Photo of the Month

Selected by the TCCC Members


 2017 - 2018 Photos


These photos are special, because they are chosen by the TCCC members themselves.
Starting with March 2013, we began asking the members to select what they consider the best "Photo of the Month," a Color and a Black and White photograph, chosen from the Prints and Digital Slides Judged to be Honors in that months competition.



March 2018 Photos

Black & White

Ken McKeown - Young Tribal Dancer

Young Tribal Dancer was photographed at the Potawatomi Native American "Harvest Days" at Dowagiac Michigan.  This event is usually around labor day and draws several hundred Native Americans from a variety of states.  Young Tribal Dancer was one of the many in the dance ceremony.

Using my Canon7D Mark ll with a 70-300 canon zoom lens I was able to isolate the subject from a lot of unwanted background.

Used Topaz software to convert the image to black & white. Black & white profile was oil paint.

Thanks for your votes.



Jake Toering - Hummer

We arrived in Arizona on December 1, 2017.  A few days later I set up my hummer feeders.  Within a day hummers were very active.  After watching them for a few days, I set up a chair along with my tripod and sat there waiting for them to come in.

This "hummer" was the boss.  He chased other males away while he let the females feed.
I took many photos of them around and on the feeders.  I wanted to catch one while it hovered just a short distance from the feeder.  Hence the result.

Camera was a Canon, 60D, set at F/8, 1/800 sec, ISO 400.  Focal length 75mm.
  Since the hummers are so fast I had to shoot multiple bursts.

Post editing included enlarging the hummer, and I also added a vignette.

These birds are so amazing, sometimes I just watched them and forgot to click the shutter.  Therefore it was a double treat for me when I obtained this shot.  I saw the before, the now, and the after.

Don't just click the shutter, enjoy what you are looking at.  Your pleasure will be doubled.

Thanks for the Honor.



February 2018 Photos

Black & White - Tie

Dennis Hafer - Theater Seating

Theater Seating was photographed at the St. Louis Muny Theater in Forest Park, St. Louis, MO., with a Canon EOS 7D, using a Tamron 18-270mm lens at 91mm.

Exposure: 1/125 @ f:11, ISO 400.

The RAW file was first processed in Adobe Camera RAW, and then in Adobe Photoshop using Topaz Studio, Curves, and a Gradient Map.


Black & White - Tie

Tom McCall - Side Light

Side Light was taken at 4:40 pm. on the North side of the North Pier and Catwalk looking West, in the afternoon of December 26, 2007.  The weather had been very cold for a few days, with strong winds and temperatures that dropped into the single digits with below zero wind chills.  The winds had been strong and gusting to 45 - 50 mph. All of those conditions, plus open water on the lake, makes it ideal for the lake to have surging waves that crash against the side of the pier.  The crashing waves then become a spray of freezing water that is carried by the strong winds onto the catwalk.  The high wind speeds made parts of the spray freeze on an angle during the forming of ice.  I could see where the winds and waves had covered the pier and catwalk structure with a massive amount of ice.  But a cloudless day, lots of direct sun light and the warmer temperatures helped a lot of the ice to brake off and slide into the lake.

When I was there that afternoon, it was all blue skies and sunshine, with the sun starting to get lower in the Southern sky that was providing the great side lighting.  The temperature was 45 degrees, with a light wind out of the South, making it a beautiful day and a very nice way to spend a couple of hours taking photographs in the middle of the winter.

Canon EOS 20D Exposure 1/125; 0.5 EV; f11; ISO 100; with a Sigma 18 - 200mm lens at 48 mm.

Post processing was in Photoshop CS6 and Perfect Effects 9.5 by onOne Software.

Thanks for your votes.



Ron Bonczkowski - Patterns In Red

Back in 2016 on one of our ROMEO outings, we were at the Regent Theater in Allegan at 10am and could shoot anything we wanted until 11am inside.
The seats looked like a good subject for patterns in B&W but also looked great in the color of red.

Taken with Nikon D300, 18-105 zoom set at 62mm, Raw, ISO 200, F-18, for 30 seconds.

I still use Adobe Elements 11.  A little cropping and straitening, Levels at auto and sharpening.  A small amount of cleaning with the Band-Aid brush

If  the members would like to know what ROMEO stands for ask Jim Lynch, or email him.

Thanks for all members voting for this picture.


Special Note from the Webmaster:
This is one of those special times for the Photo of the Month.  Having one of your Honor images selected by the club members as Photo of the Month is pretty special.  Receiving both, the Black & White and the Color selections in the same month and both in Select, is rare and very special.  This has occurred only on two (2) other occasions.  In January 2015 Ken McKeown had both of the POM Photos and in April 2015 Dennis Hafer had both POM Photos, all of them were in Select.

The January Select Subject was "Creative." There were a lot of excellent Honor photos to choose the POM from and it was going to take exceptional images to be selected as the winners.  I think we can all agree that Maria's images were definitely exceptional.  She came up with some wonderful ideas and was able to convey them into her photos for us.  They were both very well done.
Way to go Maria, great job.   Congratulations...

Many thanks to all of you (we had 26 votes) that took the time to review the Honor Gallery and submit your votes.  I want you to know it is much appreciated.  Thank You!


January 2018 Photos

Black & White

Maria Pelaez - Little Boy

This little boy is my son.  I took this picture two years ago in Saint Joseph while my kids where playing in the snow.  I used a Nikon D90 and a 70-300 mm lens at 200mm, f 4.8, ISO 800.

The image of the trees was taken in Saint Joseph last year with a Nikon D90 and a 18-200mm lens.

I created a file in Photoshop with both images, I positioned the photo of the trees in the middle of the head of my boy and changed the blending mode of the layer to screen mode.  I erased the unwanted parts of the images and convert the final image to black and white and finally adjusted the contrast, brightness and sharpness.

Thank you for your votes!



Maria Pelaez - Getting ready for Fall

This picture was taken in November, fall is my favorite season and I was inspired to do something with leaves.

The idea was to pretend that I am the one that helps to create fall, the one that makes all those leaves getting ready with a little help of paint and a paintbrush.

I took the picture with a Nikon D90 and a 35mm. lens, f 5.6, ISO 100.

I dipped the leaves in a bowl of water so that they looked freshly painted, arranged the leaves on the table and added a bit of dirt around to give the table a little texture.  I arranged a paint palette with paint similar to the colors of the leaves.  I adjusted contrast, saturation, sharpness and exposure in Photoshop.  I did the last effects on an iPad in an app called Procreate, using painter-like oil brushes I added some paint around the leaves to create the painting effect and added some drops of paint on the table.

Thank you for your votes!


December 2017 Photos

Black & White

Jim Lynch - Civil War Troops

The image was taken with a 30D Canon at Gettysburg Battle Field.  Converted into B&W and a couple textures added and cropped down to a pretty much a square composition.




Tom McCall - A Column in Red

A Column in Red was taken on Sunday March 25th. 2012, during the preparation and testing for a Monday Night Program that included this setup for Water Drop photography.  This was another one of those fortuitous moments of capturing a water drop photo that became a Photo of the Month choice.  If you look at the September 2015 POM, you'll see "Liquid in Motion" another photo taken on this same Sunday evening during the testing.  The description for that image explains the process so I won't repeat it here.  Water drop photography can be a lot of fun once you get through the learning process and how to set everything up.

Just remember that close-up and/or macro photography is more up close and personal to the viewer, so the composition and details are going to play an important part of your photos.  On the plus side, since these are set ups, you are controlling everything, (except the actual water drop in this case) and you have the ability to set everything else up the way you want.

Canon EOS 40D, Sigma 18-200mm Lens at 200 mm Macro 1:4.4, f 6.3, 1/100, ISO100, Sigma EF-500 flash set to Manual lowest setting.

Post processing was with Adobe Photoshop CS6, Camera Raw and On1 Perfect Effects.

I thank you for your votes...


November 2017 Photos

Black & White

Tom McCall - From Waves to Mist

From Waves to Mist was taken, in an area South of Lions Beach, of the waves interacting with old wooden pilings and the jumbled rocks dumped there to provide protection from erosion.  I liked the effects of a small aperture and the long exposure, that captured the waves and spray as they created a mist that floated like a blanket of fog over everything.  The sand in the foreground was there only because of a recent beach replenishment project and was quickly washed away during the next storm.

Post processing was in Photoshop CS6 and On1 Perfect Effects 10.

Canon EOS D30 Exposure ISO 400, f45, 25 sec., Canon 75 - 300mm at 300 mm on a tripod.



Dennis Hafer - Spinning Wheel

Spinning Wheel was taken in May during the "Blue Hour", in Pigeon Forge, TN.

Canon 7D Mark II with a Tamron 18-270mm lens at 18mm.  Exposure: 10 sec., f22, ISO 100.

Processing: Adobe Camera RAW for highlights & shadows. Photoshop plugins (Topaz Studio, ON1 Effects) for contrast, HSL(Hue, Saturation, Luminance), and vignetting.



October 2017 Photos

Black & White



Barry Nelson - Bryce Canyon Hoodoos

Bryce Canyon Hoodoos was taken in Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah, during September 2017, while on vacation and traveling with a Sarett Nature Center group.  I liked the brilliant colors, shapes and wide view of the Hoodoos.

Canon EOS 7D, Tamron 16-300 lens at 16mm, Exposure 1/160 - F:8 - Iso 200

Post Processing in Lightroom CC for Basic adjustments, setting white and Black points, increase contrast, lens corrections and chromatic aberration defaults and added some dehaze.  Then in On-1 software to add Dynamic Contrast, a little sunshine filter, and vignette.  Into Photoshop to size for competition.

This was my favorite photo taken at Bryce Canyon National Park.


September 2017 Photos

Black & White

Dennis Hafer - St. Anne's Chapel

St. Anne's Chapel was shot with a Sony A6500 camera using a Sony 10-18mm wide angle lens at 10mm.

Exposure: 2 sec. +- 2 sec. , f:13, ISO 100.

Processing: 3 exposure HDR processed in Photomatix Pro 6.0 as Fusion/Natural.
Opened up Shadows and closed down Highlights in Camera Raw to maximize the Dynamic Range.
Used Topaz Studio in Photoshop as a plug-in to adjust contrast & detail.
Then used ON1 Effects in Photoshop as a plug-in to convert a B&W.



Sandy Hafer - Copper Pots

The picture of the “Copper Pots” was taken this May when we were in Florida on vacation.  The window was inside a restaurant at Universal Studios.

 I used the Sony A6300, with an 18-200mm lens (f 3.5 -6.3) at 18mm.  The exposure was f5.6 - 1/125sec. - ISO 3200.  I used Camera Raw lens correction and then Photoshop.  I used Topaz studio to change the contrast, saturation, and added a vignette. 

It was my favorite picture from the trip.




Photo of the Month for the Year
2016 - 2017 Competition Season


The members have selected what they consider the best two (2) photos, a Black and White and a Color photograph, from all of the POM Winners that year, for the "Photo of the Month for the Year."

These are their selections.


Black & White

Photo of the Month for the Year Award Winner
Gary Huttenstine - Eagle Eye 3

Eagle eye 3 was taken at Howell Nature Center in 2014.  I shot it in camera raw on a bright overcast day using a Canon EOS T5i, EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM zoom lens on a tripod.  Lens was maxed out at 300mm at f7.1, 1/25, ISO 100.
Post processing included conversion to black and white, some cropping, high contrast and clarity to increase detail and white balance set “as shot”.  Brought out the black tones a bit and the highlights slightly.  Even though it was misting, it was an enjoyable shoot.
Thanks to everyone who voted to include my black and white as photo of the month.  I appreciate it very much and am honored to be selected by such a talented group.



Photo of the Month for the Year Award Winner
Jim Lynch - Reflections

I think this is a Greater Scaup that I photographed at Kellogg Bird Sanctuary.  At the time I was using a Cannon 50D with a 500 mm lens.  It was would have been shot at f4.0 on aperture - priority, ISO 100 with whatever light was available.

Photo was taken 3 or 4 years ago and for me it is all about the waterfowl that you might find up there. This was the reason I was up there.

There was some post processing done in Photoshop CC.




Additional Photo Galleries:

- Monthly Honor Images

- You are Here

- Photo of the Month images prior to the 2016 - 2017 Season

- Honor Images prior to 2005 - 2006 Season

- What We Do - It's all about photography and having fun...

 - Top 3 winners in each category.

  - TCCC Members Top Place Winning Photos in SWMCCC



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