Revisiting The Photoshop World 2018 Images

Many months ago, one of the highly-respected denizens of the KelbyOne Community had commented that my photos appeared too dark to him. He uses a calibrated monitor and definitely knows his stuff. Although I have a Datacolor Spyder Elite calibrator, I found that getting my monitors set properly was a real challenge.

With my new monitor calibrated, I could finally see his point. What a massive difference!

Live Model - Viking 02With that in mind, I wanted to re-edit some of the photos that I took at Photoshop World 2018 this year. The fabulous Wyrd Brothers Productions had an excellent live model Viking set. I could finally do some justice to those images.

I really like the intense stare in this newer version of the photo. Filter Forge helped me create a suitable background replacement.

Live Model - Viking 04This image is a new upload to my Flickr Photoshop World 2018 album.

I kept the same background replacement texture and made good use of the Topaz Labs toolset to tweak the colours and sharpening. The three original images of the Vikings were cleaned-up and improved and two new images were added.

My hope is that Wyrd Brothers return to Photoshop World 2019. I’ll be sure to take more photos this time and pay more attention to the camera settings. I don’t want to waste creative opportunities like these in the future.

World Machine – Mount Daniel Release

After a very long development hiatus, Stephen Schmitt is back to seriously developing World Machine. He has opted to stop using version numbers in favour of naming the releases. I think this is a silly and confusing idea but the newest release is called Mount Daniel.

My preferences to using version numbers aside, I am impressed with the new World Machine. There are a lot of performance enhancements and improved multi-threading. This Mount Daniel release offers a re-built snow device, support for OpenEXR and numerous bug fixes.

The major disappointment with all this work is that the Programmer’s Development Kit keeps getting breaking changes. This doesn’t impact most users directly; however, third-party developers like Quadspinner keep getting punched in the face. Quadspinner’s GeoGlyph is an absolutely essential plug-in for World Machine.

This weekend, I hope to sit down and build a new digital terrain. It has been so long since I have created one.

Photowalk – Return To Mimico Creek

Yesterday, after clicking my personal odometer up a notch, I went on a photowalk. It was a short one but I wanted to try out a few things.

Yours Truly – Sir Dumb-Ass here – forgot to bring along the cable to connect the Pluto Trigger to my camera. So that cut my try out list down a bit.

Kipling Station 01I started out with a quick hop over to Kipling Subway station. I figured that the Sigma 10-20mm lens and the Platypod could still create some interesting images.

The lighting in the subway station sucks. I find that the fluorescents always blow out. But I walked as far on the of the platform as I could and set the Platypod near the edge. The 10mm focal length nicely captured the flooring in front of me along with the waiting train. The colours were all over the place; so I made it a B&W image.

I also experimented with shutter priority to get blurred trains. The aforementioned fluorescent blow out made that extra tricky. I don’t have a neutral density filter that will fit on the Sigma lens.

My other plan was to get a self-portrait in front a blurred train. But not having the Pluto Trigger hooked up keeps that idea on the To-Do list.

Mimico Creek 03After the subway, I wandered back to Tom Riley Park and Mimico Creek. This was where I took my first photowalk when my Canon 80D was brand-new.

This time, the Platypod let me get down low to the water’s surface. That change in perspective can make a big difference.

Mimico Creek is only a few centimeters deep through the park – I’m sure it gets deeper elsewhere and I should more of the creek in the future. Some shutter priority work when the water is flowing faster would be cool too.

I think my mojo is nearly back. This week, I have to make the return to 3D work. I feel like I’ve forgotten everything about modeling and rendering…

Forty-Six

16,801 days ago, Garstor was sent to this world.

He still has no idea why…if you have any ideas, let him know…he could use them.

Sarcastic smile

Canadian International Air Show 2018

The Labour Day weekend traditionally marks the end of the Canadian National Exhibition – known locally as The Ex. It also means the Canadian International Air Show plays out over Lake Ontario.

I haven’t been to an air show in over 30 years. With a passion for photography, I ended that too-long dry spell on Saturday.

USAF Thunderbirds - flyby 2It was a hot, humid day and the haze was heavy all morning. Only the noon sun was able to burn that away for the aerial displays overhead.

The show opened with the jaw-dropping performance of the USAF Thunderbirds in their F-16 Fighting Falcons. This weekend is their only performance outside of the United States. All I can say is, “Wow!”

CF-18 about to climbThe Canadian Forces showed off their own prowess with the CF-18 Hornet demonstrator. She was painted in the colours of NORAD to mark the 60th anniversary of that partnership.

I’m always proud of our forces and their global reputation.

The amazing F-35 Lightning II followed the Canadian Forces and it darn near made the Hornet seem quiet. What a beast that plane is; with a roar to match!

I couldn’t stay for the entire three hours of the show unfortunately. I followed the Thunderbirds’ formation into the sun with my camera. My eyes still hurt from that – I hope I haven’t damaged them any more than they already are. Sadly, this means that I missed the Canadian Forces Snowbirds performance.

Next year!

My Flickr album for the air show is available here.

Hello September!

Here is hoping that with the new month I can get out of this funk. I accomplished very little during August – the one exception being the Lego Big Ben model.

Big Ben - progress 3That build was my one Zen-like escape from the rest of the three-ring shit-show.

I am glad that a model called “Big Ben” actually included the Big Ben bell. I still cannot explain why the misnaming bothers me so much. Ah well!

One neat feature of this build is the ability to rotate the clock hands with a small knob on the back of the building. The gearing for this is basic, but I always love how Lego implements things like this. I ended up skipping this feature though – I found it too tricky to get the main shaft through the tower connected. I kept breaking parts of the model while fighting this, so I decided to stop trying and finish the build.

Big Ben - complete 1Speaking of finishing…

I put the model on the edge of my table and used my new wide-angle Sigma lens to get this shot. One neat idea for this would be compositing in a London sky instead of my living room ceiling.

All in all, this is a great model to build. Well worth the time investment.