October 20, 2014

Capturing Quality Light - iPhoneography

Image captured just after the sunset

Yesterday while at this iconic location in Yosemite, a photographic tour leader made comment about iPhoneographers, tripods and the seriousness of photography when he saw me and my iPhone yielding tripod amongst those with $5000 cameras and $2500 tripods. 

As those of you who follow my blog know, I am a very serious photographer who just happens to love taking photos with my iPhone. It really doesn't surprise me however that I am not taken seriously as most people who take iPhone photos capture a snapshot of a scene. 

I arrived to capture my iconic Yosemite Valley image about 1 hour before sunset. A few photographers had already staked their claim, tripod poised, shutter release in hand. 
I walked around using my tripod to balance as I walked through the rocks looking for my favorite location. Once I settled I actually found the light quite harsh and the image quite uninteresting.  I took a few shots and waited.
I was waiting in anticipation to capture the alpine warm glow on the granite cliffs just as the sun crossed the horizon. The glow never came. However just as the sun set the harsh light was gone and the beauty (IMHO) emerged. 
After I finished capturing what I believed was the best shots of the evening, I noticed that everyone had packed up and was walking to their cars. They missed the beauty that I saw. 
While packing up ourselves, Mark and I discussed how photographers prided themselves on arriving well before dawn to capture wonderful morning light, but few seemed to appreciate nor wait for the post sunset light to emerge. Why is that?

The image I found to be uninteresting. 

October 8, 2014

Car Camping in the Palouse

Car Camping 3:45am

Wake up, look up!
A billion, trillion, zillion stars I see,
One moon that glows blood red.

So quiet and then,
Two packs of coyotes howl and yippee.

How wonderful, how joyous to be embraced in Mother Natures wonders,
While parked next to the Lone Tree in the draw of Tennessee Flats.

September 26, 2014

Palouse Abandoned House Photography Tour

Palouse Photography Tours with Teri Lou
It was a busy summer and therefore my blogging came to a stand still. My goal for next month is to get back to it! As most of you know who follow my Facebook posts I became a grandma to Brayson John and my youngest daughter was a bride just last week. I also was thrilled to visit the Palouse several times as a tour leader.

Speaking of touring the Palouse... I recently launched a new website that I hope you all choose to follow. I also have a Palouse Meetup group anyone can join and of course a Palouse Facebook page that many of you 'liked' already - thanks much. In other words I am loving everything Palouse! and I get to visit next month since I am leading a private tour - lucky me!

Since I love the Palouse and leading tours I have recently announced 5, yes 5, Palouse tours for 2015. (and as always I am available for private tours all year long). The Shades of Green tour is being offered 3 times since May and June is such a popular time. Then in August I am offering the Abandoned House Tour and the Harvest and Family Farm Tour. Please check them all out since they each have unique opportunities.

Today I am highlighting the Abandoned House Tour since it was just announced and is available to only 4 participants. So I wanted you loyal blog followers to get the first opportunity to sign up. Please contact me if you have any questions.

I call this one Edith's Chair - Palouse Abandoned House

I have captured this chair in many different ways over the last 5 years. Palouse

Treasure in Palouse Abandoned Houses - come tour with me in August.

Teri Lou loves the Palouse - can't wait to visit again!

June 27, 2014

Photos from the Past - Palouse - iOS Processing

Today I wanted to process this truck as if I had found the photo in a drawer of an Abandonded House in the Palouse. I knew there were several apps in my arsenal that would process it with an antique look however which ones would create just the right look I couldn't decide. 
It took several tries to get it to look like my minds eye was envisioning, but when I did it felt just the way I wanted it to. I truly believe that your emotions are such a driving force in the way you process and present your work. Once you know the tools that are available you can use those resources to play with. 
How do you know it is right?, well sometimes you just need to believe in your inner voice. As I kept trying new apps and blending my image this way and that, I kept hearing, "no that doesn't accomplish your goal." So I would add another layer of an antique like filter, "still not right" so I would back up a few steps and start over. It wasn't until I cropped it and added a filter that softened the entire frame did I really feel settled. 
So what apps did I use you ask? Well this time it isn't so easy to list them as I can't be sure if the Structure I added in Snapseed for the third time and masked it in with Filterstorm on just the truck really matters. The lessons I want you to learn are 1. Play with your apps to learn what is possible with them. 2. Keep in mind a theme or feeling you want to portray while processing. 3. Enjoy 

The original

June 22, 2014

Magic Moments - iPhone Photography

I had dinner with my good friend Rod the last evening I last visited the Palouse. We talk about how much I valued the time he took me to the Garfield Cemetery and told stories about friends and family that were buried there. It was during those moments that I realize just how special it is to live in a place where your roots run deep. Why your word matters and why honoring a handshake deal is so important. 

After dinner the clouds were forming at the horizon in a way that made me believe the sunset would be fabulous. 

Since I was close to Colfax I decided to remember this evening by capturing the sunset in the Colfax Cemetery. 

As I walked around I discovered a statue of a little boy who died at the age of 7. I decided my image would honor the memory of this child.  So I composed the shot, tapped the button in ProHDR and spent the next few seconds admiring the golden rays. After ProHDR did its magic of combining the two image, I tapped the save button and finally saw the image. A silhouette of a bird was perfectly places above the little boy's head. I then looked at the statue with no bird in sight and then back at the captured image. 

The moment warmed my heart and I felted blessed to truly be in the right place at the right time.  

Rod called me just a minute ago. He asked how I enjoyed the sunset. I told him my story and he thought it would be wonderful if I printed this image for the boy's parents. I told him I would.  I am delivering the framed print this weekend. 

Such a wonderful day it was!

A Day of Leading Photography Tours in the Palouse

A Day of Leading Photography Tours in the Palouse

Yesterday I spent from 4:20am until 8:10pm sharing many of my favorite locations in the Palouse with a Hasselblad and Canon photographer from Seattle. The day may have been long, but the opportunities are vast and we had lot of territory to cover.  

The morning sky was clear as can be which allowed the sunlight to dance along the hills planted in wheat, lentil and peas. We were at eye level with those fields as the sun rose and he captured images in all directions with his two cameras  - the day was starting off wonderfully. 

Next I found a yellow crop duster spraying the peas for weeds - if you happen upon such a sight please stay a safe distance from them as not to 1. Disturb their work 2. Be able to smell the chemicals. This shot was strictly captured with his Canon in full burst mode as the plane swooped along the field. 

We continued our morning to a mustard field near the modern wind turbines and then to many postcard perfect red barns. 

However as the day continued with bald blue skies and then cloud cover that created a flat light box effect, good for portraits but not so much landscapes, my job as tour leader was continually challenging. 

I took him to Henning Hill where an abundance of Oliver Tractors, International Trucks and various machinery are lovingly displayed in honor of Mr Henning, Sr. Then we drove to my favorite Abandoned Farm where an array of weather worn buildings, a windmill and even an old Chevy are displayed in ghost town like fashion. It was near here that my client saw the shot he was looking for all day, a tractor plowing and fertilizing a field for next winter's wheat. 

You see a plowing tractor creates an impressive plume of dust and the scene was such that the sun would back light the plume as the tractor plowed the field against the backdrop of the rolling green hills. We waited one hour for the tractor to appear in the perfect location but when he did the image was fantastic!

My client was satisfied with his shot so much that he wanted to reward himself and his friend with a early dinner out, so I drove back to Pullman and I dropped him off at 8:10pm. 

It was on my drive back to Colfax that I saw this magical opportunity presenting itself. The clouds were parting in such a way that I knew the sunset would be a light show of color. So I started to drive to a place I felt worthy of such an event. 
It was this dip in the hills that I so fortunately found in time to capture this moment. Imagine me running up the hill with my iPhone on my tripod. Running until I saw this scene before me and then quickly working to capture 5 images to create a pano as I caught my breath. Yes that is how my day happily ended. Full of continued wonderment for the Palouse and for the ability of the iPhone to capture the moment perfectly!

While I appreciate the quality image that the Hasselblad and Canon produce, I am still extremely happy with the possibilities of the iPhone and my results. 

If you are interested in a private tour please contact me at teri@terilou.com or 509-674-8424 

June 20, 2014

Storybook Kitchen - Palouse -iPhone Photography

Today while scouting in the Palouse I found a new treasure. Abandonded houses are a favorite of mine. I love opening the door for the first time and peeking inside. I walk gingerly from room to room always hoping to discover some jewel that was left behind. 
Today I found that jewel in the kitchen. Not only was the sink and cabinet left behind but the view out the window was pure poetry to me. 
So I set my tripod and iPhone in just the right location to frame the little shed just right. 
After walking the property a bit longer I sat in my car and processed the image as if I had stepped back in time. 

Original capture with ProHDR

Step 1 processed in Snapseed

Step 2 processed in OldPhotoPro

Step 3 blended #1 and #2 with ImageBlender

Step 4 processed in Perfectly Clear and once again in Snapseed. 

I'll be here for 5 days this trip. I am a happy girl to be leading two private tours. I'll also be working on my new map and book. 

June 17, 2014

Seeing, Not Just Looking - iPhone Photography

Classic Red Barn in the Palouse

Last week I lead 12 creative and adventurous photographers through a tour of the Palouse. Each of them shot with a dSLR while I continued to shoot with my iPhone. At times, especially on top of Steptoe Butte, I envied their telephoto lenses. 

At first I captured this image just to remind me of what the barn looked like at this location, since the barn is just a speck in the field without a telephoto lens! When I arrived back home it somehow made it to my 'to be processed' file. However as I processed it I was annoyed by the triangular clouds and chose not to post it. This morning as I looked through my Photo Library through just waking up blurry eyes, I realized just how much the clouds mimic the triangles in the field and fell in love with the wonderment of Mother Nature one again!

A lesson in seeing instead of looking!

June 10, 2014

For the Love of the Palouse

Dear Fellow Photographers,

Back in 2010 I spend many months scouting the Palouse in order to create a map with photographic locations on it for photographers who wished to visit the region. 
I would start early in the day and return many times after sunset. Along the way I would highlight the roads I travelled and make various notations of worthy spots to photography - see my overused maps below.  I decided to highlight red barns, barns, windmills, abandonded houses, view points and granaries. 

After the summer was over I transferred my locations to a clean map with symbols that would easily identify all the various highlighted spots. 
I then created this website and have sold hundreds of my maps to many photographers who are extremely grateful for my hard-work. 

Sadly in the spring of 2014 the Chamber of Pullman announced that they had a
photographers map of the Palouse. When I heard the news I was curious to what their map looked like so I clicked the link. To my utter amazement, which soon became anger, I discovered they copied my map item for item, not missing one of them and not adding any of their own without crediting me anywhere - see below.

My map on the left, Chamber of Pullman on the right. 
Viewpoints highlighted in pink. Exactly the same
Red barns highlight in blue. Exactly the same.

Instantly I wrote to the Chamber explaining my frustration. Marie Dymkoski, Exectutive Director, denied the obvious, "This is our map," she wrote, "using many different resources. You hold no ownership..."

I then contacted a couple attorneys who basically explained that I would spend as much money to fight this issue as I would maybe get in return. So I decided not to involve myself in so much negativity.

I continued to sell my map, it is my creation, until today because I have now received two angry emails from photographers who believe it is I who copied the Chamber of Pullman. 
When I received those emails I became full of anger all over again. The last thing I want is to associate the place I love so much with anger and frustration. The Palouse is where my heart sings, where people take pride in their word meaning something and where you can find peaceful solitude all day long. 

It is extremely frustrating and disappointing that the Chamber of Pullman stole the map from me. I will continue to work to at least get my name mentioned on the map for the work I did.

One of the reasons I chose this project in the first place is that my goal is to motivate, inspire and share what is possible. If you would like to make a donation to me after downloading the chambers version.  I will be forever grateful, however if you do not I totally understand and sincerely want you to fully enjoy discovering the place I love so much. 

One more thing: I am a photographic leader in the Palouse for both private and group tours and would appreciate it if you considered having me as your tour guide. 

Have a wonderful day, 
Teri Lou 

April 20, 2014

Spring Flower

Some days I just want to create. 
I don't know if it is spring fever or that I keep seeing wonderful images on Facebook, but today I just wanted to create. Thanks to my friend Karen Messick I discovered BrushStroke. 
I combined it with Tangled, Filterstorm, ImageBlender and a Snapseed to create this water color image. 
How fun it is!

The original. 

April 14, 2014

A Day at the Beach with my iPhone

A day at the beach was great for my heart and soul. 

iPhone capture ProHDR 
Processed with Snapseed, Image Blender, Glaze and Filterstorm - a favorite combination

April 4, 2014

The Moody Gorge

Green, damp, wet, solitude, mossy, fresh, clean, rushing, hues, moody, rain, mist, dripping, lively, beautiful, serene, active,.... just some of the words I believe describe the Columbia Gorge yesterday on my hike. After capturing this image I took a minute to sit and absorb the moment.