Photography

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Photography

Towering Plumes of Volcanic Smoke Mix With Streaks of Lightning in Photographs by Francisco Negroni

July 16, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

All photographs © Francisco Negroni, shared with the artist’s permission

Chilean freelance photographer Francisco Negroni captures nature at its most rambunctious, with a particular focus on volcanic eruptions and lightning storms. In his work, bright orange and red streaks of lava burst from mountains, enormous plumes of smoke overtake the horizon, and dramatic lightning strikes connect the earth and sky. The photographer originally studied advertising photography and tourism, but once he witnessed his first volcano, he knew that it would be his focus going forward.

Colossal spoke with Negroni about his strategies for braving the elements and capturing just the right moments:

When I go outside to take photographs, I try to leave with the images in my mind: I imagine what I am going or want to achieve that day in that place… Although many times I don’t get what I imagined or thought would be a good photograph, and I get others that I couldn’t have imagined and they are much better, it’s strange. But almost always I work in a direct documentation, with an idea in base, but trying to always obtain an understanding of something more difficult for the spectator.

Due to the expenses and difficulties of traveling in the Chilean backcountry, Negroni carefully tracks  upcoming eruptions and risk factors to maximize the potential of each trip. He travels light, only with a backpack containing a laptop, camera, tripod, and three lenses, and he camps in his car for longer excursions.  Presently, Negroni shoots for reporters and journalists, and has published his work with National Geographic, the Associated Press, and Terra. You can see more of his weather and landscape photographs, which are also available as prints, on his website. For the adventurous, Negroni also leads personalized tours and workshops.

 

 



Photography Science

Microsculpture: Macro Photographs of Iridescent Insects Composed of 10,000 Images by Levon Biss

July 16, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Iridescent Bark Mantis

Iridescent Bark Mantis

Photographer Levon Biss (previously) shoots highly detailed images of insect specimens for his continuing series Microsculpture, combining 8,000 to 10,000 individual shots to produce the final piece. Included in this selection are the shield bug and tricolored jewel beetle, which were both collected by famous naturalists. The former was collected by Charles Darwin during a visit to Australia in 1836, and brought back to the UK on the famed HMS Beagle. The luminescent tricolored jewel beetle was collected exactly two decades later by his contemporary Alfred Russell Wallace.

Biss has current exhibitions at the Hessischer Landesmuseum in Darmstadt, Germany through August 5, 2018 and Naturama in Svenborg, Denmark through November 25, 2018, in addition to his first US exhibit Microsculpture: The Insect Photography of Levon Biss which opened at the Houston Museum of Natural Science earlier this month. You can buy limited edition archival pieces on his online print shop, and view interactive versions of his highly detailed composite images on his Microsculpture website.

Detail of Iridescent Bark Mantis

Detail of Iridescent Bark Mantis

Detail of Iridescent Bark Mantis

Detail of Iridescent Bark Mantis

Tortoise Beetle

Tortoise Beetle

Detail of Tortoise Beetle

Detail of Tortoise Beetle

Detail of Tricolored Jewel Beetle

Detail of Tricolored Jewel Beetle

Tricolored Jewel Beetle

Tricolored Jewel Beetle

Shield Bug

Shield Bug

 

 



Photography

Winners and People’s Choice of the 2018 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year

July 13, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Nature: Grand Prize Winner, "Mermaid" by Reiko Takahashi.

Nature: Grand Prize Winner, “Mermaid” by Reiko Takahashi.

After sifting through nearing 13,000 submissions National Geographic has announced the winners, honorable mentions, and people’s choice of their 2018 Travel Photographer of the Year Contest (previously). This year’s grand prize was awarded to photographer Reiko Takahashi for her close-up image of a humpback whale calf she captured while snorkeling near Japan’s Kumejima Island. Other selected photographs include an aerial image of thousands of flamingos taking off from a lake in Tanzania, a dramatic shot of Northern Italy’s alien-like sand towers, and a dazzling immersive art installation that frames a running girl in a bright red dress. You can read the stories behind these images, and view more selections from the categories of Nature, People, and Cities, on National Geographic. (via Kottke)

People: People's Choice, "The Girl Who Leapt Through Time" by Daniel Cheung.

People: People’s Choice, “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time” by Daniel Cheung.

Cities: Honorable Mention, "Alone in the Crowds" by Gary Cummins.

Cities: Honorable Mention, “Alone in the Crowds” by Gary Cummins.

Nature: Third Place Winner, "Mars" by Marco Grassi.

Nature: Third Place Winner, “Mars” by Marco Grassi.

Cities: People's Choice, "Traveling to Heaven" by Trikansh Sharma.

Cities: People’s Choice, “Traveling to Heaven” by Trikansh Sharma.

Cities: Third Place Winner, "Reflection" by Gaanesh Prasad.

Cities: Third Place Winner, “Reflection” by Gaanesh Prasad.

People: Second Place Winner, "Leida and Laella—I Will Lift You Up" by Tati Itat.

People: Second Place Winner, “Leida and Laella—I Will Lift You Up” by Tati Itat.

Nature: Second Place Winner, "Flamingos Take Off" by Hao J.

Nature: Second Place Winner, “Flamingos Take Off” by Hao J.

Nature: People's Choice Winner, "Formation" by Niklas Weber.

Nature: People’s Choice Winner, “Formation” by Niklas Weber.

Cities: First Place Winner, "Another Rainy Day in Nagasaki" by Hiro Kurashina.

Cities: First Place Winner, “Another Rainy Day in Nagasaki” by Hiro Kurashina.

 

 



Illustration Photography

Sticks, Seeds, and Petals From the American Southwest Inspire New Insect-Shaped Arrangements by Raku Inoue

July 12, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Raku Inoue (previously) recently look an extended road trip to several destinations in the American Southwest. During his journey he created a scorpion-shaped arrangement from seeds, sticks, and a pepper found at Antelope Canyon in Arizona, and utilized a fallen cactus segment near Horseshoe Bend as the abdomen in a prickly tarantula. Other works created with found natural elements during Inoue’s trip include a turtle bug, red ant, and centipede.

Recently Inoue created a monochrome stag beetle and Monarch butterfly for a short film in collaboration with CBC Arts. The artist has also begun to explore three-dimensional versions of his found flora creations, building armatures for a gorilla, water buffalo, and tiger. More foraged creations can be found on his Instagram.

 

 



Photography

Brave Snorkelers and Ravenous Jellyfish Steal the Spotlight in This Year’s Underwater Photographer of the Year

July 6, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Compact Commended: "Elvis" by Stefano Cerbai (Italy)

Compact Commended: “Elvis” © Stefano Cerbai (Italy)/UPY2018

Winners and finalists in the 2018 Underwater Photographer of the Year contest showcased a wide range of subjects and perspectives—from a split photograph of a pair of crossed swans to a startling portrait of an unlucky fish being devoured by a luminescent jellyfish. The annual competition, held since 1965, is based in the UK and open to photographers worldwide. Judge chairman Peter Rowlands shares with Colossal that a free downloadable yearbook is available, compiling this year’s top photographs.

Wide Angle Commended: "Blacktip Rendezvous" by Renee Capozzola (USA)

Wide Angle Commended: “Blacktip Rendezvous” © Renee Capozzola (USA)/UPY2018

Behavior Runner Up: "In Hinding" by Scott Gutsy Tuason (Philippines)

Behavior Runner Up: “In Hinding” © Scott Gutsy Tuason (Philippines)/UPY2018

Black and White Highly Commended: "Morning Flight" by Filippo Borghi (Italy)

Black and White Highly Commended: “Morning Flight” © Filippo Borghi (Italy)/UPY2018

Wide Angle Third Place: "Evening Snorkel" by Brook Peterson (USA)

Wide Angle Third Place: “Evening Snorkel” © Brook Peterson (USA)/UPY2018

British Waters Macro Commended: "Nudibranch across the kelp" by Trevor Rees (UK)

British Waters Macro Commended: “Nudibranch across the kelp” © Trevor Rees (UK)/UPY2018

Macro Runner Up: "Friend or Food?!" by Songda Cai (China)

Macro Runner Up: “Friend or Food?!” © Songda Cai (China)/UPY2018

Portrait Winner: "A sand tiger shark surrounded by tiny bait fish" by Tanya Houppermans (USA)

Portrait Winner: “A sand tiger shark surrounded by tiny bait fish” © Tanya Houppermans (USA)/UPY2018

Black and White Winner: "Crocodile reflections" by Borut Furlan (Slovenia)

Black and White Winner: “Crocodile reflections”  © Borut Furlan (Slovenia)/UPY2018

Macro Highly Commended: "Pretty lady" by TianHong Wang (China)

Macro Highly Commended: “Pretty lady”  © TianHong Wang (China)/UPY2018

Wide Angle Winner: "Humpback whale spy hopping" by Greg Lecoeur (France)

Wide Angle Winner: “Humpback whale spy hopping”  © Greg Lecoeur (France)/UPY2018

British Underwater Photographer of the Year: "Love Birds" by Grant Thomas (UK)

British Underwater Photographer of the Year: “Love Birds” by  © Grant Thomas (UK)/UPY2018

 

 



Amazing Photography

French Bookstore Invites its Instagram Followers to Judge Books by Their Covers

July 2, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

In addition to laying claim to the title of France’s first independent bookstore, Librairie Mollat has carved a unique niche on Instagram with its #bookface portraits. The Bordeaux-based bookstore regularly features photographs of book covers held up in front of perfectly scaled, dressed, and nose-shaped people (presumably, some are customers, though some repeated faces seem to indicate a few photogenic employees). You can see more from Mollat—and perhaps even get your next book recommendation—on Instagram. If you enjoy this, also check out Album Plus Art. (via Hyperallergic)

 

 

 



Photography

Underwater Realm: Black and White Photos Capture Breathtaking Moments Amongst Life in the Sea

June 26, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Mexican photographer and anthropologist Anuar Patjane captures black and white moments of life underwater as a way to bring awareness to a part of the world most do not get a chance to see. Patjane searches for awe-inspiring snapshots to connect viewers with images of fish and other underwater animals. He hopes his photographs create an empathy towards these creatures and their environment while also expressing the impact that our choices have on their trajectory as species of the sea.

“With the [Underwater Realm] series, I try to drive our attention towards the beauty of our oceans a a truth usually unnoticed: We are brutally overfishing in our oceans, and our attention should be concentrated on the way we fish, as well as what we eat from the ocean,” he explains in an artist statement about the series. “We see and care when a forest is gone because it is visible to everybody, but we don’t see when we destroy life underwater.”

Patjane not only captures life underwater, but landscapes from all over the globe that may often go unnoticed. You can see more of his series, including images shot in Antarctica and Iceland, on his website and Instagram.