Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Helping to rediscover my Mojo

When my PC gave up the ghost the other month, I rather lost my mojo for photography. I think it was the thought of processing and uploading all the photos I'd taken for my 365 project that did it. Also that my session with the twins was a bit of a disaster too, will blog that later

Two things have happened recently to help me recover this lost mojo, one was that the photo I took above won December's competition in my camera club - "Black & White"

And the second was that I won six months membership to Silverlake Photo in a Twitter competition. All in all a successful finish to 2009.

And to help me keep up the momentum, I will be starting another 365 project on 01.01.2010 *

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Merry Christmas

Gratuitous Christmas shot of my two house models. Hoping you all had a good one and that 2010 brings all that you wish for. *

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Panning or Brushing as they call it here in Spain - had to google it ;-)

So, our local camera club decided to hold it's monthly competition with the theme of "brushing" My mind truly boggled and so I consulted the ever trusty SeƱor Google, and from the description found out that they were talking about panning. As I had never tried this before I decided to give it a quick whirl.

Took the girlies on a hike out to the countryside, where we found some huge bales of straw. It took very little coaxing for them to repeatedly climb up and jump off

As you can see, my efforts weren't really that successful LOL

Luckily a few days later Girlie#1 was competing in a Duathlon of running and cycling, so like the good mamarazzi that I am I took my camera along and...By jove I got it

So that's one other new thing that I've learned to do :-D *

Monday, 2 November 2009

Going back in time

The main PC is at the doctors with a nasty virus, I am blaming the girlies for downloading music. So I decided to dig through my Flickr archives for something to post :-)

Way back in March of this year, we went to Muricia where one of our camera club members gave a talk on the use of natural and artificial light in outdoor photography. We used fill flash, reflectors and off camera flashes. We had "real live" models and makeup artists as well. Fortunately we all met up rather early and as the girlies were with their Daddy, I didn't have to worry about them getting in the way, getting lost or getting a cob on as they weren't being used as models - hahaha!
This picture actually got to number 19 on Flickr Explore, which is my highest placed explore, laughable really as the original was seriously over exposed. However, there is still something about it that I like, which is what counts I guess.

The models were all complete professionals and so easy and fun to work with. Only had a few language barrier problems

with this one, where I wanted them to look lovingly into each others eyes! Don't think that the chemistry was there actually.After this shoot, we retired to a nearby hotel, for an absolutely splendid lunch, and then spent the afternoon wandering around Murcia taking more photos and generally enjoying the day. As evening came we tried a few nocturnals, a disaster for me and of course it was obligatory to round the night off with a fantastic Tarta Murciana, a lovely spicy meat pie. *

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Beautiful Bugs

Last Saturday 1000's of these dragonflies flew past the house. I have never seen anything quite like it. I tried to take some shots of them in the air to no avail, but then noticed that some were landing in my field. A quick change of lens and I managed to get some quite lovely photos. Unfortunately we were on the way out to a birthday party for one of the girlies friends, so I didn't have quite as much time as I would have liked.

They were green


and they were red


Friday, 9 October 2009

Ugly Bug

Look what I found! It's a Praying Mantis and was just asking to have it's photo taken. It proved a very amiable model, and let me take loads of photos.

I used my Canon 100mm
f/2.8, which hasn't had an airing for ages. I must start doing a few more macro shots again. Unfortunately I don't suppose I will be able to find a willing model like this one every day! *

Thursday, 8 October 2009


I seem to have a problem with landscape photography, that I don't really know how to sort out. My images always seem kind of flat and uninteresting. I know that we are all our own best critics, and when you know that there is a fault or something wrong with your picture, your eyes are just drawn straight to it. I have been trying just this past week though, and am quite pleased with the sunset picture above. This is obviously helped by the canal (luckily full at the time) leading through to the background, and the reflection of the setting sun.

Here, I am rather liking the fact that I managed to get some feeling of volume to those lovely fluffy white clouds, and the road travelling into the distance helps with acheiving some sort of perspective or depth. The fact that I took it whilst travelling along the motorway must also give me some brownie ponts too no?

I'm fairly pleased with this one too, the view from my front terrace, although I obviously need an artistic director to do things like remove the plastic table - hahaha *

Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Could you just ...

take a few pictures of my daughter, I've left my camera at home. Was the request from one of my neighbours. So, with a face as cute as this how could I possibly resist.

I've cropped this from the corner of the original, quite hard, and did all the processing in lightroom. It was such a long time ago that I can't quite remember what I did, even though *I think* that I could go back and check on the history. All sharpening and skinsoftening was done in there, as for me , for minor blemishes it gives a much smoother finish - maybe I am too heavy handed in PSE. Once I had finished playing, I exported and uploaded it, without touching Photoshop at all. I am really pleased with Lightroom, although in PSE, I could probably have wiped her nose better, for a quickie I am really quite pleased with this.

I really need to go through all my photos from the summer now and download them as "printers" from Lightroom, and take them to actually be printed. Who knows, if I do it might just bring me in a sitting or two ;-) *

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

With the sunlight in your hair

I am very pleased with how this has turned out, it's DD1 with her back to the soon to be setting sun earlier this evening. She has very sensitive eyes to the sun and they kept streaming, when I tried to get her to look in the opposite direction.

I shot a few from this side, aiming for that lovely wraparound sun flare look that seems to be all the rage at the moment, but my flares were just bog ugly. Something seems to have gone a little wrong with the processing around her eyes though, so I will have to try a re edit. I think it's where I did a brush adjustment when I thought that I was going to convert it to black and white. Must sort out a proper workflow so that dosen't happen again in the future. Will try to post another of her looking into the sun, as it makes her lovely red hair look even redder.

Now re-edited and replaced in a much larger size, don't think that I will bother posting to here direct from flickr again, the photos don't arrive here large enough for me.


Thursday, 27 August 2009

A Different Blog

I would like this blog to show my most favourite photos, that I have yet to take.

I am constantly stalking my girlies, and presume that they are going to feature heavily in this blog. I don't have a preferred style of photography, but certainly enjoy portraiture and macros. I really don't seem to have got the hang of landscapes yet, but I'm sure it will come with a bit of perseverance.

I currently shoot with a Canon EOS 400D - but am hoping for an upgrade soon - various Canon lenses and have both PSE7 and Lightroom 2. I bought my first camera in November/December of 2007 and I am self taught in all aspects of photography and post processing. In January 2009 however, I joined a local camera club, who have been more than useful with regards to courses, local knowledge and some general socialising!

My wish list includes a decent tripod (messed up by buying a cheapy), the 50D, a flashgun and a pair of new lenses, an "all terrain" for days out with girlies, and a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L with or without the stabilising, after trying out one from an aforementioned clubmember. *