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Barley. San Mateo County Farm. 2017. Canon 1Dx II. Click to order a print. Upcoming Workshop: Fine Art Printing Hands-on. July 15-18, 2017.


Welcome to the July 2017 Edition of the Photography Newsletter.

Sometimes, looking back over the month, I wonder what on earth I have to write about. After all, I've just been working away, chipping away at tasks that often seem more complex than they ought to be. But then, as I sit down to write the newsletter, my month comes back to me, and I realize, that as I'm in the business of photography, my tasks and my curiosities not only fill the days but there is a continuum of new photographs and explorations.


This month's View From Here column talks about a few recent experiences, projects, and discoveries. We hope you find the column interesting and will consider sending us some comments.


  • I just finished work on a new Pacifica book, a gathering of work from my Pacifica Calendar series over the last few years and other photographs I've made in the course of living here for 30 years. I'm happy to have Ben Pease's great trail map as part of our outreach to bring attention to the natural wonders of Pacifica.
  • 2017 Workshop Schedule is building with these and other great courses coming up. See what a great experience students have had on Steve's Workshops by exploring Workshop Testimonials.

    Fine Art Editing & Printing Hands-on. July 15-18, 2017. Focusing exclusively on fine-art digital printing, Stephen explores the possibilities of printmaking using Epson inkjet printers. Concentrating on printing with color pigments and black/gray ink combinations on coated and rag papers, students learn from the digital pioneer how he obtains his impressive results. Stephen covers workflow issues, color management, correcting color casts, adjustment layers, custom profile generation, editing, and inspection, as well as paper visual qualities and the challenges and advantages of printing.

    Digital Black & White: Vision and Printing. August 5-6, 2017. Explore black and white conversion, aesthetics and printing in the digital age with a classical landscape photographer who comes from the world of large-format black and white photography and years in the darkroom and has worked hard and early on for the development of high quality digital photography technology.

    Crater Lake and Total Solar Eclipse. August 16-21, 2017 Awesome Crater Lake, a total Eclipse of the Sun among strange Painted Hills, check this out, an amazing opportunity! (full with waiting list)


Steve with the Fine Art Printing Workshop in early May 2017.

Scholarships and Mentoring

As part of our ongoing commitment to photographic education, there is one student scholarship spot in many of our classes. Please pass the word along.

For discounted time studying with Steve, keep in mind our Mentoring Program.

With all of our busy schedules and limited budgets, destination workshops or classes become a challenge, but many of you still have questions you need answered, or feedback on some new work. We want to remind you of our Virtual Online Consulting Program. This service allows all of you out there around the globe to consult online live with Steve on technical, aesthetic and workflow issues using Skype and your webcam.

Our Essays and Tutorials from the past couple of years can now be found on our Newsletter Archive and some on Google Blogger.

We hope you can come by the gallery and see the National Parks Gallery, and the Exquisite Earth exhibition with its accompanying very special Exquisite Earth Portfolio 1. We invite you to join us on a workshop, rent lab space, or just say hello and let us know what you are up to photographically and what you might like to see us offer. We value your input.


Workshop Testimonials



Wheat and Purple Verbena. 2017.
Canon EOS 1Dx II.

Wheat Field and Purple Verbena. 2017.
Canon EOS-1Dx II

9.5x14 Pigment Inkjet Print on Cotton paper
$195 each.

Wheat field topped in purple flowers.


Workshop Schedule
Fine Art Editing & Printing Hands-on. July 15-18, 2017
Digital Black and White: Vision and Printing August 5-6, 2017
Large-Format Fine Art Digital Printing July 22-23, 2017
Crater Lake and Total Solar Eclipse. August 16-21, 2017
Highway One San Mateo Coast. September 9-10, 2017
Pt. Lobos, Carmel and Big Sur. September 23-25, 2017
Death Valley in Winter January 27-30, 2018


Linda Mar Bay, just down the road from Stephen Johnson Photography.


Speaking and Exhibition Events (see below)

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Rocks. Pebble Beach.. 2017
Canon 1Dx II

Eroded landscape on the San Mateo County Coast.


Purchase a print of this photograph

jack casady

Jack Casady of Hot Tuna and Jefferson Airplane. Summer of Love +50 Celebration..2017.


by Stephen Johnson

This past month has largely been spent working at the studio on internal projects, but a special 50th anniversary of 1967's Summer of Love scene brought me into Golden Gate Park on the first of many celebratory wanders.

Celebration of the Summer of Love

1967 is being celebrated as the Summer of Love on it's 50th. anniversary around San Francisco all summer. The first event was a show opening at the De Young Museum. For the Solstice, a celebration was held with live music and light show at the Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park. A couple of my good friends gathered and we kicked back to soak up the scene. Apparently 9,700 tickets were issued to the free event.


oak limbs

The Conservatory. Golden Gate. Summer Solstice. 2017.
Canon 1Dx II

There was a lot of gray hair outfitted in tie-dyed shirts, scarves and dresses. Young faces were everywhere too, often retro attired in seeming 60s garb. Face painting, picnics and general good spirited hanging out filled the afternoon. The live stage featured appearances by various local bands with Country Joe McDonald, David Freiberg and Jack Casady all sitting in on tunes from Quicksilver, the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jesse Colin Young and some Beatles covers.



Scenes from Summer of Love +50 Solstice Celebration. Golden Gate Park. San Francisco. 2017.
Canon 1Dx II.


As darkness fell, lights on the crowd dimmed and we were greeted with a few comments by politicians and event organizers, drones and helicopters overhead and some technical delays. The delay left the basin in front of the Conservatory strangely full of people and pretty dark for a few minutes. Then then a few songs from the Sixties began to fill the air and the light show began.


Summer of Love +50 Light Show to Scott MacKenzie’s ‘San Francisco'.
2017. Canon1Dx II.


The light show was a bit cheesy, lacking in inspiration, but still fun to see. I grabbed some pretty shaky. hand-held video with my 70-200mm lens. Looking at the video back at my studio, I remembered that Adobe Premiere had a shake reduction plug-in, Warp Stabilizer, and it worked very well. It makes me want to move any hand-held video from one on my Canon cameras in video mode or the iPhone into Premiere.



and now for something completely different...

gift certificate

Modern Man. Ushuaia Argentina. 2005.


A very strange photograph turned up among the archives. I have little memory of taking it, only the date tells me where it was. Better records would be better, but the story of artistic construct and social commentary seems clear.


...continued top of right column of the essay


Tailings from Drone Perspective.. 2017.
DJI Phantom 4 Drone.

Drone Mapping

A few weeks ago we ran into a fellow named Dan Koopman on the cliff side at Devil's Slide flying his drone in an automated mapping mode. Although it made perfect sense, I was not fully hip as to how far this software and infrastructure had come for such efforts. Dan was very encouraging and helpful, just the kind of encounter we always hope for.

Of course I had to try it, and the next day mapped the Art Center where my studios and galleries are located.

aerial map

Stitched Aerial from Adobe Camera Raw. Pacifica Center for the Arts.
Home of Stephen Johnson Photography. 2017.
DJI Phantom 4 Drone controlled by Drone Deploy software.


The idea is to load a drone controlling software, then select an area you want mapped. You then fly a programmed path, automatically making photographs that overlap and build a fairly high resolution image set that then gets stitched together into a product that looks like a much higher altitude rendition.

I used Drone Deploy to program and fly the route with two different sites to stitch the images together for the online produced map. Any uploaded maps can then go into a shared database that anyone can access in an open source environment. The whole thing is a kick.

My first mapping attempt had me fly the drone right into a mountainside as I had not fully appreciated the altitude of the hillside. The drone flew to it to cover my selected area. With GPS still sending out signal from the aircraft, I was able to locate my quad-bird. It was fine, and was shortly up and flying again, making new photographs.

One downside, the programmed flights take only jpgs, thus reducing the usefulness of the individual images as photographs.



Pacifica Center for the Arts derived from stitched aerials above. Pacifica. 2017.
3D Rendering by Peter J. Sucy.
DJI Phantom 4 drone.


I can tell already, this capability is deeply seductive. As I learn more, I will likely continue to write about it.


A Few New Stereo Cards



Weaver. Norway. 1910.

I can never resist a stack of stereo-cards in antique stores, and I found a few I really liked recently right here in Pacifica. Both the dignity of work and craft, with a strong sense of struggle came through to me in this card. I thought it would be nice to share it. I also found the text on the back interesting.

From the back of the card circa 1910:

I3499--Weaving Woolen Blankets on a Primitive Hand Loom, Telemarken, Norway.

In the matter of manufactures, Norway is very backward. It contains very few mills or factories for making cloth and these are in or near the larger cities. In the rural districts women may be found spinning and weaving just as they did in the earlier days in the United States.

Most Norwegian families raise their own sheep and spin their own wool and very many of the homes contain rude looms such as the one shown here, where the yarn may be made into homespun cloth for the family. Down below may be seen a roll of the cloth already woven. It is very durable and warm, suitable for the long, cold, dark Norwegian winters. Very often it is colored with home-made dyes and may be made beautiful by a skillful worker.

The weaver shown in the picture, with her fair skin and 'heavy braids of light hair is a good type of Norwegian women. They are industrious and thrifty people, otherwise they could not gain a living in that mountainous country with its short summers.

In recent years large numbers of these thrifty Norwegian people have come to the United States. They have settled in most of the northern states but are most numerous in northern Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota and the Dakotas.

Copyright 1910, Keystone View Company



Recently at Stephen Johnson Photography


ee catalog


The Exquisite Earth Exhibition Catalog

On a roll on fixing bodies of work into POD books, I decided before the EE show could come down for upcoming show, I wanted to create a printed record. So, now available is the 56 page 11x17 wire bound book, 5 years of work from 2005 to 2010 traveling this wondrous planet.

Preview and Order Here


please email your comments to us

The Stephen Johnson Photography Gift Shop

Featured Products



New Exquisite Earth Exhibition Catalog

pacifica book


ee book pageee book page

  • Photographs from 2005-2010
  • 56 pages
  • 11x17 wire-bound book
  • $50

Preview and Order Here

New Pacifica Book

pacifica book



pacifica bookpacifica book

  • 74 pages
  • 11x17 wire-bound book
  • Pacifica Trail Map
  • 32 years in Pacifica
  • Drawn from 10 years of calendars
  • $75

Preview and Order Here


Pacifica Land Trust Trail Map

Pacifica Trail Map by Pease Maps special to the Pacifica Land Trust.

11" x 17" folded
(free shipping) proceeds go the Pacifica Land Trust, a non-profit corporation.

I'm proud of my 16 years on the board of the Pacifica Land Trust, and happy to have Ben Pease's great trail map as part of our outreach to bring attention to the natural wonders of Pacifica.


trail maptrail map


2017 Pacifica Calendar

20 scenes in and around Pacifica, California where Stephen Johnson Photography is located. Full page trail map included. Printed on a color laser digital press.

11" x 17"

To order directly from MagCloud Printing

2017 pacifica calendar

Gift Certificates for Prints and Workshops!

Emailed or shipped with beautiful gift note card.


To Purchase



gift certificate

Life Form Note cards

5x7 inches (now in stock)



Click to Purchase

12 image Note card set with envelopes featuring photographs from Steve's new Life Form work.

Printed by Steve in his studio in very limited numbers on a color laser digital press


gift certificate

National Park Note cards

note card

National Park Color Note card Set
Stephen Johnson
12 cards/envelopes $20 set

From "With a New Eye" Beautiful 300 line screen offset reproductions with envelopes in clear box. A great gift.


gift certificate



Please come visit us at our gallery and see our original prints in person. The subtle detail of the prints and the beautiful texture of the fine art paper have to be seen to be understood. And while you're here, browse through our books, cards, posters, and specially priced prints.

We're happy to mail you a copy of our product catalog, just send a note to or call us.

We're located at:

Stephen Johnson Photography at the Pacifica Center for the Arts
1220-C Linda Mar Boulevard, Creekside Suites, 5-7
Pacifica, CA 94044
(650) 355-7507



Pacifica Center for the Arts from Linda Mar Boulevard

Studio Lab Rental

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Stephen Johnson Photography at the Pacifica Center for the Arts
1220-C Linda Mar Boulevard, Creekside Suites, 5-7
Pacifica, CA 94044 650 355-7507

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Last updated on July 8, 2017 . Mail comments to:
Photographs and Text Copyright ©2017, Stephen Johnson. All Rights Reserved Worldwide