Monthly Archives: March 2021

Botanique—Watch the Video!

Botanique is my handmade limited edition artist book of botanical prints. You can find out more about Botanique, including current edition and pricing information, by clicking here.

Can’t view this video? Check it out on YouTube. Click here for more information about our artist books and portfolios.

Posted in Photography

Night Photography Webinar Panel on Saturday, April 3, 2021

Please consider joining us this Saturday April 3, 2021 at 11am PT for a night photography webinar. This panel session will present work by accomplished night photographers Steven Christenson and Jeff Sullivan.

I’ll be showing some of my own work, with a look at my urban night photography from around the world and other work that uses long-exposure techniques, as well as dark skies and star circles in nature.

The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion in which the photographers will discuss how they approach night photography, as well as their future plans.

All proceeds will benefit the Alameda County Community Food Bank.

Click here to register for the Night Photography Webinar, here for more information, and here for our scheduled Workshops & Events.

Edge of Night © Harold Davis

Posted in Workshops

I Have Minted Two NFTs

I have “minted” two NFTs—non-fungible tokens. To break this down a little further, to mint an asset such as a digital file means to place it on the blockchain. Placing the asset—the NFT—on the blockchain also generally means in the case of digital art to associate it with ability to buy and sell it using cryptocurrency, most often with digital art, Ethereum. 

Just saying, you can make NFTs out of things that have nothing to do with art. Just saying, a JPEG file minted into an NFT recently sold for $69 Million via the Christie’s Auction House. Just saying, what can you do with this thing besides buying and selling it (you can’t hang it on your wall)?

My first NFT is Petal Pushing, a GIF file. The description reads “This is a hand-created artisinal GIF file forged in Photoshop from a series of LAB L-channel inversion light box petal images by free-range artist and photographer Harold Davis.” The “Buy It Now” price is 0.5 Ethereum (or about $850 at today’s exchange rate). You can check it out here on Rarible, and here on OpenSea.

Petal Pushing © Harold Davis

My second NFT is Harold Davis—Petal Circles.gif, another GIF file. The description reads “This is a hand-created artisinal GIF file forged in Photoshop from a series of  light box petal images by artist and photographer Harold Davis.” The “Buy It Now” price is one Ethereum (or about $1700 at today’s exchange rate). You can check it out here on Rarible, and here on OpenSea.

Harold Davis—Petal-Circles.gif © Harold Davis

They are such a bargain, compared to $69 Million at least. Just saying. And just to be clear, what are you buying? You can’t put it on the wall. You are buying the one minted copy, but it can still be digitally copied and displayed. And, you are not buying my copyright in the image or its components. So, this is literally a trading vehicle—which can be said for some art editions, and some original art, as well!

More thoughtfully, I did have a few minutes back in the 2000 aughts when I was just starting as a digital artist and photographer when I considered whether there really was a reason to make a physical manifestation of an image. Then I fell in love with physical printmaking, making books, and all the old-fashioned stuff. 

Phyllis came over to my work station as I was going through the software gyrations to load up my digital wallet with Ethereum and pay for the “minting.” She said, and I quote, “Just what do you think you are doing?”

She has a point. But I’m going to stick with it a bit, and so far have enjoyed my first venture on the blockchain, with cybercurrency, and with minting NFTs.

Posted in Bemusements, Business of Art

Get creative in this photo challenge with Harold Davis [Free]


Photography on Black 

with Harold Davis

Tuesday, March 30th, 2021 at 2:00 pm CT
FREE! Click here to register.Knowing a variety of techniques to work with gives you the power to be more creative. Join Harold Davis as he shows you how to create low-key HDR images using a black velvet or other dark background. His demonstration will emphasize photography of floral subjects and various background possibilities, plus post-processing tips to create beautiful effects that almost seem like light painting. Afterwards you’ll get a fun photo challenge to put Harold’s ideas into practice, plus an invitation to share your results in the community.

Click here to register for this FREE live webinar. Be sure to forward this email to invite your friends!

Space is limited. If you are unable to join us live, a recording will be available. If you would like to participate in the photo challenge and be part of the discussion in our community you need to be registered for Out of Chicago LIVE!

Harold Davis is an internationally known photographer and a sought-after workshop leader. Harold’s most recent book is Creative Garden Photography, published by Rocky Nook. His prints are widely collected. He is the developer of a unique technique for photographing flowers for transparency, a Moab Master, and a Zeiss Ambassador. Learn more.
Posted in Workshops

Travels in the Inter-Mountain West

These are newly-processed images from travels in the inter-mountain American West in early 2020 just before the pandemic struck and we began sheltering in place.

As vaccinations proceed apace, I am looking forward to traveling with my camera again soon!

Old Tree © Harold Davis

Colorado River © Harold Davis

Death Valley Landscape © Harold Davis

Posted in Landscape, Monochrome, Photography

The Black and White Still Life Webinar

I’m looking forward to The Black and White Still Life Part II, a webinar we’ll be presenting on Saturday, March 27, 2021 at 11am PT.

This presentation will particularly emphasize tabletop and other kinds of still life that can easily be accomplished in anyone’s home with things you already have. Shadows, lighting, and monochromatic composition will be explained and considered. A number of post-production effects will be demonstrated with complete examples.

There will be an opportunity for presenting and reviewing participant work.

Click here to register for The Black and White Still Life Part II, and here for more information.

Parfait Mandala 1 © Harold Davis

Please keep in mind the upcoming Night Photography Panel Webinar on Saturday April 3, 2021 (benefits the Alameda County Food Bank) and One Flower, One Garden, One World on Saturday May 15, 2021.

Please click here for our scheduled webinars and events.

Posted in Workshops

Bridges Call to Me

I like photographing bridges. Put a different way, bridges call to me. I like walking across bridges, and examining their under-structures.

And not just bridges with grand vistas, because a great deal of my visual concern is in fact structural. By definition, most bridges are functional—they transport from one place to another, usually across something. When the structure of the bridge is beautiful as well as useful, it is an excellent example of form following function.

Here is a quintet of bridges from around the world.

Lower Deck © Harold Davis

The Ponte Rodo-Ferroviária de Valença crosses the  River Minho from Tui in Galicia, Spain to Valenca in Portugal. The lower deck of the bridge is shown in this image. Click here for more about this bridge.

Long Bien Bridge © Harold Davis

Built on a cantilevered structure designed in the studio of Gustav Eiffel, Long Bien Bridge crosses the Red River from Hanoi, Vietnam on the main train line to the port of Haiphong. Strategically important, Long Bien Bridge was bombed numerous times during the American-Vietnamese war, but (as you can see) survived all attempts to cut this vital supply link. Long Bien Bridge is a bit rusted, but that would be normal in Vietnam’s humid climate.

Old Train Bridge © Harold Davis

This old train bridge, crossing the Kennebec River in Bath, Maine seemed mostly abandoned—or at least so I hoped as I set up my tripod for the sequence of exposures needed to make this image!

Under the Yaquina Bay Bridge (B&W) © Harold Davis

Under the Yaquina Bay Bridge © Harold Davis

The Yaquina Bay Bridge is an Art Deco structure south of Newport, Oregon. The bridge opened in 1936, and is notable for its graceful series of descending arches, as well as the Gothic architectural flourishes.

Rainbow Bridge © Harold Davis

The Rainbow Bridge spans the lower harbor in Tokyo, Japan, and connects two of the sprawling districts of the Tokyo metroplis, Shibaura and the Odaiba waterfront development in the Minato district. 

After walking across the Rainbow Bridge in 2015, I wrote that in this image my idea was to use “selective focus to contrast the curves in the Rainbow Bridge with the linear spaces of the buildings beyond.”

Well, these are but a small taste of the bridges I have walked under and across, otherwise explored, and certainly photographed. I hope you enjoyed this story, and maybe someday will join me in bridge-walking and bridge photographing!

Posted in Photography

Blackberry showing seeds

Washing berries for breakfast, I was struck by the way some of the seeds in the blackberry appeared. Unlike most of the blackberry, or indeed most blackberries one eats, the clump of seeds in the upper left of this photo have not pollinated, and are clearly shown for the “naked” seeds they are.

Blackberry showing seeds © Harold Davis

I have been asked a couple of times about my posting a photo that is so different from the styles that I am “known for.” 

The simple answer is that I thought the seeds in this berry looked interesting.

A more complicated answer is that I have been known for photographing close-ups (I go through phases), I get bored easily and don’t like being “pigeon holed,” and photography is a medium with a wide range of looks, styles, and applications, from fashion to journalism to botanical art and beyond. Why be self-limiting (when the world will do this for one quickly enough)?

Posted in Photography

Rooftops of Paris Redux

The appeal of a 2016 Rooftops of Paris image—besides the wonderful patterns of chimneys, dormer windows, and Mansard roofs—is an intentional, and vaguely anachronistic, antique look. In contrast, the 2018 Rooftops of Paris shown below, is a post-film digital high-dynamic range (HDR) image that is very modern in its aesthetic intentions. 

This was a tricky image to make from a garret window high on the Montmartre Hill, and time-consuming to process as well (see below). This perhaps explains why I only got around to processing the RAW files (the digital analog to developing and printing) just now.

Rooftops of Paris © Harold Davis

The captures for this image were made from a small window, with my tripod awkwardly perched to take advantage of the setting sun receding behind a cloud bank. There were seven exposures, with each exposure using a 28mm moderate wide-angle focal-length lens at f/22 and ISO 64 on my Nikon D850. Exposure times varied from 1.3 seconds (lightest, for the foreground) to 1/80 of a second (darkest, for the sun burst). I used a combination of automated HDR, manual RAW processing, and layers and masking to create the final image.

For another recently processed view of Paris as landscape, click here.

My hope is to get back to Paris as soon as possible for more photography. For that, of course, we need vaccinations to beat the virus—and we need to stay thoughtful and vigilant.

Posted in France, HDR, Paris, Photography

Pandemic Print Pricing Ends May 1, 2021

Our special pandemic print pricing ends May 1, 2021. Please place orders for “Pandemic Prints” (at the special price) by May 1, 2021! Thank you for your support during these turbulent times.

Red Tulips © Harold Davis

Red Tulips © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Tis Bottles

Tis Bottles © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Wayback Machine

Today we will journey to a labyrinth and church on the island of Gozo in the Malta archipelago, followed by the Île de la Cité along the banks of the Seine in Paris early in the morning of an autumn day. Both were photographed pre-pandemic in November, 2018, and first processed just now.

Maze and Church, Gozo © Harold Davis

Île de la Cité © Harold Davis

Posted in Malta, Monochrome, Paris, Photography

From the Files

California Live Oak © Harold Davis

Here are two images from my files. California Live Oak (above) is from 2019, photographed in Walnut Creek, California. 

Arcade, Trapani (below) is from November, 2018, photographed in Trapani, a seaport on the western coast of Sicily, Italy.

Arcade, Trapani © Harold Davis

Posted in Italy, Monochrome, Photography

Peonies mon amour

This is a version of my Peonies mon amour image with a little space added above the upper flower at the request of the art director at a licensing client.

Peonies mon amour © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Painting of Coney Island Beach

This is a detail of an oil painting of Coney Island Beach by my grandfather Harry Davis, circa 1940. Clearly, no masks are being worn. Will we ever crowd together in the same way again? What will the new post-pandemic life look like?

Posted in Coronavirus times