JAMES CRAIG PHOTOGRAPHY

b&w images • blog • project journal

(placeholder)

Island Flower and Bee

Feb 6, 2017

…for lack of anything else to call it. I shot this with my iPhone as a TIFF. It was windy and I wasn't sure I got it, even after a few tries. In the end two were sharp – surprisingly sharp. I used the other good exposure in a posting from the Island HERE. I then gave it to Helga who was working with someone doing a book of insects on Rapa Nui – color of course. The neat part is that in the enlargement the veins in the bee's wings and even the legs on the two ants are defined.

I've now turned the other shot into a print file – 12.4x15.6. An odd size but the file wouldn't hadle any larger and needed to be as large as possible. That plus all that extra on the sides needed to be cropped. It wasn't an easy conversion, the bright oranges don't play well with B&W conversion from color (rgb or cmyk). I need to run my printer, been a while, so I probably feed my curiosity and actually print this one next week.

OOPS – tiny text… I was concentrating so much on getting the conversions to the new blog system done properly that I didn't notice that there was a glitch (one of many) in the new system that caused the text size to fail to set properly. Man was it far too small. Anyway, I've now gone back and fixed that, all the way back to 2006. Maybe now I can crawl back out into the world.

Virtual vs Real Art – A Caution… meh or yay?

(Not really a rant, but I'll include it in that index anyway.) I can't repeat this often enough – the internet is no place to view any art medium so as to come to a conclusion that one has anything but a flawed hint of what the original is like. The fact is that JPEG images combined with computer/iPad/phone resolutions and the internet is the great equalizer when it comes to depicting art. Not to mention the whole size/scale issue. Good work is belittled while bad is all too often improved immensely.

Of course in today's world much photography, color especially but even some of the "presets" generated moody B&Ws, are designed primarily for internet viewing. Fine art prints from this work can be at first impact striking but fail the test of time. At the same time taking a B&W print file and prepping a reduced resolution, small version for the web obliterates so much – forcing one to introduce artificial contrast, brightness, etc. to approximate the visual effect. Never really works.

Painting is just as tricky. Go see any real art exhibit after viewing the work on line… you will immediately see the problem. The vast majority of the time you will be disappointed, it's so easy to correct so many color, tone and contrast issues with the press of a button – effectively misrepresenting the art. Wow those weak paintings can look impressive. You never want to purchase real art on line unless you know the art and/or artist. Arrive at the gallery or show and you will be glad you made the trip – there is no way that web images can successfully represent the good paintings.

We collect original art, the extent of that effort is evident by my "Other People's Art" section on this site – where the same caution applies. Our collection began long before this site was launched, so there are many, many pieces, especially the larger paintings, that are not represented. We search out exhibits and showings – and never find what we expect upon our visit. It's like a treasure hunt – is it going to be "meh" (mostly) or "yay"? But like a treasure hunt, the thrill is in the hunt and occasional discovery.

Most area artists today are represented in some local members gallery. Art Shows have ceased to be a functional venue for them, one man shows have all but disappeared from the scene. These local group efforts have pretty much become the norm. They may be way overcrowded, mixed with too much crafty stuff and over the top flashy work may be hanging next to more subtle, serious efforts. But spend some time looking around, isolate your view of interesting pieces, it's all just another complication in the hunt for treasure. Just be sure to check some of it out on line first at the gallery's site – you'll see what I mean about not trusting what's represented, and perhaps understand why we get so excited when we add a piece to our collection.