Friday, September 27, 2013

Get out of my head!!

Yes, I said it, get out of my head, no, not you guys but that image that's been stuck in there since my session with Randy and his 2010 Challenger.

The above photo is what started it.  I don't normally do the "touchdown" dance over a photo but I really like this one.  The mood was great, the ground was nice and wet, which lent itself to some great reflections and with the magic of Photoshop, I was able to create some movement in the clouds (it was a pretty still day).  Awesome, right?  Well, not so fast my friend.  This isn't the shot, yes, I like this one a lot but all the while taking this photo, I had visions of the city of Tampa skyline in the background, the hood down and that feeling of watching over the city.

As an artist, I'm at a slight disadvantage when I get these visions.  Why?  Mainly because my only artistic talent is what I can accomplish with my camera, I can't paint, I can't draw and you don't want to hear me sing (just ask my wife :) ) .  So what's a guy suppose to do?   How do I get this vision out of my head?  Honestly, every time I looked at Randy's car, it would pop back in my head , taunting me , daring me to find a way to make it happen.

I've found that the best way to deal with these things is to go back through your old images and see if you can find a spot that might work for your vision.  I was in luck, back in January I had taken some photos of some Mustangs from the room of the Tampa Bay Times Forum parking lot.

That's pretty close to what I was looking for, now all I had to do was convince Randy that we needed to get this out of my head and into my computer (there's a Billy Ocean song in there somewhere, isn't there?).  After explaining what I wanted to do, Randy said yes , let's try to pull this off.

So we did.

Thank you, Randy for helping me get this out of my head.  :)   Now, if I could only get all these cars out to Nevada and the Valley of Fire, I could get the other thousand or so shots that are stuck in my head out.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, I don't blog nearly as often as I should so I really do appreciate everyone's patience.  My regular website is down right now but don't fret, I still have my Fine Art America site, facebook, twitter and google + sites all active.

@rorymadstudios on Twitter

Saturday, May 4, 2013

For a new look, change the prespective.

I photograph a lot of cars and generally most of these are photographed from a position pretty close to the ground.

For me , it was always "How low can you go?".  Which is a cool prespective but it's also one that gets used a lot by a lot of different photographers.  If you want your work to standout, you have to be different, right?

So instead of getting the view from the angle like above, I switched things up and started shooting from the back of the car, like the images below.


A fresh prespective can give you a whole new fresh look.  To go a step further, I decided to get up off the ground (no taking naps on the job!!)  and get up in the air for these next few.

Don't be afraid to try something new. 
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, it's much appreciated.  If you have any questions I can be reached at or on Facebook by clicking on the badge on the top left of this page  and you can find my site at .
Have a great week everyone :)
Warm regards,

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Cars and HDR

These are just two of my favorite things as the song goes.  If there is a Car Show in the Tampa Bay area on a weekend morning or night, chances are you see me, my camera and my tripod there capturing as many cars as I can in HDR. 

What's HDR you ask?  Well, some of you already know but for those that don't, I'll give a quick explanation.  HDR stands for High Dynamic Range.  Sounds pretty fancy and high tech doesn't it?  I guess in a way it is but it's really not that complicated. Photographers measure light in stops.  Our cameras have sensors that detect the light and can if you wish adjust the shutter speed of the camera to give you an even exposure based on the information the sensor receives through the amount of light the lens lets in.  Most cameras are capable of capturing 3 to 4 stops worth of light, your eyes can see between 11 and 14.  You'll notice this difference more in the highlights (bright areas) and shadows (darker areas) of your non HDR photographs.  HDR is a two step process, the first is capturing the scene (taking the photographs).  I 9 times out of 10 will take 5 exposures of the same scene each exposure is 1 stop over or under exposed from the previous.  (+2 +1 0 -1 -2).  By capturing the scene in this manner, you are exposing for both the highlights and the shadows, this means that once you have loaded the 5 exposures into your HDR software like Photomatix or HDR Effex Pro to name a few, you will now have details in those highlights and shadows that you didn't have previously with just the single properly exposed image. 

Here's an example of a 0 exposure (properly exposed according to the camera's sensor shot). This photo is straight from the camera, I haven't done a thing to it.

Here's an example of what the HDR of the same image looks like , saved directly from HDR Effex Pro without any adjustments in Photoshop.

As you can see there's is a lot more detail and vibrance in this image now.  Below is what the final image ended up looking like for those that are interested.

As you can see, there's a lot more contrast, vibrance, saturation and reflection in the image.  This why I take the extra time to shoot HDR, it's why I lug the tripod around and why it takes me some time to process my images.

It's not about taking a photograph of a car for me, it's about creating a piece of art with what I have photographed.  Anyone can run around a take nice looking photographs of cars and people at these events and some of these photographers are absolutely amazing with the camera but for me, I want a canvas I can create something unique and special with and that's what HDR gives me and that's why I go through all the extra steps to create the artwork I create.  Nothing makes me happier than hearing that an owner of one these amazing cars or trucks wants a print of what I have created.  That's one of the best compliments any photographer can earn.

Thank you so much for reading my blog, if you have any questions I can be reached at .   If you would like to schedule a photoshoot of your car or truck, let me know, I'd love to discuss it with you.  :)

Warm regards,
Michael White

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About Me

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My name is Michael White and I'm a Fine Art Photographer based out of the Tampa Bay area.   I enjoy photographing various landscapes and wild life that can be found in the US.  I am also the creator of a new process called High Key HDR. 
You can find my website at and I can also be followed on Twitter at @rorymadstudios .