As a child I was fascinated by my father’s old cameras and darkroom equipment gathering dust in a basement closet. They were mechanical puzzles I was driven to secretly take apart to see how they worked.

My film camera in retirement.

I remember as if yesterday, the profound fear as interwoven aperture blades of a lens flew apart as part of my botched surgical exploration, and the rush of relief when I finally managed to reassemble them.

I was intrigued by the pictures my father had developed and printed. His abandoned hobby seemed like magic. Perhaps my interest in photography has a genetic underpinning.

While it’s almost cliché to say photographs freeze moments in time, I’m also interested in how they freeze subjects in space. A photograph flattens our four-dimensional world of space-time into a flat, two-dimensional shortcut. Navigating this compression is where I find my art.

I try to find interesting light in ordinary places where it escapes attention. My interests are eclectic and changing – from landscapes to urban, to people and portraiture. I like buildings.

Lightroom /post processing

In the film age, technically oriented photographers fine-tuned the dynamic range of an image by adjusting the negative’s exposure and development. Later, in the darkroom, they used dodging and burning to make local adjustments.

There were detractors (of course) who believed those techniques sullied an image that ought to be perfect straight out of camera – SOOC – the holy-grail of purist photographers.

Famed photographer and early darkroom wizard Ansel Adams dismissed this sort of criticism. Post-processing adjustments, he explained, were to “take care of mistakes God made in establishing tonal relationships.”

I’m no Ansel Adams, so I value post-processing work to take care of my mistakes, as well as God’s.

Today’s digital post-processing techniques parallel those of film, and require similar skill and patience – but much of the arduous calculation and pre-planning has been eliminated, and ‘retakes’ are more easily reversible.

Much of my work begins after I’ve clicked the shutter. But there are limits to post-processing magic; the image must be fundamentally sound to begin with.

I try to achieve good tonality and color with global adjustments. I try to avoid the overuse of local adjustments that can too easily spoil the dynamics of an image.

Buying new lenses…

I’m proud to have been an Adobe Community Professional, part of a support team Adobe calls “creative experts around the world… extremely knowledgeable about one or more of our applications” and hope to continue that role in the future. I train people in Lightroom and to a much lesser extent, Photoshop, and have technical expertise in several web design applications.

Photographer for hire.

I am available to take creative, artistic photographs of you, your family, friends, pets, home, business, possessions, or anything else in the world. Senior portraits a specialty.

Additionally, you may purchase any image you see on my site. I print images using acid-free materials; under reasonable conditions they will retain color and tone for a lifetime.

Contact me: info@joelfriedmanphotography.com