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“The best way out is always through.”

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Liberty Glows

Spent the entire night playing in Photoshop to create some photos for the revision of my book The Joy of Digital Photography. I knew from the start of the book that Lady Liberty would be a part of it. Last fall Lynne and I spent three days in New Jersey shooting the statue and visiting the area. I have never been more moved by a single photographic subject in my life. Something about seeing that face in person (it was my first time on Liberty Island, though of course I'd see her from Manhattan hundreds of times) really shook me to my core. The idea that she was the first vision of America that millions of immigrants (including my grandfather) saw hit me profoundly when the ferry first brought us close to her. I had an extraordinary first day there--it was baking hot and then we were hit by a rollicking thunderstorm. And as much as I tried to concentrate on photographing her, I could not shake this feeling that I was meant to step on that island, meant to look her in the face and meant to be there with a camera. When you go there, you are surrounded by thousands of people, most of whom, I think, are having the exact same experience: awe that such an amazing country exists and that such a fabulous work of art welcomes everyone. If you have never been there, go this summer. Take your kids, or take your parents--or both. You will never be the same.

By the way, I created this using a combination of color tools (including the channel mixer) and created the lighting effect using the--what else?--the lighting effects filter. Just playing and having fun. Also, today's Black Star Rising blog features two of my Liberty collages. Black Star is the greatest photojournalism agency in history and they have a really great and interesting blog.

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