Any photographer who has not found ‘Phlearn’ training videos is missing Aaron Nace who is the best teacher of photoshop techniques that I know. After watching his video and working through it on my iPad, it taught me a new technique for capturing some of my favorite wedding pictures and making them even more compelling to the bride and groom. Thank you Aaron and the Phlearn team
I have to get my butt in gear and start the new 52 Week Photographers Challenge in earnest. I have been looking at the themes for a couple of weeks and have been totally ‘inspirationalless’ if there is such word. Here is my rendition of ‘Part of a Whole’ from a rocky beach scene in Jupiter, Florida. The rocks, which are now isolated by the erosion of the sea, were once part of a whole – It was before my time but I choose believe the person who told me – he was older than me if you can believe that!
On 1st August the 52 week challenge starts again with another photo assignment per week. As we come to the final photographic challenges of this year, I offer one of my favorite places on earth. The beauty of Florence is unsurpassed and the Ponte Vecchio bridge, which was built in 1345, continues to be a beautiful and functioning bridge. The irony hitting me is my house is 4 years old and I have spent a small fortune in the last 2 months getting stuff fixed. Imagine Taddeo Gaddi the architect in 1344 telling his customers that things would need replacing in 4 years – so, I think it is case proved on “they don’t build ’em like they used to….” The question is ‘Why Not?’
Here are 3 selfie pictures – the first not only me but I am in there – guess which one. The second and third ones break the rules for this 52 week competition as they should to be taken in the last year and these were not. Hence, why I put the first one in to satisfy the rules. As I went through some old pictures that I liked I could not resist the last two which will make you work a little to see the ‘Selfie’. You be my judge and jury – guilty as charged.
Took this picture on my last England trip and saved it for this subject. It is an old RAF base which they have turned into a museum. These were the bikes that the flyers used to use to get around the base and make trips to the local pub!
Visiting the 9/11 Museum in New York is an emotionally moving experience. You are torn with anguish at the experience of ‘mans inhumanity to man’. Reliving the dreadful nightmares that befell the victims, who were just normal people like you or I going about their day-to-day activities. You are warmed by the unbelievable bravery of the first responders who risked their lives to help those in need, many of whom paid the ultimate sacrifice in following their calling. We all remember the moment when we heard a plane had flown into one of the Twin Towers and the ensuing second plane. Out of the devastation, New York has rebuilt a beautiful memorial to the victims and their families and friends. The beauty of the Reflecting Pools symbolizes the drops of water that fell from all our eyes on that fateful day – we will never forget those who lost their lives and those whose lives were changed forever.
Our community had a picnic on the beach and we were all anxiously awaiting a stunning sunset to capture some group pictures. The sky was cloud covered for most of the afternoon apart from 5 minutes when I managed to grab these neighbors and get them to kick off their shoes, get their feet wet and get their sunset shot. You never know what mother nature it is going to give you but you need to be ready. I used flash to lighten up the group and to ensure the sky was not blown out.
I love to point my camera into the sun rather than follow the old school of photography rule. I have to make sure my cameras light reading is in spot metering mode and then I just choose a few different focal points and poses. At weddings I normally will have a flash to light up the subjects and retain detail in the background for those pictures where I do not want a silhouette. You get different effects by moving your focal point which adds to the challenge but increases the satisfaction when you get the image that is in your imagination. Then it is over to the bride and groom to decide which they like best – my job is done.
On our May Cruise we were blessed with a passenger who was extra special. Every day he was dressed in his Caribbean Santa outfit and gave out sweets to all the children. Obviously December is a long way away, so he was allowed to have a cocktail or two to help him build his strength for his big night of the year in seven months time. The occasional nap or two was also allowed as Mrs Claus read her book. It got me in the ‘Holiday Spirit.’