Developing your own film

I started off in film and jumped wholeheartedly into digital back in 2002 when the Nikon D100 was released.

It was supposed to be a short break from film.  I’d always intended to return to it at some point and shoot the two side by side, but I was smitten by digital and it was a good 10 years before I finally pulled my Nikon N90s back out of retirement.

One thing I’d never done when I originally shot film was to develop and print it myself.  This is something I wanted to correct when I started again (prompted by the acquisition of a Nikkormat FTn for the princely sum of £1 at a local car boot sale).

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Birds, Birds, more Birds and a Dog!

A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of spending four and a bit days at the International Centre for Birds of Prey at Duncombe Park in Helmsley, Yorkshire.

I go to a number of game fairs and falconry fairs throughout each year, sometimes for work and sometimes for personal pleasure, but this one was a little something extra.  As well as being ICBP Duncombe’s first Raptor Fair, which looks set to become a great annual event, I was to photograph some of their display birds.

Of course, I photographed the birds during the displays themselves, as I often do at such events, darting about the arena and hopping from post to post, but I wanted to give them something a bit special.


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What is “Sync Speed”?

Most people who use flash understand that your sync speed is the maximum shutter speed with which you can use flash.  What people generally don’t know is why.

“My camera goes all the way up to 1/8000th of a second, so why can’t I use flash past 1/250th?”

Well, this is really all down to how your shutter works in a DSLR.  The types of shutters in DSLRs are called “focal-plane shutters”.

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“Do you photograph babies?”

My reply to the question posed in the title of this post is usually something along the lines of, “It depends.  What type of baby?”

Then the conversation tends to go one of three ways.

The first two answers are the obvious ones.  I either hear “a little boy” or, not surprisingly, “a little girl”.

The third answer is my favourite, and the one I seem to hear most often;  “It’s a baby [insert random non-human species here].”

It’s not that I have anything against kids, you understand, but if you want the absolute best photographs of your new children, go find somebody who’s good at photographing babies and LOVES doing it.

The images will be worth it!

When it comes to animals, however, it’s a whole different story.

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Calibrating an iPad Display!

So, this is interesting, and while datacolor have had a Spyder option for a while, its calibration is limited to its own software (unless it’s changed since I last took a proper look at it).

This new offering from X-Rite, released in March, looks rather good, though, and it seems it has an API that allows other app developers to add support for the profiles it creates (meaning other software can show your images correctly, too – Hello? Lightroom Mobile? You listening, Adobe?).

There are, however, a couple of things that annoy me slightly about it, although one kind of negates the other (for me anyway).

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Fixing the Twenty Fourteen WP Theme Gap

I get why they put a gap at the top of the posts & pages in the Twenty Fourteen WordPress Theme, but it’s a little inconsistent (aesthetically speaking).  The gap does make blog posts without a feature image look just right, and fit & flow they way they should.

If, however, your post has a feature image, it just looks awkward (to me, anyway), and as the goal for me is try to to always have a feature image for each blog post, I decided to go ahead and remove the gap.

It’ll also force me to update those older posts at some point to add a feature image.

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The Bluebells Are Back

Yesterday was spent out with a friend scouting a few of the locations I discovered last year but didn’t get to properly shoot at the time of year I wanted – the time when bluebells are out.

Last year was a strange one, with the longer winter they arrived a couple of months later than expected.  This year, however, they’ve already started to come out.

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Turn off Facebook’s Auto-Playing Videos

It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s a step in the right direction.

Lifehacker recently posted a way to turn these off, but at the moment Facebook only really allows you to do it on the desktop.

We can turn it off for Android and iOS devices, but only if they’re using GPRS/3G/4G (ie, not WiFi), which is understandable, but unfortunately it doesn’t help my issue.

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