Some blasts from the past!

Saigon Fine Art Museum Stair (Down) © Harold Davis

Museum Stair, Saigon © Harold Davis

Some blasts from the past: A back staircase in the Fine Arts Museum in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon, 2017) above;  geometric patterns in the arches, shadows, reflections of the Pont Valentré, spanning the Lot River (Cahors, France, 2018). 

Geometry © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

The Blossfeldt Effect Webinar coming up on Saturday June 12

Karl Blossfeldt (1866-1932) began his career at a decorative ironwork manufacturer. He was assigned the task of creating reference botanical photographs to use for wrought iron designs. Eventually, his iconic botanical images became celebrated in their own right, and today he is known as one of history’s foremost botanical photographers.

I’ve long been fascinated by Blossfeldt’s botanical imagery and have developed a set of techniques for emulating the beautiful photographs of this master.

Some of my work in homage to Blossfeldt has even been mistaken for the real thing on a certain art consolidation website that shall not be named!

You can check out a portfolio of my (genuine, authorized Harold Davis) prints after Blossfeldt on Saatchi Art

Click here to read more, and here to register for this webinar!

Queen Anne's Lace © Harold Davis

Queen Anne’s Lace © Harold Davis

Posted in Monochrome, Photography, Workshops

Some flowers from our garden

The Way Things Were © Harold Davis

Papaver rhoeas © Harold Davis

Click here for our upcoming (September) Photographing Flowers for Transparency in-person workshop!

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Photographing Flowers for Transparency: Early-bird discount of $200 applies through June

I am beyond delighted to announce an in-person Photographing Flowers for Transparency workshop here in Berkeley, California towards the end of September, 2021. This is always an incredibly festive occasion, with the workshop room decked out in myriad flowers. It’s great working through the process, and helping folks get over the bumps. We always have a fun time enjoying botanicals with like minded folks, learning together and making translucent floral images, and investigating LAB color. 

This year, we’re adding an included bonus feature: a Zoom follow-up so participants can show their work, and get help with any issues. We want you to learn!

Note that an early-bird tuition discount of $200 applies through June 30, 2021.

Click here for complete information including the curriculum. To register, visit the listing on Meetup to register using Paypal (RSVP YES, and pay the discounted tuition using any credit card), or contact us for direct registration by check or credit card. Please do contact us if you need help with registration, or have any questions.

Mass Delusions of Poppies © Harold Davis

Here’s part of the workshop description: Harold Davis is well-known for his often imitated—but seldom equaled—digital images of luscious transparent and translucent flowers.

In this unique workshop offering, Harold Davis shows the techniques he uses to create his floral masterpieces. Arrangement, composition, photography, post-production will all be covered, as will Harold’s special techniques for shooting on a light box.

There is no better way to learn the floral transparency techniques that Harold Davis has pioneered. The multi-day format will give participants the chance to complete their imagery using the techniques that Harold will demonstrate, with input and help from “the master”. We will follow up with an online Zoom session for further critique and help with work.

Click here to learn more and for the curriculum!

Posted in Photography, Workshops

Splitting up my Long Exposure Waves workshop

I’ve been contemplating a Long Exposure Waves workshop, and trying to see where this would fit into my schedule. My idea has been to combine a webinar prep session with an in-person session at the ocean, followed by another webinar to review results.

Long Exposure Wave Study, South Beach © Harold Davis

The request I’ve received from several photographers is to split the workshop up for separate enrollment, by doing the before and after webinars separately from the in-person session. Pro: Folks who just signed up for one or both of the webinars could practice on beaches anywhere. Con: In the past, when I’ve done this as a live workshop I’ve had before and after classes. My idea of the webinars is to replace these classroom sessions. It would be harder for me to keep a tightly focused group if the registrations were decoupled, and I might worry that some participants didn’t have adequate preparation.

As you can see, I am still thinking this through. In our new normal world, there are certainly uses for remote learning and Zoom as a way to make learning more available and flexible, and it is not entirely clear how to best take advantage of this capability.

Exposure data: +4ND, Circular Polarizer, five minutes at f/16 and ISO 64. Check out Five Minute Wave Exposures.

Posted in Workshops

Long Exposure Waves

Now that things are opening up, I’ve been thinking about giving a long exposure waves workshop again. It’s been several years since I’ve given this workshop in person and with an ocean at hand.

The idea behind this technique is that with the camera on a tripod even the most violent action of the ocean can be stilled. The results can be an abstraction. Depending on the length of the exposure, the effect can be fairly subtle and attractive, or with really long exposures produce imagery that seems like fields of color. I think this kind of work is great, but it does take some know-how and a great deal of patience to pull-off successfully.

Long Exposure Wave Study 2 © Harold Davis

To make Long Exposure Wave Study 2, shown above, with my camera on a tripod, I added a +4 neutral density filter and a circular polarizer to the front of my lens, and exposed for five minutes at f/29 and ISO 31.

In a Blue Hour, shown below, is a shorter duration exposure. Once again, I had the camera on a tripod and used a polarizer. I exposed for 10 seconds at f/29 and ISO 200.

In a Blue Hour © Harold Davis

My conception of a new, improved Long Exposure Waves workshop is a hybrid format, with an introduction and technical preparation session held over Zoom, followed by a week later an actual in-person session at a photography-friendly beach. We’d follow up after the live session a week or so later on Zoom to review images and discuss technical issues that came up.

Anyhow, in terms of my calendar, I haven’t been able to schedule this workshop yet. There’s just been too much on my plate between family, travel, and existing commitments. But, when I can I will put it on our calendar—you can keep an eye out for it on my Workshops & Events page!

Posted in Photography, Point Reyes, Workshops

Save the Last Dance

For this image, I framed essentially a portrait view of the mallow (upper left) and the poppy (along the right, purple and red).

For some reason, the Save the Last Dance song, melody and lyrics, went through my head as I composed and honed the image. So I used the song as the name for my image. Perhaps the poppy is addressing the mallow? Flowers are so ephemeral.

Save the Last Dance for Me © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Fantasy in the Key of Campanula

Often when I am through with the primary photography in a light box design, I continue to experiment by adding lines, weaving botanicals, getting closer, and anything else that is fun that I can think of. Fantasy in the Key of Campanula is an example of this kind of improvisation, with the lines of the Campanulas (Bell flower) laid over the original design, then photographed close for a different kind of composition.

Fantasy in the Key of Campanula © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Inside a Hollyhock

My inspection inside blossoms continues on from the Foxglove (Digitalis) to a beautiful, crimson Hollyhock (Alcea rosea) blossom.

Hollyhock © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers

Photographing Flowers for Transparency Workshop Sept 25-26 Live! In-Person!

2021 Photographing Flowers for Transparency with Harold Davis (Weekend Workshop) | LIVE and IN-PERSON

Master photographer Harold Davis is well-known for his often imitated—but seldom equaled—digital images of luscious transparent and translucent flowers.

In this unique workshop offering, Harold Davis shows the techniques he uses to create his floral masterpieces. Arrangement, composition, photography, post-production will all be covered, as will Harold’s special techniques for shooting on a light box.

There is no better way to learn the floral transparency techniques that Harold Davis has pioneered. The multi-day format will give participants the chance to complete their imagery using the techniques that Harold will demonstrate, with input and help from “the master”. We will follow up with an online Zoom session for further critique and help with work. Click here to read more and for the curriculum!

Where: Berkeley, CA (see notes in the full listing)

When: Saturday Sept 25 – Sunday Sept 26, 2021

Tuition: $1195 (early bird discount of $200 applies until June 30)

Special Feature: We will follow-up with a Zoom webinar approximately two weeks from the workshop to showcase and critique participant work (and to help with any problems).

Workshop size: Maximum of 14 photographers

To register: Visit the listing on Meetup to register using Paypal (by RSVPing YES), or contact us for direct registration by check or credit card. Please do contact us if you need help with registration, or have any questions.

Click here to read more and for the curriculum.

Posted in Workshops

Pandemic Prints await shipping

Most of the special Pandemic Prints that have been ordered are printed, cured, and signed, and only await shipping (see photo). (The special offer for these prints ended May 1, 2021.)

Thanks everyone, and thanks especially if you ordered a print for your patience, as it has taken us a while to get these prints made! I think they look beautiful, and if you are expecting a print, I hope you like yours as well.

Pandemic Prints Await Shipping © Harold Davis

Posted in Print of the Month

Matilija Poppies

The Matilija Poppy (Romneya coulteri) is native to California, with a range from Mexico through northern California. This is a drought tolerant species that can be somewhat invasive once established—but, lordy, does one love being invaded by the Matilija with its big, translucent white flower petals, and yellow stamen cores that have been likened to a hard-boiled egg yolk.

Two other fun Matilija facts: the sap of the Matilija is highly poisonous, and the flower (genus Romneya) was named in the Linaean taxonomic system for Irish astronomer John Thomas Romney Robinson (1792-1882). There’s clearly an interesting tangent here, because Robinson was a good friend of Charles Babbage, and there is some evidence that a conversation between the two of them may have helped to spark the idea for Babbage’s Difference Engine (a forerunner of the modern computer).

Tangents aside, I love to create images on my light box that overlay the translucent Matilija with more colorful flowers, as you can see from the sequence below, and also in Matilija Poppies and Mallows and Matilija Poppies and Friends (among many others).

The Right to Assemble © Harold Davis

Matilija Poppy © Harold Davis

Let Poppies Reign Forever © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

From Blossom to Art Webinar on Saturday May 15, 2021

Please consider joining us for One Flower, One Garden, One World | From Blossom to Art, a live Zoom webinar on Saturday May 15, 2021 at 11am PT.

Click here for registration, here for more info, here for our Workshops & Events, and here for Webinar recordings.

Details: In this unique and detailed presentation, Harold Davis will take you along his garden path to show you some of his favorite flowers for translucent photography in high Spring bloom. From the garden, the next step is onto the light box, where Harold will discuss and demonstrate some of the archetypes of floral composition. The webinar will continue with a demonstration of actual exposure of a high-key sequence on a light box, and conclude with post-production in the Photoshop darkroom.

Folks have asked for it, and here it is! One image from start to finish: from flower pot, to light box, to post-production. Fasten your seat belts, because it is going to be a fun ride!

There will be ample time for Q&A.

We look forward to “seeing” you there!

Click here for registration, here for more info, here for our Workshops & Events, and here for Webinar recordings.

Posted in Workshops

Creating Your Signature Style Webinar

What: Creating Your Signature Style

When: Saturday August 14, 2021 at 11AM PT.

Where: Zoom authenticated registration and a tuition payment of $29.95 is required for enrollment in each session. Seating is limited. The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_yibm5QbnQOeU7UPSzC8e8g

Details: In a world deluged with images, some stand out. A very few select photographers have an iconic look and signature style. We recognize the work of these artists anywhere. How do these photographers create a recognizable and individual style? Harold’s light box flower photography is one example of this.

In this webinar you will discover:

  • What makes photographs special?
  • How do you cultivate an individual style?
  • Believing in your own vision
  • Learning not to listen
  • Validation is for parking tickets

Becoming an artist takes time, patience, dedication, and a certain blessed kind of stubbornness that comes from belief in one’s own vision. Creating Your Signature Style will help you assemble a toolkit to get you there!

Some Fine Poppies © Harold Davis

Webinar participants are encouraged to share some of their own work for constructive feedback. Pick images that best represent your journey towards an individual style. 

Click here for registration.

Who should attend: All photographers interested in creating a unique personal style so they can work towards becoming a more powerful artist.

Note that by participating in this webinar you are authorizing your likeness and your work to appear in the video recording, which will be posted on public websites such as YouTube.

Number of Seats and Tuition: Zoom authenticated registration and a tuition payment of $29.95 is required for enrollment in this webinar.  Seating (on a first come, first served basis) is limited. You must register via Zoom to be enrolled in this webinar! The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_yibm5QbnQOeU7UPSzC8e8g

Poppy Extravaganza © Harold Davis

About Harold Davis: Harold Davis is an artist, photographer, educator, and the  bestselling author of many books, including most recently Creative Garden Photography from Rocky Nook. He is the developer of a unique technique for photographing flowers for transparency, a Moab Master, and a Zeiss Ambassador. He is an internationally known photographer and a sought-after workshop leader. His website is www.digitalfieldguide.com.

Posted in Workshops

The Blossfeldt Effect Webinar

What: The Blossfeldt Effect

When: Saturday June 12, 2021 at 11AM PT.

Where: Zoom authenticated registration and a tuition payment of $29.95 is required for enrollment in each session. Seating is limited. The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_WdzXDLdfQ0Gs1dnzjuj08Q

Details: Karl Blossfeldt (1866-1932) began his career at a decorative ironwork manufacturer. He was assigned the task of creating reference botanical photographs to use for wrought iron designs. Eventually, his iconic botanical images became celebrated in their own right, and today he is known as one of history’s foremost botanical photographers.

Harold has long been fascinated by Blossfeldt’s botanical imagery and has developed a set of techniques for emulating the beautiful photographs of this master. Some of Harold’s work in homage to Blossfeldt has even been mistaken for the real thing! You can check out a portfolio of Harold’s prints after Blossfeldt on Saatchi Art

Click here to read more, and here to register for this webinar!

Papaver Pod from above © Harold Davis

Posted in Workshops