Zovirl Industries

Mark Ivey’s weblog

Photographer’s Guide to Point Reyes

I’m finally launching a project I’ve been working with off and on for the past year: a photographer’s guide to Point Reyes National Seashore. I’ve been taking photos at Point Reyes for several years now and it is one of my favorite places for landscape photography in the Bay Area. Since I couldn’t find any resources that talk about taking photos there, I decided to start one. I have 3 goals with this project:

  1. Help people take better pictures at Point Reyes.
  2. Give myself an excuse to go there more often to do research for the website.
  3. Improve my writing through practice.

Now, for some technical details about the site. It is built using WordPress. Although primarily blogging software, WordPress also has a limited ability to write static pages. This is intended for things like an “About” page, but also can be pressed into service to make an entire static (i.e. non-blog) site. The blog features of WordPress, which are perfect for a “News/Announcements” page, can be bumped off the front page of the site to a dedicated news section. Since I’m already using WordPress for zovirl.com, it is convenient to be using the same software for pointreyesphotoguide.com.

WordPress has some good image upload features, and it generates thumbnails for you too. However, I want more control over both the image resizing and the final URLs of the images, so I’m using a Makefile and ImageMagick to automate the image generation. The original images are organized in a directory structure which mirrors the final URL structure I want. These are much larger than practical for a web page, so ImageMagick is used to shrink them down to the full size & thumbnail images. I apply a slight sharpen after the resize to avoid post-resize blurriness. Having automated this process, it was easy to try different images sizes because I just had to tweak a parameter in the Makefile and run ‘make’ again.

Photographer’s Guide to Point Reyes