Chasing the Light Magazine, Issue 31
Photography spanning the globe to inspire and inform
Welcome to August 2014’s edition of Chasing the Light Online Magazine for our f11 Members.
This month David Noton continues his French theme in his Behind the Lens article and accompanying Video Blog: join him and Wendy on their wonderful photo trip to France in May, as they explore the idyllic countryside of the Dordogne, revealing David’s approach to location finding and shooting in this inspirational area. The Low Down continues with Part Two of an article trio on the important topic of Do-It-Yourself Printing; and we also have our usual two Post Production Video Tutorials, which continue to be firm favourites amongst our readers.
From our trusty band of contributors, Ross Hoddinott continues his Hoddinott’s Hangout column with a personal exploration of the joys of shooting insects close up, including plenty of advice on equipment, technique and approach so you can have a go yourself. Meanwhile Chris Weston provides the next installment of The Storyteller, this time providing a set of a dozen projects and challenges to give you inspiration to get out and about with your camera. In the final article of his Taylor Made series, David Taylor writes a cathartic confessional on the various mistakes he has made over the years as a professional photographer – read and learn!
This month we're delighted to welcome sky and storm photographer David Mayhew back to the fold to contribute our How It's Done article, as he recounts the story behind his breathtaking shot of a barnyard scene with a stormy backdrop in Colorado. And we're also absolutely thrilled to welcome onboard renowned photographer and filmmaker Clive Booth, who writes the Guest Feature about shooting a casual portrait at Photokina, exploring the approaches and techniques he uses to create his expressive, naturally lit pieces. Finally, I get brave and ask some of our contributors to reveal their pet photographic hates, which it transpires cover a wide gamut of subjects!
To all our f11 Members, we hope you’re enjoying our magazine but we need your pictures. If you fancy being featured in the Member’s Gallery, please send an email to [email protected] with three low-res jpegs and the story from behind the lens. We’ll look forward to hearing from you.
Chasing the Light, Editor
Behind the scenes on location in Dordogne, France.
To print or not to print? That is the question. And the riposte must surely be: why not? It's the final consummation of the whole photographic experience, both stimulating and creative; and at the end of the day, it's just plain fun. I ascertained in Part One of this Low Down series on printing that it's all now as easy as a click of the mouse, and it is, once you're set up. But there's the fly in the ointment that puts many off: getting set up is undoubtedly the tricky bit.
I'm happily in the Land of Nod, pushing up Zzzzz's. I'm just about to score the winning penalty kick against Germany in the 2014 World Cup Final, when the alarm on my iPhone wakes me up abruptly. I switch it off with a quick thump. Through my bleary eyes I see that it's 4.30am.
Ho hum, another roving French trip shooting bucolic landscapes and quaint hill top villages - been there, done that! Coffee and croissants as we cruised into St Malo, the well travelled route south through Brittany towards Nantes, the picnic of baguette and fromage; it was all conforming to script.
This month we go back to square one by looking at how we can ensure important creator and copyright information is embedded in an image's metadata at the time of import. I then work through how we can use different viewing modes in Lightroom to make our selections using flags and ratings to help hone in on a shoot?s best images.
I then process two selects from the edited shoot in Lightroom before merging the two exposures in Photoshop using layers and a simple drag and drop solution, before selectively tweaking contrast in different areas of the frame.
I've never been one of those photographers who can just go out with a camera and take pictures; I don't shoot on a whim, my photography has to have a purpose. Because of this, I am constantly setting myself little projects, photo goals that motivate me to make images and give my photography meaning.
For a storm chase photographer, there's a lot of preparation required before embarking on the spring chase season. It's hard to admit, but a camera is not the most important piece of equipment for me - it's actually the car. Being able to get to and away from storms safely is crucial, otherwise there would be nothing to photograph!
This month we thought it would be interesting, and more importantly a bit of a laugh, to grant some of our trusty band of contributors the opportunity to have a good rant about the things that really annoy them in their work as professional photographers. So without further ado or pre-amble, I'll hand you over to them? Hold onto your hats!
It's human nature to make mistakes. Even so-called experts occasionally slip up. Some of my favourite examples include Ken Olson, Chairman of Digital Equipment Corp., telling the world in 1977 'There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home'. I mean, he may have a point. Who'd want a computer cluttering up their desk? What practical use could it have?
A casual request for a portrait is anything but 'casual' when it involves finding the right location and the perfect light.
Please take a look around our f-11 members gallery. Share your photographs with other members and receive David's feedback on your work.