Chasing the Light Online Magazine, Issue 53
Photography spanning the globe to inspire and inform
Welcome to June 2016’s edition of Chasing the Light Online Magazine for our f11 Members.
This month in Behind the Lens David Noton invites us to travel with him to Paris, where he enjoys a few days of spring photography – without a tripod, but with the new Canon 1Dx Mk II – to take a whole new hand-held, spontaneous approach to shooting the City of Light. In Photo Essentials, he continues his invaluable exploration of camera settings. Meanwhile, in this month’s Low Down David this time turns his attention to the photographic inspiration to be found in colour, as he encourages us to explore our own use of it, and how we can improve our use of it in the future. And finally, he presents two of his popular Fundamentals of Post-Production Videos.
Elsewhere, this month’s Field Trial sees Paul Sanders take us on a tour of his experiences with the Fuji system. In Hoddinott’s Hangout, Ross Hoddinott celebrates the arrival of late spring with a practical introduction to shooting wild flowers. Then in the Art of Landscapes, Bas Meelker provides an invaluable insight into working with with Canon’s imagePROGRAF PRO-1000. And for this month’s edition of the Pipeline, Ben Pipe whizzes us over to Budapest to explore the city’s iconic sights. Finally, for our Guest Feature we’re delighted to welcome on board commercial architectural photographer Tom Roe, as he reveals his particular passion for capturing the relationship between buildings and their surrounding landscapes – with some breath-taking results.
To all our f11 Members, we hope you’re continuing to enjoy our magazine. If you’d like any of your images to be featured in our Member’s Gallery column please send an email to [email protected] with your low-res jpegs and the story from behind the lens for each.
Chasing the Light Magazine Editor
It felt distinctly odd to be boarding the train to Paris without a tripod. We all know a good tripod to be one of the most fundamentally important items in a photographer's arsenal, don't we? But this time, maybe my twentieth or more, visit to the City of Light, I was travelling light - indecently light.
The light at dawn was pretty uninspiring. We'd hung around on the banks of the lake for several hours, hoping for a glimmer. In the meantime we grew progressively colder, despite it being mid-May in Oxfordshire, until eventually the pull of hot coffee and breakfast in Woodstock was simply irresistible.
More bedtime reading this month on camera settings - scintillating stuff. Maybe not - but crucial stuff, without a doubt. So let's continue wading through the increasingly complex menus of our cameras, using Canon's latest 1Dx Mk II as the template, with Ross Hoddinott chipping in with the perspective from the Nikon side where appropriate.
I'm lucky. I've been a photographer since I left college in the 1980s, and in that time I have used every format and most brands of camera. I started off with my dad's Praktica MTL 3 then I moved onto my very first SLR, a Mamiya ZE-2. As I progressed through my career I used Bronica SQ-As for my fashion work then the Mamiya RB67 to achieve greater quality.
This month I process two images, one shot conventionally and one shot with a dedicated infra-red camera, and experiment with trying to replicate the classic Black & White look with both. In Part one I merge five standard colour exposures and then use Lightroom's infra-red B&W pre-set followed by further adjustments using the Brush Tool to create a dramatic B&W image with a definite strong hint of the IR look.
In Part Two I process the RAW image shot with the camera which has been converted to be receptive to infra-red light only, adjusting black and white clipping, the point curve, clarity and using the brush tool in the process. I then compare the two images side to side to asses which is preferable.
Flowers aren't going to run off or fly away, so you have far more time and control over the look of your final shot. In fact, they are great subjects for honing your close-up skills. You can carefully consider perspective, depth of field, camera angle and lighting; you can also focus and expose with great precision. You don't need fancy or pricey kit either - a tele-zoom or standard lens together with a close-up filter will get you started.
Printing is a big thing for me - I love printing. This is because for me a 'real' photo is a printed one, not just a digital file. I've been printing since the beginning of my photographic career back in the years 2002 and 2003; not with the aim to sell prints, but just for the fun of it. Nowadays, printing is business for me: I sell fine art prints and I work together with Canon as their large-format print ambassador.
The Hungarian capital of Budapest was so named in 1873 when the west banks of the Danube River, Buda and Óbuda, were united with Pest on the eastern side. Known as the Pearl of Danube, the city of Budapest has more thermal spas than any other in the world; it also lays claim to having the second oldest subway network after London.
In my job as a commercial architectural photographer, I often find myself shooting in built-up urban environments or tethered to a laptop shooting interiors. While I very much enjoy my work in all its diverse forms, I'm undoubtedly at my happiest when I'm photographing larger architectural projects, especially those situated in beautiful or interesting locations where I can focus on relating a building to its surrounding landscape.
Please take a look around our f-11 members gallery. Share your photographs with other members and receive David's feedback on your work.