The Power of the Print
|Category: News||03 August 2016|
Vineyard at Castello Di Pontentino, near Seggiano, Province of Grosseto, Tuscany, Italy. An image from my Behind the Lens feature and Video Blog in this month’s edition of the Chasing the Light Online Magazine. Canon 5DS R, 70-200mm lens at 200mm, 0.5 sec at f32.
I’m spending the morning printing – and I’m loving it. I can’t help hovering in expectation by the printer, peering at the image from last month’s trip to Tuscany as it slowly emerges. Prints of images from the past year’s travels are piling up: the Dolomites, Australia, Iceland, Paris and Italy, not to mention the Brecon Beacons, Somerset and Dorset. I’ve no real reason to be doing this other than for my own satisfaction. But then again, that’s not something to be taken for granted; enjoying the fruits of our labours behind the lens does spawn future creativity.
Printing is the final consummation of the process of photography that starts with inspiration and ends, hopefully, with that warm glow of creative fulfilment that I’m feeling now. Of course, the bit in between – the hanging around on hill tops waiting for the light, the thrill of the chase and the exhilaration of capture – is the best bit. But the icing on the cake is seeing the end product, not on a screen, but as a big, beautiful print. It’s also a pleasure that inspires and instigates future forays and adventures.
The joy of printing takes me back to what got me into photography in the first place.
Inspiration, along with information, is of course what the Chasing the Light Online Magazine is all about. Nevertheless, the planning and co-ordination of all the features from our talented contributors each and every month is quite a task. Thankfully it’s one that Editor Freya Dangerfield, after over four years at the helm, is now completely au fait with. What’s on the menu each month is her call, but we do want to hear from you, our f11 Members, as to what you’d like to see in future editions. Meanwhile here, in her own words, is what’s in store this month for our subscribing f11 Members in the Chasing the Light Online Magazine:
FD: During the early summer months, David visited Italy: in a new Behind the Lens mini series, we join him for the first leg of this trip as he and Wendy take in Brescia, Mantova and the Val d’Orcia – this article is accompanied by a Video Blog. In this month’s How It’s Done, David visits the banks of the River Dart in Devon to shoot the estuary at Kingswear, refreshing himself on a few home truths about location searching along the way. And in a separate Video Tutorial on the same subject, he walks us through the fundamentals of the location searching process. Then David presents two of his popular Fundamentals of Post-Production Videos.
This month in my regular Fundamentals of Post-Production Video Tutorial I process an image of a classic Tuscan scene using Lightroom, paying particular attention to lens corrections, contrast and the reduction of haze. I then continue making selective adjustments in Photoshop using a layer mask.
Having previously explored the Canon, Sony and Fuji systems in our Field Trials, this month Ross Hoddinott closes off our loop with an examination of the Nikon system. Meanwhile in this edition of Hoddinott’s Hangout, he puts Manfrotto’s LUMIMUSE LED range to the test. In the Art of Landscapes, Bas Meelker walks us through the image-editing techniques he uses in Lightroom and Photoshop; and in the Pipeline, Ben Pipe takes us along with him as he visits the incredible Omo Valley in Ethiopia. Finally, for our Guest Feature we’re delighted to welcome on board wildlife photographer Richard Peters, as he recalls his creative journey that has seen him shooting wildlife in locations that range from his back garden, to the Maasai Mara.
Barley field blowing in the wind near Cerne Abbas, Dorset, England. Canon 5DS R, 24mm TS-E lens, 0.8 sec at f16, polariser and 0.9 ND filters.
DN: Now I’m looking at an A3+ print of barley blowing in the wind on the hill above the well-equipped Cerne Giant. I shot that image just a week ago, as part of the location finding project that Freya mentioned above. The breeze was causing the barley to sway tantalisingly, and my initial notion was to use heavy neutral density filters to slow the exposure right down to express that motion. However, I soon realised that a Big or even Little Stopper filter resulted in a shutter speed so long that the field of gold was rendered as just a blurry mess. Experimentation revealed a 3-stop neutral density filter combined with a polariser allowed a shutter speed just under a second long. This was slow enough to portray the movement, but fast enough to retain the appealing texture and form of the barley.
My new ebook David Noton: Exposure is available to download now for £9.99, but free for f11 Members.
Such considerations over the finer points of exposure are all part of what we photographers do. On that topic hopefully by now you’ve perused my latest e-book, David Noton: Exposure. This is available to download now for £9.99, but f11 Members get it absolutely FREE, as they do my other two ebooks, David Noton: The Composition Tutorials and David Noton: Light.
Meanwhile, the summer is passing in a blur of barbecue smoke here in Milborne Port. We’re pretty much Wessex-based at this time of year, apart from the odd foray into Wales, where last weekend we met up with f11 Members’ Your Vision 2016 Competitions Winner Jeremy Flint for his prize of a 24 hour one-to-one session with myself – and a curious cow, or was it a bull?
One-to-one tuition in the Brecon Beacons with f11 Members’ Your Vision 2016 Competition Winner Jeremy Flint, watched by a cow, or is it a bull?
What else is news? Later this month I shall be talking twice daily on the Canon stand at the Rutland Bird Fair from 19 to 21 August. If you’re there it would be great to have a chat – I’ve been told that wearing camouflage is not mandatory. Failing that, I’ll be presenting two talks on the Canon stand at the Carmarthen Cameras’ Camera and Optics Show in west Wales on 3 September – full details from Carmarthen Cameras.
Or you could join us this autumn 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. 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 French photographer Nicolas Logerot, who has all the local knowledge. Wendy Noton will be on hand to support us all, and in particular assist partners who, as always, are very welcome.
An image of the Source du Lison in the afore mentioned Franche-Comté has just chuntered out of the printer. The detail in the depths of the woods is exquisite. It is funny how we look at pictures differently as prints as opposed to viewing them on a monitor, tablet or phone. At meetings and on courses I find that people respond to prints so much more positively. It’s probably because we all spend so much our working and leisure hours staring at screens now, I guess. Whatever; this is fun.
I should remind you of a three-part feature we ran in the Chasing the Light Online Magazine Issues 30 to 32. If you’re contemplating getting in on the act of printing, or if you’d like to improve your printing knowledge and skills, you really ought to take a look. It goes without saying that all f11 Members have full access to all 55 and counting back issues of the Chasing the Light Online Magazine. Not yet an f11 Member? It’s a no brainer, but if you are still confused here’s a video explaining all.
Last print: a tranquil picture of the Derbyshire Dales shot in the first light of an early July morning. The sheep posed as if scripted; a rare occurrence. What paper to use: a vibrant platinum glossy or an arty Museum Etching Matte? Life is full of tough choices.
Edale at dawn, Peaks District National Park, Derbyshire, England. Canon 5DS R, 270mm lens at 70mm, 1/15 sec at f11, polarising filter.