Tag Archives: Photography

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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Campfire Cooking

This post might seem a little bit of an odd one for a site like this, but as I often shoot on location (English weather permitting), I also go camping on location if I want to shoot particularly late, or super early in the morning – or if I want to scout out a location and see how it looks at different times of the day and night.

Friday/Saturday was an example of the latter at a location that’s absolutely gorgeous in the summer when the sun’s out and the clouds are few.

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Arranging a shoot here, however, is not a simple affair, especially when you have a lot of equipment to carry, as well as food and other supplies.  Two of us each had to make two trips between the car and the location to carry everything up.

So, an overnight test was essential to work everything out in advance of actually arranging a shoot.

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Lightroom Mobile – What’s the big deal?

I’ve had a few people asking me about this, so here’s the short version.

I won’t be getting it.  Not interested in the least.  It doesn’t do anything I’d need an iPad version of Lightroom to do, and it does a whole bunch of things I don’t need.

The fact that there isn’t an Android version, too, I think is a bit short sighted.

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It’s getting to be that time of year again

After 5 or 6 months of almost non-stop rain, we’ve finally started to see some breaks in the clouds the last couple of weeks and had one or two days of rather lovely sunshine.

That means it’s time to get out of the studio and back on location!

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Throughout the year, even when I’m not actively shooting on location, I’m always looking for new places to photograph clients, models and other subjects.  It’s just something I tend to naturally do when I’m out travelling somewhere.

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Do Your Research When Hiring Freelancers

Whether it’s a photographer, a programmer or any other type of freelancer, do your research, and make sure you get the right person for the job.

While most of us will never work on projects with such expensive, devastating and controversial implications as those shown in the video below, it demonstrates the point of finding people who know what they’re doing.

Don’t risk just accepting the cheapest bid, and yes, there may be a lot of folks out there who may even offer to do it for free, but if they don’t even value their own abilities, why should you?

Look at work they’ve done in the past, sometimes it may even be possible to get references from previous clients, especially if they use sites like Freelancer.com.

Most reputable freelancers will tell you if they don’t think they can do the job you’re asking of them and will often suggest somebody they know who can as an alternative.  They value their reputation too much to risk screwing up a job they know they can’t do.

Cover Image : ‘Research’ by Neil Conway
Used under CC BY 2.0 License.

Work Hard or Work Smart?

This post is the consequence of a conversation I had yesterday evening with my sister, chatting to her about the upcoming South Lakes Interclub Photography Competition, and how the whole thing works.

But it is also kind of the point I was attempting to make on my previous post about fixing things in Photoshop that you could’ve resolved at the time of shooting (well, one of the points I was trying to make).

In previous years, we’d remained at the venue (as a competing team, not as host) until at least 11pm usually (once past midnight – after which we had to make an hour and a half drive back home) due to waiting for technological hiccups to be overcome so that we could continue, but last year was different.

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Fix it in Photoshop?

During my talk for Lancaster Photographic Society recently, I was asked a question that I’m also going to answer here.  I’m paraphrasing, but it went something along the lines of…

“Is getting the right exposure in camera really all that important?  Can’t we just nudge it in Photoshop?”

Before I start, I want to clarify a definition here, and a difference between “right” and “technically correct”.  It is perfectly possible to make an exposure that is “right”, but not “technically correct” when you shoot with your post processing in mind in order to maximise the capabilities of your camera’s sensor.

Sometimes intentionally over or underexposing slightly allows you to capture the scene and process it in a way that gives a better final result than if you’d started off with a “technically correct” exposure.  So, sometimes “technically correct” isn’t the same as “right”.

But to answer to the question, the short answer is “You can, but if you don’t have to, why would you?”.

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Talks and Presentations

I have been a member of Lancaster Photographic Society for about five years now, ever since my wife and I moved to Lancaster.

Each week throughout autumn and winter we meet, and usually the photographers who come and offer presentations to us are detailing projects and genres that are very personal to them.

They tell some amazing stories, they sometimes go pretty in-depth into the technical aspects of how they do what they do, detail the circumstances that led them to be where they are today, and list some of the challenges they have faced along the way.

Occasionally we have a speaker from our own membership, somebody interesting, worldly, and presenting images the rest of us could only dream of creating.  So when I was first asked to present a talk, I was quite surprised.

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Sekonic L-758DR “Digital Master” Light Meter

In photography, there are many items we would buy if only we could find a viable reason for putting down so much cash.

sekonic_l758drFirst, for me, was the 70-200mm f/2.8VR.  For years, I lusted after one, but didn’t really had a legitimate need for one that would justify dropping £1600+ until about four years ago.

Then there was the 105mm f/2.8D AF Micro-Nikkor.  As much I would’ve loved to have been able to splurge on one, it was an expense I couldn’t justify until last year.  That was another one that had been on my wishlist for about a decade.

The Sekonic L-758DR falls into that same category.  It’s a handheld light meter that I’ve wanted for years, but with a retail price of £399, it just wasn’t going to happen.  Certainly not when my L-718 has performed so beautifully the last few years.

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