Tag Archives | Josh McCullough

Picture This Winners for June 2011

Our returning  judge, Josh McCullough, offered a challenging topic that stretched your comfort zone. And you met the challenge!! The entries were astounding.  A big thank you to Josh who always excites and titillates Picture This entrants; your passion and creativity shines through ….. Fran

“In this month’s contest I asked us to step out of the bounds of conventional thinking and use the camera in ways that are contrary to the goal of most photography, namely stopping motion. This required a great deal of creativity on your part and probably some extended fiddling with your cameras! I have to say that the resulting images were in a few cases simply astonishing.

The Cupcake Bandits

The first entry (which should merit a prize in itself) from The Cupcake Bandits was a surprise, like flames or a shooting star against the dark background. This is a great example of “slow synchro flash”, a useful group of techniques for showing and controlling motion in images. And “Momma Cupcake’s” story about accidentally discovering this feature is hilarious! Thanks Christine!

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Reminder For June’s Picture This Deadline

A reminder to get your entries in for this month’s Picture This Photo Contest.

The subject for this month: SHOW THE MOTION

Josh McCullough has offered a challenging and exciting topic. Get out those cameras, experiment, and make sure that your entries are in before the deadline, this Friday, June 25th at 11:59pm.

Oakwood Gardens_0610-Photo #3


1. You must have an active blog in order to participate.

To be eligible for judging, you need to leave us TWO LINKS – a direct link to the image, and a link to your blog post that includes the image (and that says you are entering the Gardening Gone Wild Picture This Photo Contest )– in a comment on this post. Your links need to be correct in order for your photo to be entered into the contest. If need be, check out previous Picture This contests to see how others have done it.

2. You are allowed one entry per contest; your photo must be able to be copied from your site. That makes it possible for us to collect all the entries in one place for easier judging.

3. The long side of the image needs to minimally be 800 pixels.

4. Because of the enormous amount of responses we receive, you can’t change your mind once you enter a photo into the contest.

5. The deadline for entries is 11:59 PM Eastern time on Friday, June 25, 2011. Entries that meet the above rules will be added to a separate gallery page. If you enter but your photo does not appear in the gallery within 72 hours, please review your entry to make sure you followed the rules.

 To read the original post, click here.

To check out this month’s gallery, click here.

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Picture This Photo Contest – June 2011

Written by Josh McCullough

I’m always thrilled when a returning judge graces GGW’s Picture This with his talent, expertise, and energy. Joshua McCullough, whose last stint as a Picture This judge was June 2010, is back once again; without a doubt, he will inspire and motivate a slew of you to come out and play. Josh is the creator of PhytoPhoto, a specialist collection of expertly identified botanical, horticultural and environmental photos; images are supplied to a wide variety of print mediums. His work is magnificent…..Fran Sorin

Subject for this month: SHOW THE MOTION

Motion blur caused by long exposures, or more precisely exposures not short enough to still motion, are often thought of as the enemy of the photographer but may in fact be used for a variety of purposes- everyone is familiar with the look of a waterfall or other moving water source left exposed for enough time to blend the coursing water into a pleasing “mist”. Other opportunities include the dynamic interest added by the sense of motion, highlighting static elements such as a bench or wall in contrast to the motion surrounding them, showing action with the course of a motion trail, or in much longer exposures often measured in minutes or hours, the motion trail of stars or to exclude from showing the surging crowd at a public space.

To accomplish these long exposures the easiest thing to do is simply wait for low light, often near or even after dark and put the camera on a tripod or use the built in images stabilization. If working with the wind even a tenth of a second can show significant motion. For other situations lower the recorded light by first adjusting the camera to the lowest ISO setting (usually 25, 50 or 100), clamping down the aperture to the smallest setting (often f/32 though much lower in compacts) if this will not affect the image negatively and lastly, employing neutral density filters to cut the incoming light (typically a 2 to 10 f-stop reduction but available to much higher levels). Try a second or two or ten, either adjusting the camera or waiting for it to be dark enough for its automatic exposure to pick these longer times. Play with night time mode/slow synchro or first/second curtain flash if you are feeling more devious.

Here are a few examples…

Water flowing over a period of time. In the first six second exposure the Darmera are better shown as isolated within the mass of moving water.

Darmera peltata_9407- Photo #1

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Obsession: A Chase Story

Written by Josh McCullough

This is the second in a series of posts by Joshua McCullough, the creator of PhytoPhoto, a specialist collection of expertly identified botanical, horticultural and environmental photos; images supplied to a wide variety of print mediums. 

Josh has been a judge for Picture This Photo Contest on multiple occasions. His work is outstanding: we value his contributions to GGW. Check out Josh’ first article in this series, On The Hunt….Fran Sorin


I sometimes sense there is an expectation for garden media- be it a glossy mag, a garden blog or from the book shelf, not to mix ones personal sensibilities up in the subject at hand. As if you should check your character at the proverbial garden gate and stick to the subject at hand- dirt and diseases and new varieties. Sure, there are some notable exceptions, but as a whole it is difficult to find garden media that could be described as revolutionary. It is a pretty, and pretty safe, sport.

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Reminder For June’s Picture This Contest

A reminder to get your entries in for June’s Picture This Contest.  Our judge is Josh McCullough of Phyto Photo. The theme for this month is The Best Frame You Have Ever Created.

This is how Josh described what he is looking for in the winning entry:

“We are all learning and growing and marking our progress each day, each moment, with the aspiration to be more aware, more knowledgeable, more fulfilled. And there is no way to still that understanding to one moment in time, one frame. The way we see that frame changes as our perspective does. And what a great thing to be able to look back on that past frame, or out into the world as our current perspective leads us and judge that for what it is now to us at this moment. And that is what I ask of you for this months contest, to give me your best ever. That’s right, the BEST FRAME YOU HAVE EVER CREATED. Your favorite. The one that means the most to you, that conveys what skill you had to bring to bear at its creation and now as you ascertain what it expresses. Your BEST EVER!”

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