Several weeks ago, I was asked to participate in a new book project that would include photographic work by a group of people that I’ve met online. The editor, coordinator and brains behind the project is Wolf189.
Well, the book is now available for purchase on Blurb, and you can see a preview and buy a copy by clicking here. Its title is “f-eleven,” and do please take a look. Every single page of the book is available for viewing, and I think you’ll like what you’ll see. The book contains over 260 images by 20 photographers over its 160 pages.
I think you’ll also agree with me that Wolf did a terrific job in putting everything together and laying it out. With such a diverse group of contributors, there are a variety of styles: portraits, erotica, landscapes, travel, fashion, documentary and (of course) art nudes, plus more. So, as I’ve said, do take a look.
I also need to say that when I first saw the book online, I was surprised – though pleased! – to see that one of my photos was chosen for the cover. Thanks again, Wolfman! (I’ll write more about this image below.)
For those who are interested in purchasing a copy, you should know that proceeds from sales will be contributed to the charity Friends Without a Border, which supports the Angkor Hospital for Children in Cambodia. You may remember that I wrote about this organization and its annual benefit photography auction a few weeks ago (here – second half), so I’m glad that my nomination of this group as beneficiary was accepted by the book’s other contributors.
Interested people should also know that Blurb currently has some promotional codes that will give $10 off for each order (one time use) made through the end of the year. The codes are:
Orders from the US (using US $): GREATGIFT
Orders from UK (using UK £): GREATGIFT2
Orders from EU (using EU €): GREATGIFT3
Orders from AU (using AUD $): GREATGIFT4
*Offer valid through December 31, 2009 (11:59 p.m. PST).
About the cover photo
I made the photo on the book’s cover in May 2005 in Nikko, Japan. The story behind this one was truly a case of “if life deals you lemons, make lemonade.” Here it is:
Nikko is a beautiful, peaceful place. It is best known as the location of the Toshogu Shrine, which is the mausoleum of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa dynasty of shoguns who ruled over Japan for several hundred years.
One weekend each May, there is a two-day festival to honor the shogun. On my last trip to Japan, I was fortunate to be there during that weekend, so I made two daytrips from Tokyo to see and, of course, photograph it.
One of the events of the first day was an archery competition. Archers dressed up in full old time regalia would ride fast on horseback along a track and shoot arrows at wooden targets along the course.
I managed to find a spot along the middle of the course with a clear view. The problems that I had to deal with were 1) that there was no way that I could manually maintain focus on a horse and rider traveling at full gallop from my left to my right, and 2) even if I could, the overcast sky and the shade from the trees forced me to use a shutter speed much too slow to capture any action sharply.
So, given these lemons that had been dealt to me, I decided to make lemonade. I used a show shutter speed (probably 1/15 of a second) to do the old “pan and blur” technique. For those who are unfamiliar with this, one follows the camera along with a moving object using a slow shutter speed. The intention is to keep the moving object relatively sharp in the image, while the background gets blurred.
I took a number of photographs like this that day (you can see another one below), and these were probably the most anxiously awaited during my developing of the film back at home. Fortunately, the idea worked, and I managed to get several images that I think are good. The one you’re seeing here (above) is the one I consider to be the best of the bunch.
I know now that at least one person other than me likes it…LOL