This image was created in Fiji, and is a good example of a compositional technique called repetition of design. Notice how all but a few of the fish are facing in the same direction. The effect is that the viewer sees a splash of color and as a result takes in the in entire scene then comes in for a much closer look. The majority of viewers go to the center then follow the orange fish to the left, merge with the purple fish and follow them along the top of the coral head then on to the right. Once the eye has seen the image the negative space on the edge becomes an easy exit point.
I use this technique in combination with s-curves in this landscape portrait. The lines of the tress, as well as the lines from the tree roots repeat and set a soothing tone and path for the eye to follow. The path has a slight s-curve which adds depth and story telling to the image. I created this while teaching a recent photography workshop in Maui.
maui’s bamboo forest
Posted in Decor, dive travel, Island scenic, life, marine, photography workshops, Travel
Tagged adventure travel, Dive Fiji, Douglas j Hoffman, Fiji, landscape photography, maui photo safari, Maui photography, Maui photography workshop, nature photography, Nikon, siren fiji, U/W Photography workshops, underwater photography
incredible encounter with baby Humpback Whale
As Thanksgiving is here I am thinking about how lucky I am to be alive, and how grateful I am for all the incredible experiences I have had like swimming with this baby Humpback Whale, and most of all how wonderful it is to have two loving daughters.
Posted in bucket list adventure, children, dive travel, family portraiture, Island scenic, life, thanksgiving
Tagged black and white photography, daughters, Douglas j Hoffman, fathers, gratitude, guided dive trips, humpback whales, life, love, Nikon, whale photography, whale swimming
Knowledge of composition is one of the elements of photography that make the difference between an ordinary image and one that the viewer is drawn into. In this image for example the concept of framing is being used. The arch of soft coral and black coral create a nice frame for the diver. What happens is the eye enters the photograph and the frame draws the viewer into the image to see the diver. This technique is great when photographing in caves, around ledges, wrecks, and where there is an overhang environment.
This is one of the concepts of composition included in my week long underwater photography workshop. The next one is scheduled May 19th, 2014 in Fiji. It will take place on the Fiji Siren.
Each day we will talk about different composition techniques and practice them during the dives. Each night we will set aside time for image critique and round table discussion. This is sure to be fun for everyone.
Posted in bucket list adventure, dive travel, Island scenic, life, marine, photography workshops, scuba diving, underwater photography
Tagged adventure, composition, dive travel, Fiji, fiji siren, learn photography, life, scuba diving, underwater photography, underwater photography workshop
For nine years I have organized and led Humpback Whale Photography expeditions and workshops in Tonga. This year, I decided to offer whale photography workshops in Maui.
After all, I live in Maui which is famous as a destination for the Northern Hemisphere Humpback Whales coming from Alaska to mate and give birth. I have unique knowledge and experience working with Humpback whales and this helps me create environmental portraits of them. The workshops will include a detailed presentation on whale behavior, the rules regarding the whales, how to photograph whales, and what camera settings work well. After the briefing we will set out. Depending upon the workshop we will set up on a beach, rocky shoreline, or use kayaks. When kayaking we will follow the law and not approach within 100 yards. Participants must be in good condition and sign a waiver. Stay tuned more details to come.
Posted in bucket list adventure, Decor, Island scenic, marine, photography workshops, photography workshops, whale photography workshop, whales
Tagged Douglas j Hoffman, Hawaii, Maui, maui photo safari, Maui photo tour, maui photo tours, Maui Photographer, Maui photography, Maui photography workshops, Nature, nature photography
There is nothing like watching your children go to the pumpkin patch and pick their pumpkin. What a great tradition. Here is Hana sitting on the pumpkin perch looking over the field of pumpkins. Which one will it be ………. Sadly Halloween is over, but as long as there are images on the hard drive the memories will last forever.
Yesterday I had the honor of judging the 2013 Photo Maui competition. This is my second time judging this competition. This year there were six different categories. Scott Mead and I were had the task of picking best of show, first, second, and third in each category. The competition had a rule that stated if someone had an image selected as a “winner”, none of his or her other images can be selected as winners in that category. It came into play during the judging and as a result a few stunning images were not selected.
I understand the rule as it keeps one person from sweeping all the prizes. This happens quite a bit in photographic competition. In fact in 1994, I swept all categories in the Ambon international photography competition in Indonesia. I can also remember other competitions I participated in where other photographers swept. So, I know how it feels to be the big winner and how it feels not win because one persons work swept the competition and won it all. Below is one of the images I created that has received awards.
family of whales
With this information in mind I think the rule is a good one.. By design it dictates that more people will receive awards. The thinking behind this is the majority of winners will become more involved and active in professional imaging. An added benefit is that they also become good will ambassadors for photography. As time goes by the quality of images will improve and that will help the entire photography industry. Tomorrow night is the awards celebration and I look forward to meeting the winners of the competition. Congratulations to all that entered.
Posted in Gallery, Island scenic, marine, photography competition, photography workshops, Uncategorized
Tagged Douglas j Hoffman, education, Photo Maui, Photo Maui competition, photographic competition, PPA, Scott Mead
This is Caralee. We had an awesome morning of photography. We worked on proper exposure and composition, and it payed off as she created some really beautiful images. I will post some in the coming days. It is very satisfying to lead photo workshops and help people improve their technical and artistic ability.
The image below was one of my favorites of the day.
It is not very often you see a turtle out of the water so this was a real treat. I think this guy is tired and wants a nap. Either that or a big shark chased him out of the water. I am kidding of course…….. Everyone knows eating turtles is against the law in Hawaii.
Posted in Decor, Gallery, Island scenic, marine, photography workshops, Travel, turtles
Tagged beach, green sea turtle, Hawaii, Honu, marine life, Maui, Nature, photography, photography workshop, turtle
This image was created in Fiji, and it features a colorful reef and healthy population of Anthias fish. The soft corals in Fiji rank among the best in the world and that is why I go there every year. I never get tired of all the color, and the abundance of marine life. My next trip to Fiji is scheduled for May 2014 and I will be sharing my insights on underwater photography composition with the divers on board the Siren
Posted in bucket list adventure, Gallery, Island scenic, marine, photography workshops, Travel
Tagged dive adventure, Douglas j Hoffman, Fiji, Siren Fleet, soft coral, underwterphotogrpahy workshops
I am so glad I live in Hawaii. It is one of the most beautiful places in the world, and there endless possibilities for creating photographs that capture the heart of the viewer.
If coming to Maui, consider combining a photography workshop with a tour of the island. This way you can go to beautiful spots like this and receive tips and pointers to make sure you go home with stunning images.
Posted in bucket list adventure, Decor, Gallery, Island scenic, marine, photography workshops, Travel, Uncategorized
Tagged Hawaii, lanscape photogrpahy, learn photography, Maui, maui tours, photo tour hawaii, photo tour maui, photo workshop