Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Art of Photography at Sunrise

Calm photos and the beauty of sunrise at the beach. Still photography and video captured by Ohio Photographer Jim Crotty on November 29, 2009 while visiting Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Camera used for these images is a Canon 5D Mark II.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Introduction to Nature Photography Workshop Set for January 30 2010

This will be an introductory workshop program for those who are new to digital photography and wish to take their picture taking capabilities to the next level. The emphasis of the workshop will be upon nature photography, particularly as it applies to the winter landscapes in Ohio. Jim will discuss topics including basic functions of the digital camera, both point and shoot as well as 35mm, choosing the right lens for particular subjects, use of filters, lighting for creative effects, aperture, shutter speed, film speed, time exposures and more. There will also be an overview of basic digital editing and enhancements on the computer using both Apple Aperture and Adobe Photoshop. The workshop will be limited to the first 20 people who register. Registration can be completed simply by sending an email or calling 937-432-6711. The fee, $89 per person, is due on the morning of the workshop.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Margins of the Day 2010 Calendar

Now available at is the 2010 wall calendar, "Margins of the Day." This calendar compliments the release of a new, self-published book of the same name and private art reception to be held on the evening of December 11, 2009 in Centerville, Ohio. In addition to the calendar and book several large format prints will also be displayed at the reception.

The calendar can be purchased online for $18.74, and for a limited time Lulu is offering a 15% discount with the code "BUY2010."

Margins of the Day Wall Calendar by Jim Crotty

Monday, November 30, 2009

New Book Featuring Most Recent Landscape Photography

The most recent self-publishing project featuring landscape photographs taken from late summer through autumn of 2009, "The Margins of the Day" is a 50-page, 8"x10" coffee table-style book that comes in both soft and hardcover versions. All the images within the book are full-color. The introductory text describes my creative approach toward capturing landscapes in those times of day when the "good light" is apparent and the subtle tones and textures of foreground and sky compliment one another for resulting photographs that are serene, peaceful and calm. Many of scenes represented in the book are from the Hocking Hills of Southeastern Ohio, however, landscapes in the Colorado Plateau of Utah, the Great Smoky Mountains of Eastern Tennessee and the coastline of the Carolina Low Country are also included in this book which is a photographic celebration of the haunting beauty of natural light at dawn and dusk.

Margins of the Day Photography Book by Jim Crotty

Fine Art Landscape...

By Jim Crotty

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Bryce Canyon in Winter by Jim Crotty

Landscape photography of the beauty of light on a winter landscape in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Toward Winter by Jim Crotty

Toward Winter by Jim Crotty, originally uploaded by

This past Saturday's workshop - "Digital Editing and Workflow for Nature Photography" - went very well. As I was leaving the classroom at Cox Arboretum following a full-day of fun and instruction this was the scene that greeted me. I quickly unpacked my camera and tripod and captured these beautiful colors of a November sunset.

I am now in the early stages of planning my next photography workshop, perhaps a full-day program on winter nature photography on a Saturday in late January or early February. Once again I will present the program at Cox Arboretum (the Mead-Westvaco Theatre is the perfect classroom setting) and limit the group to 20 attendees. This time the instruction will be more of a balance between basic instruction on field shooting techniques and basic digital workflow. I also look forward to demonstrating the hidden beauty that can be discovered out on the winter landscape of Ohio.

If you'd like to be added to the mailing list of those to be first notified when the date is announced for "Winter Nature Photography," please drop me a note via email.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Photographers and Stock Image Licensing

Previously I was using kind of a "third party administrator" for sales of stock image licensing to most of my images. The monthly fee just simply wasn't worth it. Hence I've returned to directly managing all of my stock image estimates and sales, and like the page on my web site that describes my commercial photography services, I don't provide a standard rate. That's too restricting, especially for the photographer. Each project and client situation is unique given the intended usage, distribution, print run, medium, etc., therefor estimates are provided only after I've had an opportunity to speak with the potential customer and ask him or her a series of questions.

My new page regarding stock image licensing includes several of what I call 'stock strips' - samples grouped according to my most popular stock subjects, including Dayton skyline and cityscapes, wildlife, avian, Ohio landscapes and holiday images. These are also designed to be printed as 4"x8" direct mail or leave-behind prints.

Also, I'm discovering that more and more publishers and agencies are fishing the waters over on flickr. Nine out 10 times they will contact the photographer of an image they are interested in using without mention of their stock fees or offer of compensation. They simply throw-out the usual "we'll give you a credit listing" in attempt to take advantage of a photographer's desire for "the big break."

I strongly encourage photographer's everywhere, whether amateur or professional, to stick to their guns when it comes to being paid for usage versus a simple credit listing, or less. Even in the case of most so-called "non-profits." If the organization has a payroll and they pay for utilities, advertising, etc., then they can - and should - pay for image licensing. A photographer's time, skill and knowledge go into the crafting of each image.

Stock Photography of Dayton Ohio by Jim Crotty

Avian Stock Photography by Jim Crotty

Flower and Garden Stock Photography by Jim Crotty

Holiday Image Stock Photography by Jim Crotty

Stock Photography of Ohio Landscapes by Jim Crotty

Wildlife Stock Photography by Jim Crotty

Monday, November 16, 2009

Dayton Photography Workshop

Dayton Ohio Photographer Jim Crotty will be sharing some of his best tips and secrets for shooting and creating eye-catching images at an upcoming photography workshop. Jim will be presenting "Digital Workflow for Nature Photography" as a full-day workshop on Saturday, November 21st at Cox Arboretum. The class size is limited to just 20 people. As of Monday, November 16th there are only three openings remaining. The cost of the full-day workshop is $89, which includes lunch. To find out more and to reserve one of the three remaining openings, please see


Posted by Picasa

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Monochrome Conversions from HDR Photography

These two images are excellent examples of the two of the advanced, digital enhancement techniques that I will be providing instruction on at my "Digital Workflow and Editing for Nature Photography" workshop. I currently have three seats still open for the full-day program, set for Saturday, November 21st at Cox Arboretum MetroPark just south of Dayton, Ohio.


Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Digital Panoramas and the Fall Landscape

In this Photographic Moment video I share some tips on capturing the fall landscape with digital panorama photography.

The Beauty of Sunrise in Autumn

Nature and landscape photography captured on the morning of October 20, 2009 at The Inn at Cedar Falls, in Hocking Hills.

October in Ohio

Nature and landscape photography showing the haunting beauty of October in Ohio, with photographs taken in both Hocking Hills and Caesar Creek State Parks. Autumn sunrise images captured at The Inn at Cedar Falls.

Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Season of the Good Light Video

Episode seven in my series of "Photographic Moment" video tutorials. This one on the capturing the Ohio landscape in the season of the "good light" - autumn. Here I share tips on white balance, ISO settings, shutter speed, aperture and composition. The video was shot on location in the tall grass prairie at Sugarcreek MetroPark, just south of Dayton.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

New Workshop on Digital Workflow for Nature Photography

I'm happy to announce my next full-day photography workshop, set for Saturday, November 21 2009 at Cox Arboretum MetroPark, just south of Dayton, Ohio. The primary topic of this program will be digital workflow for nature photography including image importing and editing using Apple Aperture, fine tuning and enhancements in Photoshop CS4, monochrome conversions using Nik Color Efex Pro and High Dynamic Range Photography using Photomatix. As of 10-6-09 there are already 10 people registered to attend. I limit my workshops to 20 attendees, so there are still 10 seats remaining, however, I expect these to fill within the next day or two. There will be another workshop this winter, most likely on a Saturday in late January or early February, so it's always a good idea for those interested to submit their names and emails to my waiting list.

Digital Photography for the Nature Photographer Workshop Presented by Jim Crotty

Friday, October 02, 2009

Another Cover on Ohio State Parks Magazine

I'm happy to announce that one of my photographs has once again made the cover of Ohio State Parks Magazine. The most recent issue - fall/winter 2009 - features an image I captured while in Hocking Hills State Park during a weekend in early November. I was there with my two favorite fellow sojourners when venturing out to the woodlands and hollows of Hocking, my daughters Emma and Chloe. Over the last six years this is either the fourth or fifth time one of my photographs was selected for the cover of Ohio State Parks.

With all the emphasis currently on our system of National Parks, thanks to another exceptional series airing on PBS by Ken Burns, it's easy to overlook the beauty and the gifts offered through our local and state parks. I've visited and photographed many National Parks, including Great Smoky, Grand Teton, Glacier, Zion, Capital Reef, Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands and Rocky Mountain. All of these strikingly beautiful parks present natural scenery that is beyond breathtaking, there's no doubt. However, it's the local, visual treasures found here in my home state of Ohio where my creative spirit and nature-loving soul feels the most at home. Especially Hocking Hills. That's where my love for nature and landscape photography first took flight during a winter hike with the nature photography club from the Dayton Museum of Natural History (now Boonshoft), so long ago when I was 13 years old.

The State Parks in Ohio are now under a considerable amount of pressure to reduce services and cut costs. It's a shame. If our National Parks are truly "America's best idea," (did you know that Ohio has a National Park ? It's Cuyahoga, between Cleveland and Akron) then state and local parks and natural areas are the second best idea. In some ways these smaller versions of their big cousins are even more important to protect and preserve due to the fact that they represent places where most people make "first contact" with the beauty and wonder of nature. I've always said that the City of Dayton's best recreational asset is the Five Rivers MetroParks. Considering the shrinking population and economic base in the Dayton area, we are VERY fortunate to have a relatively large number of local parks which are easily accessible, well-managed and each in their own way, provide the essential connection to the healing powers of our natural environment.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

High Dynamic Range Photography

In presenting my first, full-day workshop on nature photography, yesterday at Cox Arboretum, the topic that generated the most interest was my work with high dynamic range photography. This slide presentation was created from the images I used at the workshop to illustrate this particular creative technique with digital photography. I like to emphasize that HDR photography - the merging of two or more exposures of the same scene - is NOT digitally adding or altering the image. It simply brings forth a much greater tonal range amongst the existing elements within the photograph. The trick is not to be too "heavy handed" when applying the various settings for gamma, white point, luminosity, etc. when using the tonal adjustment tool.

The September 26 workshop at Cox Arboretum in Dayton went very well, despite it being my first time presenting a full-day program. I limited the attendees to just over 20 people. This was a good, manageable group. I will be presenting another full-day program on a Saturday this January, at which time I will probably concentrate more on digital workflow using Apple Aperture and various digital techniques using both Photoshop and Photomatix.

Favorite High Dynamic Range Photographs

Posted by Picasa