Playing my Edge with Photography, Telling a Story in Pictures (adjustments)

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Beginners photography with samples of photopoems, photography poetry, and essays on the use of photography to illustrate article ideas.  Please see Press Release for additional information.


“a beginner’s view: the intent of this blog is to incrementally build a body of thought that works toward integrating various topics, yoga, fitness, and the arts – it’s a process…”

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playing my edge with photography, telling a story in pictures (adjustments)





in two recent posts of mine, “playing your edge” and “playing my edge with photography, variations” i developed my thoughts about playing the edge of one’s experience, whether in a yoga pose, or in art

and in a more recent post, “opening a view of gratitude,” i used a sequence of photos to illustrate the idea of combining visualization and movement in a small way

Adan Lerma
Adan Lerma

the sequence of photos are deliberately chosen, and reworked in adobe photoshop

does that make the photo sequence less authentic?

less meaningful? less true in meaning?

i dont’ think so 😉


a recent article on cora wen’s facebook page, “bks iyengar interview – times of india may 25, 2011,” has some of iyengar’s usual ubber-reasonableness

“I find that the East absorbs the yogic philosophy far better. Yoga is an emotional subject actually and the in the West they calculate from the head. On the other hand, the East banks on the intelligence of the heart. They are both strong in their own spheres… have the best of both approaches….”

head and heart, something to think about, something to feel good about…

yes 😉


A Four Picture Sequence

One, Beginning


Gratitude, Sheila, Beginning
Gratitude, Sheila, Beginning – Original Photography Adan Lerma


a nice straight forward shot

not much adjustment here, took out the garbage can at the end of the seawall 😉

and placed my copyright sig fwd, out to toward the sea, as if also searching with sheila and setting a beginning for what we’d find

i did barely dab the dodge tool on the clouds on either side and above of sheila’s head, but just barely

art books often speak of a brush stroke here and there, that only the artist notices, or is often aware of – it often can’t be seen, but is felt, especially by the artist; that was the sense i had dodging (making more light/white) the far off clouds visible around sheila

saturation levels were bumped but barely a few notches, to bring the photo closer to what i felt and saw in real life


Two, Searching


Gratitude, Sheila, Searching
Gratitude, Sheila, Searching – Original Photography Adan Lerma


saturation levels got another few bumps, but not much

copyright sig moved inward to reflect and match the feeling sheila was searching but also beginning to find or sense her internal vision of gratitude

the nearer whitecaps of the larger incoming wave got a few swipes from the dodge tool, helping highlight the wave releasing itself into the atmosphere

and of course i again erased the garbage cans at the end of the seawall 😉

the puffy clouds about sheila’s head had moved northward a bit, and i gave them just a tiny bit more work with the dodge brush

i played with darkening her shadow, then placing deeper shadow hints within the main shadow, but didn’t like it, didn’t feel they reflected the feeling in the image


Three, Finding


Gratitude, Sheila, Finding
Gratitude, Sheila, Finding – Original Photography Adan Lerma


Time to Play the Edges

now i got to play even more with the image 😉

in the actual article, this image is full size, while the former two were inset to the left with text-wrap enabled

my copyright has crept back out toward the edge of the seawall, but not out among the rocks, it feels comfortable at this level of “openness” 😉

the whites of the clouds have been enhanced across the whole horizon they appear in –

swipes and re-swipes, erasures and cmd-shft-fades, and like layers of paints dabbed in impressionist works, like “austin at night,” i found the balance i liked across the sky

faint dodges were wiped across the nearer highlights in the rocks, and a crevice or two was burned, but just a bit –

an encasing smatter of tinted seawall formed around sheila’s feet, and foam-lightened tops of waves joined the clouds in celebrating sheila’s skin tone on her outstretched arms and open face to the sea –

she practically glows in an energy-saver dose of highlights –

or it could just be me 😉


The Seagull

did anyone notice the holy spirit apparition of a bird to sheila’s left-top in the sky?

not photoshop’ed 😉 it was actually there!

along with a contorted speck of another bird, to our right of our mystery seagull, but it distracted, and disappeared, sky-cloned by the trusty stamp tool

the sharpening tool brought our seagull out more clearly, but too clearly, and the fade tool didn’t give enough of a good feel effect, even at 25, 50, and 75% levels, so the seagull remained “as is”


Head & Heart Decisions

In General

the connections being sought in the modifications have to work, or they’re either not worth repeating, or best re-traced…

this is true in yoga, art, movement, and, probably, love…


In Yoga

if something reasonable appeals or occurs to me to try, like my photo work above, i do

if it hurts or fails or doesn’t provide a feeling or sense i can accept as good for me, then i don’t repeat it

if it’s borderline, flitting along yoga’s loophole, allowing me to play the edge, then i go for it

and when everything fits, then the only question is the final resting form of the pose

Sheila Gratitude
Sheila Gratitude – Original Photography Adan Lerma

my final image of sheila in my gratitude post, was untouched


the head and heart agreed –

all that remained was the final form


a nearly square shape, only slightly wider than tall, the copyright tucked safely behind her, cap and sunglasses added security…

and the image of personal gratitude was complete

namaste – con dios – god be with you


Playing my Edge with Photography, Variations

photography series

paintings series



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