Wildcard Wednesday – I Didn’t Know

I Didn’t Know

As I displayed a painting, someone said, “I didn’t know you were an artist.”

I smiled and asked in a kind way, “What?  Photographer’s aren’t artists?”

Photography is all about art.  The same concepts that make a painting look good apply to a photograph.  The problem is, there are a lot of photographs out there that appeal to the emotion, and not the artistic eye.

For example, take a photograph of your grandchild.  You might like it because you love your grandchild and looking at the photograph brings a rush of emotions surrounding that love for your grandchild.

I Didn't Know


The above picture is a typical snap shot.  I like it because it reminds me of the sunset that night, and my sweet granddaughter.  However, it is not a good picture from an artistic stand point.  I’m sure if it were someone else’s grandchild they too would like it for the same reasons.  However, there are a LOT of things wrong with it:  too much contrast, subject is centered, bad juxtapositioning with the bush, the sky is blown out and I could go on.

Thus, people, because of snapshot photography, tend to think of photography as photography and not art.  However, good photography is art.

As a painter, I cannot take a lousy photograph and turn it in to a beautiful painting.  The rules of art must apply.  The concept of garbage in = garbage out applies.  This means if I want a beautiful painting based on one of my photographs, I must start with a beautiful photograph.

Here’s a recent award-winning photo and the painting that resulted:

copyright 2014 db walton

Cowboy Bob – Before and After

In the above example, the picture of the cowboy is artistically good, but there are a few small distractions.  I changed his coffee cup and I painted out the white paper plate in the foreground.  (In the final version of the painting, I also removed the pen from his pocket.)

Both the photograph and the painting are art.  We’re just used to calling paintings art, but I think when we see good photographs, we should call them art too.

Product Highlight – Real Estate Pictures

Real Estate Pictures

One of the best sales tool a real estate agent has is a good picture of the house being sold.  Of course, they don’t want it to look so good it is deceptive, but they want a clean, presentable image.  Here at photography by db walton we can do that type of photography, but most real estate agents handle those pictures themselves.

The type of real estate picture I’m talking about is one that you might use for a greeting card, or to hang on the wall.  In fact, taking it a step further, why not one that is painted?

Here are some samples of the type of picture we are ready to do for you…

Real Estate copyright 2014 db walton

Beckwith Mansion Painting

Look at the soft emotive feel of the above painting.  Such a painting hanging in the foyer of your home will add warmth and provide a conversation piece.

copyright 2014 db walton

Painting of Commercial Building

Or, even if your building is a commercial building, we paint it.

A little about the process…

You can take any photograph and run it through an App or program that makes it kind of look like a painting.  However, of time you will grow tired of it because you will see that other people have used the same App or program to do the same technique to their photograph.

We however come out and photograph your home or office, and then we go back and we actually paint from our photograph.

The final painting will be on acid-free watercolor paper, or if an acrylic/oil it will be on canvas.

Call us for a quote today.  (315) 226-3292

Week of April 21, 2014

Week of April 21, 2014

We have an exciting week planned.  Two big public events you might be interested in are…

First, Thursday night, April 24th, our owner, D. Brent Walton will be speaking at the Macedon Palmyra Walworth Chamber of Commerce’s Business After Hours Event.  The event starts at 5pm and will be held in the Alling Coverlet Museum which is located on William Street in the Village of Palmyra.  (It is behind the old Cumorah Merchentile Building.) He will be giving excerpts from his book on business practices.  Regardless of what business you are in, it will be an informative and entertaining evening.

sorry we are open

Don’t Let This Be Your Business

Second, Friday, April 25th, is our monthly Head Shot Days.  YOU NEED AN APPOINTMENT.  (Call 315-226-3292 to schedule an appointment.)  This is the fastest, most cost efficient way to get a professional head shot that you will have license to use on social media and business cards.  The cost is $40 + tax and that includes the license, retouching and digital file.

glamour - copyright 2014 db walton


And, as always, we are talking appointments for spring and summer family portraits.  Do not wait for the last minute.  Book your session early as you can to avoid disappointment and have the best choice of times.

Equipment Highlight – Ruggard Triumph 55

Ruggard Triumph 55

The Triumph 55 by Ruggard

Ruggard Triumph 55

My friends at B&H set me up with this cool camera bag backpack.  Let me tell you my impressions…

At first, I couldn’t quite figure out how to get things in and out in an efficient manner.  It has a top pouch and large side pouch.  As I poked around the thing I discovered the back has a zipper.  I opened it, and whoa!  There was plenty of room.

The next step was to see what I could cram in this thing.  If I could get enough in it, my plan was to take it with me to Houston.

Here’s a picture of what I managed to get inside:

Ruggard Triumph 55

Contents of the Triumph 55

Let me inventory this for you…

  • Fujifilm X-E1
  • 2 SD card wallets
  • Light meter
  • 2 LED lights
  • LensPens (2)
  • 2 58mm filters in their cases
  • 3 Fujifilm batteries
  • Closeup lens set
  • 85mm Lens
  • 15-55mm Lens
  • LensBaby Composer
  • LensBaby Sweet 35
  • T2i batteries (5)
  • Canon T2i with a Sigma 8-16mm Lens
  • Tascam digital record
  • and business cards and odds and ends

After getting it packed, came the next part.  This is a slinger that looks like a backpack with one strap.  It is made so you can wear it on the front for quick access, or on the back for carrying.  It took mentally challenged photographer a little while to figure it out, but once I did, it quickly became second nature.

It cost about $80, and it is very well built.

Stories From the Studio – Broken Equipment

Broken Equipment

Insurance doesn’t cover stupidity or clumsiness. When it comes to camera equipment, a bump, bang, or drop can cost thousands if you’re not careful.

Camera neck straps can save your camera, but they can also damage your neck and shoulders.  As a result, it is a trade off:  Safety of the camera or your health.

I often wrap the neck strap around my wrist so if my camera does slip out of my hand, the strap will still catch it before it hits the ground.  Many photographers do this.  It works well if you are careful.

This particular day I was quite involved in my photo session.  It is easy to be distracted when photographing a beautiful model.  (below)

Broken Equipment - copyright 2014 db walton

The Expensive Shoot

As the photo shoot progressed, I needed to change memory cards so I sat my camera down on a chair.  Upon picking the camera up, before I could get the strap wrapped around my wrist, the arm of the chair caught the strap and sent the camera flying back towards the chair.  Lunging towards the camera, I was able to catch it, but the $350 part (a Pocket Wizard) hit the chair and snapped.

Looking at my client, and a little embarrassed, I explained I would have to get my spare Pocket Wizard because I just broke it.

I learned a couple of lessons that day.  First, I will never pay a lot of money for cheaply made parts.  (The Pocket Wizards were just that… cheaply made).  Second, slow down no matter how well the shoot is going.

For the photographers reading, I’ve switch from Pocket Wizards because they became too expensive.  The hot-shoe on the breaks easily, and the electronics seems to fail after a year or two.  I’ve switched to the Aputure Trigmaster II system.  It’s a little more durable and it costs a lot less.  It also has features only available in the very high-end Pocket Wizards.

For the clients reading, just remind me to slow down.