• Powerful brushes provide the right results for specific editing tasks:

• Perfect Eraser removes objects with content-aware fill technology

• Retouch Brush uses spot healing to remove small distractions

• Clone Brush removes unwanted items by replicating and covering specified areas of an image 

• Masking Brush reveals underlying layers or selectively applies effects

• Perfect Brush delivers precise edge-detection masking

• Hundreds of Customizable Presets are available throughout Perfect Photo Suite 8 that make it easy for any photographer to instantly create an image they love. Presets can also be used as starting points for creativity and efficiency. Presets are included in the Enhance, Effects, B&W, Portrait, and Resize modules. 

• Improved Masking Bug in the Effects and Layers modules make mask creation easier and more intuitive.

• Perfect Batch engine simultaneously applies presets from multiple modules and a watermark to a selected group of images.

Availability and Pricing
The new Perfect Photo Suite 8 is now available at www.ononesoftware.com/store. Perfect Photo Suite 8 is available in three editions: Premium, Standard, and for Adobe Lightroom & Apple Aperture. 

The Premium Edition works with Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Photoshop Elements, Apple Aperture, and as a standalone application. It is priced at $179.95. Owners of previous versions of Perfect Photo Suite Premium Edition can upgrade for $99.95. For a limited time, orders of Perfect Photo Suite 8 Premium Edition will include a special collection of Professional Presets and The Essential Video Guide to Perfect Photo Suite 8, which provides a comprehensive collection of getting started training videos for Perfect Photo Suite 8—for free ($80 value). This offer ends on December 3, 2013.

Perfect Photo Suite 8 for Adobe Lightroom & Apple Aperture works with Lightroom, Aperture, Photoshop Elements, and as a standalone application. It is available for $129.95; upgrades are $79.95. The Standard Edition works as a complete standalone photo editor and is available for $79.95. For more information on Perfect Photo Suite 8, please visit http://www.ononesoftware.com. A 30-day Money Back Guarantee backs all onOne Software products. 

Fall Reflections

I was able to make two trips up to the mountains of North Georgia and North Carolina this fall and one of my goals was to find a nice calm body of water to photograph reflections of the fall colors. 

I hit pay dirt when I arrived one afternoon at Vogel State Park in Georgia.  Lake Trahlyta (don't ask me to pronounce it) is a 22-acre lake with a nice easy 1 mile hiking trail around it, offering many good vantage points.  When I arrived mid-afternoon there was very little wind and the lake was very calm with just light ripples on the surface, which gave the reflections a nice painterly appearance.  I was able to spend about hour or so wandering up one side of the lake before a storm started to roll in and the winds picked-up.

Here's just a couple of the photo's I took that day while the lake was calm, enjoy.

Reflections of the fall foliage in Lake Trahlyta

Behind the scenes iPhone shot

Stocksy

I'm very excited to annonce that I've partnered with Stocksy United Photography for the licensing of my images!  Please visit my Stocksy page here for available images and pricing.  I'll be uploading images regularly, but if there's an image you would like to license and it's not on Stocksy yet, please email me and I'll get it uploaded.  Thanks for your support,  Adam.

"Stocksy, a digital licensing co-op launched March 2013, is a new concept in the world of stock photography: An online marketplace owned collectively by its photographer-members and dedicated to paying them the maximum fees possible for their work.

Co-founded by Bruce Livingstone, who invented microstock with iStockphoto—which he sold to Getty Images in 2006—Stocksy was built out of his experience shaping the ground floor of the sector. Stocksy is a cooperative designed to respect the work of the artist and whose very system of shared ownership and profit sharing allows for real, sustainable careers for all participants in the marketplace."