About this Blog

Photo Writing is the web version of the Photo Writing mini-magazine produced by Limephoto and Emil von Maltitz since 2010. As of 2015 it is now completely online. Feel free to browse through the articles and please leave comments in the comments section if you would like to engage with us.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Kubu - Island of Giants

Landscape photographers seem to have a penchant for hard to reach out of the way places. Yes, we tend to seek beauty in the landscape, but there is also the quest to find the unusual. Places like Dead Vlei in Namibia are not so much beautiful as astounding. They defy our usual imagination of the world. The much photographed Yosemite Valley is alluring, not only because it is beautiful, but because it is otherworldly. Like the hanging cliffs of Vietnam, it looks more like something out of the imagination of a science fiction novel. Of course we tend to forget that Science Fiction is very grounded in what we experience and have in our own world, just on a imaginatively grander scale. When that grander scale turns out to be real, well it just floors the landscape photographer.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Blind Brand Loyalty

I had a fascinating conversation with a prospective student photographer a few weeks ago when she admitted surprise that I didn’t personally shoot with Canon cameras. She believed, so she said, that all ‘professionals’ used Canons. This tidbit of information she had gleaned from a photographic safari guide who apparently shot with Canon and authoritatively informed her that professional photographers all used Canon cameras. Amused as I was I went through the motions of describing how I feel one should choose a camera for personal use, not simply that you choose a camera based on what someone else has recommended (although word of mouth is most certainly the best advertising that one can have).

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Why Post-Process?

An exposure blend of three images, manually stacked and selectively blended. The goal of the posr-production was to recreate the scene as I perceived it at the time.

Photoshop, or the use of post-production, is something of the naughty boy in class at the moment. From the heavy-handed criticism of Steve McCurry (see this article in The Wire) to the outright stripping of titles in competitions such as the World Press Photo Awards (World Press Photo Awards disqualified 20% of the finalists in the 2014 competition due to overuse of editing software). Celebrities too have suddenly gotten churlish around the use of Photoshop (which admittedly has been used so badly that the results are often more laughable than attractive). The public, desperate for some semblance of authenticity, jumps on the bandwagon and crucifies anyone slated with the terrible accusation of, “it was done in Photoshop”. So, ‘post-production’ gets to sit in the corner with the dunce cap on.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Tuli Wilderness Photography Workshop

Nestled into the south eastern corner of Botswana, spitting distance from Zimbabwe, lies the mopani wooded Tuli Block. The area is characterized by red sandstone ridges, snaking riverbeds lined with towering lead wood and apple leaf trees and a night sky like something out of a mythical story. This was the setting of the 'Romancing The Trees' Tuli wilderness photography workshop.