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Norm Bleistein


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Norm Bleistein                       back to gallery artists

Norm started taking pictures with a plastic “Donald Duck” camera when he was five years old.  After an ever-improving series of 35mm cameras, Norm added digital cameras to his collection in 1999. He has become totally hooked on the power of the digital darkroom, working in PhotoShop from original digital images, scanned prints, negatives and slides.

Norm tends to see things in frames, with some background process in his brain that constantly composes the world around him into images to photograph. He usually decides fairly quickly on the composition, but then spends time in setup to achieve what he has envisioned in his head. However, Norm can move fast when it is necessary.

In the realm of digital processing, Norm avoids artificial color enhancement in deference to developing the image to match what his eye saw when the image was captured. Film or digital media can capture only a small fraction of the highlight and shadow that the human eye sees. The digital darkroom facilitates recapturing the visual image, especially near the edges of the range of light of the medium, where detail begins to fail. Further, the eye interprets color more vividly than it appears in any image capture. Norm tries to reproduce that interpreted color while avoiding artificial enhancement. For him, the result has to be pleasing and plausible, but Norm does admit to a consciousness of light and color that was raised by his love and study of impressionist painting.

Norm has translated his enthusiasm for teaching and his enthusiasm for the new medium into a side career of teaching digital photography and digital darkroom classes. The digital photography classes introduce the skills of planning images for later processing in the digital darkroom to a traditional photography class. The digital darkroom class teaches a basic workflow—standardized procedures for processing images to get the best out of them. Together with his wife, Judy, Norm also teaches more advanced and specialized classes.

Norm has had a long and successful academic career as an applied mathematician, while taking thousands of photographs “on the side.” Now, in semi-retirement from his mathematics, the rate at which he creates new images has skyrocketed. Norm and Judy travel a good deal, always with cameras. Together, they approach each new adventure in familiar or unfamiliar places with a sense of excitement about the people and locale. The digital darkroom provides a venue for a wonderful balance of their creative and analytical sides, allowing them to make the best visual statement they can in order to achieve and share an intimate sense of the places they experience.



Montaione, Italy
Giclee print from original photograph

Vernazzza en Basso, Italy
Giclee print from original photograph

Antique Press
Portofino, Italy
Giclee print from original photograph

Lavender Feld
Provence, France
Giclee print from original photograph

Coming of Age
Giclee print from
original photograph


Additional images.  All are giclee prints from original photographs:

Lone Horse Mill
Crystal, Colorado
One of the most photographed spots in Colorado, located in Crystal, a four-wheel drive from Marble. Photomerge of three images, late afternoon, September 21.
McClure Pass Snowfall
September 21 on McClure Pass, snowy, cold.
Night View, Mt. Ste. Michelle
An image captured before patches of fog coming in from the right and clouds gathering to engulf the mystical promontory of Mont Sainte Michelle have completed the nightly enshrouding of the abbey.

Reflections 2
Leaves in a pond located on Kebler Pass shortly beyond Treasury Hill Road on the right, driving away from Crested Butte. The pond is hidden from cars and bicyclists, although it is right beside the road. Three image photomerge.
Monet's Bridge, Giverny
Giverny We arrived at Monet's Garden at Giverny early in the morning with a slightly hazy blue sky provding slightly filtered and diffused sunlight. It was hours before we got this far in our wanderings around the garden. 'not the traditional view, which is usually taken from the other side of the bridge. This side has more foreground!

Eiffel Tower at Night
I wanted an image of the tower looking back towards the Seine behind. We walked up boulevard with the tower on our right. The two sides of this street seemed to provide the perfect frame for this tower of perfect proportions.

Anthracite Range, Ohio Pass, Colorado
A view from Ohio Pass Road, which starts about three miles north of Gunnison on CO 135 and runs northwest to the summit of Kebler Pass. The Anthracite Range runs roughly east/west near the summit of the pass. This view shows snow flurries coming from the east on September 22! One family of aspen has already lost its leave while others retain their fall splendor.
Reflections 1
Reflections in a pond on Kebler Pass Road, just beyond Treasury Hill Road near Crested Butte. It is necessary to walk along the road to find this pond. Two image photomerge.

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