Misty Woodland

Wide View

I’d been meaning to post this blog a fortnight ago but struggle with time to write so better late than never.

Trees, forests and woodland have been featuring in my photography more and more, mainly because it’s the sort of place I most enjoy spending time, relaxing away from work and people. One of the big draws was to find some mist having seen stunning atmospheric shots from photographers I admire. Autumn completely passed by in a blur with the birth of my daughter so I thought I’d be waiting another year but woke up to thick fog on an early March morning.

Continue reading “Misty Woodland”

Snow Photos

Winter Forest Abstract

Most people get excited at the prospect of snow round here, especially photographers as it transforms the landscape and opens up lots of different shots which wouldn’t normally work. We only seem to get one day with a decent covering each year recently so you have to make the most of the opportunity!

It wasn’t exactly a blizzard but we woke up this morning to a light dusting, enough that out in the countryside it had settled well, so I set off at 7:30 to catch first light and spend a couple of hours walking round a local spot near Calverton, Nottingham where there’s an area of woodland and the old colliery spoil heap to get some views from.

Continue reading “Snow Photos”

New Year’s Resolutions 2016

If you read my last post (here) you would have seen that my first year really trying to get my photography out there started with a New Year’s resolution twelve months ago. Because of how well that turned out I’ve decided to make some more for 2016 and hopefully carry this on, so below are my new resolutions, I’m looking forward to seeing how I get on with these.

Continue reading “New Year’s Resolutions 2016”

Review of 2015

Stormy Skies Reflected In Scottish Seas

Some of you may know that this year has been my first actually trying to get my photography out there, it’s been a hobby for a good few years now but past sharing on a few sites like Flickr and 500px I hadn’t taken it any further.

A lot has changed in the last year so I thought it was worthy of a quick round up!

Towards the end of 2014 a few people made comments on my photos which gave me the confidence that they might be popular outside family & friends, so I made a New Year’s resolution to try and sell a print to someone I didn’t know.

Continue reading “Review of 2015”

Forest Abstracts

In a couple of weeks I’ll be making some photography resolutions for the New Year, one that will definitely be on there is to take my camera out more, take more photos and experiment. More on that in a later post, but for now I’ve started early during a short family walk in a local patch of woodland this morning.

Often I wouldn’t even take my camera on a trip like that or I’d come away without taking any photos I was happy with, so today I made a conscious effort to try something new, to take photos and come away with something that was worth sharing. This led to some fun with longer exposures, panning the camera up through the trees as the shutter was open. I’ve seen these techniques referred to recently as ICM or Intentional Camera Movement but it’s a great way of trying something more abstract.

Continue reading “Forest Abstracts”

Shooting Landscapes in Portrait

Composition is a very subjective thing, there are lots of guidelines like the rule of thirds but as clichéd as it sounds these are all there to be broken. One thing I have found as I’ve been learning photography is that I often prefer landscapes shot in portrait orientation which might not be the most obvious or conventional approach.

I think it’s always worth trying when you’re shooting your next landscape, take a portrait version of the same scene and see the difference it makes to the photograph.

Continue reading “Shooting Landscapes in Portrait”

It’s Not All About the Gear – Photography on a Budget

A while back, before my latest trip to Scotland, I posted a picture on my Instagram showing the camera kit I was packing to take with me. One of the biggest subjects that comes up in photography blogs and magazines is gear, so I wanted to give my take on it as someone who can’t afford to spend a lot.

Obviously great gear doesn’t make for great photos, you still need to have an eye for composition and lighting as well as learning all the technical aspects of photography, but you can’t take those photos without the right equipment to back you up, so it is an important topic to cover.

Continue reading “It’s Not All About the Gear – Photography on a Budget”

Moving on from Auto – Manually controlling your camera’s settings

One of the things that helped me most in my progress as a photographer was learning to take control of my camera, making it do what I wanted it to, rather than just letting the camera decide. Hopefully I can pass this on, with some tips on how to move away from auto settings.

The first thing you need at this point is a basic understanding of shutter speed, aperture and ISO, so you can make informed decisions on how to set up your camera. These three settings are often described as the exposure triangle, as each one contributes to the amount of light that gets into your camera. One common analogy is filling a bucket of water, the ISO is how big the bucket is (how much light you need), the aperture is how fast you pour the water in and the shutter speed is how long you’re pouring for. You always need the same amount of water (or light) to fill the bucket, but you can add it quickly or slowly. The shutter speed and aperture are often chosen for creative reasons, so I’ll explain what they all mean and why you would choose certain settings below.

Continue reading “Moving on from Auto – Manually controlling your camera’s settings”

Landscape Edit Walkthrough

I strongly believe that knowing how to edit your photos to maximise their impact is as important as knowing how to take them well in the first place. It’s not a new thing, having been very common in the film days too, it’s just become more accessible and doesn’t require specialised equipment or advanced skills to get started with.

There will always be debates on how much you should edit, my personal approach currently is not to add anything that wasn’t there, and mostly keep removals to spots/artifacts, so I do 99% of my editing in Lightroom. For this reason I always shoot RAW as it allows much greater scope for adjusting exposure, white balance, etc. and helps reduce the need for some filters like graduated neutral densities.

Continue reading “Landscape Edit Walkthrough”