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Archive for February, 2012

As photographers we are constantly chasing the ‘wow’ factor and trying to getting images that are stunning and appealing to others.  We are critical of our own work and critique the work of others and can become obsessive in our quest for excellence.

However, recently I was reading a post at http://momentsclicked.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/those-days/ that reminded me that photography is also about capturing memories.  All those moments in our lives that matter and that we don’t wish to forget.  It’s very much a personal thing and the resulting photos will never win a competition or acclaim but are the most important ones we will ever take. 

A bootful of memories

To those of you reading this post the above photo is just a photo of a pair of boots, nothing more.  But to me, this is Paris in the summer of 2006.  I look at this photo and I can still feel the soreness of my feet, the warm breeze on my face and the excitement and joy of being in one of the great cities of the world.  I remember the miles walked, the laughter, the food, the wine.  This single photo triggers a hundred memories.

Over the years I’ve taken a lot of photos, some good, some not so good, but this will always be one of my favourites, why, because this one was just for me.  

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Another stunningly gorgeous morning in Rockingham. 

This shot is the result of 15 photos (10mm lens on a panoramic head) stitched together in PT Gui and edited in Photoshop CS5.

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A couple of more shots from our little excursion to Bunbury the other day.  There is no denying that WA has some of the best beaches in the world. 

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Fish and chips with a view

Spent the afternoon in Fremantle and finished up at the Fishing Boat Harbour for Fish and Chips on the deck.  Not a bad place to watch the sunset from.

 

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If there is one rule I stick to when it comes to wedding photography it’s that I will never do a wedding for someone that I don’t immediately feel comfortable with.

Now please don’t get me wrong I’m not judging anyone, everyone has a different personality, it’s just that some people you feel comfortable with as soon as you meet them and others not so much.

As a photographer you’ll probably spend more time with the couple than any other single person and to capture the intimacy of the day all parties need to feel relaxed about the fact that you’re going to be sticking a camera in their face all day.

 So, if you don’t feel that connection with the couple when you meet them, do yourself a favour and politely explain how unfortunately you’re already booked on that day.

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Spent a couple of hours in Bunbury, south of Perth yesterday and it is definately on my ‘must photograph’ list.  There were some wonderful rock formations on the beach and can’t wait to get back there when I have more time.

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I’ve often thought that if God was a photographer, then when he made the heavens and the earth he would have made the sun rise at a reasonable hour, around 11:00 would be nice, and not at the crack of dawn.  

Anyone who has had anything to do with photography will have heard of the Golden Hour, that magical time just before and after sunrise and sunset when all the world is bathed in warm soft light, coincidently it is the time when the bed is the coziest.  Anyway photographers are obsessed with the Golden Hours.  Look at any photographic website, blog or gallery and it’s full of stunning photos taken at that magical time.  We become so obsessed with it in fact that we sometimes forget about the other 22 hours in the day!

OK so the light during the middle of the day is hardly flattering and here in Oz it’s downright harsh, but is that any reason to rule it out altogether.  With a bit of planning that harshness can be harnessed and utilised. 

Two days ago we had a scorcher.  Hot, glary and hardly a cloud in the sky, so with sunburn cream, hat and water bottle in hand I headed off to Point Peron.  I chose Point Peron because I figured the harsh, high contrast light conditions would really highlight it’s gnarly weathered rock formations and this is the result. 

Tips:

Choose your subject carefully, it’s very difficult to get those ‘warm and fuzzy’ photos in the midday sun so pick harsh subjects.

Be aware of the shadows.  Any photos taken are going to have a lot of contrast in them so try to minimise any areas of shadow, they’re just going to come out black.

Use a polorising filter, especially if foliage or water is an element of the photo.

Beware of under exposure.   Yeah I know, on a really bright day you would expect the problem would be over exposure.  But the fact is that the magic pixies that live in the camera are told there is only so much white light in the average photo and when they register more than average they simply ignore it.  White sand on a bright day just does their heads in.  It’s not such a problem now days with instant digital displays but in the days of film it could be a nightmare.  I you want the technical explanation google ‘Grey Scale.’ 

The great thing about not just shooting during the Golden Hours is that it gives you an extra 22 hours every day to take photos.

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