Author Archives: Harold Davis

Nocturnes Exhibition and Competition at the Southeast Center for Photography

I am the juror for Nocturnes a competition and exhibition based around night photography at the Southeast Center for Photography.

Here’s the description:  A nocturne is a musical composition that is inspired by, or evocative of, the night. Enter your best photos that express the poetry of the night referentially in visual symbolism. Show us you night images, your light painting talents. Imagery should be evocative of the night and our human relationship to nocturnal darkness. Structures are okay, as is the urban landscape. It’s fine to include celestial features such as star trails or the Milky Way, but images should include terrestrial markings as well; this will be an exhibition about the human relationship, and feelings about the night.

Submissions close on June 5, 2016. Click here for the prospectus for the competition and exhibition.

Edge of Night © Harold Davis

Edge of Night © Harold Davis

Posted in Digital Night, Photography, Workshops

Nanzenji Aqueduct

Nanzenji is one of the Five Great Zen Temples of Kyoto, Japan. Wandering through the grounds at Nanzenji, I came across a huge red brick aqueduct, built in the 19th century, and designed to carry water to Kyoto from Lake Biwa (it is still in use today). The mammoth nature of this structure seemed incredibly interesting to me, so I moved underneath the aqueduct with my camera and tripod to capture its supports, which seemed oddly out of place, almost like an ancient Roman engineering project in the heart of Japanese Zen.

This image is brought to mind because it is one of the illustrations in my new book The Photographer’s Black & White Handbook, which will be published by Monacelli Press.

Under the Aqueduct at Nanzen-ji

Under the Aqueduct at Nanzenji © Harold Davis

28mm, 4/5 of a second at f/22 and ISO 100, tripod mounted; processed in Photoshop, and converted to black and white in Photoshop and Nik Silver Efex Pro.

Click here for more blog stories about Japan.

Related image: Under the Yaquina Bay Bridge.

Posted in Japan, Monochrome

Monet’s Garden

Two more from Giverny via my iPhone and the Waterlogue app:

Giverny on my iPhone © Harold Davis

Giverny on my iPhone © Harold Davis

Monet's Garden © Harold Davis

Monet’s Garden © Harold Davis

Posted in France, iPhone

Morning Mist

Morning Mist © Harold Davis

Morning Mist © Harold Davis

In the early morning in the Lot River Valley fog follows the course of the river, shown here behind a stand of trees and in front of the cliffs on the far side of the valley.

Posted in France, Landscape, Photography

Country Rainbow

To paraphrase Ansel Adams, if you don’t go out in the rain, you will never get to photograph the clearing storm. As I explored the ancient town of Cordes sur Ciel, it began to rain. I pulled out my rain gear and continued up to the highest battlement. From the top of the fortifications, a rainbow spread out over the countryside of southwest France below me.

Country Rainbow © Harold Davis

Country Rainbow © Harold Davis

Posted in France, Landscape, Photography

Gourds

I realize that I never blogged this iPhone image of gourds, which I rather like. It was photographed locally at the wonderful Berkeley Bowl produce market. I processed in on my phone in the Snapseed app.

Gourds © Harold Davis

                                               Gourds © Harold Davis

Posted in iPhone, Monochrome

Echinacea Peeking

I photographed this echinacea (cone flower) peeking through the translucent white rose petals shown in Back to the Flowers with my 200mm telephoto macro lens and a 12mm extension tube. The settings were twenty seconds at f/40 and ISO 100, of course using a tripod.

Echinacea Peeking © Harold Davis

Echinacea Peeking © Harold Davis

Posted in France, Photography

Venice Destination Photo Workshop Rescheduled

We’ve rescheduled the Photograph Venice with Harold Davis destination photo workshop. The new dates are October 23-29, 2016. Click here for details. Please let us know if you would like to join us in Venice!

Bridge of Sighs at Night © Harold Davis

Bridge of Sighs at Night © Harold Davis

Destination Workshop Description: Venice is the largest preserved antique city in Europe, and possibly the world. Extravagant, decadent, charming with ever-changing light, Venice is a photographer’s delight with its fairy-tale canals and endless maze of footpaths and bridges.

Join acclaimed photographer Harold Davis for the experience of a lifetime exploring and photographing La Serenissima, the most serene and exciting Republic of Venice. There you’ll have the opportunity to experience firsthand the places and sights that have inspired artists for centuries.

We’ll focus our lenses on canals, reflections, and the infinite wonder found around every corner in Venice. There will be special emphasis on techniques for impressionistic rendering, and several sessions will be held to teach the related post-production techniques, as well as how best to use an iPhone camera in Venice.

Click here to learn more!

Piazza San Marco © Harold Davis

Piazza San Marco © Harold Davis

Posted in Workshops

Remains of the Clematis

What happens when the bloom on the clematis fades? When the leaves fall off, and all that is left is the wabi-sabi of the central flower core?

Remains of the Clematis © Harold Davis

Remains of the Clematis © Harold Davis

Shown here photographed on a light box, in Photoshop converted to monochromatic, and duplicated—with the duplicate L-channel inverted in LAB color to substitute white for black, and black for white.

Posted in Flowers, Monochrome, Photography

Back to the Flowers

I’ve been in Europe (rural southwestern France, and then Paris) for most of the past month, which has blissfully enabled me to avoid American politics. Except when I admitted to someone that I was American, in which case loud laughter and pointing commenced. Followed (after the second bottle of wine) by the lachrymose admission that things were just as bad locally.

© Harold Davis

The Wild and the Tame © Harold Davis

So coming home I do feel that I’ve slipped into Bad Biff’s alternative universe in Back to the Future Part II, with he-who-shall-not-be-named all too likely to become our new overlord. The only defense to this mass insanity is to practice Back to the Flowers as a viable alternative to Back to the Future.

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Fetish

Technically speaking, a fetish is defined as “an inanimate object worshiped for its supposed magical powers or because it is considered to be inhabited by a spirit.” I photographed the fetish object shown here in the lobby of my Paris hotel with my iPhone, then processed it on my iPhone to convert to black and white, and to add the background texture. By the way, if you noted that my iPhone itself is a fetish, you might not be far off.

Fetish  Harold Davis

Fetish © Harold Davis

Posted in iPhone, Monochrome, Photography

Eglise Sainte Jean

The doors to the church in Najac, France are closed tight—which helps lead to the visual sense that one never really knows what goes on behind closed doors. The entrance to the church of Saint Jean is photographed here with my 16mm rectangular fisheye to emphasize the circular effect of the placement of the doors.

Entrance, Eglise Sainte Jean, Najac © Harold Davis

Entrance, Eglise Sainte Jean, Najac © Harold Davis

Posted in France, Monochrome, Photography

Impressions of Giverny

In addition to Monet’s bedroom, here are two more iPhone impressions of Giverny: The outside of Monet’s house from the front steps, and an impression of the famous garden.

Monet's House at Giverny © Harold Davis

Monet’s House at Giverny © Harold Davis

Giverny Impressions © Harold Davis

Giverny Impressions © Harold Davis

Posted in France, iPhone

Diamonds and Contrails

The group went to the court of the Louvre to photograph the Pyramide, with the idea being to start with sunset and see how it went. I was a little skeptical that I could best previous results (check out this one, and this more recent example too!). But I enjoyed the scene, and the girl from Russia in a red dress who asked me to take her photo with the Pyramide in the background. Then as the sun set I saw a new viewpoint on the diamonds of the Pyramide, contrails and all, and aimed my 16mm rectangular fisheye lens at scene and reflections!

Diamonds and Comtrails © Harold Davis

Diamonds and Contrails © Harold Davis

Posted in France, Paris

Looking Up

Sometimes a view from underneath looking up is a great way to present an unusual composition, and interesting light. People don’t look up nearly enough! Some cases in point: Here are two views from underneath, one looking up at the Eiffel tower and the other from beneath a weeping willow at Monet’s Garden in Giverny.

Underneath La Tour Eiffel © Harold Davis

Underneath La Tour Eiffel © Harold Davis

Under the Weeping Willow at Giverny © Harold Davis

Under the Weeping Willow at Giverny © Harold Davis

Posted in France, Landscape, Paris, Photography