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Thread: Stark abstracts

  1. #1

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    Stark abstracts

    I ventured into the realm of abstracts both in capture and post-processing techniques. I have wanted to do this for a long time, so it's great to learn that it's really fun to do! C&C is encouraged, though I don't have anything to ask.

    Click the photos to eliminate the moire effect.


    Photo #1: Selective color
    Stark abstracts



    Photo #2: Straightforward B&W
    Stark abstracts



    Photo #3: Straightforward color but with the top changed to pink
    Stark abstracts
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 30th December 2012 at 01:21 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Absolutely love it! Now you have to 1) tell us what it is and then tell us how you did it! (Unless it's a trade secret) I strongly suspect that this has more to do with that elusive animal called "The Family of Angles" - You are making me want to forgo the delayed gratification of waiting for the library book and plunge right into Amazon and go for it! Great and interesting shot Mike

  3. #3
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    Re: Stark abstracts

    very clear what this is- a Light Saber test facility

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    It's good to know that you don't know what it is. However, James, the capture has to do with nothing other than paying attention to Mr. and Mrs. Angle and their children. The post-processing is no less straightforward.

    All of these photos are of the same object. I'll let you know what it is later today once I've posted some other images that are more telling. I'll also explain how I did it. In the mean time, I have to return to my cave, umm, my makeshift studio in black.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 30th December 2012 at 02:47 PM.

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    We humble children of a lesser "Family" eagerly await the next posting from the Master of Light

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    A glass coaster perhaps? Whatever it is, I like the way you treated it. Well done.
    I eagerly await more photos and details.

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Hi mike, the first 2 images , i think you are holding back a little. (not quit abstract enough)

    The last image however is very good. I think part of making an abstract , is not being able to identify what it is.


    How's this for the first one.....................

    Stark abstracts

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Not to hijack the thread, but I have a question for you Mike: Do you know what is different in the fourth edition of "Light, Science and Magic"? Just wondering what they updated, because the previous version can be obtained at a much reduced price. What version do you have, and what are your thoughts? If you don't want to reply here a PM would work if you have the time. Thanks

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve S View Post
    i think you are holding back a little.
    Ha! My wife will gladly tell you that I have never been accused of that. There are so many times that she wishes I would become comfortable with the concept of restraint.

    Seriously though, I do like your version a lot. I didn't go that far with it because I didn't capture the image with such a small crop in mind. I'm not done, so I can create something more like yours without cropping. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Regarding what constitutes an abstract and what doesn't, I hold to the theory that there is a range of abstraction insofar as the amount of realism being displayed is concerned. One end of the range is like your version and my third photo in which it's extremely difficult if not impossible to detect any realism. My second version shows more realism but is still within the realm of an abstract in my mind. For those who feel that total lack of realism is important, notice that nobody has guessed what the object is or even its approximate size or shape.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 30th December 2012 at 07:06 PM.

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Sorry, James, but I have never seen the third edition of the book. The rear cover of the fourth edition explains that it provides "dozens of new photographs and lighting diagrams" and "new information on how to work with color gels, portable strobes, motion and ambient and flash lighting."

    If you're especially interested in the type of photography we've been discussing, you could start a thread to ask others if photographing clear glass using bright-field and dark-field backgrounds is explained in the third edition. If so, you would be at least good to go with those ideas. Hope that helps you make your decision!

    Thanks, Jon! Good guess but still way off the mark. I'll get back to the thread once I've posted some other images. That's a bit delayed because I lost a good chunk of time today when our electricity went off.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 30th December 2012 at 07:05 PM.

  11. #11

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Not positive, but it looks like a glass door knob.

  12. #12

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Jon and Steve are correct that it's made of glass, but it's much larger than the door knob or the coaster that they guessed it to be. When I return from dinner, I'll post another thread to provide context.

    In the mean time, this new photo is an approach to abstraction that will perhaps make Steve happy.

    As before, click the photo to eliminate the moire effect.


    Stark abstracts

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    Plumcrak's Avatar
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    Re: Stark abstracts

    The design is familiar to me. I have been trying to remember all day. I am not sure but I am thinking some kind of crystal serving dish of sorts.

  14. #14

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Jon wins the prize! It's a cut glass or crystal bowl (not sure which) about 10 inches in diameter at the opening and about 8 inches in diameter at the base. It stands about 6 inches high. The bowl in the close-up images was sometimes at the closest focusing distance of my 35mm lens, which is about 9 inches.

    Capture Method: Explained in the 8th post of this thread. This particular series of images used high-quality black velvet as the background, not black board as explained in that post. I don't think that post mentions the need to prevent flare and low contrast by placing a black card in front of the camera with a rectangle cut in it.

    Post-processing Method: Post-processed as usual. Removed unwanted highlights caused by flaws in the glass. Dodged and burned according to taste. Left as a color version throughout, selectively used color or converted the entire image to black-and-white. Nothing unusual, esoteric or particularly advanced.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 31st December 2012 at 12:32 AM.

  15. #15
    Plumcrak's Avatar
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    Re: Stark abstracts

    You would have thought that would have been permanently burnt into my brain...I broke my Grandmothers when I was young. They make a really good clay pigeon! Oops.

    What's my prize

  16. #16

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Quote Originally Posted by plumcrak View Post
    What's my prize
    Bragging rights.

    By the way, I think I edited my previous post after you posted. The edits contain information you asked about.

  17. #17
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    Re: Stark abstracts

    Mike, thanks for sharing info on these shots. I am really enjoying your glass shots.

    I'm good with bragging rights...doesn't happen very often.

  18. #18

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    Re: Stark abstracts

    The bowl used to create the abstracts posted in this thread is now shown in a larger context here.

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