Still Life – The Concepts Series, Part II

My second day blogging about . . . . 

Digital Lightroom Contest – Still Life

The entry deadline is May 17th, and the prize is the complete Topaz Suite Bundle.  Even if you are unsure of the quality of your photos, you should enter. You can’t win if you do not enter.

My next group of subjects was my inspiration for wanting to take photos specifically for this contest . . . this next shot is called “Cutting Edge Photography”

Still Life

Get it?  . . . cutting edge . . . never mind; not important.  

These are all the pocket knives I own plus a knife I’ve had since I was in my teens (the fixed blade knife).  The one with the big circular hole, the one with the multiple holes on the handle, and the black knife with the blue inlay are the knives I have with me pretty much all the time.

Not all three at once, obviously; one is for when I am out an about, and the other two are for casual clothes, usually at home.

Some people freak out when I take out my knife to cut something open.  Odd that . . . knives have been used in use for at least 2.5 million years.  Knives are humankind’s first tool, and it remains ubiquitous in our culture.  Look around . . . knives, or derivations thereof, are all around us.  I’ve had a knife on my person since I was a pre-teen, and would not think of going anywhere without it.

The first knife I ever had had a handle shaped like a gondola (from Venice).  I remember playing something akin to mumblety-peg.  It was not exactly the same game, but close enough.  Read the stuff in the link, and be sad about kids nowadays getting expelled for having a pocket knife with them.

BUT . . . right now it’s the subject of Still Life Photography exploration.

Still Life

The shot above was generated using onOne’s Perfect Black & White.

I mentioned that I shot this in a light box, the bottom and back lined with black muslin.  Actually, while it was a black backdrop, it was not muslin . . . it was a fabric whose sole purpose was to attract lint.

While I shot with a very high aperture and low ISO (to essentially “hide”) the texture of the fabric itself, in each of these and subsequent photos I had to go in and “remove” all the white specks.  Cleaning the cloth between each shot did little more than piss it off, and it would redouble it’s efforts to pull in any kind of floating dust particle within a radius of a couple of hundred feet.  We don’t have a dusty home, so I suspect the cloth was importing dust from our neighbors.

Still Life

I shot the knives both open and closed, and I think I prefer my original idea of having them open.  

Here is my own B&W interpretation:

Still Life

Here’s a couple more shots . . . 

A "muted" version
A “muted” version
This is using the Topaz Suite to highlight portions of the outlines.
This is using the Topaz Suite to highlight portions of the outlines.

After dealing with the knives, I went around the house and started gathering stuff up . . . 

Still Life

The larger car is decorative; the two smaller ones are actually pencil sharpeners.  The compass is in there to, you know, contribute to the travel and adventure feel evoked by the old-time automobile.

I thought that was too busy, so I did the next one.

Still Life

But, so far all of these had themes . . . What if, I thought, I just grab random crap and throw it in the shot.

You know . . . an ashtray shaped like a bug (yes, I used to smoke, eons ago), a rope, ring, and wooden balls puzzle, a humorous bowling figurine (another “sport” I no longer do – used to carry a 184 average before I moved on to RB), and some “bug pods”, complete with moving legs, tails, and heads.

Still Life

I don’t know . . . now it just seems silly.

Anyway, tomorrow I will add another segment, and will do one each day until Friday, May 17th.  That is the deadline for submitting your entry for the contest.

As a reminder for them who made it this far (and therefore might actually be interested in the rest of the photos), the SmugMug Gallery can be found HERE, and all these look better there.  

All the above shots are there, as all subsequent themes will be.  The gallery is in reverse chronological order, with the latest photos (these, and then each subsequent post) shown first.

If you are one of them gentle people who appreciate moments spent not reading about man’s inhumanity to others, and found this to be one such moment, don’t you think you should share it with others in your life?  Others who might appreciate the above, and find a similar escape in it?  

. . . and, even if you hated it, and found it a complete waste of time, you might want to share it anyway; there is always the chance it will make you appear less like . . . you know, you.

The Beacon
The Beacon

Astute persons might have noticed these doodles, and correctly surmised they hold some significance for me, and perhaps for humanity at large.  If said astute person is curious about them, click on it for an explanation of their origin.

WordPress is still screwing around with trying to be a class operation.  As such, while they busily work to add features and themes I will never use, they are remiss in fixing problems like disappearing links.  So, if you click on the doodle, and nothing happens, this is the link it’s supposed to go to:  Note . . . there is no guarantee WordPress will keep this as a link, but at least you can copy it and paste it on a browser’s address field.


Please, if you are considering bestowing me some recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline nominations whereby one blogger bestows an award onto another blogger, or group of bloggers.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I would much prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would actually mean something to me.

Should you still nominate me, I will strongly suspect you pulled my name at random, and that you are not, in fact, a reader of my blog.  If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards          About “likes”:   Of “Likes”, Subscriptions, and Stuff

Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not personally hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.