Chasing the Light Magazine, Issue 42
Photography spanning the globe to inspire and inform
Welcome to July 2015’s edition of Chasing the Light Online Magazine for our f11 Members.
David Noton was recently commissioned to shoot the beautiful Venice Simplon Orient Express as it made its way through the breath-taking scenery of the Austrian Tyrol. So in this month’s Behind the Lens he describes his experience of working on this prestigious commission, from first contact to making the actual shots, along with the logistical hurdles of completing such a shoot. In Stepping Back David reminisces on his beloved Umbria, describing the love affair he and Wendy have enjoyed with that region over the last decade.
Then in Part 8 of our Low Down series on Exposure, David looks at the ‘need for speed’, otherwise known as fast shutter speeds: when we need them, why we need them, and how fast we need them. For this month’s How It’s Done, he returns to Vietnam to try his hand at some close quarters travel portraiture; and he also presents two of his ever-popular Fundamentals of Post-Production Videos.
In this month’s Hoddinott’s Hangout Ross Hoddinott reveals how his photography of the enchanting wildlife on the Galapagos Islands benefitted from a recent second visit, as he pushes his technical and creative boundaries. In The Storyteller, Chris Weston discusses his hobby – landscape photography – and how really getting to know a subject can make all the difference in this field. And this month experienced travel photographer Jeremy Horner kick-starts his own new column, Sense of Place, by remembering on his long-standing photo relationship with the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal, as well as the devastation caused by the recent earthquake.
I was tasked with exploring of the role of women in photography, so read my own thoughts, and those from a selection of photographers and photo industry partners, in this month’s Opinion column. And Victoria Hillman pens this month’s Guest Feature – wildlife researcher who has recently turned professional photographer, she shares with us her passion for photographing those smaller wildlife subjects, as well as developing her creative style.
To all our f11 Members, we hope you’re continuing to enjoy our magazine but we need your pictures. If you fancy being featured in the Member’s Gallery and entered into our next annual photo competition, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with three low-res jpegs and the story from behind the lens. We’ll look forward to hearing from you.
Chasing the Light Magazine Editor
My phone chirps; it's a text from Silvia on board. They're leaving Brennero now, which means Wendy will be pressing the button in about 5 minutes then I'll follow suit a few minutes after that. I look above again: the sun is behind cloud at the moment, but a blue gap is coming, and after that more grey. Yet again I try to appraise what the chances are of the sun being out when the train is due to pass.
It's a long way down the congested Autostradas from the Val d'Aosta in the Alps to Umbria. As we approached Preci, the roads just became narrower, slower and windier. It had been one of those journeys where the closer we got, the slower we got, but finally we were driving up the hill towards Il Collaccio, the Agritourismo site recommended in our guide book.
We're here in Mui Ne, discussing the merits of Watford; it's a brief conversation. It turns out that the German girl at the hotel reception lived there for several years. I too know Watford from window cleaning in the early 80s - those were the days. Actually, they weren't; neither she nor I can summon any nostalgia and she quickly moves on to showing us around.
It seems all wrong. It's a beautiful summer's day and I'm stuck here in the gloom, hunched in front of the screen, editing pictures of Iceland some five months after we were there. I'm working on another cold image, teasing out all the mood I can. The image in question is an interesting one: a long lens shot of a tiny church dwarfed by the majesty of the huge elemental landscape rising above.
This month I evaluate how best to streamline our workflow when flipping from editing an image in Lightroom to Photoshop. I then save an edited version of the final image with both LR & PS adjustments applied back in the original Lightroom catalogue.
In Part Two I experiment with using the new capability of Lightoom?s versatile graduated filter to refine the mask overlay using an adjustment brush, both adding and subtracting from the mask to ensure the absence of unsightly haloes. The fine tuning of both density and contrast of selective areas of the image using the grad tool is thence achieved with considerable control and flexibility.
The trip didn't start well. When I checked in my luggage at Heathrow, the Dutch guy behind the desk thought I was heading off to Afghanistan! For the entire flight to Guayaquil, via Amsterdam, I had a nasty nagging feeling that my suitcase might be heading for a war zone rather than its intended destination. Believe me, I was a happy and relieved man to collect it safely when we touched down in Ecuador 16 hours later!
I first visited Nepal when I was 22. Immediately I became enchanted by the medieval atmosphere of the towns of the Kathmandu Valley and the unparalleled scenery of the mighty Himalaya beckoning beyond. At the time I was recovering from dysentery that I had acquired in India, so the mountain air, exercise and simple food seemed like a good prescription.
Landscape photography is what I do when I'm not taking pictures. That's to say, as a wildlife photographer it's a passion that has to fit around my working life. And so, when I get the opportunity I need to make the most of it. Because of that, I don't want to be chasing the light to far flung places I've only seen in books or on calendars and postcards; I want to be out making images.
A couple of months ago David asked me to compile one of our Opinion pieces on the subject of Women in Photography. Like some of the following contributors, I was a little non-plussed at first - this is not actually a subject to which I have often given much thought!
When I'm asked what it is that I do, I often receive an interesting reaction when I reply that I'm a wildlife researcher and photographer. I always put the science part first in my response, as I have a background in Zoology with Marine Zoology then an MSc in Wildlife Biology and Conservation. Until recently photography was purely a hobby, a way for me to capture and share my travels and experiences with family and friends.
Please take a look around our f-11 members gallery. Share your photographs with other members and receive David's feedback on your work.