Wednesday, 30 December 2015

52 Week Project 2016

With New Year's Day fast approaching people are making their New Years resolutions. Vowing to get fit, save money, cut back on alcohol, eat less chocolate etc...a smorgasbord of resolutions, most of which will be dropped by February.

With that said, this year, for the first time in my 29 years of existence...holy crap! I'm 29! how did that happen?...I've decided to make one, kinda...

I don't get the chance to shoot as often as I would like, I'd shoot every day if I could, but you know, life! In an effort to combat this and get me shooting more I've decided to attempt the 52 Week Project. Each week, starting Monday 04th January, I'll be trying to create an image based on a set theme, or word, or colour, and I'll post the results whether they be good or crap. Unlike most 52 week projects my theme will be selected, at random, the start of each week.

If all goes well I'll post my image each Sunday and announce the following weeks theme. If things go a little awry, as let's face it happens all too often in life, I'll do my best to get back on track.

As it's it my wedding anniversary on Friday 08th January, my first theme shall be ANNIVERSARY...


Ian

Friday, 25 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

Despite the un-wintery weather it's that day of the year again, Christmas Day.

I hope you all have a great day! I also hope that Santa, St Nick, Kris Kringle, Tim Allen, whatever your chosen name for him has left you some lovely presents in your stockings.


Ian

Friday, 18 December 2015

Bloody Hell It's Windy Up The Great Orme

This past week I ended up somewhere I haven't visited since I was about twelve...Llandudno. It wasn't a proper visit, at best it was a drive through, however, I ended up having an hour atop the Great Orme.

Between dodging birds going to the bathroom, avoiding sheep muck, and trying not to get blown off the cliff I managed to take a few shots...not many, it was practically gale force winds after all.








Ian

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Emma, You May Be Gone But You'll Never Be Forgotten

Back on September 19th I uploaded a bunch of photos of my families dog, Emma. About five weeks ago she seemed ill so my father took her to the vets for a check up, she was found to have cancer.

This past Tuesday vets at the University Of Liverpool Small Animal Teaching Hospital made the difficult decision to put her to sleep. In the short space of time between emergence of symptoms and then, the cancer had spread at an aggressive rate, and they believed it would be cruel to make her continue to endure it.

I have only known her for five years, since meeting my wife, but she had my wrapped around her paw from day one. She was such a wonderful dog, she was the softest, friendliest little girl despite her bark whenever anyone rang the doorbell.

I'm going to leave it at that and wrap this post up before it descends into a rant about injustice in the universe, or reverts back to my first draft, it was quite obscenity heavy!


RIP EMMA


Ian

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

2015 Christmas Gift Guide

It's that time of year again...in a few short weeks Home Alone will be on the telly, we'll all have gained half a stone, and houses will be littered with shredded wrapping paper...yep, it's nearly Christmas.

Along with the fun and frolics of Christmas comes the not so fun necessity to fight with traffic, find parking, and navigate through hordes of shoppers...thinking about it, it's a little like The Walking Dead. Also, when it comes to gifts for photographers, online is now pretty much your only option, here in the UK anyway, I don't know if things are better elsewhere. With these issues in mind I've knocked up a list of gifts you could get the photographer in your life. They range in price to cover your budget, and/or your relationship with said photographer, from uncle knobhead to the person in your life who touches your fun stuff I've got it covered...that's right folks, a Peter Kay and That 70's Show reference in one sentence.

Anyway, on with the list...all laid out nicely for you in ascending order of price...


ThumbsUpLensCup-ImageCourtasyOfThumbsUpPressRoom

Most people drink some form of hot beverage, be it the normals like tea or coffee, to your more obscure drinks such as Bovril, and as such, people need cups. Available in both travel and 'regular' these cups look the part and are a great cheaper gift option.


Dust, the enemy of many a photographer...a Rocket Air Blower is a cheap and effective way of removing dust, making it a great, low cost gift...did I mention it looks like a rocket?


Novelty T-Shirt (for him / for her) - £9.99
Ermmm, this doesn't really need much explaining...there are many novelty t-shirts around, from clever technical ones to downright silly ones, it all depends on your photographers sense of humour...I'm usually the dafter the better.


StunningDigitalPhotography-ImageCourtasyNorthrup.Photo

It's always good to try improve yourself, and a good way to achieve this is through learning. From two of YouTube's favourite creators of photography related content, Chelsea Northrup and Tony NorthrupStunning Digital Photography is a great way for your loved one to improve their photography. Unlike most books that are just, well, books, Stunning Digital Photography comes with hours of videos and a community of like minded people.


5 In 1 Reflector - £28.07
Light, she can be an unruly mistress, especially natural light. At times it can be like herding sheep that have ADHD and are hopped up on sugar. One of the vast array of ways photographers can deal with this issue is a reflector, bouncing light where they need it...or reflecting it if you will. A 5 in 1 reflector gives the ability to not only bounce light, but also adjust it's temperature, it also has a removable centre which can be used to diffuse harsh light.

I should point out, the reflector isn't really applicable if the photographer only shoots landscapes!


BlackRapidSport-ImageCourtasyOfBlackRapidPressCentre

If the photographer you are buying for is, like me, a bit of a klutz, the Black Rapid RS-Sport Strap could be of use to them. Attaching to the cameras tripod mount, the RS-Sport is a longer strap than the factory supplied one, this allows the camera to sit comfortably on the wearers hip when not in use. As well as extra comfort, the length and design allows for easier movement of the camera when taking images. Security is another great benefit of the design as it fastens cross body, and has under arm safety tether.


Wacom Tablet - £264.99
WacomIntuosProPTH651-ImageCourtasyOfWacomPressCentre

Nowadays there isn't an image sent out into the world without some form of retouching. If your photographer's always rambling about layer masks, chances are they're using Photoshop, and a Wacom Tablet may be good for them. Put simply, it's a glorified laptop track pad that, when used with the supplied pen, gives the ability to make more controlled, spot specific changes in the likes of Photoshop and Lightroom...it's a little like drawing, or painting on your image.


DSLR (Canon / Nikon) - £2000ish
NikonD810-ImageCourtasyOfNikonPressRoom

Now, this gift will vary from person to person, as will the price, the cameras and price above are what's on my wish list, sadly however, Santa's so broke that Rudolph's been repossessed. Most photographers are gear junkies, and will no doubt have a camera (or lens) they crave. Money permitting, surprising them with the gear they've longed for will no doubt blow their mind...only downside, as a non-photographer you'll have to try remember daft model numbers.


There you go folks, a few ideas for you. Obviously the list is only a guide, only you know your budget and the recipient's likes...FYI, I'd love anything off the list, just in case you wondered.


Ian