I have thing for photographing through windows of old west ghost towns and taking pictures through the old glass. I get my lens as close as I can to the glass without risking damage, then shade the lens as best I can to remove external reflections , and bracket exposures like crazy.

Here is the barbershop in Randsburg, CA shot a few weeks ago. You can see some of the outside reflections around the left side and that is due to my hands not blocking all the glare. I shot a two image pano: left and right side as vertical images, then let Photoshop stitch them. Next I went into Photomatix and gave it a medium HDR grunge look. Then opened in Topaz B&W Effects and used the filter: Flavescent which added the yellowed newspaper look I wanted. I finished with another layer using the Blueprint effect and set that to 30% opacity to add a dark edginess.

ca_randsburg_MG_6394-7_pano_tonemapped-

When I like what I created, I abandon it for the next image. 

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As I pass through Las Vegas on my way to Arizona for the warm winter months, I cant help but stop in Vegas and do a little shooting. This image is from the Fremont Street area, which has been totally revitalized since my first visit to Las Vegas in 1985. 

One of the cool things they have been doing here is preserving the old neon signs from hotels and motels that are no longer standing. So right outside the Fremont Experience areas are these awesome old signs and symbols. 

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So I shot the old sign, hand held by the way, and opened in ACR where I added a little contrast, lightened shadows, tiny bit of Clarity, Vibrance, and Saturation. Then I opened in Photoshop and added several luminosity masks for shadows and highlights. 

This allowed me to darken a few areas, lighten specific areas, and then selectively saturate more specifics. Then I straightened the angles and removed a light pole that was in the shots and Voila!

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Oh this was so fun! Drove through Holbrook AZ on our way to New Mexico. Stopped in Holbrook to shoot Petrified Forest and when driving through town we saw the Wigwam Motel. OMG–gotta shoot!

Came back at dusk and it started pouring down rain. Perfect! LOL. I did get pretty wet but who cares? I did a non-grungy HDR, then accentuated lighter areas by painting highlights in Photoshop, added a vignette, and a little more burning and dodging for effect. A teeny weeny bit sharpening. And I am done…for today that is.

I was on Route 66 last week when I stopped at the casino outside Albuquerque and captured this with my iPhone. The file did not have the dynamic range as a RAW file so I had to do some work on it and also remove a section of car on the right that was parked there and clean the cracks and such on the pavement.

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I recently had an architecture shoot in Washington State to shoot a beautiful custom home. Here is one image from the shoot. I was asked to get 10-12 scenes of the home, which is a lot but also pretty common these days.

I have determined the best way to do this is using selective lighting and Photoshop, which is lighting specific areas and then compositing a lot of images for the final result. This image had 20 layers.

Copyright (c) 2013 Charlie Borland

I teach these techniques in my class on Architecture photography here.

You love photography and want to photograph full time by launching a photography business. Maybe you are unemployed or wish to supplement your retirement income or simply wanting to earn money doing what you love.

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I was on a walk, with camera in hand of course, when I discovered this door and entryway. It stands out very well and obviously I had to shoot it. I love the color contrasts that the painters chose. Everything snaps!

I tried various angles really skewing the lines and perspective and I like those, but keep coming back to this one-the first frame I shot.

This is the way of my ‘artists mind’ in that I like symmetrical and angles as they should be with everything in order. The skewed perspectives are cool and I will process those later, but am drawn to the straight looking down angle.

Maybe that will change later!