Monday, 30 January 2012

I just liked the light....

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2.8 @ 100 mm, 1/1250, ISO 400, No Flash

Pond dipping

A candid taken wide-open on the Zeiss 100MP. I'm loving the thin depth of field and smooth bokeh from this lens. The lighting was lovely yesterday - golden winter sun.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/2000, ISO 100, No Flash

Saturday, 28 January 2012

James on Burn's night

James trying the silly hat / wig that I wore for most of the evening! Processed with a free Lightroom plugin I found on the web - google 'Matt's Sin CIty" Used Canon 50mm f/1.4 and bounced a 580EXII off the ceiling with the white card out.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2.8 @ 50 mm, 1/300, ISO 400, Flash

Friday, 27 January 2012

2012_52 Week 4 - Sweet

Week 4

I had this crazy idea of some sinister sweet-beings coming to attack. I wanted hard lighting with clear shadows so I used a gridded studio strobe and a reflector for fill.

Not sure what I think of the result!

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/9 @ 100 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Lou on a bench

Colour Creative - CP2 in Lightroom.

FUJIFILM FinePix X100, f/2.8 @ 23 mm, 1/70, ISO 400, Flash

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Is that my dinner coming?

One from a while back that never got to see the light of day!

Canon EOS 5D, f/2 @ 85 mm, 1/125, ISO 200, Flash

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance

Saw this show today - very impressed. Thought I'd grab a shot near the end of the final dance. I needed a high ISO as the theatre was relatively dark. The shot needed some processing to get rid of the shadow of the person's head in front of me.

I used NoiseNinja to reduce the noise from using a high-ish ISO. (1600)

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/2000, ISO 1600, No Flash

Saturday, 21 January 2012

One hotel room - lots of different styles.

Today I thought I'd share how you can get quite a few different styles into one shoot. Admittedly the model and I were there for about 3.5hours (not including unloading/loading the car), but I think we managed quite a few different styles from one session.

Firstly a studio strip-softbox firing along the length of the bed. No other lighting at all. You can actually see the band of light across the model. I liked the way this made the background darker and gave interesting shadows across the shot.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/5.6 @ 35 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Next, was yesterday's main blog shot using a large octabox

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/5.6 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

For this shot I had Hannah stand on the bed and I fired the strip box almost parallel to the wall.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/5.6 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Now we setup a studio with white backdrop for more tradional portraits. First one was lit by a strip softbox with two gridded reflectors on the hair - one each side and from above. As there was no light on the background it simply went mid-grey in tone. I may photoshop out the creases at some point!

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/10 @ 102 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Changed to a black background and beauty dish (40cm) for this shot.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/11 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

For this one there was a strip softbox camera left and a gridded reflector giving a pool of light camera right.

Last shot in the standard studio setup   - octabox as the main light behind and above camera (slightly to the left), strip softbox as a rimlight firing in from 45 degrees behind the model.
Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/6.3 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Another one against the wall - this time bring the strip softbox out further and angling in to the model - about 45 degrees from the line of the wall.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/6.3 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Finally using the natura light in the bathroom + a little fill from an on-camera 580EXII

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/2 @ 35 mm, 1/640, ISO 400, Flash

Love lies bleeding and 2012_52 Week 3 - Sigh

Had a rare day off work today and decided to spend it in a grotty hotel room taking photos of Hannah!

Firstly, Hannah had some great ideas for a themed shoot. More will be coming soon, but here's the first. Simple lighting here - an octabox pointing down towards the bed.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/5.6 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Next up is the third week of my 2012_52 project - 'Sigh'

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/11 @ 50 mm, 1/125, ISO 100

Sigh - behind the scenes view:
Improvised studio:
40cm white gridded beauty dish as key light camera left. Gridded strip box camera right. Gridded reflector as hair light (you can just see this behind the beauty dish) and a reflector with barndoors to light the black ground to make it slightly grey.

Friday, 20 January 2012

Rusty sign

I just like the colours and textures in this!

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/4 @ 100 mm, 1/160, ISO 100, No Flash

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Not to be moved

The lighting was lovely early afternoon today and I headed for the local hobbiest railway for my lunch break. I used the Zeiss 100mm wide open (f/2.0) to draw attention to the sign. Shooting along the side of the carriage helps to give a feeling of depth.

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/4000, ISO 100, No Flash

The blacksmith at work

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/4 @ 100 mm, 1/200, ISO 200, Flash

Sunday, 15 January 2012

The blacksmith

A blacksmith with 40 years experience. Recently got a new workshop at the canalside.

Photo taken using the manual focus Zeiss 100mm Makro Planar, with flash bounced off the wall on the left hand side to avoid that 'direct flash' look. I had the bounce card on the 580EXII up to give highlights in the eyes. I also include a crop - the Zeiss is unbelievably sharp! (Click the photo to see the cropped area larger).

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, f/5.6 @ 100 mm, 1/200, ISO 400, Flash

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Tit in winter sun.

I love shooting in winter sun - you get a lovely warm quality to the light. This was taken handheld with the Canon 70-200 f/2.8 MKII and a Canon 2x II Extender. This is a great combination for getting decent reach with decent quality without having to buy a huge lens!

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/6.3 @ 400 mm, 1/400, ISO 800, No Flash

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Project for 2012 - a '52 - Week 2 - Fear

I went for the source of (I guess) the most common phobia.

I used the 580EXII off-camera and due to space requirements had to hand-hold the camera - this made getting the focus bang-on the eyes a challenge.

I did a manual conversion to B&W in Lightroom adjusting contrast, clarity, blacks, cropping and adding a vignette. The original shot is below as a reference.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/9 @ 100 mm, 1/300, ISO 100, Flash.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Flying Swan

I don't do lots of bird photography and hence have not invested in any of the longer lenses. For this shot I used my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 L IS MKII with a Canon 2x MKII extender. The combination is surprisingly sharp (in my opinion the MKI version of this lens was terrible with the 2x extender) and is perfect for my occasional wildlife shots.

I liked the late afternoon winter sunlight in this shot.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/6.3 @ 400 mm, 1/1600, ISO 800

Friday, 6 January 2012

It's all about the light

The subject in this photo is arguably nothing special, but I really liked the winter sunshine and the resulting colours and shadows.

FUJIFILM FinePix X100, f/5.6 @ 23 mm, 1/400, ISO 400

Thursday, 5 January 2012


Simple shot,. but I like it - I think the wide aperture helps to draw attention to the duck. I've sought to further enhance this effect by adding a slight vignette. Manual focus, handheld.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/2000, ISO 800, Flash

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Project for 2012 - a '52 - Week 1 - Direction

This is a project for 2012 - I enjoyed doing the photo-a-week project back in 2010 (see here) and fancied trying again this year.

Each week a new theme is posted. Participants then take a photo to match the theme and post it in a thread for others to comment.

The 'TalkPhotography' discussion thread is here

Rather than go with my first instincts of signposts or someone pointing, I thought I'd imply interest in a direction outside the frame.

I was deliberately challenging myself here shooting handheld with my Zeiss Makro Planar T* 100mm f/2 ZE. It is a manual focus lens so I thought wildlife might be 'interesting'.

Shooting at f/2 I was pleased with the sharp focus and narrow depth of field. I cropped slightly in Lightroom to put the eye on the thirds.

Week 1 - Direction
What the hell's that up there?

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/1250, ISO 400, Flash

Monday, 2 January 2012

Victorian Pump Tower

This tower is at Sywell Reservoir where I had a pleasant new-years-day walk!

Three shots combined in Photomatix. A wide faperture of /2 helped to keep the tower in focus whilst blurring the foreground and background.

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/400, ISO 100

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Ladybird in Natural Light and Flash

Happy 2012 all!

Two different approaches to the same subject - the first taken wide open in natural light, the second @ f/8 with flash - at this aperture (with a 1/300s shutter speed) the ambient light was basically removed from the exposure equation.

I like both in different ways!

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/2 @ 100 mm, 1/250, ISO 400, No Flash

Canon EOS-1D Mark III, f/8 @ 100 mm, 1/300, ISO 400, Flash