The Art and Business of Photography by Joe Farace

Three of our photography web sites are featured in the 
August 2000 issue of Shutterbug Magazine

The Art And Business Of Photography
Web Site of the Month  by Joe Farace

This month's Web Site of the Month honors are shared by three photographers whose work celebrates the beauty of the natural world. Whether that image consists of a dramatic landscape, photographs of flowers that will change your concept of flower photography forever, or of the gentile interaction of a young Amish boy with his horse, these three sites express their creator's view of the art of photography.

Photographing the Unphotographable

Bill Coleman's web site (www.AmishPhoto.com) contains a collection of sensitive images of the Amish people that he has been making for the past 24 years. Popular myth has it that the Amish and similar religious groups do not permit themselves to be photographed, but Coleman's images are clearly made with the cooperation of his subjects. While some photographers simply unlimber their longest focal length lenses to spy on people who don't want to be photographed,

Click here to visit Bill Coleman's web site
Not since the film "Witness" have scenes of the Amish life been portrayed so poignantly. Bill Coleman clearly enjoys the trust of his subjects while capturing poetic images of their simpler lifestyle

Coleman's subjects clearly permit the interaction. In the "About the Photographs" section of the site, it's explained this way: "...none of this would be possible were it not for the understanding and warmth of a few Old Order Amish families where Bill's odyssey is understood and his camera is tolerated -- to a degree. And thanks to you, these few families do not go unrewarded.

The Galleries include five sections that are devoted specifically to Amish children, including one showing a group of kids with straw hats placed in front of their faces. The other sections are divided among weddings, beasts of burden, pets, tree (not trees -- it's the same tree photographed in different seasons), and the cemetery.

Three new galleries include black and white, Amish millennium, and fall, 1999. The two panoramic galleries feature landscape images of a schoolhouse made over 24 years. All the images on the site are for sale as prints that are handmade by the photographer or as posters, including some of his panoramic images, such as a stark, yet humorous image of Amish children at play called "The Kick".

Links at the bottom of the Galleries page take you to the photographer's art show schedule, information about frames (including an admonition not to use non-glare glass), and an "About the Artist" section that includes a portrait of Coleman with his son. This site, like the following two, strikes a perfect balance between art and commerce allowing you to not only appreciate the photographer's work, but to purchase a print to hang in your home for inspiration.

The Art of Nature Photography

Jim DeLutes' web site (www.JDLphotos.com) opens with a listing of six galleries that contain many different kinds of images, ranging from flowers to sunsets. Dragging your mouse across the list causes an image to pop-up from that gallery. Two of DeLutes' online galleries spotlight landscape images, with some amazing photographs of lightning in another, and graphic images of doors, windows, and missions of the Southwest in the last gallery. It's his stunning photographs of flowers in Galleries One and Two, however, that will make you sit up and pay attention.

Navigating through this beautifully designed site was a dream using a set of buttons at the top of each page that let you view images from any of the six galleries -- including larger sized images of DeLutes' photographs -- as well as information on what art shows he will be attending. This web site is not a virtual museum, but as marketing tool for a fine art photographer. Consequently, you'll find information on purchasing images, matting and framing, as well as his money back guarantee on any images purchased. When double-clicking one of the large thumbnails to see it displayed even larger, a pop-up menu list shows prices for matted or framed prints. DeLutes' web site combines these practical elements of commerce, along with photographs that have a haunting beauty.


Click here to visit Jim DeLutes' web site





Forget everything that you thought you knew about flower photography. Jim DeLutes' unmanipulated images will leave you gasping and rethinking your own photography of the natural world

The Art of Landscape Photography

Richard A. Nelridge's web site (www.Nelridge.com) celebrates nature with quiet, powerful color images of the Western US. From his home page, you first enter his galleries page featuring nine different areas that are grouped by different topics. Some are by geography -- Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming, and Utah National Parks -- while others highlight subject matter, such as Coastal, Spring and Autumn, and Running Water. Regular readers of this column know I'm often critical of sites that use small thumbnails linked to small images, but Nelridge provides larger thumbnails linked to larger images, allowing visitors to appreciate his deft treatment of a subject that many photographers aspire to but few conquer.

Click here to visit Richard Nelridge's web site
Using color as a strong tool, Richard A. Nelridge's
 landscape images evoke the greatness of a wonderful land


Like the other sites featured this month, Nelridge's motives are not altruistic; this site is designed to sell prints of the photographer's work, but he adds touches that visitors will enjoy. For his image "Autumn Misty Morn, Heart Lake" and many others, he provides caption information about what it was like when making the image, putting you behind the tripod while providing a "you are there" experience. Some of Nelridge's images clearly transcend the genre. Be sure to visit the Coastal gallery for an image he calls "A Sea of Red and a Ribbon of Red and White." The caption information has technical details about how he produced this graphic beach photograph totally in camera -- not digitally. 

This site is a snap to navigate though and uses buttons that let you be where you want to be next, without any muss or fuss and the unpretentious design clearly puts the focus on the images -- where it should be.

Bookmark of the Month

The one common element that all three of this month's featured web sites share is they were created by the same people.

Berman Graphics is the work of Larry Berman and Chris Maher, who create web sites for artists, crafts people, and photographers. Most of their clients come from the art fair world and information about show dates is a common design element in all three sites. Berman told me that his job is "to create great looking, fast loading pictures that accurately show off our client's art. I either scan their slides or prints or work with digital files that I shoot with a Nikon CoolPix 950 (soon to trade up to the 990). Then I build the basic web site."

Maher then creates a theme that represents the personality of their client and finishes by doing a promotional push to major search engines. In the past months, Berman Graphics has had two of their sites listed as "Pick of the Day" on Yahoo!, which has translated into over 20,000 page accesses and increased sales for the photographers. 

If you're a fine art photographer looking for a Webmaster, these two guys seem to "know the territory."  All of the recent web sites that these two gentlemen have created can be viewed at: www.BermanGraphics.com,  this month's Bookmark of the Month.

 Berman Graphics 
PO Box 265, Russellton,  PA  15076
412-767-8644   800-350-9289 

All photos on this site are available for stock or fine art sales
contact Larry Berman for more information

Slide scanning for ZAPP and other digital jury systems

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1970s ABA and NBA Basketball photographs
specializing in Julius Erving (Dr J) photographs

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email Larry Berman - larry@bermanart.com