Sunday, 29 May 2011

Lyme Hall / Pemberley

I went to Lyme Park a couple of days ago. The weather wasn't brilliant but there were a few rays of sunshine which only lasted a few seconds. On the left was the usual lighting and this would have been my preferred view of the Hall. A few steps later and the sun came out. This is the view on the right. I am not keen on unattached branches hanging in view but the lighting is so much better.

I couldn't finish this blog entry without writing about Fitzwilliam Darcy. In 1995 the BBC decided this was their Pemberley and Colin Firth should go for a swim. Let's hope it was a warm day.

Happy snapping

Saturday, 21 May 2011

The first dance

When I take a photo of the first dance I like to amend them a few times. The bride and groom get the original and then I will blur the background. Then I convert to monochrome and then sepia, usually with a vignette like that on the right.

Anyone can take a photo like these as I am not telling the couple where to stand or where to look. I hope the difference between my photos and those of family and friends is that they don't know how to make the changes on the computer.

Happy snapping

Friday, 20 May 2011

Thank You Card

I don't remember why I got the expressions on the left but it does add to the many other photos that could have been used for the thank you photo on the right. I pick on a couple of photos, add them together and it becomes an inexpensive way of sending a thank you card. All you have to do is fold a piece of A5 card and stick one photo on the front, one on the back and write something in the middle.

The photo on the left didn't make the final two for the card and there were dozens of possibilities. However I am always willing to put any two photos together. This time I was even thinking of the photo seen on Tuesday with the new pose.

Happy snapping

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Colour and Monochrome

Both of these photos are examples of a very simple technique in which you leave part in colour when most of the photo is converted to monochrome. Even though it is a simple technique it should not be forgotten but I only use it sparingly. Out of well over four hundred photos that I will be giving to this couple, these are the only two examples of this particular technique.

If you like the colour and monochrome together then that's nice. If you don't then it doesn't matter because they do get a colour version and a completely monochrome version too.

Happy snapping

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Don't avoid the props

Yesterday I showed you a pose that I had never used before which was inspired by the wedding cake models. Today I can show you another pose that I have never used before inspired by a children's play area. I didn't expect the groom to climb up for the photo on the left but I was quite prepared to take the photo as he managed to get up there.

We had looked at photos in this play area and the one on the right was one that we had planned. You don't get natural smiles like this without something happening so whenever I see a play area I don't avoid it, I head straight for it.

Happy snapping

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

A new pose

I am always looking for new poses and this is the first time that I have used this pose. It is also the first time that I have seen cake models in this pose.

I always take photos like that on the left but the one on the right is much less frequent. The great thing was that it was a bit of fun, not that it is difficult to get great photos at weddings as everyone has taken time to get ready and they are there for a celebration.

Happy snapping

Monday, 16 May 2011

That's a nice lawn

This is a typical wedding pose. I like the train in this direction as we read photos like we read books, from left to right. The eye catches the end of the train and leads us to the faces. Then you may take a look at the lawn and background shrubs.

We went to this venue recently for a pre-wedding meeting and I said that it wasn't really cheating if I took weeds out of the lawn because the grass may have been recently cut. Well it was, but there were still one or two weeds to take out digitally.

Happy snapping

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Yesterday's wedding

This photo is from yesterday's wedding. When I go back in the evening I like to take an enlargement and that is on the left. It was a 10"x 8" print which makes the proportions 5:4. I also take fridge magnets which are 9cm x 6cm which happens to be the same proportion of the most common size of photo 6"x 4".

So you know the reasons for the different proportions but by putting them in the same blog you can see which you prefer. I have worked on quite a few of the photos now but you also know why I chose these photos - because I have worked on them.

Happy snapping

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Looking for different methods

I passed this statue yesterday morning. I have written about it before and I have taken it from various angles and at different times of the day, but that doesn't mean there may be other photos that are better. The chances are that my opinion as to which photo is better is different from yours. It may be that tomorrow my preference may change. So it is important to look at other ways in which to shoot the same subject.

Yesterday morning there was a photographer taking photos here and he was using a telephoto lens. This type of lens has a shorter depth of field which means the background is more likely to be blurred. So maybe I'll try that next time I am on the prom.

Happy snapping

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Manchester Angels and Demons

I watched Angels and Demons again recently and I wondered how far fetched it could be to have a theme of following directions from statues.

These two statues are in Manchester. On the left Gladstone is pointing into the air but if you looked at it from above could you make up your own direction to another statue? You will find him in Albert Square which is dominated by the Albert Memorial but he isn't pointing anywhere. On the right is the silhouette of Richard Cobden in St Ann's Square. The silhouette makes it two-dimensional but I could have taken this image from any angle.

Happy snapping

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

A natural pose

This photo was taken a few hours ago. The reason I took it is because of the lighting. I took a photo a few months ago when a desk light was the sole light and in this case the computer screen is the main source.

On the right I converted to monochrome. Less obvious is the change I made to the periphery of the photo. There is a dark vignette which puts more interest on the centre of the photo. This is a simple technique. You can't use flash but you have to keep the camera still. A tripod is nice but just leave the camera on a chair and use a timer and in this way your photo may result in a natural pose.

Happy snapping

Monday, 9 May 2011

No kissing babies

Here is proof that we did everything right at the local election and still managed to lose. Alright it's more an example of a photography technique that leaves part of the photo in colour and part in monochrome.

It is the sort of technique commonly used in wedding photography when flowers are the last remaining part in colour. It works better if the flowers are brightly coloured and works well with rosettes.

Happy snapping

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Still inside St Helen's Church

This is the stained glass window which is behind the altar at St Helen's Overton, and you saw it yesterday in the background. The photo on the left is a simple cropping. There is a distraction from the wonderful detail in the window which is to be seen all along the periphery. A tighter cropping corrects this and can be seen on the right. You may also notice a slight distortion to fit into the common proportions of 3:2 but I don't think you would notice if you were only looking at the photo on the right.

Happy snapping

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Inside St Helen's Church

This photo puts the inscriptions into context. The "university challenge" amendment yesterday may be alright if you want to make a bookmark or a ruler as a memento of the church, but they really belong beside each other, not one on top of the other.

In this photo you also see the altar and another stained glass window. I'll show you this window in more detail tomorrow.

Happy snapping

Friday, 6 May 2011

True University Challenge Style

There are not only fine stained glass windows in St Helen's Overton, but there are also some wonderful inscriptions. The photo on the left is a typical photo taken with a standard lens and a tripod. This is natural light not flash.

I have amended this photo by correcting the distortion. I have also changed the surrounding light falling on the plaster because I added one inscription on top of the other, in true university challenge style.

Happy snapping

Thursday, 5 May 2011

It is still St Helen's

We are still at St Helen's Church in Overton but have moved indoors. I wanted to show you one of the stained glass windows for a few reasons. It shows you the beautiful work that has gone in to creating the window. You have to be inside the church to appreciate these windows but they really are works of art.

It is fairly easy to take these photos. You do need a tripod because you have to use natural light. It is better to avoid shutter blur by using a remote trigger or, as I did, set the timer to two seconds. Less obviously I have amended the distortion caused as I took this photo below the centre of the window. This perspective makes the bottom of the window broader than the top, but this isn't the way our brain appreciates the view. So until you read this second paragraph I bet you didn't notice.

Happy snapping

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Removing weeds and a path

I liked the image from yesterday that only showed St Helen's Church as the house was hidden by a shrub. I prefer it when the gardener has just taken the weeds out but hey I can do that on the computer.

I thought the path was a distraction as well as the weeds so you can see the amended photo on the left. I hope you can see the point of removing weeds digitally but maybe removing a path is beyond the pale. In that case I have made a closer cropping on the right.

Happy snapping

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Different perspectives

This variation to remove the house is really quite simple - walk a little bit and change the perspective. Now that I am on the other side of the stone wall the house is not seen in the photo on the left.

On the right the house is disguised by shrubbery. I prefer this view because it gives depth to the church. The photo on the left is the kind of perspective that a child would use when painting. The other view is much more sophisticated. Here you know so much more about the building but it still isn't good enough. I'll show you more tomorrow.

Happy snapping

Monday, 2 May 2011

St Helen's Church Overton

A few days ago I took these photos of St Helen's Church in Overton. I have taken photos at several weddings here and it really is a beautiful and ancient church.
It was built in the thirteenth century and this photo could have been taken at any time. Alright we didn't have photography until the nineteenth century and the big problem with making this view historic is not the trees, they could have had similar trees hundreds of years ago. The big problem is the house which has a look of the 1960s about it. Tomorrow I'll show you some variations to remove the house.
Happy snapping

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Can you see this join?

Yesterday's question was could you see the join? Well we are now with the next generation but it is the same question. However this time the large number means that this time it would have been really helpful to have a larger black piece of material.

The computer has extended the backdrop but I had to work around hair. Yesterday there were no difficult areas to work around but the proof of the pudding is whether you can see the join.

Happy snapping