Photo Frontier Lightroom Presets

Old Glass: Americana Color Presets for Lightroom

My friends at The Photo Frontier put together a fantastic collection of presets for Lightroom. Retro looks from decades past, presets inspired by movies, fashion and portraits presets, presets for B&W and much more can be purchased in the Ultimate Collection (which I picked up earlier this week) or individually.

I thought this image of the US Capital Dome wrapped in scaffolding for a restoration project was the perfect image to showcase their Americana Color Effects collection.  I ran the image through a handful of the dozen or so presets in the set. It is hard to pick a favorite!

Click on any the image above or any of the thumbnails below to launch a lightbox viewer.

Capital Dome: Flat Blue
Capital Dome: Vivid Rust
Capital Dome: Overgrown Abandonment
Capital Dome: Grain Silos
Capital Dome: Dusty Barn
Capital Dome: Bleached Sign

Team Chris Weekend: Part 1

Smithsonian Station

I’m back from my annual trip to Washington DC and I am overloaded with emotion, memories and (of course) images.

The reason for the trip was to run the Marine Corps Marathon to raise money for the CPL Christopher G. Scherer Semper Fi Fund (Team Chris), an organization founded by the family of CPL Scherer, USMC, who was killed in Iraq in 2007 by an enemy sniper. Team Chris’ mission is simple: Honor the fallen and support the troops.

Over the years they have fulfilled their mission in a variety of ways. So far this year about $30,000 has been raised, all of which will be used to sponsor service dogs for wounded warriors. (My fundraising page for the Boston contingent of Team Chris will be open until Christmas, if you care to contribute.)

My association with the Team Chris is deep and personal — My wife and I have been friends of the Scherer family for over 30 years. Chris’ death in the war on terror hit us hard.

Team Chris Weekend is always emotional. Through the Gold Star families involved, we feel both pain and pride. I won’t try to explain. My words can’t do it justice.

Between the Team Chris festivities I was able to go to the National Mall for some sightseeing with some of the Boston Crew. We toured the Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam Memorial and the WWII Memorial. Here are a few images from the day. More to come.

Matt and Katie
On the steps of the Lincoln Memorial
Joel — focussed
At the Lincoln Memorial
Charlie and Katie

NXNW 2014: Lobster Motif

Lobster Motif

The second stop on the Friday of NXNW weekend was Rockport, Massachusetts.

Rockport is a quaint little fishing village on Cape Ann, located on the North Shore of Massachusetts. It is also a popular tourist destination in the summer and something of a magnet for artists.

That little red lobster shack in the background is Motif #1, a muse to countless artists. Google Motif #1 and gaze at the extraordinary art that has been created in her name!

Seriously, though. It is a fun place to photograph and it was a great spot to show the guys, some of whom had never seen a real live lobster trap (cough … justinbalog … cough)!

So this shot is for Justin. I took the attention off of the classic structure and put it on the dinghies in the foreground. One of them loaded with lobster traps ready to haul them to the lobster boat.

And a couple of bonus images. One of Justin, giddy over finding what I told him was the last wooden lobster traps in New England (he believed me). The other is an iPhone shot taken from the window of the cafe where we had breakfast — a little dingy longing to be free.

Justin and Lobster TrapsDinghy

NXNW 2014: The Chair

Stone Mill Chair

Having shot the Stone and Everett Mill buildings so many times myself, I love seeing how others see the space. I always walk away inspired.  That was the case when I brought the NXNW crew here a couple of weeks ago. It was a preliminary shoot in anticipation of our drive to Acadia National Park the following day. Just kill some time in the mills. Shoot some history.

This simple shot of a basically modern chair in the not-so-modern Stone Mill is a shot I’ve passed up in all my trips here. Well, similar shots. The chair has been in the building for as long as I’ve been shooting here, but not in this exact spot. Still, I passed on all those opportunities.

When Armando showed me a shot he took of this chair on his LCD, I knew I had to shoot it.

Thanks, Armando, for helping me see familiar things differently.

NXNW 2014: The Blue Skyline

Blue Skyline

The official start of NXNW in Acadia National Park was Saturday, October 4. That was the day we left the Boston area for the 5 hour drive (without lighthouse stops) to Acadia. But leading up to it, the guys trickled in over Thursday and Friday. Some drove in from New York, other flew into Logan. Some (Armando and Justin) chose Red Eye flights fromDenver to Boston. Arrival times for both intrepid light explorers was 5:00 AM EDT. One on Thursday and one on Friday.

They each arrived rested and ready to rock. Conveniently, one of the best spots to shoot the Boston Skyline is only a mile or so from Logan — Lo Presti Park in East Boston. I introduced Armando to Lo Presti in the rain on Thursday. On Friday, I picked up Justin at Logan before dawn, then joined Armando, Mike Criswell (who arrived later on Thursday afternoon) at Lo Presti for a proper sunrise shoot. We were joined by Mike Tully and Steven Perlmutter, who helped with the host and chauffeur duties for the Boston Newbies.

This is one of my shots from that Friday morning. It is also one of my first from the morning.

I love Blue Hour.

  • Olympus OM-D E-M1
  • 12-40mm Pro Lens (30mm)
  • f 22
  • 15 seconds

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NXNW 2014: Embracing the Bad

Nubble Light

I’m not a morning person. It isn’t easy for me to get up and shoot dawn. So when the NXNW crew looked at the forecast at dinner on Friday night and saw that the day called for rain through most of Saturday (the official first day of NXNW2014) I rejoiced! I could sleep in — until 5:30AM. Ugh.

Still, it was a blessing. My previous two days found me waking at 4:15 AM to make airport runs. Armando and Justin arrived before dawn on Thursday and Friday respectively. The rest of the crew trickled in later by planes, trains and automobiles.  By Friday afternoon everyone had arrived. We did a little shooting in the mills in Lawrence then went out for dinner and drinks—a good beer bar is getting to be an NXNW tradition. Over dinner we discussed our departure time for the following morning. With a forecast of rain and clouds all day, we knew there would be no great light at dawn so we decided to sleep the extra hour.

Our first stop on the road to Acadia was Nubble Light in York Maine. The weather was nasty. The rain, wind and sea spray wreaked havoc on our lenses. And the slippery rocks were no treat! But we all embraced the bad weather. For me, the pounding surf and overcast sky begged for long exposure and black and white processing.

This is my favorite image from that first stop on an epic trip.

  • Olympus OM-D E-M1
  • 12mm (24mm  equiv)
  • f 4.5
  • ISO 200
  • 3.2 seconds