Monday, May 19, 2008

Early Morning Photos (and an Old Favorite)

I happened to be awake pretty early this morning and figured I'd take the opportunity to get some dewy first light shots. I took the tripod outside this time, but between its cumbersome operation and the fact that most of my subjects are low to the ground, I didn't use it a whole lot. Sadly, the empty lot next to us was just mowed and all the weeds I like to look at were cut down. But I did find a pretty little patch of buttercups:

Click for more pretty Monday Morning shots for Best Shot Monday at Mother May I.

(If you've clicked over for Best Shot Monday, I need your help! I'm looking to put together a collection of my photos to show a small artsy shop owner who sells local artist's work. I would like some fresh perspectives on my photos: I blogged about it here, and you can find my working portfolio set here, and my Flickr stream here.)

One of the best things about having photo bloggy friends is the incredible input I am getting on my photos. I am finding especially helpful any suggestions for editing. I think I'm going to go through and re-edit most, if not all, of the images since I know more about Photoshop now and I have some great suggestions to follow.

Couple of things:
1. I think I will print these 11 x 14 to show the shop owner. I plan to mat them and present them so that they are ready for sale the day I meet with him if he agrees to have them in his shop.
I think 8 x 10 is too small and besides, I don't like how 8 x 10 is almost square, but not. I like the more rectangle-y 11 x 14. If I were to buy a photo for my wall, I would probably buy at least 11 x 14, I think.
What do you guys think?

2. Right now I plan on printing from Shutterfly since I have always been happy with the way their color has come out. I've like my local Costco at times, but their color can be inconsistent. A quick Google search didn't turn up a whole lot in the way of professional labs in my area. A bunch of Ritz and a couple of small "1 hour" places. I may try one of the local places since it says they do wedding photos, so they must be able to do professional looking printing.
If you bought a gorgeous print from a small artsy shop would you be disappointed if you flipped the photo over and saw it was printed at Shutterfly? (Maybe I can turn off the backprinting, I'll have to see).

Also, here's the first of my go-back-and-edits:

cropped to 11 x 14, unsharp mask, screen layer at 100% opacity

photo ratio (like 4 x 6), probably a contrast bump


Swistle said...

I don't think I'd be disappointed if I saw it was at Shutterfly. I think I'd be like, "Hey, I should start getting MY photos printed at Shutterfly, if REAL ARTISTS use Shutterfly!"

Christina said...

What a beautiful little clump of buttercups! You are the queen of flower pictures.

I think 11x14 sounds like a good size - and also make it clear that you can provide larger sizes, but check your resolution to see how big you can go and it still be a quality print. I reccomend Mpix for printing - their color is much better than anything else I've seen. Your edits are great! The only additional thing I'd try is expanding the greeny-black frame and touching up the bottom petals so there's border all the way around.

Brittany said...

I am SUCH a sucker for beautiful flower shots!!! :)

They are all beautiful!

Kara!!! said...

I love that you take lots of nature shots - I myself am amazed at the beautiful scenes in nature. And I looked at your portfolio and I love your daisy shots - so pretty! And I don't think there is anything wrong with using Shutterfly - they have really made a name for themselves.

Hope your photos do well - congrats on pursuing your dreams!

Mandaroo said...

Lovely buttercups. I've learned to take photos while there, not later, as you never know when they'll get mowed down or removed!

Blueberry said...

beautiful flower pictures!!

Dawn said...

i love the questions you asked; it's like you're doing what i did but on a way more professional level. i am learning a lot from you.

i'd totally prefer to buy 11 X 14 over 8 X 10, too. i have two framed photos in the larger size on my wall right now and they seem so much cooler than 8 X 10s.

i don't think i'd be surprised to find that a purchased picture was from shutterfly; however, it depends on how much you charged me for it. i think if it was pricey, i'd expect the finest of papers.

that said, i sold a small set to a friend recently and had them printed through, and i don't think they're the best, but it's okay. it's not like i'm ansel adams. and i only charged my friend a little for it all.

i guess that's a post for your future: how much to charge!

btw, the buttercups are lovely and i'm really liking your new white daisy edit.

Jenn said...

I love your DoF - very very pretty!

Megan said...

mpix is the way to go! have you thought about also printing and matting them in a smaller size? sometimes people want art, but are afraid to go too big or don't want to pay too much. offering two sizes (11x14 and 5x7, say) would cover two very different price points and buyers. it would give the shop owner a choice, too. i loved looking at your flickr portfolio!

Bonnie said...

Thanks for your comment ! I don't know much about showing photos ... I'll be interested to see how that all develops for you !! I had a peek at your other blog too. Love love love those daisy photos !

By the way ... I have a blog totally dedicated to flowers. Here's the link : FLOWERS IN MY POCKET

Golightly said...

Beautiful buttercups!

Phyllis Sommer said...

these are all gorgeous. i think shutterfly prints very nicely, but have you tried photoworks? i think they print black and white better than anyone else...not that i've tried them all...just a thought.

Maggie said...

What beautiful buttercups!

I agree that 11x14 sounds like a good size to print. I think that using Shutterfly is just fine - I think that the prints looking good is more important than where you got them.

Maya said...

Love those photos. I like like the sizing too!

Crunchy Domestic Goddess said...

those buttercups are gorgeous! :)