An animated GIF created in Photoshop CS6, with photographs from Hipstamatic’s new “burst” option.1
An alley I’ve photographed before methinks, but not with about six inches of snow covering.
Hipstamatic snapshot, using the Florence Lens, and BlacKeys Extra Fine Film
Currently #323 in Flickr Explore for December 12th, 2013.
You were talking in your sleep
Snow, Fulton Market, West Loop, Chicago.
Hipstamatic snapshot, using the Florence Lens and BlacKeys Extra Fine film.
Currently #252 in Flickr Explore for December 8, 2013.
I thought last month’s total was light, but I only worked on 51 images in April, probably my least productive month in a long, long time. Although, two of these made Flickr Explore…
I was fighting off a few illnesses1, plus my birthday, plus general slackitude. C’est la vie.
Without additional blah-blah, here are my personal favorites processed in April, 2013.
My first ever Vesper
James Bond doesn’t have the best taste in cocktails. Martinis should really be shaken, not stirred, so he got that right, but vodka and martini are two words that should never be joined in the same sentence.
We Have Never Been Very Pure
Manhattan Beach, LA. I’ve mentioned this photo before. I should make a print of it too.
Pinhole Self Portrait Circa 1994 I scanned this recently, unfortunately, the print is fairly damaged. Some friend of a friend who was a grad student at the ARTIC back in the mid-90s built the pinhole out of a coffee can, and brought a flash. I just posed.
Cool! Another photo has made it into Flickr Explore, and with even more favorites than the last photo got. I take and process photos every day, or attempt to, and I always do the best I can to transform the images into art. But prior to these two photos making Explore, I hadn’t been selected since April 2012. I realize the Explore algorithm is mostly computerized, and that there is an element of chance in making the cut – but still. Odd. And nice.
Funny, as I only sort of randomly selected this photo of the CTA tracks near Graceland Cemetery as a means to test new perspective tools in the Lightroom 5 Beta, and then tweaked the image a bit using the Google Silver Efex Pro plugin. The subject is a bit of cliché to tell the truth – high contrast black and white image of shadow perspectives, yadda yadda. I’ve taken many similar photos that didn’t get so much appreciation from Flickreenos. Still, I am happy with how this one turned out…
Click here for an embiggened version.
Or here to purchase a print for your own wall.
Click here to view larger on black.
Venice Beach, last February.
Hasn’t happened in a while, but this photo made it into Flickr Explore April 9th1, reaching into the lower 200s. Funny, I spent less than ten minutes processing it in Photoshop (tweaking the contrast, cropping, then converting into black and white), and yet it became a hit. Go figure. There isn’t a prize or anything, just satisfaction in knowing that this photo is popular with the masses, and humbling, when you look at all the other great photos also contained in that day’s batch. I would not say each of those photos are my favorites as well, but a great number are super images.
I do like my own photo, don’t get me wrong. And in fact, I like it better viewed at a larger size.
Shameless hucksterism, prints are available for purchase.
I don’t have a clever story as to the photo’s title: probably a willful mishearing of a song lyric or something. Titles are a challenge, as we’ve discussed before.Footnotes:
Continuing a tradition: these are my 24 (!) personal favorites, all developed in my digital darkroom last month. In no particular order…
/ Posted in / 2012 / April (122 items)
(click here to see more Flickr: Archive of your uploads to Flickr in April 2012.)
And yeah, I have too many favorites this month. A good problem, but a problem nonetheless.
The former USPS building, still not being developed.
Slide show version here
(Last month’s edition)
Without preamble (if you want explanation, check December’s children), here are my favorite twelve photos from February. There were 133 to choose from.
And I Still Do Not Know What It Was That I’ve Done Wrong
Honorable mention goes to:
Amusingly, this iPhone snapshot I took yesterday 1 made it into Flickr Explore, currently ranking #163. [Update: later this same day, now ranked at #24!!] Still don’t quite understand the Explore algorithm, as I’ve taken this exact photo dozens of times, or more, but this particular one resonated. I’m just happy it snowed finally.
What is Explore?
Explore is a Flickr feature with the intent of showing you “some of the most awesome photos on Flickr.” Photos are automatically selected by computer according to a secret algorithm called Interestingness (see below for more about that).
Is Explore a showcase for the top Flickr photographers?
No. It’s for photo viewers, not the photographers. It exists so that, at any moment, anyone who wants to view interesting photos can go to Explore and have a reasonable chance of seeing something interesting. Does that imply that photographs not in Explore are uninteresting? Of course not. There are many, many wonderful photos uploaded to Flickr each day that aren’t selected for Explore. But to serve its purpose, Explore only has to include a small sampling of all of the photos on Flickr (currently at 500 per day or about 0.005% of the daily upload volume). And Explore tries to show photos from as many different people as possible to create a diverse selection.
Explore is for the viewers. It’s a way for Flickr to show the world a sampling of what is being shared there. It’s there for those who are new to Flickr, who are lost in the vastness of it all and don’t know where to begin. It is not a “best of” listing of photographers. It is not a popularity contest.
What is Interestingness?
Interestingness is what Flickr calls the criteria used for selecting which photos are shown in Explore. All photos are given an Interestingness “score” that can also be used to sort any image search on Flickr. The top 500 photos ranked by Interestingness are shown in Explore. Interestingness rankings are calculated automatically by a secret computer algorithm. The algorithm is often referred to by name as the Interestingness algorithm. Although the algorithm is secret, Flickr has stated that many factors go into calculating Interestingness including: a photo’s tags, how many groups the photo is in, views, favorites, where click-throughs are coming from, who comments on a photo and when, and more. The velocity of any of those components is a key factor. For example, getting 20 comments in an hour counts much higher than getting 20 comments in a week.
(click here to continue reading Frequently Asked Questions.)
Flickr even owns a patent on Interestingness, aka Interestingness ranking of media objects.
According to BigHugeLabs, I’ve had 104 photos that made Explore (though some dropped out later), but who is keeping track! ahem…
Better viewed in Lightbox, of course.
under the Brown/Purple Line CTA tracks, River North. I realize I have hundreds of shots just like this, but love how the distant lines of the CTA tracks converge, especially in a black and white photograph.
Near Buckingham Palace, on Constitution Road1, in the middle of a fairly hard rain. We were huddled underneath an old, big tree, waiting for the rain to subside, when these ladies whizzed by on a bicycle, laughing hysterically. I was mad at myself that I didn’t get a chance to focus properly, but conversion to black and white (TRI-X 400 emulation) captured the essence of the moment.
CTA tracks on Lake Street, near the Garfield Park Conservatory. Post-processed in Photoshop, with TRI-X 400 (pushed one stop) emulation. If you look closely at the Lightbox version, you can see the fun film grain, especially in areas of solid color.