Monday, December 20, 2010
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
|Autumn Harvest, Napa|
|Autumn Vineyards, Napa|
|Grandmother Vine, Napa|
Thursday, December 2, 2010
|Waterfall at Dusk Canvas Wrap|
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
|Autumn Glow, Zion Canyon|
At Photoshop World in Vegas this year I learned about the amazing Pixel Bender plug in for Photoshop - Free from Adobe if you have Photoshop. This cool plug in makes your pics look like a van Gogh painting (well sort of) and is really fun to play with. The only problem is that there seems to be a size limit to the photos it can work with, so it will not process very large files. Here is a fun shot retouched with Pixel Bender I did of an old truck I saw driving to Zion. You may need to click on the image to get it to display full size to see the effects. I enjoy doing this type of retouching to images with man-made subjects, it can add a little fun and attitude to the shot.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
When I saw the clouds forming during the day I thought it would be a colorful sunset, so I lined up on the bridge 3 hours before sunset to get the primo position for this shot of Autumn Sunset in Zion. The locals were saying they had the best autumn colors seen in the area in 8 years!
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
My next post will be on some sunrise and sunset images from a dramatic and remote area on the north rim of the Grand Canyon.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
- Define your budget. Be realistic about how much can you set aside for re-design. Will this endeavor be a couple of coats of paint and some new furniture? Or do you have a budget that can accommodate some high impact changes such as a panoramic photo mural or architectural remodeling?
- Understand your corporate culture. What is your corporate brand personality? Are you fun and creative? Innovative and modern? Authoritative and reliable? Take the time to nail down your company personality as this will help define the artistic palette of your work environment.
- Define the space in question. Is the space client facing? If it is, you must select an aesthetic that creates the mood you want the client to feel. Do you want them to be relaxed? Perhaps inspired or optimistic? What would the ideal client state of mind be? Likewise, if the space is intended for your employees, consider how you want it to affect them. Do you want them to have high energy? Or perhaps to feel inspired and appreciated? There are many ways to convey these emotions through design. Define who will be within the space, and determine the emotional responses you want to evoke. In some cases the space will contain both employees and clients and you will need to strike the appropriate balance.
- Find the right inspiration. Many interior designers start their journey with a single inspiration piece. This is often a statement piece that sets the tone for the entire room such as a sculpture, painting or large landscape photography print. For some great examples of how the Ritz Carlton at Lake Tahoe used high impact nature photography to create a client-friendly commercial space check out my installment examples section. If you are not comfortable selecting your inspiration piece on your own, there are a number of fantastic professional corporate art consultants who can help you find that perfect piece that will not only fill the space, but also beautifully represent your business.
- Partner with the right corporate art consultant and/or interior designer. I highly recommend bringing in a professional that can help you translate your ideas into a cohesive reality. Always review portfolios and ask which projects were similar to yours in budget and scope. This will allow you to not only view their work, but also gauge their taste level. Ask for references. Ask those references about the consultant’s professionalism, integrity, transparency, vision, creativity and ability to stay within budget. The ultimate goal to find a partner you can trust to help you realize your company’s distinct image.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
I have posted a series of installation examples of my fine art prints on my website. These are installation examples from a private residence, the new Ritz Carlton Highlands at Lake Tahoe, and at the Truckee Rec Center where I installed a 10 foot high canvas wrap over the fireplace. The Ritz Carlton installation was coordinated by an art consultant specializing in hotel decor, and the other installations were coordinated by interior decorators. I have also worked with art buyers and art consultants who specialize in installations for casinos, health care facilities, and professional offices. I can custom size all my prints to fit a specific dimension, and specialize in printing on canvas and fine art papers using the large format Epson 11880 printer. Recently I have been experimenting with LED lightbox installations that display fine art prints on Lexjet polyvinyl. I will do a blog post on this new display option soon.
The residential shots were taken by Ethan Rohloff Photography. Some of Olof Carmel's Photography is also included in the residential installation. I am collecting installation examples of my work from other venues - please email me any installation photos if you have one of my prints and would like to showcase it on my website. I keep all locations and collectors' names confidential.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
I am pleased to announce my newly redesigned website with fully secure online shopping capability, easier image browsing, wish-list creation, gift registry, social network image sharing, image email capability, and many more features not available on my previous website. My new site is also fully compatible with the ipad and mobile phones. Please check it out at ElizabethCarmel.com.
To celebrate the launch of my new site we are offering 10% off all orders placed through the site for the month of September. Please click here for details.
My previous website was flash based and not very functional from an e-commece standpoint. I worked with Endo Creations to completely redo the site based on the Volusion e-commerce platform, which has been working well for the CarmelGallery.com website.
Flash makes for a lovely website with large image display, but it can be difficult to make a good e-commerce site with flash, and I am concerned about the long-term viability of that platform with lack of flash support on the apple iphone and ipad. I will keep my flash site for people that enjoy browsing using that interface. My flash site is still accessible at http://flash.elizabethcarmel.com and from a link titled Flash Site under contact heading from my main site.
PLease take a moment to check out my new site and feel free to email or comment any feedback - we are still putting on the finishing touches.
Monday, August 16, 2010
Summer in the Sierra brings dramatic displays of both thunderstorms and wildflowers. A few weeks ago we had a dramatic storm that started to clear at sunset, leaving a spectacular display of clouds and rainbows. I set up my tripod on a hill near my house to get these shots of rare mammatus clouds and a rainbow at sunset.
I also visited one of my favorite locations for wildflowers - the Carson Pass area. Even though it was mid- august the flowers were still blooming due to the very cold & snowy early summer. These shots were taken at sunset. I was pleased to get a few shots that worked given that it was extremely windy. Wind and low light are not a good combination for wildflower photography. I had to crank the Hasselblad H4D iso up to 800, and underexpose by a stop, to get down to 1/15 of a second which only worked to stop blowing flowers during the infrequent pauses in the wind. Out of the hundreds of frames only these 2 were really usable due to wind blur. I was not able to get the depth of field I like since I could not shoot at f22 due to the need for a higher shutter speed, so the background is not as sharp as I would like, but it was the best capture possible given the conditions.
These new images that are unmanipulated, just developed to maximize tonal range in photoshop cs5. Nature can sure put on spectacular shows!
Thursday, August 5, 2010
We spent a week in Paris in July. We rented a great little apartment on the left bank that gave us easy access to all the sites. I have edited the collection of images I took from about 500 down to 20 Fine Art Prints of Paris that have released on my website. I decided to convert all of them to Black & white since I thought that gave them a more dramatic and timeless feel. In particular, I thought the Eiffel tower was wonderful to photograph when lit up at night (the lights go on for only 5 minutes every hour, starting at 10 PM). We also staked out a spot in front of a view of the Eiffel tower where the tour de France riders would be coming by on their last day. I was pleased to get a shot of the yellow jersey of Contador riding into Paris. All of the statue images were from the Louvre, which still allows photography.
For Black & White conversions I used Nik Silver Efex, with some final touch up of the psd files in Aperture and Photoshop.
Paris is endlessly photogenic, and really overwhelms you with options. All of my shots were taken with the Hasselblad H4D which I used at 800 iso for the handheld images. The night shots of the Eiffel were on a tripod at 100 iso.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
I am back from a wonderful trip to Sweden & Paris and am working on editing images from the trip. All went well with my travels and I was pleased with some of my images, which I will be adding to my online & print portfolios soon.
Pottery Barn has selected two of my images from Tuscany for their "Art to Collect" series. You can see them in the current print catalog and online at: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/elizabeth-carmel-tuscan-farmhouse/
I will also be doing a Lake Tahoe photography workshop in 2011 with the Mountain Light Gallery. Here is a link to the workshop announcement:
We will be photographing all the great locations around Tahoe and some of my secret spots that have not been in the workshop before. PLease contact Mountain Light to sign up, they handle all of that.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
I am leaving for a few weeks in Sweden and Paris next week, so I thought I would share a few of the tips I have learned on how to travel internationally with a full set of lenses and medium format digital camera, along with laptop & all accessories.
Never check your lenses or camera, either in your luggage or on those carts you sometimes have to put your carry-on on smaller planes - never let them leave your body unless they are on the security conveyor belt or in the overhead bin or under plane seat. I always carry a smaller camera backpack that will fit under the seat of any plane, which is a last resort if all the overhead bin space is taken. Better to have no foot room rather than have to check your camera bag. With the big backpacks or roll-ons you are at risk of having to check your camera bag if all the overhead bin space is taken by the time you get on the plane. The bag that I have found works well is made by Clik Elite - it is the new Escape pack that can fit a Hasselblad H4D 40 and 3 lenses, along with various accessories. The black version looks very un-photo backpackish, so it does not scream "I am carrying expensive camera stuff". With the streamlined look of the pack I am comfortable walking with it in more urban areas and don't feel overly dorky with alot of pack straps flapping around.
Since you are allowed 2 items I also take my 17" MBP laptop in the Clik Jetpack, which has a shoulder strap and can look like a satchel instead of a backpack. It also doubles as a smaller camera backpack if needed, and can fit chargers, ipad, and other stuff to take on the plane. This & the camera back is a lot to carry through the airport but that is the burden of being a photographer I guess. Roll-ons are more convenient but come with the risk of being weighed by zealous airline staff. On one trip to France a few years ago all my carry ons were weighed, so I was busted for being over the with limit and had to check all my lenses in my hard sided porter case roll on, which was very scary. In case the airlines are weighing carry ons I now travel with a ScotteVest, which I can stuff my lenses into if needed and then put back in my backpack after going through the check in. I have the kind with the zip off sleeves that can be a vest or jacket. What I like about these jackets is they don't look like the bulky photo vests or jackets, so you can be more of an in-cognito photographer while travelling. Black is better than khaki for travelling in cognito.
Always have cf cards, battery and charger with you for camera & laptop, everything else including tripod & head goes in the checked luggage. If your luggage is lost or stolen at least you have a functioning camera & laptop.
Since I am sometimes travelling alone I always carry a Personal Locator Beacon I can set off in case of emergencies - I have never had to use it but it is comforting to have along and small enough to fit in a camera backpack.
We will be in Paris on the final day of the Tour de France, so I hope to get some fun shots of that and of Paris that I will share when we return.
Sunday, July 4, 2010
In mid June I had a chance to do a quick trip up to Redwood National Park in Northern California, home of the magnificent Coastal Redwoods and the wild Rhododendrons. I was able to find one blooming grove of Rhododendrons amongst the Redwoods, and have added these new images to my Wildflower Photographs portfolio. I also had a wonderful sunset at the beach where a creek flows into the ocean, titled "To the Sea".
© Elizabeth Carmel, 2010
Monday, June 14, 2010
I love Tuscany and was thrilled to find a batch of red poppies & olive trees in Napa Valley that look just like a shot I would
find in Tuscany. These are at the Castle Di Amorosa in the Napa Valley. The poppies are growing in amongst the vineyards there. This is a great photo location for autumn vine shots as well. These were all taken before 8 AM but the sun is still very bright, making for hi - key images. I did not use HDR, just some shadow highlight adjustment in Hasselblad Phocus to bring up the shadows and tone down the highlights. I also had to desaturate slightly to give them a more pleasant color. You can view all 3 of them in the wine country photographs portfolio on my website.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
I have released two new camera paintings of Lake Tahoe - these were done in-camera with minimal post processing. I have found shutter speed of 1/20 or slower works best with these, on some I have even used 1 second. Just pan the camera in the direction that makes sense based on the subject. These are of Lake Tahoe at sunset looking towards the west shore, camera panned left to right.
Friday, May 28, 2010
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Monday, May 17, 2010
I will be speaking at the Squaw Valley Institute on Thursday June 17. Please attend if you will be in the area. Below is the press release for the event:
Photographer Elizabeth Carmel Speaks at Squaw Valley Institute Event Olympic Valley, Calif. – Elizabeth Carmel’s new book, The Changing Range of Light: Portraits of the Sierra Nevada, takes center stage at a presentation on Thursday, June 17 at 7:00 PM at the UC Davis Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences in Incline Village. A no-host bar reception begins at 6:30 PM. Tickets for the event, co-sponsored by Squaw Valley Institute and UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center, run $10. Students and children ages 17-and-under are free. Carmel’s book combines the author’s remarkable landscape photography with important information about how the depicted landscapes are threatened by climate change. Prominent climate change scientists Robert Coats, Ph.D. and Geoffrey Schladow, Ph.D. contribute insights in the book, and will join Carmel for the presentation. The synthesis of art and science summarizes the changes that will occur in the Sierra from global climate change. Inspiring quotes and poetry by renowned authors are also included and play an important role in making this book an uplifting celebration of natural beauty. Elizabeth Carmel is a Sierra-based photographer specializing in unique, expressive landscapes and “waterscapes.” Her prints combine dramatic photography, vivid colors, and artistic touches to create new, captivating visions of the natural world. She has spent years exploring and photographing the diverse landscapes of the world, often traveling on foot or skis in wilderness terrain far from roads in order to capture her unique images. Her award-winning images are featured in numerous galleries and private collections throughout the United States. Elizabeth and her husband, Olof Carmel, currently own and operate their own photography gallery in Truckee, California. The UC Davis Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences is located at 291 Country Club Drive in Incline Village, Nevada. Tickets for this presentation are on sale now on the Squaw Valley Institute’s website atwww.squawvalleyinstitute.org. Squaw Valley Institute is a nonprofit organization dedicated to presenting programs having artistic, cultural and educational values. The Institute presents lectures, performances, forums, exhibitions and classes in the unique mountain environment of Squaw Valley, North Lake Tahoe, Truckee and surrounding communities, bringing together visitors, residents and friends in the truest sense of community.
Photographer Elizabeth Carmel Speaks at Squaw Valley Institute Event
Olympic Valley, Calif. – Elizabeth Carmel’s new book, The Changing Range of Light: Portraits of the Sierra Nevada, takes center stage at a presentation on Thursday, June 17 at 7:00 PM at the UC Davis Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences in Incline Village. A no-host bar reception begins at 6:30 PM. Tickets for the event, co-sponsored by Squaw Valley Institute and UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center, run $10. Students and children ages 17-and-under are free.
Carmel’s book combines the author’s remarkable landscape photography with important information about how the depicted landscapes are threatened by climate change. Prominent climate change scientists Robert Coats, Ph.D. and Geoffrey Schladow, Ph.D. contribute insights in the book, and will join Carmel for the presentation. The synthesis of art and science summarizes the changes that will occur in the Sierra from global climate change. Inspiring quotes and poetry by renowned authors are also included and play an important role in making this book an uplifting celebration of natural beauty.
Elizabeth Carmel is a Sierra-based photographer specializing in unique, expressive landscapes and “waterscapes.” Her prints combine dramatic photography, vivid colors, and artistic touches to create new, captivating visions of the natural world. She has spent years exploring and photographing the diverse landscapes of the world, often traveling on foot or skis in wilderness terrain far from roads in order to capture her unique images. Her award-winning images are featured in numerous galleries and private collections throughout the United States. Elizabeth and her husband, Olof Carmel, currently own and operate their own photography gallery in Truckee, California.
The UC Davis Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences is located at 291 Country Club Drive in Incline Village, Nevada. Tickets for this presentation are on sale now on the Squaw Valley Institute’s website atwww.squawvalleyinstitute.org.
Squaw Valley Institute is a nonprofit organization dedicated to presenting programs having artistic, cultural and educational values. The Institute presents lectures, performances, forums, exhibitions and classes in the unique mountain environment of Squaw Valley, North Lake Tahoe, Truckee and surrounding communities, bringing together visitors, residents and friends in the truest sense of community.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
This month's June issue of Shutterbug Magazine has a 6 page book excerpt of my book "The Changing Range of Light". They did a great job of reproducing the photos in a magazine format. The article is available in both the print and digital versions of the magazine. The print version is in almost every magazine rack in the country if you want to check it out.
I had some time to head down to Big Sur a week or so ago and take my new Hasselblad H4D out for real world shooting. I was lucky to have some sunny weather since we were between April storms. Big Sur is one of my favorite places in the world - it is truly a photographer's paradise, especially this time of the year when the wildflowers are blooming. After reviewing my files from the new camera I can say that I am really delighted with the image quality and performance. The only problem I ran in to was an error message to restart the back when I used an off brand of CF card, so I think it is important to use the recommended Sandisk cards with this system - the problem was eliminated when I used the correct CF card brand. My unscientific analysis of the H4D files gives me the opinion that the image detail is better than the H3D - 39 - I find there is better detail in fine areas such as tree branches and leaves. The files also seem to accept sharpening better. The image below of the poppies along the coast in sunshine was shot at 800 iso due to the wind. This is an example of a shot I would not have been able to get with the H3D-39 since the poppies were blowing around and I needed to shoot the image at f22 for depth of field but at a high shutter speed to freeze motion. The flowers are tack sharp with no blur, and noise is minimal.
Here is another shot of one of my favorite places, McWay cove at sunset, shot with a split ND filter at 100 iso.
All the files need to be processed in Phocus since Aperture and Lightroom do not support the files from this camera yet, but I am sure they will at some point. I also used the new Photoshop CS5 to do some post processing. CS5 is noticeably faster than CS4, and the content-aware fill tool is amazing.
I also discovered that the Colorspace UDMA back up device will not accept files from the H4D (is does from the H3D). Colorspace needs to get with the program and update the firmware on this device. I called Hasselblad and they told me that they make the file formats available to all companies that request them so devices can be upgraded to accept the H4D files. Come on people get with it!
I still have the H3D-39 kit available for sale, and an HC 35 mm lens, will consider all reasonable offers.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
I have posted a new series of images from the Caribbean on my web site. These were all shot on the island of Virgin Gorda with the Hasselblad H3D. I developed these images with what I consider to be a more contemporary, slightly desaturated color palette. I used this color palette to emphasize the beautiful blues of the ocean and the natural forms of the rocks and sand. I am also working on a second series that will introduce more of the pastel colors of the sunset. All images were developed in Aperture with Photomatix HDR plug in. I then did final retouching and sharpening in Photoshop. I think the Photomatix effect should be used sparingly to give the image a little pop - the image should not scream "I used Photomatix".
I think it is good to work on images in a series and edit images according to groups that work well together. All editing should be a bit painful. I eliminated quite a few strong images that just didn't quite fit the color scheme and compositional content of the others in order to come up with the final grouping I show on my website. Hope you enjoy the photographic journey to this distant island!
© Elizabeth Carmel, 2010
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
I have been traveling in the Caribbean the last few weeks and am currently sorting through a few thousand images to pick the ones I will put in my portfolio. The editing process is relatively painless thanks to Apple's Aperture program. We went to St. John, which is a U.S. virgin island, and Virgin Gorda, which is a British island. Both had some amazing scenery. I particularly liked Virgin Gorda because of the large granitic boulders on the beaches. It was similar in many ways to the scenery of Lake Tahoe & allowed for some interesting compositions of rocks and water. I will be posting the final selections to my website and this blog.
I have decided to upgrade my camera system to the Hasselblad H4D-40 instead of the H4D 60 (which is still not available as of today). The reason is mainly that I can use the high iso functionality that is unique to the H4D-40 more than the increased resolution of the 60 mp. The H4-D 40 is designed with micro-lenses over the sensor that allow for great 40 megapixel shots even at iso 800, and it can be pushed to iso 1600 if needed. (see my previous post on this topic for more info). I like the freedom to do handheld photography if needed, and to freeze motion on a windy day.
I will be selling my current H3D-39 megapixel with the 80mm lens for $10,000. This camera is in great working condition with a few minor cosmetic blemishes on the back, and I will also include a day of training with the system here at my studio. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in purchasing this camera. I can take credit card payments, but will only ship within the USA. I will also be selling a Hasselbald HC-35 mm lens for $2500, with original box, lens hood, & leather case, in excellent condition. I am finding that I do not use this lens now that I have the 28mm, so that is why I am selling it.
I will do review of the H4D-40 when it arrives soon, and will post image samples and impressions on this blog. I will also be doing a post on how I handle airline travel with heavy & expensive camera gear.
This image below is from "The Baths", a rock & ocean grotto in Virgin Gorda. It was processed in Apple Aperture using Photomatix Pro plug-in for HDR rendering.
Monday, March 22, 2010
The Napa wine country is in full bloom with the mustard flowers now. I did a few in-camera paintings of landscapes in the wine country and have posted them on my website in the Camera Paintings Portfolio. It is still a mystery to me how to get the best effects - I try many different motions with the camera and a variety of shutter speeds to cover different options, but it seems a bit random what ultimately ends of making the best camera paintings. The best solution seems to be just shooting a few hundred frames of any subject and selecting the one that works. The key is to make them more blurry rather than less, because they end up looking more painterly that way. I am realizing how much more difficult traditional landscape photography is compared to doing these camera paintings. To take a traditional landscape photo you really need the convergence of amazing scenery in beautiful light with minimal wind- camera paintings require interesting colors and forms, which are easier to find. I think they are a fun way to explore the landscape, and people in our gallery seem to be enjoying the effect in large prints.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
The new Carmel Gallery site features our top-selling images. We have many more images on our individual websites at ElizabethCarmel.com and OlofCarmel.com. We will also extend the 10% off special to phone orders on any images not available on the new website. Please call the Gallery toll free at (888) 482-4632 to place a phone order for items not on the website.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
I get many questions emailed to me and try to answer a few on this blog - here are 2 recent ones with my responses: