Category: Photographic techniques

Still Light

I think of it as ‘still light’, adapting the idea of still life; a style that originated centuries ago in the world of the painted image, and went on to influence the early years of photography… (240 words. A two-minute read) The big idea of still life is to have an intensity of quietness, whose arrangement may also carry a hidden message; ranging from … Read More Still Light

Signs of Spring (3) : Raid a Resort!

We all have preconceptions about places we know well. As photographers, we are uniquely placed to ‘sneak up’ and shoot a different story, deliberately skewing things.. The Lancashire resort of Morecambe is less than 30 minutes drive from where we live. Tess, our collie, loves the beaches there, and there is a three mile promenade allowing pleasant Sunday walks with access to take-away coffees … Read More Signs of Spring (3) : Raid a Resort!

Signs of Spring : Beaches

It’s easy when you have a dog. The charging collie clearly loves a beach. But I’m having as much fun as she is. You see, one of the greatest places to see the sky is the beach… Where the ocean meets the land is a wonderful place. Rocky, sandy or urban-developed, this ‘littoral zone’ has a special magic that spills over into opportunities for … Read More Signs of Spring : Beaches

Wet Sunday photo trickery…

What do you do when it’s raining so hard that normal landscape photography is impossible? Stay indoors and use a simple trick to make some sophisticated and stylish abstracts for your future blogs… or even book covers. (400 words, a two minute read) They’re inexpensive, available online at a day’s notice, and will fool most observers into thinking you’re a Photoshop expert – which … Read More Wet Sunday photo trickery…

Eyes in the Sunset

I love this time of year. The early spring offers an interesting mixture of summer light and winter forms. The last few weeks of the bare organic structures offer mischievous possibilities for a slight degree of editing… But sometimes, nature surprises without any artifice on the photographer’s part. In the opening shot, I was walking Tess through the local forest when I was startled … Read More Eyes in the Sunset

Signs of Spring (1): the edges of colour

There’s a saying in Cumbria; you don’t get the real spring till it’s fooled you, twice… But you do get the sun; and its increased energy brings real life to the natural colours in the landscape and the sky. Below: One of the great trees on the shores of Lake Windermere has a large network of half-exposed roots which look magically green in the … Read More Signs of Spring (1): the edges of colour

Approaching delight

It shouldn’t be happening. Bowness-on-Windermere swans are notoriously aggressive, and yet these two are approaching me as though I were another swan. I’m not, obviously. But I am in the water with them. Why this is taking place needs some explanation… We live a short drive from the shores of Lake Windermere. Our collie needs a decent daily walk, and the park areas around … Read More Approaching delight

Winter walks with camera (12) liminal crossing into Spring

There’s something special about the two week period when one season blends into another, particularly winter into spring. This liminal period is capable of showing us the subtlety that winter lacks… (200 words, a two-minute read) Something wonderful happens to the winter sky towards the end of February – there is a weekend during which the light energy doubles – it’s the largest upward … Read More Winter walks with camera (12) liminal crossing into Spring

Winter walks with camera (11) : black and white

Winter is a natural fit for black and white photography. The essence of a good monochrome shot is strong contrast, aided by subtle mid-stones. The low winter sun lends itself to that mix – as long as there is any sun, at all… (460 words; a four-minute read) The power of the high-end mobile phone camera has provided the means to carry out sophisticated … Read More Winter walks with camera (11) : black and white

Winter walks with camera (10) flowing water

Winter landscapes involving water are plentiful, but water can be a tricky subject to photograph. The eye is much more subtle than a camera lens, and we have to help the camera overcome this… (200 words, a two-minute read) Watery landscapes can look pale and ‘flat’ if you let the standard camera settings take charge. The lens is doing what it’s supposed to, but … Read More Winter walks with camera (10) flowing water

Winter walks with camera (9) dull green and soft ochre

We think of winter as being full of disadvantages for the photographer, but it also brings unique colours and dynamic contrasts: from clouds in the sky to the low sun on the landscape. (200 words, a two-minute read) One of the most subtle contrasts is between the dull green of winter’s foliage and the colour of the residual life of trunk, branch, twig and … Read More Winter walks with camera (9) dull green and soft ochre

Winter walks with camera (8) first frosting

I love that fragile first coat of snow that changes the landscape like a frosting… yet leaves the main features visible behind the sheet of white. Here, the thin snow is not sufficient to do anything but emphasise the railway tracks and the tall, bordering conifer trees. There was something stark about the collie and the single post in the field near the coastal … Read More Winter walks with camera (8) first frosting

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