Here we are again, may has passed, and believe it or not, but when I started writing this article, it had only passed for one single day. Now, when ending the article, we’re well passed half of June already. Time passes by, and it even flies. Whether you have fun or not, whether you’re asleep or awake, busy or bored. Time never stops, it just continues. And that’s indeed how the month of May will be remembered, it passed by, quickly. Too quickly even. Same goes for June, I should make them all slow down a bit, or maybe slow down myself. We’ll see.
As for the pictures, not nearly as many were taken as I would’ve loved to. But more were taken than I had feared in advance, so all in all, not a bad month! Let me take you on the trip of the best images of May 2019!
Top Instagram and EyeEm image of May 2019
Spring, one of my four favorite seasons! Yes, I love them all four, they all have their own specific treats. But what I love from spring is the fresh colors, the combination of parts of nature still being in its sleepy winter state, and other parts already being wide awake and shining out their bright colors through their fresh new leafs.
Take these bright colors of plants and trees. Take this combination of the new leafs and plants that are waking up after the winter. Add a wonderful backdrop of pastel colors from an early sunrise, and sprinkle with a soft spray of morning mist.
The result is a picture that has been on my iPhone’s background ever since I took the series. The picture was also very much appreciated by my fans on Instagram and EyeEm, and on Facebook, as it was most liked and commented on all three platforms. And even better, it appeared on the June front cover of the monthly magazine “2310” of our village Rijkevorsel (https://www.rijkevorsel.be/sites/default/files/public/communicatie/infoblad/2310_editie2019-06.pdf).
The picture that I posted on Instagram and the other social media, was taken with my iPhone X, using Procamera, in HDR setting.
In post processing, in this version of the image, only the shadows were lightened up a bit, and saturation was turned up a slight notch.
Luckily, I also brought our Fujifilm X-M1, as I try to carry it with me as much as possible these days. So out it came, and I shot a second series of the scene with the Fuji. The pictures on the Fuji are not as readily available for sharing across the internet, as it always requires a card reader and laptop, and some more time. The pictures that I shoot with the iPhone can be uploaded into Lightroom CC Mobile right away, and shared from there while walking from my car to the train in the morning. And exactly this is the reason why most of my “best of” pictures are coming from my iPhones, and not my otherwise much better performing gear, such as the Fujifilms or the Canon EOS camera’s.
Most of the pictures that I take using my iPhone are for fun, for social media, for the love of photography, for capturing beauty on a photographic device that I have readily available.
Most of the pictures that I take using our professional gear, such as the Fujifilm X camera’s, or the Canon EOS camera’s, are taken with professional intentions. So postprocessing is done a bit more tedious. The higher quality of the images these camera’s output also allows for a bit more flexibility in the postprocessing.
For example, in this version of the Fujifilm X-M1 image, I’ve been playing with the new (and way cool) “Texture” slider in Lightroom. What it is? It’s a bit of refined version of the “Clarity” effect. In that way that the Clarity has it’s effect on the whole picture, and the Texture works more on medium sized details, without overthrowing all the details in the pictures. For instance, in a portrait, it will be perfect for softening the skin, without messing with the eyes. In a landscape, such as this, it can soften the background, without softening the subject, the tree too much.
Top 500px Image of May 2019
I love reflections. In general, but more specifically in photography. So when I’m looking around for photo’s (which is almost always), I tend to look for reflections. That is one of the reasons why I like the canal in front of our house so much, it adds reflections, and reflections add depth, they double things.
I’m particularly fond of sunrise or sunset reflections, of course, as the sunset or sunrise skies are already a beautiful palette of intense colors, doubling those only sparks more joy! But a clear blue sky can also create some very nice reflections, especially when some white clouds are present, as they add even more liveliness to the blue. And the reflections in water then provide a deep blue color where you would not expect it.
So as I said before: always be on the lookout for reflections! Even if they’re not perfect, as in this picture, which scored the best picture of 500px of May 2019. The colors of the sky are nicely reflected, but the form isn’t. It’s a reflection, not a mirroring, due to the wind. Which is good in this case, both can work, depending on what you want to achieve.
This picture was once again shot on my mobile phone, the iPhone X, with Procamera on the HDR setting, and a bit underexposed for deeper colors.
In postprocessing, almost always done in Lightroom CC (Mobile) these days, only some small adjustments in contrast and shadows/highlights were made, plus a light touch on the saturation slider.
Top Stock Image of May 2019
Stock photography is a very special thing. Everything can sell, and it is not always your most beautiful, your best photographs of which you are so proud which are your best selling pictures on stock agencies. On the contrary…
To prove this statement, this month’s best selling stock photo was a photo taken in the Brussels North railway station, while all of a sudden, a Eurostar High Speed train paused by the platform, and took off again. I took advantage of this short pause of the Eurostar to take out my iPhone 8, and shoot a few pictures. The moment was so brief, I could only take 4 different pictures, of which one failed because it was already too fast on the move again (you already see some movement here in this picture).
I put all three good pictures on stock, I uploaded all three of them to all stock agencies we’re working with, not expecting too much of it. Funny, as often the case, the images are rejected on some stock agencies, and well selling on others. This only to prove that selecting your photo’s per agency is not always the best thing to do in my experience. But more about that later.
Post processing on this picture was rather limited, as I knew I had to sell it as “Editorial”, meaning only as little post processing as possible would be allowed.
All pictures that you see here, are available for sale via stock agencies , or print via our Smugmug page. If you have special requests or considerations, feel free to contact me.
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