Tag Archives: urban

Link Roundup 09-30-2010

Don’t forget that we have ongoing themes in our Flickr pool and I’ll be selecting my favorites on the topic of “Camera Porn” sometime next week. We only have a few entries in the pool, so be sure to see here for details on participating.

Link Roundup 07-17-2010

Before we get to the links, I apologize to anybody that visited the site recently and found it to be infected with a malicious redirect exploit. I became aware of the issue this morning (thanks to an email from a reader) and I had it fixed within an hour. These things happen from time to time, and I appreciate folks letting me know when something is wrong with the site. Now for some weekend reading!

Link Roundup 05-15-2010

Link Roundup 04-10-2010

Link Roundup 10-11-2009

Before we get to the links, just a quick reminder that you can suggest links and articles to me via Google Reader, Twitter, Delicious, and/or StumbleUpon. Google Reader is probably the best method (follow me and I’ll follow back if your shared items don’t suck), but I try to keep up with the others as well (though I’m really bad about following back on Twitter).

13 Alternative Flower Photography Tips

Flowers are so cliche when it comes to photography… but that doesn’t stop most of us from shooting them! Heck, some photographers even specialize in flower photography and they do a darn good job of it. If you’re getting bored with your current bag-o-tricks for photographing flowers, scan through these tips and get inspired to try something different.


Flower photos are generally full of vibrant colors, but that’s not the only way to do it. Black and white flower photos can bring much needed attention to details and textures that would otherwise be masked by the blinding colors.

let's craft the only thing we know into surprise
Creative Commons License photo credit: linh.ngân


The flowers don’t always need to be the center of attention. Use them as a foreground or background to lay down some color for your main subject. Bonus points for using complimentary colors in your composition.

Creative Commons License photo credit: creativesam


Flowers are inside too! Not every flower photo needs to be 100% “natural” — try your hand at some still life.

3 sisters
Creative Commons License photo credit: mamako7070


Flowers can make for pretty cool double exposures. Experiment with combinations of up-close and far-off shots of the same flowers.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Maco@Sky Walker


Flowers have great curves — so use that to your advantage. A good macro setup will allow you to capture abstract images of the colors, curves, and textures.

monstera deliciosa flower
Creative Commons License photo credit: nothing


Reflection can be a powerful composition technique, and flower photography is no exception.

Balboa Pond Lily part deux.
Creative Commons License photo credit: peasap


Reflections are a type of symmetry, but flowers often exhibit another type of symmetry: radial. Use the radial symmetry of most flowers to create a strong composition.

Creative Commons License photo credit: josef.stuefer


Light painting is another interesting style of photography, so why not mix it up with flower photography?

Night Flower
Creative Commons License photo credit: Brian Auer


That’s right, catch a bug in your frame. Those little insects can often add a lot to your image by catching the eye of the viewer. Anything unexpected will generate interest.

ladybug on gerbera
Creative Commons License photo credit: Vanessa Pike-Russell


Sometimes you have to get a little dirty to get the shot. Macro photographers will often wear grungy clothes for nature outings (or bring a blanket/tarp) because they know they’ll be laying on the ground at some point. Get down there and see how the world looks from the perspective of your feet.

Under the Tulips
Creative Commons License photo credit: ♥siebe ©


Flowers grow in cities too! Next time you’re in an urban environment, keep your eyes peeled for flowers growing naturally or even landscaped flowers.

urban life
Creative Commons License photo credit: Pedro Moura Pinheiro


Most of us have seen these types of photos with the flower inside the dewdrop. Still, it’s a pretty cool trick and you can do it with more than just flowers.

Day 45/365 : All the world in a little droplet
Creative Commons License photo credit: ~jjjohn~


If you’re doing people shots or portrait photography, try adding flowers as a secondary subject or background.

Boy taking a rest. (DGM)
Creative Commons License photo credit: Simon Pais-Thomas

Do you have any flower photography tips or examples? If so, leave them in the comments below!

Link Roundup 07-26-2009

Link Roundup 02-28-2009

A bit late this week with the links, but we were having a few things worked on with the server so I figured I would take a break until everything went back to normal. Here are your selections of the week:

  • Tips for Better Self Portraits
    Nathan’s Favorite New Flavor
    Self portraits are tough — I’ve tried my fair share of them! Here are some tips to improve your skills in this area.
  • 10 Excellent Open Source and Free Alternatives to Photoshop
    Six Revisions
    There are a number of open source (and completely free) programs out there that do much of what Photoshop can. In this collection, you will find 10 excellent examples of open source and free alternatives to Adobe Photoshop.
  • Digital Black and White Photos
    Here are a few good tips for creating black & white photos from your digital captures.
  • Capturing Urban Decay
    Getting good photos of urban decay is not necessarily hard; it is more a matter of patience and understanding of the subject. So what is it that can help you become a better urban landscape photographer? Here are 10 tips for great urban photos.
  • Watermarks: Evolution of a Watermark
    In this article, Jim shows us the evolution of his watermark and reveals the reasoning behind each one. Very interesting for those considering the addition of a watermark to their photos.
  • 10 Easy Steps To Advanced Photography Skills
    Smashing Magazine
    By Trey Ratcliff (aka Stuck in Customs), one of the most famous and renowned HDR photographers on Flickr. In his article Trey describes some professional insights and useful photography tips that he collected over the years of his career.
  • Catacombs of Paris – The Real French Underground
    I’ve heard of these catacombs under Paris, but I’ve never seen them like this. Zoriah takes to the caverns with some local cataphiles and shows us a different side of these historic entities.
  • D3A – The Best Photography Contest Ever
    Wow! DIYPhotography.net is 3 years old! To celebrate, Udi has lined up some great prizes for the readers — and all you have to do is submit photos to his Flickr pool to be eligible for the contest.
  • Lessons I Didn’t Learn in Photo School
    Photoshop Insider
    Here are some really great lessons for photographers — definitely not anything you’ll find in a textbook.
  • 100 amazing iPhone photos
    Camera phones can be pretty fun to use — especially high-end phones like the iPhone. Here is a huge collection of great photos taken with the iPhone.
  • How To Photograph Rock Concerts – The Basics
    digital Photography School
    Interestingly, I found this article the day after I shot my first concert. I can definitely say that the tips are helpful for those of us with less experience in the subject.
  • Filters in the Digital Age
    Lens filters can be difficult to comprehend in the digital age — so we chat about the different options and uses for the various filters available.
  • Pulled over by Los Angeles Port Police
    All Narfed Up
    My pal Bryan Villarin is quickly becoming the next Thomas Hawk when it comes to photography related run-ins with the authorities. His latest story involves being pulled over while shooting photos from a freakin’ boat!

Book Review – Night Vision: The Art of Urban Exploration

Some weeks ago, a fellow by the name of Troy Paiva contacted me about his new book that would be coming out soon — only asking if I’d like a copy of it. So of course I jumped all over the offer and told him that I could do a review of the book on the blog. He replied “Well, sure, but there is no real obligation.” Once I got the book and started diving into it, there’s no way that I could pass up the chance to let everybody else know about it.

DISCLAIMER: This is NOT a paid review, nor has it been reviewed or edited by the book’s author or publisher. The book was sent to me by the author, free of charge, out of his own goodwill. I am in no way affiliated with the book or the publisher of the book. The author has also granted me permission to post his photos in this review. The following review and commentary is my honest editorial opinion.


To understand this book, you have to know a little bit about the author and his experience with photography and urban exploration. Troy Paiva began exploring the decay of the American west as a teenager during the 1970’s, driving the deserts in search of abandoned places and objects. By the end of the 80’s, he had incorporated night photography and unique lighting effects into his urban exploration, creating a style of photography that is quickly identified as his own. Through the 90’s and into the turn of the century, Troy wandered the West seeking out long forgotten places that were once bustling with activity. After releasing his first book, Lost America, in 2003 Troy began to shoot digital and the Internet had pulled him closer to other photographers sharing his love for urban exploration. The photos in this second book, Night Vision, are primarily from this era of Troy’s career. The book contains years of work, and decades of passion, experience, and artistic ability.


Night Vision is a book about urban exploration — or the investigation of man-made places ignored and largely unseen by the public. This includes old military and industrial installations, “ghost towns”, and any other sites that have been left to decay out of sight. Troy is a master of urban exploration, and he shares his thoughts and feelings on the topic throughout the book. In fact, he does this so well that he can get you excited and otherwise emotional about it. He has a very strong connection with this genre and it enables him to show you the world through his eyes.

The book is filled with brilliant photos of Troy’s adventures as he explores the historic monuments of the past. His photos appear to be impossible and purely imagined post-apocalyptic scenes like something from a movie. The work presented is both sad and exciting at the same time, with visions of towns and businesses that were once a part of everyday life for many people, reduced to nothing more than ghostly shells of a structure and decaying heaps of rubble. As I made my way through the book, I began to wonder what the landscape will look like 50 years down the road. Will the towns I know today be nothing more than a thing of the past, waiting to be demolished, salvaged, or completely forgotten?

There are 144 pages in this extraordinary book, most of which are filled with photos (115 to be exact). This may sound like a lot of photos, but as you read the book it feels more like a teaser. Just as you begin to gain some interest in the subjects, Troy sweeps you off to the next location, leaving you craving more of his imagery. For me, the book was a “one sitting” read — I couldn’t put it down once I started the journey. It’s a truly captivating work


I can honestly recommend this book to anybody with any background. The photos are outstanding and appealing to the eye, the writing is informative and educational, and the message is inspirational. It’s presented in such a way to let your imagination run wild with thoughts of days gone by in the American West. And on top of all that, this is a standing piece of history — as several of the sites photographed in the book are no longer in existence.

If you’re looking for a good photobook, this one is 100% worth buying. The photos presented in the book take on a completely different appearance versus those you can see on this page or on Troy’s Flickr Set. There’s a story being told, and that story is done justice in Troy’s book, Night Vision.

Link Roundup 01-05-2008


  • It Ain’t What You Got
    Neil Creek
    Creative photography project that encourages you to take good photos with crappy cameras. The results should be quite interesting! I think I’m gonna bust out my kids’ Fisher Price camera – 640×480 resolution, baby!
  • Your Best Photos From 2007
    Gather up your best photos from 2007 and post them on your photography blog (if you’ve got one). Aside from being a project, it’s always good to evaluate your photography and your progress as the year goes by.