Jun 25, 2012

A Blast at the Portland Museum of Art

 
The other week we visited our family in Portland Maine. One stop on the short New England road trip was the Portland Museum of Art where we had a blast viewing the ongoing exhibition of "From Portland to Paris" by Maine artist Mildred Giddings Burrage. Her paintings were amazing and came as this bonus surprise when visiting the museum for another exhibit and then stumbling on these unbelievably stunning master pieces of art. The PMA website describes this beautiful, must see exhibit as follow: This exhibition focuses on Portland-born artist Mildred Burrage (1890-1983), who as a young aspiring painter traveled in the early 1900s to Giverny, France. There Burrage trained her eye on the landscape, creating oil paintings and filling sketchbooks with her Impressionist style. She wrote copious letters to her family back in Maine, detailing her adventures and providing vivid accounts of the artists, dealers, and distinguished figures whom she encountered, including French artistic legend Claude Monet and avid collectors Gertrude and Leo Stein. While Burrage was a prolific artist up until her death, this exhibition celebrates these crucial, formative years (1909-1914) when she traveled abroad and was introduced and exposed to modern European movements. Comprised of approximately 70 works of art, including paintings, drawings, and never-before-exhibited letters, this exhibition reflects a unique time of innocence, ebullience, and optimism in Mildred Burrage’s life and career, and in the American and European psyche before the onset of the First World War. This art exhibit runs from June 14, 2012 - September 3, 2012.



"The Draw of the Normandy Coast" was the other exhibition on display that was equally impressive. The PMA website describes this beautiful, must see exhibit as follow: The northern coast of France—and Normandy in particular—proved to be an artistic crucible for French and American painters during the course of the 19th and 20th centuries. Geographically convenient to Paris, accessible by train, with dramatic cliffs and rock formations, and picturesque and active ports, Normandy was an attractive haven. Realists, Impressionists, Neo-Impressionists, Fauves, Cubists, and Surrealists all gravitated to the area, including Claude Monet, Henri Matisse, Camille Pissarro, and James Abbott McNeill Whistler. This exhibition charts the coast’s significance and showcases the ways in which the landscape was rendered by a spectrum of artists. This exhibition explores the importance of the towns and villages of Honfleur and Le Havre, and such unique destinations as √Čtretat and features more than 40 works of European and American art, mostly paintings and works on paper, from the Portland Museum of Art’s holdings and from the private collection of Isabelle and Scott Black, and holdings from other generous lenders. This art exhibit runs from April 21, 2012 - July 15, 2012.


Jun 24, 2012

Das Foto of the Week


Every week I choose one of my favorite photographs of the week from my Fine Art landscape, cityscape, flower and macro photography collection and offer it throughout that week at a discounted rate. This week's photo of the week on sale is White Iris displaying flower photography in full bloom and its beauty.

Starting today through the week of 25 June 2012 this rain drenched white iris photography image from my Flower Photography Gallery, available as art print, acrylic, or on canvas, is on sale.

Jun 23, 2012

Photographing Light published by Apogee Photo Magazine


Learn from my photo magazine article "Photographing Light" how to create beautiful landscape, seascape, skyline, flower, and macro photography images with your camera as I guide you through my photography work process ~ published by Apogee Photo Magazine

“Nothing is repeatable, especially the light”, so capture it while you can!

Jun 19, 2012

Raindrop Macro Photography Artwork

In this nature macro photography blog post I compiled some of my personal favorite Raindrop Photography Artwork in a collage. The selection varies from flowers drenched in raindrops to photos of a single raindrop on a blade of grass. All pictures were taken locally in the beautiful natural environment of my home state of Massachusetts where I benefited from my own Exposure and Flower Photography Tips.



Jun 17, 2012

Das Foto of the Week


Every week I choose one of my favorite photographs of the week from my Fine Art landscape, cityscape, flower and macro photography collection and offer it throughout that week at a discounted rate. This week's photo of the week on sale is Saturday Night Live in Beantown displaying the Boston skyline at a beautiful late night and twilight.

Starting today through the week of 18 June 2012 this Boston skyline photography image from my Skyline Photography Gallery, available as art print, acrylic, or on canvas, is on sale.

Jun 11, 2012

Composing by The Rule of Thirds


When composing an image I often start out applying the "Rule of Thirds". I don't use it as a set rule; more as a guideline or starting point for a more interesting and pleasing photographic composition. In Landscape Photography I like to place the horizon in accordance to the importance of the sky; with dramatic sky formations I like to place the horizon in the lower third giving the sky more preference, for images with stronger foregrounds and weaker cloud or sky formations I prefer to place the horizon in the upper third of the image. Usually locating the horizon in the middle makes a photo ordinary and static. An exception to what I just said here would be a grand landscape lake Reflection. I often apply the same approach to my Flower Photography and lay the focus or point of interest within the flower at one of the four intersections, leaving room for the viewer to explore the image but also to be drawn back to the focus point.




Jun 10, 2012

Das Foto of The Week


Every week I choose one of my favorite photographs of the week from my Fine Art landscape, flower and macro photography collection and offer it throughout that week at a discounted rate. This week's photo of the week on sale is White Iris displaying beautiful iris flower photography at its best.

Starting today through the week of 11 June 2012 this white iris floral photography image from my Flower Photography Gallery, available as art print, acrylic, or on canvas, is on sale.

Jun 7, 2012

Web Presence for Artists Powered by Fine Art America


Fine Art America is one of the best print on demand website deals artists and photographers can get for $30 a year. The annual $30 get us our “own” customizable website which has limited but sufficient customization features to set up a professional online artist presence for our art and photography. More importantly FAA provides the artist with many marketing tools like easy to assemble newsletter, social media sharing tools, shopping cart for our Facebook page, coupon codes, promotions … the community of artists is great. The website allows one to write an Art Blog and add events to share with our online social network communities. It has a clear format and the options to buy art prints, canvases, and greeting cards are very intuitive and easy to navigate for potential art collectors and buyers. The website appears very professional as many customers, friends and art collectors stated in the past.

For the artist, the artistwebsites is very simple to use. Basically one needs to upload new artwork, assign prices and start marketing and selling artwork. FAA takes care of printing, framing, matting and shipping for each sale which frees up lots of time that can be used to create more art and photography. Fine Art America provides all tools needed for a successful online art business but does not market the artists' work individually. It is solely the artists' responsibility to market their artwork and drive traffic to their site which is very crucial for the success of online selling. Besides my nature photography blog I use social media networks like twitter (@natuerfineart), Facebook, Linkedin, and Stumbleupon to drive traffic to my Artists Website.

Long story short: If you are trying to sell art online and don't have a professional looking webpage for your artwork and photography you should consider a web presence for artists powered by Fine Art America ... it's a Win Win ... sign up for the Free Trial.

Websites for Artists Websites for Artists Websites for Artists

Jun 6, 2012

Favorite Garden and Flower Quotes



"One of the most attractive things about flowers is their beautiful reserve." ~ Henry David Thoreau

"Earth laughs in flowers." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Flowers are our greatest silent friends." ~ Jim Brown

"It is at the edge of a petal that love awaits." ~ William Carlos Williams

"In joy or sadness, flowers are our constant friends." ~ Kozuko Okakura


"A flowerless room is a soulless room, to my way of thinking; but even one solitary little vase of a living flower may redeem it." ~ Vita Sackville-West

"Bloom where you are planted." ~ Mary Engelbreit

"Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food, and medicine to the soul." ~ Luther Burbank

"I don't know whether nice people tend to grow roses, or growing roses makes people nice."
~ Roland A. Browne

"I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers." ~ Claude Monet


"Gardening has a magical quality when you are a child." ~ Barbara Damrosch

"A garden is a love song, a duet between a human being and Mother Nature." ~ Jeff Cox

"A garden is a friend you can visit anytime." ~ Author Unknown

"How lovely is the silence of growing things." ~ Author Unknown

"In search of my mother's garden, I found my own." ~ Alice Walker


Jun 5, 2012

Flower Anatomy and Structure


Most Flowers have the same structure that consists of 4 main parts: Sepals, petals, stamen, and carpel:

Sepals are leaf-like structures and are part of the outer ring.

Petals are just inside the ring of sepals and attract animals such as insects and pollinators.

Stamens are male reproductive structures and are located in the center of the flower. They form a circle around the carpel and consist of anther and filament.

Carpel is the female reproductive structure and is located in the center of the flower. The carpel consists of stigma, style and ovary.

Jun 4, 2012

Rainy Days


Yesterday it was raining on and off in Boston but nevertheless I made my way over to the beautiful Hall's Pond sanctuary for some rainy day photography. I envisioned that if I am lucky I may find the occasional heron stalking in the rain for its dinner. Instead I found a male Mallard Duck completely soaked after an earlier heavy downpour. I was lucky to have brought my umbrella that protected me and my camera gear from getting soaking wet. After capturing a few images of the duck I spotted the heron in one of the trees grooming itself. At this point I decided that there was no decent photo opportunity and made my way over to the  formal garden that never really disappoints. And again, it didn't. I immediately found my special photographic objects for the day while walking in and a bunch of white irises drenched with raindrops was just screaming to be photographed. Knowing that overcast sky makes for good lighting condition in close-up photography I set up tripod and camera. I chose the Canon 300mm telephoto lens in combination with a 1.4 telephoto extender to keep the Depth of Field to a minimum and to isolate the white iris from any disturbing features in the background. It's truly amazing what nature offers when one keeps looking around and paying attention to detail. I tried multiple compositions from various angles but settled on a straight on view that allowed me to isolate the floral against a darker green background with a second iris out of focus. With the tripod and camera lowered slightly above the level of the flower, I adjusted the aperture setting to f/8 to achieve sufficient depth of field. The slightly windy conditions turned out to be a little bit of a problem but there were always moments where the wind slowed down and the iris remained calm. A low ISO setting in combination with the aforementioned aperture resulted in an Exposure time of 1/40 second. The use of the camera self timer minimized camera shake and enhanced picture quality. During the post processing process, I minimally adjusted contrast, lighting, and color saturation before sharpening the final image of The White Iris. It's raining ... it's pouring ... but I ain't complaining 'cause I love the rain.

Jun 3, 2012

Das Foto of the Week


Every week I choose one of my favorite photographs of the week from my Fine Art landscape, flower and macro photography collection and offer it throughout that week at a discounted rate. This week's photo of the week on sale is Twirling Red displaying beautiful red anemone flower photography at its best.

Starting today through the week of 04 June 2012 this anemone photography image from my Flower Photography Gallery, available as art print, acrylic, or on canvas, is on sale.