Archive for the ‘Black & White’ Category

Closing Out 2012 in Grand Style – BSG Exhibiting @ 25CPW Gallery/NYC

Cab Ride in the Rain, Radio City Music Hall, NYC 2009

Cab Ride in the Rain, Radio City Music Hall, NYC 2009

Closing out 2012 in grand style. I will be exhibiting work at 25CPW, the great New York City gallery located at Central Park West and West 62nd Street. Bess Greenberg, Founder/Curatorial Director and Abby Verbosky, Manager of Exhibitions run the gallery which has recently held a 100 year celebration of Editta Sherman’s celebrity portraits that was covered by ABC News and the New York Times. They have also mounted exhibits with the Magnum Foundation, the New York Camera Club and continue to show the work of established and emerging artists.

The Artist’s Market group exhibition will run from Thursday night through Sunday night. Gallery hours are 12 pm to 8 pm, with an Artist’s Reception Saturday night with live music from 6pm to 9pm (gallery will close at 10:00 pm).

I hope that all my NYC friends and anyone else that might like to see some interesting work, will stop by. Thank You.

Art Basel Miami – Looking Forward


                                    Reflection on Mystic Lake, Coeur D’Alene, ID 2010

This week in Miami we have Art Basel Miami Beach and numerous Art Fairs during the week of December 3-9. Originally Art Basel Switzerland, many of the finest galleries in the world now also bring their wares to Miami this week to benefit from the great weather and huge crowds of art lovers.

I have in the past, and will this week, utilize this opportunity to network with galleries around the world with an eye towards additional exhibitions. Looking forward, you’ve gotta believe.

America’s Greatest Animals / Our Big Five

Bison, King of the Mist, Yellowstone National Park, WY 2010

I never know where inspiration for a blog post might originate. I enjoy watching the nature channels on cable to see places I have been and to plan for places to shoot in the future. Recently, I was watching a National Geographic television show on Nat Geo Wild (@natgeowild) called America’s Greatest Animals. The premise of the show was to identify America’s version of Africa’s “Big 5” animals. By the end of the show, the final list was revealed (spoiler alert!): Polar Bear, Grizzly, Wolf, Bison and Moose.

Although some may disagree as to which animals should be on the list, I realized I had classic images of each animal they had chosen. So, to celebrate America’s Big 5, without further ado:

                      Wolf Shake, 2010                                              Polar Bear, 2009

                          Grizzly, 2004                                                 Bull Moose, 2010

Under the Boardwalk Exhibited at FotoWeek DC in Washington DC

Under the Boardwalk, Deerfield Beach, FL (2010)

My Black and White image Under the Boardwalk is currently being exhibited during the FotoWeek DC festival in Washington DC from November 9-18, 2012. Created at night while I was positioned under the pier, the biggest challenge was capturing the long exposure to soften the water and then grabbing my tripod and camera before getting soaked from the incoming waves. This image was previously exhibited at the former Camera Obscura Gallery which was owned by the great photographer and gallerist, Hal Gould in Denver, Colorado.

Whether through fine art photography, photojournalism, or the work of emerging artists, FotoDC provides a dynamic, evocative, engaging experience for photographers, cultural institutions, galleries, curators, schools, area residents, and tens of thousands of viewers. Founded as FotoWeekDC in 2008, the weeklong photography festival initially attracted 20,000 participants; including professional and amateur photographers, photography lovers, and partners such as National Geographic, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, The Smithsonian Institution, and various local art galleries.  In 2009, the organization received non-profit status and began developing programs to include professional development and new exhibition venues. In response to demand for year-round programming, FotoWeek DC rebranded in 2011 to become FotoDC, and launched new programs to provide greater exposure for all photographers, new venues for exhibitions and new programs for students and youth. The annual Festival in November continues to be FotoDC’s largest project with over 40,000 attendees each year.

One Man’s Tragedy…is Another Man’s Treasure / Art of a Superstorm

 A Sign of Things to Come, Deerfield Beach, FL 2012

 Collateral Breakers, Coral Cove Park, Tequesta, FL 2012

From personal experience I understand and sympathize with those affected by the recent Superstorm Sandy. Living in South Florida I survived the outskirts of Hurricane Andrew and a ground zero hit from Hurricane Wilma. I know what it is to re-build and that it takes years to reach “normalcy” because of the enormity of the situation.

So, when I am lucky enough to have a storm go by without it being a direct hit, I am drawn to the ocean and get as close to it as possible in order to photograph the Seascapes it creates. That’s exactly what I did to commemorate my 55th Birthday last week. We headed to the beach to see what Sandy was packing and walked out onto the Deerfield Pier where only the heartiest fisherman braved the powerful winds and fierce intermittent rain squalls. We were out at the Pier’s end as the wind and rain bands blasted away from the storm and toward the beach, causing the fisherman to crouch in front of the wooden benches for some, albeit limited, cover. The force of the wind was so strong that I had to hold on to the railings to anchor myself while trying to capture focused images without destroying my camera. Blocking the rain with my body and covering my camera with plastic, my rain coat, and a now demolished umbrella, I caught the first image above, A Sign of Things to Come. Although this definitely lets you appreciate the power of Mother Nature, we are quite experienced in these storms and (hopefully) know the limits of what is safe… so definitely don’t try this at home.

As for the second image above, we followed the storm as it traveled north and photographed the sunrise at Coral Cove Park in Tequesta, Florida on Jupiter Island By then the storm was creating 20 foot waves that could be seen breaking farther out to sea than any of the locals had ever witnessed before. Later in the day we had to leave the beach on Hutchinson Island because the winds were so strong the pelting sand stung like BBs. I knew it was time to leave when my 6′, 200 lb. (plus) body was being lifted off the ground.

After feeling the effects of the outskirts of the storm, I did send notice to those in my social network stratosphere of how powerful she was, even from hundreds of miles out to sea. Clearly, it was a sign of things to come.

For me, this storm allowed for the creation of some treasured images …while for so many others it caused such great tragedy.

You can donate to Red Cross Hurricane Relief at

Resilience / Proud to be a (Former) New Yorker / Hangin’ with Celebs

Images of Hahnemuhle’s Booth at PhotoPlus Expo 2012 at the Javits Center in NYC

All images (c) Hahnemuhle USA

Having grown up on Long Island and spent much time in Manhattan, the city that never sleeps, and New Jersey, I send my best wishes to all those effected by the recent storm. Having come from there, I know how resilient the people are. They will deal with the hassle and discomfort of no power and public transportation and make it through better and stronger. For those in Jersey it will be a tougher ride. Having been through hurricanes and having faced serious home damage, the bottom line is that it takes time, a great deal of time for any normalcy to return…but it does, eventually.

To celebrate past and future good times in the Big Apple, here are some images of the Hahnemuhle Booth at the PhotoPlus Expo the weekend before the storm at the Javits Center in New York City. My image Rush Hour, Grand Central Station (shown in my last post) was exhibited along with many great scenics and celebrity portraits. Also exhibited were E.J. Camp’s portraits of George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer;  Jerome Burnet’s image of Fergie, formerly of the Black Eyed Peas; Hawaiian images by Scott Mead, along with images by photographers R.C. Concepcion, Joel Pickford, Greg Boyer www.gregboyerphotography and Alex Geana All images are (c) each of the respective photographers.

Although I couldn’t make it up there personally, it was still nice “hanging” with you guys in New York City this weekend, and I look forward to doing so again in in the near future.

Hahnemuhle Paper Exhibits BSG Cityscape at PhotoPlus Expo in NYC

Rush Hour, Grand Central Station, NYC 2009

Every year during the last week in October, PhotoPlus International Conference and Expo to the Javits Convention Center in New York City (this year from 10/24-10/27). Photography seminars presented by many of the most knowledgeable people in the industry, presentations and appearances by some of the best-known photographers in the world and a huge exhibition floor displaying everything photographic. All the major names in camera equipment, printers, accessories, and photographic paper have booths set up for the 25,000 annual visitors that walk by.

A few years ago, while walking through the exhibition floor, I admired the outstanding prints exhibited by the major printer and paper companies such as Epson, Canon, and others, which were all created by well-respected photographers to showcase the quality of the respective products. As with many Galleries that I have visited, I promised myself I would do everything possible to see my images exhibited at PhotoPlus Expo in the near future. I have been printing most of my portfolio and gallery prints on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl, which has complimented my work and helped me impress the curators, collectors and gallerists that have juried my prints into shows. This year, I am honored that the 400 year old German Fine Art paper maker, Hahnemuhle, has chosen one of my Cityscapes, Rush Hour, Grand Central Station, NYC to exhibit in their booth at PhotoPlus Expo to showcase their fine product… You know what they say…you’ve gotta believe.

Celebrating the 100th Post and Inclusion in Black and White Magazine

Howling Baboon, 2012

As if shouting…”Wow, the 100th Post,” in a new addition to my series: Of the Wild, Howling Baboon is a striking black & white portrait of this unique primate making itself heard.

To me, creating a close-up, intimate animal portrait requires a concentrated focus on the details of the animal’s face. Often, I also try to capture the unique behavioral expressions of a particular species, herein the howl of a Baboon. When it all comes together in one image, the impact is obvious.

Macaw, Black and White, 2009

To mark the 100th Blog Post I also include an image above which is currently featured in Black and White Magazine which can be found at many Barnes and Nobles’ as well as other fine book sellers.

Categories: Animals, Black & White, Nature

Selective Focus – Elvis has left the building.

Elvis, 2012

In a new addition to my close-up animal portrait series Of the Wild, I created a classic black & white image of an American Alligator.

Not just any alligator, mind you… Anyone that remembers the classic TV show, Miami Vice, should recall Elvis, the alligator that lived on “Sonny Crockett” (Don Johnson)’s sailboat. As with many great animal actors, Elvis has retired to live out his days in a place where he is provided for. In this case, in South Florida at Flamingo Gardens in Davie.

Using selective focus with a long (400 mm) lens, I highlighted E’s eyes and left his menacing teeth soft, but clearly visible. The puddle that formed on his indented snout adds another dimension to the close-up portrait.

In South Florida you tend to see alligators, and not just in captivity. You can see them on the golf course, in the local canals and in your neighbor’s yard (better than in yours).  Although I usually use a long lens for these scary creatures, last weekend I had to tip toe past one that decided to park itself across the only path out of the section of Everglades National Park that I happened to be shooting in.

Nothing like a little excitement at the end of a day’s shoot.

Blocking the Path, Everglades National Park, 2012

One way out, getting dark…what would you do?

The Road Less Traveled – Miami Nature Scenic

The Road Less Traveled, Miami, FL 2012

I have always believed that a good scenic image draws the viewer into it. Roads, wooded pathways and trails are particularly good to draw in the minds eye. Capturing the best composition often requires shooting from the middle of the road. This requires extreme caution because on seemingly deserted roads, inevitably someone comes speeding along believing they are the only one on the road. The safest way to do this is having your back watched. If that is not available…don’t try this at home.

Sea Design – Oregon Coast / EQUIVALENTS Exhibition opens in Seattle

Sea Design, Bandon, Oregon 2009

Pinnacles in the Mist, Olympic Peninsula, WA 2006

My blog posts are often inspired by current world events or my own personal observations and experiences. Most recently, a phone call to one of my best college buddies, wherein he told me he was off to Oregon, inspired a post on…Oregon. His son was ending a cross-country bike trek there to benefit affordable housing in the U.S. A great effort for a great cause deserves our attention…and contribution.

As for the first image, from a casual seaside hotel I captured this scenic Black and White image of the pinnacles at Bandon Beach, Oregon. Having walked amongst the rocks during low tide, once the sea came back in it created this beautiful design along the beach.

The second scene, which was previously posted, I came across unexpectedly as I climbed atop a large pile of petrified wood that had floated ashore over time. Catching the fog, just before it lifted, this image captures the sole of this beautiful location.

A magnificent part of the country, the scenery and the local seafood alone make this area a great place to visit. The fact that you can find sand dunes, granite cliffs, pinnacles and old growth forest, all within a few hours drive of each other on the coast, in my humble opinion, makes this the greatest road trip in America.

P.S. GALLERY OPENING: As indicated in this PDN Photoserve News item at:, the Equivalents exhibition at the PhotoCenter NW Gallery in Seattle, WA opened this weekend. From over 2,000 entries, my image “Niagara” was juried into the exhibition by the legendary Curator and Collector, W.M. Hunt (who will speak on opening night at the Seattle Art Museum). The show will run from August 3rd to September 18th, 2012. (see image 61 of 65 on the Gallery website).

Into the Clouds – Top of a Glacier in Black and White

Into the Clouds, British Columbia, 2004

While at the top of the Glacier mentioned in the last post, I would have been remiss not to have created some Fine Art work. Special places tend to result in special images, as I like to believe this one is. The granite mountaintop is lightly covered in snow and breaking through the clouds. Clearly, not something you see…or feel, everyday.

Water Down – Wild River Scenic

Wild River, Rocky Mountains, CO 2010

One more cascade image to go with the flow… of the last two posts. After an exceptionally harsh winter season in the Rocky Mountains, the runoff from the melting snow made for some powerful rivers and waterfalls. I captured this image from a bridge that was right in the path of the thunderous cascade, just before being ordered off by some Park Rangers (justifiably) concerned for my safety.

A tripod was necessary to capture the detail of the trees and rocks and to make a long exposure emphasizing the flow of the water. The key to an image like this is an overcast sky to avoid overexposure of the smooth water and carefully composing the scene while maintaining secure footing. The idea is to get the shot, without losing any equipment…or your life.

Animal Portrait Series OF THE WILD Featured on

Lioness, 2012

With 35,000,000 monthly views, is the world’s largest, most popular trend community and is fueled by a global network of 102,000 members. Trend Hunter, Trend Hunter TV and Trend Hunter PRO feature 151,000 micro-trends and cutting edge ideas.

Routinely sourced by the media, Trend Hunter is a source of inspiration for industry professionals, aspiring entrepreneurs and the insatiably curious. Trend Hunter has been featured or cited everywhere from MTV, The Economist, and CNN to the personal blog of Kanye West, tweets by Ashton Kutcher and Paris Hilton.

Each day, Trend Hunter features a daily dose of micro-trends, viral news and pop culture.

This week posted:

“The remarkable Barry Steven Greff ‘Of the Wild’ photography series is an amazing illustration of nature photography. Taken of cougars, lions, gorillas and more, the captures are one of the best ways to see beautiful animals close-up without fear of danger. The majestic animals are perfectly aimed, lit and captured.

Greff, an accomplished photographer in the fine art/commercial realm portrays the animal portraits in a straight-on, fierce and awe-inspiring manner. The very matter of fact photography is truly an incredible collection of the very best of nature and the animal kingdom.

The jaw dropping photography has earned Greff some prestigious awards and nominations throughout his career. Among some noted accomplishments include the Popular Photography Magazine 2010 award in the category of Great Wildlife Photographers and the International Photography Awards of 2008.”

Attitude – Cougar Style

Cougar, CO 2008

Usually, the key to a good animal portrait is capturing the eyes…but not always. Although my series of animal portraits: Of the Wild concentrates on the eyes, I can’t resist a good growl, yawn, or shake.

Case in point, this image of a Cougar, mid yawn. In an image like this I seek to capture clean, crisp detail of the the teeth and the papillae of the tongue. These sharp, raspy projections act as a sort of comb for the animal to groom itself, just like a common house cat. Unlike Tabby, a Cougar’s tongue also allows it to remove all the meat from the bone of its prey.

The largest Cougar on record weighed 276 pounds and depending on the region of North America, are also known as mountain lion, puma and panther. Although in the wild they feed on deer, elk and moose, an occasional hiker has had their journey end when unexpectedly crossing paths with one of these beauties.

Images from OF THE WILD Featured in C4fap / Pichler Juried Book

Lowland Gorilla, 2010

A portfolio of images from my series: Of the Wild, featuring close-up, intimate portraits of animals, was just published alongside the work of 14 other Fine Art photographers in a beautiful book entitled: Portfolio Showcase No.5. Produced by the Center for Fine Art Photography in Fort Collins, CO The portfolios chosen for the book were juried by Chris Pichler, founder and publisher of Nazraeli Press Nazraeli creates some of the most spectacular Fine Art photography books on the planet and features the work of Michael Kenna, Todd Hido and others. The book was edited by Hamidah Glasgow with a layout by Lauren Henkin and published by Montage Graphics

Information about the book can be obtained from the Center and additional images from the series can be viewed on my main website at

Happy Earthday Mother Re-Posted for 2012

Mother Earth, 2011

(For best viewing, watch on You Tube at full screen, 720p resolution, depending on your system. If the video doesn’t play correctly, choose a lower resolution. All selections are bottom/right.)

      If, for any reason you have trouble viewing, here is the direct link. 

A year ago, when the blog was still new, I posted this three minute video to celebrate Earth Day. Now that I have a much larger viewership, I am re-posting the video (and the accompanying text) for Earth Day 2012…

By now, I hope it is clear that my landscape images seek to capture the spectacular natural beauty that still exists on Earth. To further that goal, and celebrate Earth Day, I am posting a 3 minute multimedia piece entitled: “Mother Earth.” This compilation of some of my sea and landscape images is accompanied by the hauntingly beautiful music track: “Willow and the Light” by gifted musician, Kevin Macleod. If possible, throw on some headphones and/or turn up the volume to fully appreciate the sounds of nature as well as the ethereal music… popcorn is optional.

In this presentation I emphasize the striking beauty that still exists on Mother Earth, the urgent need to conserve and protect her, and the dire consequences of failing to do so.

It is my hope that you enjoy the piece, and in some small way, it shines a light on the critical choices we need to make to protect and preserve the planet…and that we choose wisely.

Mystic Cliffs – West Coast Cliffs Shrouded in Mist

Mystic Cliffs, Carlsbad, CA 2008

In my quest to create ethereal sea and landscapes, I found myself atop a seaside road one misty morning near Carlsbad, California. Looking south along the shore, the cliffs that jutted out to sea were shrouded in mist. Waiting for the right wave to complete the composition, this image further exemplifies the spectacular scenery on the west coast of the United States and why it is a good idea for photographers to get up early.

Composition – Disregard the Photographic Rules

Niagara, 2006 (c) Barry Steven Greff 2012

One of my signature images, which was used to launch the blog, Niagara depicts how a unique composition can be extraordinarily powerful. The line of tourists on the bottom of the image were in Canada viewing the thundering falls in New York. The flying bird to their right was a (purposely) added bonus.

The composition of a photograph is just as important as the lighting, sometimes even more so. As can be seen from this image, as well as my last post (you can always click on the Blog Title to view all images), the photographic rules of composition were made to be broken. When I create an image I compose it according to what I feel about what is in front of me. The juxtaposition of the main subject, to the background and to anything else I choose to include. There needs to be a complete balance within the frame, every part of the image has to contribute to the whole picture, so to speak.

Often, this involves a great deal of negative space. If used improperly the image will seem imbalanced. When done right, you can create something unique, an image that goes against long standing photographic teachings, that violates the rule of thirds and often results in something very special. Sometimes I will shoot a scene utilizing varying compositions, the best of which is not always readily apparent in the viewfinder or LCD screen. Then, when editing the images, the most impactful composition becomes clear and it is usually the first one I saw which was also the most extreme variation from the norm.

So, the moral of the story is shoot from your heart, not your head. Experiment and disregard the traditional rules. Done right, you just might create and unexpectedly, powerful image.

Sweet Dreams – Sugar Refining in Florida

Emission Flight, Clewiston, FL 2012

In central South Florida, the landscape is dominated by sugarcane fields. Refineries here produce hundreds of thousands of tons of sugar each year worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Smoke stacks at the main refinery plants emit chemicals, which is largely waste from the burning of cane stems and other woody residue that creates fuel that runs the facilities. Many birds, including Vultures, hover near the site.

Sweet Dreams, Clewiston Sugarcane Fields, FL 2012

Prior to harvest, sugar cane covers much of the vast, flat landscape along U. S. Route 27 near Clewiston, Florida. Trucks can be seen barrelling down the highway carrying the harvested sugar cane to the plant for refining into crystal. Controlled burns in the fields are also a daily occurence and can be seen for miles, sending billowing clouds into the sky.

Happy Valentines Day – A Moment To Remember

A  Moment To Remember, South Beach, FL 2011

For Valentines Day, I have taken the liberty of bringing back an image I posted a year ago entitled: A Moment to Remember. Standing on the rock jetty between South Beach and Government Cut, this couple was so moved by the grandeur of the passing cruise ship that they  turned and embraced for a passionate kiss. For them, it was clearly a moment to remember, one that I was very fortunate to capture.

Starting 2012 Off Right – 3 Images in Black White Exhibition at C4fap

           Touch the Sky, 30 Rock, NYC 2009                           Beaded Web, Weston, FL 2011

      Moonlit Sailboats, Coconut Grove, FL 2010

Starting off 2012 right, with three images chosen for the Black & White Exhibition at the Center for Fine Art Photography in Fort Collins, Colorado. The exhibition was juried by Susan Spiritus of the Susan Spiritus Gallery in Newport Beach, CA

Susan Spiritus has been a leader in the field of fine art photography for over thirty years, opening the doors to her Southern California gallery in 1976 so that she could share her passion for photography with others. Today, the gallery handles the work of over fifty artists including photographic luminaries Ansel Adams, Ruth Bernhard and André Kertész. Also represented are many of today’s most popular and award-winning contemporary artists including Roman Loranc, Camille Seaman and Hiroshi Watanabe.

In addition to these three images (which have each individually appeared in prior blog posts here), Ms. Spiritus had previously chosen my image Moonscape, Matlacha, FL 2007 for the 2010 Dreams exhibition. This also marks the fifth exhibition in which my work has appeared at the Center for Fine Art Photography.

The Power of the Sea

Power of the Sea, Blowing Rocks Preserve, Jupiter Island, FL 2011

South Florida is not known for it’s large waves or rocky beaches. As a matter of fact, you can drive the entire coast and find that rocks are the exception, not the rule. One beautiful deviation from the norm is Jupiter Island located some 25 miles north of West Palm Beach. On the southernmost tip of the island is the Blowing Rocks Preserve, which is protected by The Nature Conservancy This barrier island sanctuary boasts the largest outcropping of sedimentary rock called Anastasia limestone (coquina) on the U.S. Atlantic Coast. Most likely formed around 120,000 years ago, in the Pleistocene Age, and composed primarily of shell and coral fragments, fossils and sand, these rarely exposed formations send plumes of saltwater up to 50 feet skyward as they are battered by waves.

Although great to visit any time of year, storms (even those well off shore), create the greatest show. On this particular day, swells of 12-15 feet were recorded from a storm that was far out at sea. The resulting impact at Blowing Rocks clearly exhibited the incredible…power of the sea.

I Built It, and They Came – Thanks for All the Blog Visits.

Rush Hour, Grand Central Station, NYC 2009

To show my appreciation for the many thousands of visits to my photo blog since launch, I move back to an image from my Cityscape series. This image of commuters moving between trains at rush hour through the main concourse of Grand Central Station was captured from a higher elevation at one end of the building. Not having a tripod with me, I needed to rest the camera on a concrete ledge and an article of winter clothing to raise the lens to the desired level. Steadying the camera was required to capture both the individuals that were stopped and blur those that were moving.

I greatly appreciate my blog visitors and will continue to post images that I hope you all enjoy…moving forward.

The Real Thing

Granite Flow, Boulder, CO 2008

After previously posting a manmade waterfall scenic, here I get back to the real deal. One of the most relaxing sounds on the planet is that of a cascading waterfall. This one, just outside of downtown Boulder, Colorado was exhibiting the significant run-off of the prior heavy winter snow season. This image was made under overcast skies which is always conducive to a tripod assisted slow shutter speed for silky water. Created during a light rainfall, the wet rock emphasized the structure of the hard granite against the soft flow of water.

So, unlike the image in my prior post, sometimes it takes a bit of exploration to find a scene like this, but it’s worth it to see and capture…the real thing.

BSG Featured in SHUTTERBUG Magazine

SHUTTERBUG Magazine has long been a trusted resource for everything photographic, in print and on-line This month’s print magazine cover (October issue) features a portrait by renowned photographer Steve McCurry which he shot on the last roll of Kodachrome film ever manufactured. Inside the magazine, there is a monthly column featuring select photography web site profiles. This issue’s article entitled: “Exploring Global Villages: Inspiring Images and Image-Makers” features my site Written by Joe Farace who is a widely published Colorado-based photographer and author of more than 30 books and 1900+ magazine stories, I have taken the liberty of re-printing it verbatim here:

“Barry Steven Greff’s photography is showcased in an elegantly designed website from Foliolink ( The site appears one way on my desktop computer and another, better I think, incarnation on my iPad, where captions and other
information appear as well. Images are arranged in four portfolios and Atmosphere displays images representing the majesty of nature, especially his monochrome image of Niagara Falls photographed like you’ve never seen it before. It’s a quiet allegory of the power of nature vs. the insignificance of humankind. It’s one of his few images that have people and here they are infinitesimal in size compared to the roar – you can almost hear it while looking at the photograph – of the falls.

Most of these images are in powerful black and white but when Greff uses color, it’s to make a point. The Classics portfolio may contain some of his classics but never fails to dazzle with understated yet inherently graceful attempts at depicting nature. Unlike the previous portfolios, Spirit & Light contains a few urban images made in New York City and, while wildly incongruous next to his nature images, are appealing in a completely different way. His image made through a car window could have easily been a still image from the film Taxi Driver, with all the connotations that come along with it. In Of the Wild, Greff has created portraits of all kinds of animals from eagles to peacocks to gorillas. This represents an entirely different body of work, separate from his landscapes, that nevertheless shows how a talented photographer confronted by a
different genre rises to the occasion. He’s created insightful works of great authority and style. “

Dream Big

Under the Boardwalk, Deerfield Beach, FL (2010)

In order to achieve one’s goals, you must dream big and believe in those dreams. To that end, I have visited several galleries throughout the years and while enjoying the existing exhibition, envisioned my work on their walls. As the old saying goes…you’ve gotta believe.

That was the case with Camera Obscura Gallery in Denver. When I first stopped in a couple of years ago, I didn’t realize at first that the elderly man sweeping the front steps was Hal Gould, an accomplished photographer who was vital to the early recognition of the medium as fine art. He became a respected gallerist for decades featuring the work of Sebastiao Salgado, Paul Strand, Jerry Uelsmann, Imogen Cunningham, and many other masters of photography at Camera Obscura. Would it be presumptuous of me to believe I would share these walls with such great names? I promised myself I would be exhibited here…you’ve gotta believe. I worked hard, I honed my craft and within two years from my first visit they held an open call, and two of my pieces were juried in. I was sharing wall space with some of the all time greats. One of those selected images, Under the Boardwalk, is featured above. Created at night while I was positioned under the pier, the biggest challenge was capturing the long exposure to soften the water and then grabbing my tripod and camera before getting soaked from the incoming waves.

During that same Colorado trip I had visited another very well respected gallery in Fort Collins, the Center for Fine Art Photography. Once more, I promised myself I would do whatever it took to have my work on these walls. With an outstanding director and staff, C4fap also has the continuous support of many prominent members of the fine art photography community. Again, with a great deal of hard work and persistence, within 18 months of that first visit, I was juried onto those hallowed walls as well.

In great appreciation to the Center, I have maintained a membership and continued to support them (and my career) by submitting additional work for consideration. With that in mind, I am honored that my image End of the Road, Florida Keys (2010) (featured three posts ago on my blog at was just juried into their DREAMS exhibition by Aline Smithson who has been the Gallery Editor for Light Leaks magazine, writes and edits the blog, Lenscratch, and has curated exhibitions for a number of galleries and on-line magazines. As
a photographer, Ms. Smithson has been widely published and exhibited nationally in museums and galleries and had her work featured on the cover of PDN just this month.

This marks the third time in just more than a year that I have been juried into exhibitions at the Center for Fine Art Photography. This continuing recognition by jurors consisting of prominent gallerists, curators and photographers reinforces my desire to create great work and to always… dream big.

Back to the Sea

Soft Surf, Deerfield Beach, FL 2011

Anyone actually reading my blogs would know that this has been a rough year for me physically. Although I am still dealing with the situation, after six months I finally picked up my camera, more to raise my spirits than anything else. To me, there is nothing like the ebb and flow of the sea as it makes its way to and from the shore, to soothe the sole and lift the spirits. So, it is no surprise that the first time I ventured out after a  lengthy, medically induced, hibernation, I would migrate to the ocean.

As I have often done before, for this image I waited until just before sunset to park myself, my camera and tripod in the surf. Not having been to this spot for so long, the topography had changed significantly. The Florida beaches continuously erode and are routinely replenished with sand by local city governments. Since my favorite rock formations on this beach had recently been (temporarily) covered, I moved north to a set that had already been exposed by the constant rush of the surf.

This image causes an optical illusion. From afar it may look like a Seascape that features a soft cloud formation in the sky above. it doesn’t. There is no sky in this image, the soft pattern at the top of the image is the tide coming in, the sky was purposely left out of the frame.

So, after a long an arduous layoff, which is still not over by a longshot, at least I know I can get back on the horse. I know that nothing I am handed in life will kill my passion for creating beautiful images, nothing will damper my photographic spirit. And eventually, nothing, but nothing, will keep me from coming…back to the sea.

Over the Edge.

Dark Descent, Niagara Falls, 2006

As the continuous torrent of water flows over Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side of Niagara, the powerful nighttime spotlights illuminate the cascade as it disappears into the mist. This image, Dark Descent, was chosen for first place, outstanding achievement in the 2010 Black & White Spider Awards. It was shot with a tripod mounted 400 mm lens from 2 miles away to capture this angle. The image was created to take the viewer…over the edge.

The Rising

                                                    Mountain Moonrise, CA, 2009

After pre-visualizing this image I waited past sunset for the first hint of light to shine behind the mountain. As the glorious full moon rose above the treeline, I quickly composed to capture what I had been looking for. It has always reminded me of the movie E.T. The Extraterrestrial, minus the silhouette of the boy on his bike flying across the night sky with ET in his basket.

It also represents perseverance. No matter what the day brings, it is always certain… that the moon will be rising.

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