Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Grandfather of all lens flares

Ah, the lens flare.

An exciting effect, a beautiful image, now reduced to another keystroke in a suite of special effects in the digital cinematography platform.

I was watching a routine, earnest film called “Denial,” when, near the end of the movie, the director Mick Jackson and his cinematographer Haris Zambarloukos, all of a sudden seemed to have discovered the lens flare. None appeared in the first 100 minutes of the movie, but in a few scenes in the last 10 minutes? Blue and golden horizontal streaks suddenly appear. It was as though they had just watched a 'Star Trek' reboot. (A better title for this earnest melodrama would have been 'Denied!')

Monday, April 24, 2017

Beautiful little things: Ben-Day Dots


I've become fascinated with the color printing process known as Ben-Day Dots.

I've been scanning in color cartoon images from old newspapers (1940s, 1950s) and when seen up close, they have their own kind of raw beauty. (Click on the images to enlarge them.)

Monday, March 6, 2017

Fire and Ice On Block Island

Photos by Lars Trodson

A little tour of the island between 5 and 6 p.m. on Monday, March 6. The sun is out for about 20 minutes after 5 p.m., and today was colder, about 32 degrees... But it's been unusually warm up until the past few days, and the ducks were out in force on Sachem Pond, diving and relaxing, up near Settler's Rock at the end of Corn Neck Road. These photos were taken at Sachem Pond, including the ice around its edges.




Saturday, January 28, 2017

Two views of the same cold world

How Norman Rockwell and Edward Hopper painted America's entry into World War II

By Lars Trodson

Same theme. Same war. Entirely different approach.

Who could be more different in temperament and technique (at least on canvas) than Edward Hopper and Norman Rockwell? They were born at the same time (1882 and 1894, respectively), in nearly the same place (New York), and enjoyed spectacular success during their lifetimes.



But you'd never know they painted the same America, and no where is this more evident than two works that treat the same theme in two spectacularly different ways — and both of which were introduced about a month apart.

It’s been written that Edward Hopper started his most famous work, “Nighthawks,” sometime after the attack on Pearl Harbor. His wife, Jo, wrote in her diary that he finished the painting in late January, 1942, and that he had been working on it for about a month and a half.