All images by Jamie A MacDonald. Used with permission
Olympus Visionary Jamie A MacDonald is a photographer that hails from Southern Michigan and has photographed landscapes of all types. In fact, black and white landscapes is what takes up lots of his portfolio at the moment, though he has shot everything from portraiture and more. While going through his portfolio, we were awestruck by some of the landscapes on top of lots of the interesting cloud formations in his images.
And while one might think that there isn’t much to capturing the right clouds, you’d be quite shocked.
Phoblographer: Do you feel that the best cloud photos can be created in the camera or in the post-production phase?
Jamie: Living in Michigan we seem to get a wide range of atmospheric conditions. This variety invariably leads to so many different types of cloud formations each of which to me has its own best way to be processed. I tend to only process in camera if the clouds have a lot of structure to them and I want to be able to share my work socially as soon after shooting as possible. I choose these for in camera processing simply because the Olympus cameras I shoot with have a few different in-camera filters that lend themselves to these types of scenes. Specifically the Dramatic Tone Art filter when set to monotone and the Grainy Black and White filter. Admittedly the use of in camera effects is a small percentage of how I work, the rest is done using the Nik Software suite. Silver Efex Pro2 and Viveza2 almost exclusively.
Phoblographer: How long could one be waiting for the right cloud formation?
Jamie: I have waited entire seasons for the right time, the right cloud formations, and the right light. I suppose I could shoot far more often if I wanted but I prefer to find a location that has character, and then let nature dictate when the image is created. For example I have this barn that is a regular subject of mine, my muse I guess you might say. I have spent the last several years photographing it very intermittently because I usually have very specific shots in mind and since I don’t make the weather I have to let nature decide when those images are made.
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