Dave Morrow Photography: September 2012

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Lost in Iceland

Sitting at JFK Airport outside of New York City waiting to board another plane back home. And now for the good news, I filled up 100GB of photos on my hard drive this weekend so there should be some fun new content from the Big Apple surfacing here and there. Here is a fun one from Iceland that I took right after midnight. By this time in the trip(my last day) I was delirious from no sleep, this shot almost seems like a dream, but then again, Iceland is a dream.
The Midnight SunI took this my last night in Iceland. As usual I was driving around the Fjords looking for fun spots to shoot. There are so many waterfalls that they almost become the norm over time, but with the sun dipping below the horizon this one looked amazing.

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Monday, September 24, 2012

Exploring the Fairmont

I just got done shooting an epic sunrise on the Brooklyn Bridge in NYC. Feels awesome to finally break my camera out in this place. The shot below was taken at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. It is filled with great little spots for HDR photography. Check out my HDR Tips & Tricks for more info on pictures like this.
A Night at the FairmontWalking around San Francisco this past weekend I found the Fairmont Hotel. I had been to this location on previous trips before I started really getting into pictures earlier in the year. Anyways, if you are in the area, this place is a must.

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Dawn on the Blue Lagoon - Iceland

I remember preparing to leave for Iceland, browsing through pictures online & looking for great spots to shoot. These wild pictures of bright blue water would pop up on my laptop and I would think, "No way, that isn't real!". Well guess what, it is. I didn't have a chance to swim in the waters, but did sneak in around 3 am to watch the sunrise, which was much better. Alone in the middle of Iceland watching the sunrise over blue waters, you really can't beat that.
Dawn on the Blue Lagoon

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Friday, September 21, 2012

Chasing the Light

Hope you all liked the Star Tutorial there was a ton of great feedback across multiple social platforms. Let's get back to some good old HDR photography. Here is a shot I took a while back with my Canon 7D which is now retired. I really enjoy the nights I spend meandering around Seattle, stopping here and there looking for interesting spots to shoot. There is so much in the city that has not been captured. This next shot surely is not one of those spots. I hope you have fun with it anyway.
By the way, I am constantly adding new sections on the right side of my page. So keep checking back, I promise to bring you some exciting galleries and "how to" content.

Cruise Control

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Star Photography Tutorial: Part I

I've gotten so many questions about my star photography lately that I decided to put together a few tutorials to help everyone out. If you still have more questions after reading through the tutorial feel free to get in touch. Once you get the hang of regular star shots and processing you can move onto massive panoramas as I have included below. Here is a little more about the shot. I took 11 shots at Ruby Beach, WA on the Olympic Peninsula last weekend. The moon was barely visible and the Milky Way covered the sky.

Processing Technique:
First sync all 11 shots in Lightroom 4 so they will blend nicely once merged. After that Photoshop 6 Photomerge blends them all together. The next step is "free transform" which in this case took around an hour to straighten the picture out. OUCH. Next step, some general luminosity masks on the stars and a little levels work. After that, some dodge and burn action with a 50% grey layer. Final step noise reduction with Nik Define. Hope you guys like this one as much as I enjoyed putting it together. After trying the tips, please share your star pics through email, G+ or whatever for you like. I would love to see them.

Shot Details:
250MB file size
27000 pixels horizontal.

Sometimes Things Get Complicated

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Come Join Us

I started taking shots of the night sky a few months ago, and everyone seemed to love it. I was flooded with questions about an array of different thing. In response, over the past weeks I have been working on a "Star Tutorial". Tonight I will post Part 1 of the series. Thanks for all the feedback and support everyone. If you know anyone that likes the night sky or photography in general, please share:)

Come Join Us

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Snapshots in Time

Sitting on my roof looking out over the Seattle skyline tonight, I had a great idea. There are a million snapshots from cool cities and places all over the world sitting on my computer. They are not necessarily the shots I would normally publish on my website, but some of them are awesome, so why not? The gallery is titled Snapshots in Time & the first addition is called "Enter the Dragon", captured in Shanghai China.

Enter The Dragon

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The Big Smooth

Here is one of the hidden gems in Seattle. I geo-tagged the location so you can find it on your own. The best bet is to shoot this spot at sunrise, but sunset gives off some nice colors as well. The day this shot was taken the light was pretty dull so I did my best to spice it up a bit. 

Battleship GreyHere is a new addition to the ever increasing PACNW Top 50 Set. I have been traveling my ass off this summer to try and complete this thing. Not spending the weekend in the back of my X-Terra is a failure at this point, time is short, and there are a lot more places to shoot.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Day Break at Steptoe Butte

During peak season this place is out of control. I slept in the back of my X-Terra at the bottom of Steptoe Butte which allowed me to beat the 15-20 photographers that flocked to the top right before sunrise. Out of nowhere there were people everywhere. I can't complain tho, the light was amazing.

Day BreakThe Palouse is awesome, the light that this place displays on any given morning is really intense, and you are almost guaranteed to get some good shots. Prepare for a swarm of people to be at the top as well. I always sleep on an air mattress in the back of my car at the very bottom right next to the gate. This allows me to wake up and make it to the top before anyone else.This particular morning was amazing, light in all directions, I was running around like a mad man for an hour getting a bunch of fun shots.

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Monday, September 17, 2012

The Future.... is Now

This was taken at Pioneer Square Station in Seattle. I was exploring downtown and came across this awesome place. It has a super futuristic feel to it that reminds me of Shanghai China. 

Here are a few tips I keep in mind when processing pictures. Black is key to any photo, without it the eyes are overwhelmed with color, saturation, and light and nothing pops out. Using black in different areas of the picture allows the viewers eyes to move around and get a break from all that great color. Look at the work of great painters such as Monet, there are always "sploches" of black in his paintings. Countless other great painters as well as photographers use the same technique. The hard part is to decide what should and should not be darker, or lighter for that matter. Next time you go out to shoot a sunset, think about what parts of the scene you see darker, and add it to your post processing workflow. Just remember, don't over do the light, dark matters too!

The Hive

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Exploring the West Fjords

Have you ever arrived somewhere and had to pinch yourself because it hardly felt real? For me that was everyday in Iceland. This place is absolutely surreal and 24 hour daylight does not help the case. I snapped this one off on the most Eastern tip of the Island. Talk about the Middle of nowhere.
The Wind & The DoorLatrabjarg Iceland is home to thousands of Puffins as well as this awesome light house. Deep in the West Fjords it does taking some driving time off the beaten path, but all the better to stay away from the hordes of tourist that flock to the country in Mid June. We arrived around 5 am, and hung out around the puffins taking pictures for an hour or so, then I wandered off and took this shot of the light house.

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Chasin' the Perseids

Some of my favorite nights are spent under the stars in the middle of no where. The Milky Way seems to hang over your head, waiting for you to grab it. I snapped this shot off at Picture Lake, one of my favorite spots to shoot in the North Cascades....

Does anyone else have any suggestions for places I should travel as the summer comes to a close? 

Chasin' the Perseids

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Monday, September 10, 2012

Last Days of Summer

The leaves are starting to change in Seattle, I can not believe how fast the summer season has passed. Fall is one of my favorite seasons to take pictures, so there is still a lot more work to do in the PACNW before I start traveling abroad for the winter months. Any suggestions for new places to travel?

*Old Friend*My back log of photos at this point in time is over 8000, which is never a bad thing. With the winter coming there will be plenty of time to process them. Here is one from Palouse Falls that was taken at the beginning of the summer. The light was not quit as epic as I had hoped for, but it still made for a beautiful sunset.For all of you that still want that star photography tutorial, don't worry. It's in the works.....