The genre is landscape and macro photography, with a smattering of opportunistic street and tourist images. The subject matter and post-processing styles are eclectic. The predeliction for saturated color is evident throughout, and unabashed.
Some critics have used the term "eye candy" pejoratively to describe such renditions. This site is not for them. There is much to be said for images that please without serious reflection, and I leave the avant-garde stuff to more creative types. My taste in art, music and literature reflect this philosophy: Monet over Rembrandt; Chopin over Schoenberg; Austen over Joyce.
Professionals might be objective about the technical aspects of a photograph, but being "best in show" does not correlate well with "love" or "like" in a visceral sense. Taste in the Arts is intensely personal, and historically as vagarious as clothing fashion. Without disparaging any author, here is my criterion for "like": would I hang this photograph on my wall, and enjoy looking at it every day?
In that spirit, I am sharing some of my images with a broader audience, and invite constructive feedback.
Who & Why?
What began as occupational therapy for a retired doctor and medical historian, has morphed into a second vocation.
Ronald M. Cyr
My introduction to photography dates back to 1971, when my late father gave me a Miranda Sensorex 35mm camera as I left for a 2-year stint as a teacher in Nigeria. A 40-year medical career then intervened. During the film era, I was never attracted to the starkness of B&W, and hands-on color photography was impracticable for amateurs.
Digital photography appealed to my need for instant gratification, but image quality was inadequate for serious work until recently. My first decent digital camera was a CANON 60D, which I used for the 2012 European images on this site.
Digital photography has made it possible for a lover of art with no talent for drawing, to produce creative renditions of his observed reality. The ability to manipulate the sensor's 0s and 1s on a computer screen gives full rein to the artistic possibilities of the medium. I am constantly amazed at the beauty that can be extracted from unpromising RAW files ---an observation that triggers a host of life-lesson metaphors.
This site is hosted on WIX.com, and was designed using their software.
These images were photographed between 2012 and 2018 using a variety of DSLR and mirrorless cameras and lenses, including a NIKON 810D, SONY a7Rii, and SONY a6500. As my experience grows, I try to shoot in RAW and "expose to the right" of the histogram.
Some photographers use the mantra "straight out of the camera" as the gold-standard for serious work. The expert photographer undoubtedly has a talent for choosing and framing unique perspectives, and makes the best possible use of his/her gear for the shooting situation at hand. That said, the best camera cannot approach the human eye in its ability to discern subtle gradations of light and shade. This means that a digital image will always be a disappointing facsimile of the original scene, especially if shot in RAW format. Software post-processing is thus as essential to the finished product as the darkroom dodging and burning of film photography. In art photography, the end certainly justifies the means.
My workflow keeps evolving. I make basic adjustments with ADOBE LightRoom, including lens corrections, perspective transforms, and spot removal. The AUTO exposure/tone in the latest version is excellent. For HDR and focus stacking, I have used both LightRoom and Photoshop. I then export as a 16-bit TIFF for further processing. In the past year, TOPAZ STUDIO has become my editing platform of choice.
My recent photography career was jump-started by taking a COURSERA online course: Photography Basics and Beyond: From Smartphone to DSLR Specialization. Thank you Professors Peter Glendinning and Mark Valentine Sullivan at Michgan State University for this inspiration. Thanks also to the alumni from this course who continue to share their work and opinions on Facebook.
Contributors to my knowledge base included the Tony Northrup "Beginning Photography" videos, as well as the National Geographic "Fundamentals of Photography" , "Masters of Photography", and "The Art of Travel Photography" videos.
Since theory is useless without practice, I thank Ann Arbor photographer Paul C. James for his mentorship during five workshops over the last few years. I also honed my macro and lighting skills at a workshop with John Gerlach in August 2018.
If you have any comments or suggestions, I'd love to hear from you. Please use the form below: