In or Out?

Category: News 04 July 2016

Villa Casanova and the Val d'Orcia at dawn, Tuscany, Italy. Canon 5DS R, 24-70mm f2.8 L II lens at 31mm, 1/6 sec at f14, polarising and 0.6 ND grad filters.

Did you know that Azerbaijan is in Europe? It is, at least according to Bernie Ecclestone – and for that matter, so is Australia, according to Eurovision. Just a couple of weeks ago, so were we. In Italy – Tuscany’s beautiful Val d’Orcia to be precise, where the picture above was taken on a beautiful soft morning in among the olive trees – I was waiting for the light at dawn again, confident that it was coming. The cloud was heavy, but there were gaps – far better that than a clear blue sky. Below in the valley the fields started to glow, as soft, golden light bathed the landscape. I waited, willing the rays to paint the olive trees in my foreground. It came, my shutter clicked, it went. For just a few seconds there the quintessential Tuscan scene glowed in light that had an almost painterly quality. It’s moments like those that I live for – at least that hasn’t changed.

But seemingly everything else has. We’re back, and now just ten days later we’re also out, or at least heading that way – although Scotland may not be. Tumultuous times – I’m confused. In or out: for months now we’ve been bombarded with the benefits and risks of choosing either option. Now the People have spoken, but clarity is still distinctly lacking. Like most, I’m bewildered and unsure of what’s been achieved, and what’s been lost. In or out, which was for the best? Only time will now tell. But I do know of one club, one international alliance, one harmonious union, one exclusive group of which membership is unquestionably beneficial: f11.

      

Take for instance the release of my latest e-book Exposure. It’s available to download now for £9.99, but f11 Members get it absolutely FREE. Not only that, but they also get the other two, the The Composition Tutorials and Light FREE too. That’s all on top of the monthly Chasing the Light Online Magazine that is published exclusively for our f11 Members, who for their annual subscription of just £39.00 get access to all 54 back issues. In or out? It’s a no-brainer – but if you’re still confused, here’s a video offering precious clarity. Not yet an f11 Member? Then this at least is a decision that is clear cut.


Bather's legs emerge from the water, Korcula, Dalmatia, Croatia. Image from the Stepping Back feature in this month’s Chasing the Light Online Magazine. Canon 1Ds Mk III, 24-70mm lens.

This month in the Chasing the Light Online Magazine we have the usual mix of features and tutorials from around the world to inspire and inform. In previous editions of our Field Trial series we’ve explored the Sony and Fuji systems – but this month Canon takes centre stage, as I explain why I chose the system, and why I’m sticking by my decision. Then in the Low Down, I turn my attention to the photographic inspiration to be found in photographing faces around the world, as I reminisce on the memorable people I’ve shot over the years. In Stepping Back we travel to the Dalmatian coast of Croatia, then in this month’s How It’s Done, I discuss what’s in my photo backpack, a piece accompanied by a video link. Finally, as always, there are two of my popular Fundamentals of Post-Production Videos.

Sgwd-yr-Eira or the Snow Waterfall, Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales. f11 Members can watch how this image was edited, processed and converted into black and white in Part One of this month’s Fundamentals of Post-Production Video Tutorials in the Chasing the Light Online Magazine. Canon 5DS R, 24-70mm lens.

Meanwhile in this month’s Hoddinott’s Hangout, Ross Hoddinott revisits the wonderful island of Skomer, photographing this wildlife location’s main attraction: the colourful, comical-looking puffins. Then in the Art of Landscapes, Bas Meelker explains why he believes that in the future image editing will become the decisive factor for landscape photographers wishing to create unique images. And for a timely edition of the Pipeline, Ben Pipe takes us on a fascinating tour of the 2015 French Open at the Roland Garros stadia. Finally, for our Guest Feature we’re delighted to welcome on board professional photographer Timo Lieber, as he introduces us to his thought-provoking portfolio of aerial photography shot around the world. And to round off this month’s offerings there’s your images in the Member’s Gallery, with constructive appraisal from myself.

Le Bief Sarrazin, Les Gorges du Lison, Nans-sous-Sainte-Anne, Massif du Jura, Franche-Comté, France. Join us for a long weekend of photographic indulgence on our new Photo-Explorer Adventure this autumn in the Franche-Comté region of eastern France. Canon 5D Mk III, 24mm TS-E lens, 1.3 sec at f16, polarising and 0.9 ND filters.

Another group that you may like to join in Europe this autumn is the gang embarking on our new Photo-Explorer Adventure in the Franche-Comté region of eastern France from 4 to 7 November 2016. We’ll be exploring this beautifully rural yet little visited region of rolling fields, wooded valleys, deep limestone gorges, waterfalls, châteaux, vineyards, villages and the mountains of Haut-Jura, just when the fall colours should be at their prime. Lying between Burgundy and Alsace, and between Champagne and Switzerland, Franche-Comté is possibly the most underrated of all French regions.

Our group of a maximum of nine photographers plus partners will be led and tutored by myself and fellow professional photographer Nicolas Logerot. Wendy Noton will be on hand to support us all, and in particular assist partners who, as always, are very welcome. We will be exploring the area over 4 days / 3 nights from our base, the Hôtel le Bois Dormant with its peaceful woodland setting and spa facilities near Champagnole. Nicolas, our man with the local knowledge, is a native of the region. I have visited the area a couple of times now and I know well just how beautiful it is in autumn. It has to be said, we’re very excited about this new course.

 


Piazza della Loggia at dusk, Brescia, Lombardy, Italy. An image from Part Two (insert link) of this month’s Fundamentals of Post-Production Video Tutorials in the Chasing the Light Online Magazine. Canon 1Dx Mk II, 35mm f1.4 L II lens, 1/80 sec at f5.6, ISO 12800.

Back into Europe, back to Italy. It’s dusk in Brescia’s Piazza della Loggia. I’m shooting legless again with the 1Dx Mk II and I’m getting into this. The lights are coming on and the locals are out, strolling, eating, drinking, and chatting. I’m hovering, watching, waiting, finger poised on the shutter release. There will be that one decisive moment when all the elements in the frame combine. Due Uomini with umbrellas on the right of my frame are deep in conversation. Maybe they’re talking dentro o fuori? They’ll not be the only ones.

Keep exposing.

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