B+W ND110 and Fistral Beach

The following blog post contains a photograph from our weekend break in Cornwall, but I kept it seperate as I wanted to share this fantastic new piece of kit with you and demonstrate it's use. It's a screw in neutral density filter that will reduce the amount of light hitting the sensor by 10 stops. In short, this means something that would usually be around a 1/15th second exposure is now a 1 minute exposure. This gives you the ability to create long exposure photographs in all sorts of conditions. A little fiddly to use at first, once the glass is screwed onto your lens the viewfinder is pitch black. Framing and focusing is done beforehand, then locked off. If your going to invest in one, I highly recommend the 'LongTime' iPhone app which is free and will help you calculate your new exposure times. The filter is constructed of brass and then annodised, which prevents binding to the lens.

A characteristic of long exposures using heavy neutral density glass is colour casts. I've used this a number of times now, and am very impressed with the minimal warm colour cast given to a photograph. Looking at a few samples in Adobe Camera Raw, sometimes I even prefer the look it can give.

I'll leave you with one of the first photographs i've taken using this filter, Fistral Beach in Newquay on an overcast afternoon. For more information, click the image below:

Fistral Beach, Newquay

Let's go mobile...

In preparation for this year's increased blogging it was time to update the site with abit more functionality. Mobile Phones are a necessity commonality these days, and with a great little widget called 'WPTouch' you can now create a mobile version of your blog site for easier compatability/faster loading times. As of today, logging onto my blog site will automatically re-direct your mobile devices to the specific mobile version which still remains all funcationality of the full site (Comments, Pictures, Search etc) Let me know what you all think...

A blog post isn't right without pictures, so here's some of my recent uploads to FlickR:

Wind Farm, Cornwall


Portland Bill, Dorset

The first photograph was taken using my new B+W ND110 77mm Filter. New blog post to follow shortly about this fantastic piece of kit.

Clicking any of the images will take you through to the assosciated FlickR page where you can find information on how where and why they were taken.

Rounding Off 2010...

First of all i'd like to wish all readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. It wouldn't be complete without an end of year blog post to round off what's been a fantastic year for myself. This year has seen many opportunities in the photographic industry for me, and has brought about some great prospects for 2011. The blog has been a little bit neglected recently in terms of uploads, but i've been busy behind the scenes with new projects and website launch.

Not only am I super excited about what 2011 has to offer, I'm keen to blog and upload more of my work throughout the year. Hopefully you'll join in with keeping up to date with my work through the various social network sites I use.

Alot of my work is uploaded onto the popular site, FlickR. The ability to display work across an audience of thousands within seconds is a brilliant prospect for any photographer. If you use FlickR please feel free to add me as a contact. Even if you don't have a FlickR account, you can still check out my photostream.

You didn't hear this from me, but i've even come round to thinking Twitter is great. It's proved invaluable this year, and if your bored or fancy getting in touch/keeping up to date, feel free to follow me.

What's a blog post without pictures? Below are a few recent shots taken from my FlickR account. Clicking the individual photographs will take you directly to their page with information about how and why they were shot:

London Eye, Westminster

Smoking Canon

Stonehenge, Salisbury

Thanks for reading. Here's to a fantastic and prosperous 2011!

Location - Durdle Door

Durdle Door is quite possibly one of the most iconic seascapes on the south coast, and because of this it's hard to capture a unique take on the fasinating structure. Taken at 2PM GMT on Saturday in what was some rare "October Sun" it was difficult to get a long enough exposure without the use of an ND filter in broad daylight.

In comes the use of high aperture which meant my camera is now crawling with sensor dust (Hurrah!). Nevertheless this allowed me to give my new Wacom Bamboo Tablet a good work out.

The above photograph is captured using three exposures, blended using a technique called HDR (High Dynamic Range). I'm not usually a fan of HDR, but processed in a certain way I think they can give that unique effect/feel.

  • ISO50 | ƒ/22 | 1 Second
  • ISO50 | ƒ/22 | 1/15th Second
  • ISO50 | ƒ/22 | 1/4 Second

Starting to really enjoy landscape photography now, as it always provides me with an opportunity for new prints in the house :D

Location - St.Pauls Cathedral

London at night is fantastic, as the city takes on a whole different look/feel due to the light radiated by nearby sources. After a great days shooting at HCPhotography, I found myself on the train to London with family for a birthday meal. Not the shot I was intending to get, as by the time we arrived at the London eye it had stopped rotating. I believe everything happens for a reason, and as such I've still managed to capture a great image which I initially hadn't set out to get. This is one of the reasons why I love photography, it's spontaneous!

This is a view along Millennium Bridge to St.Pauls Cathedral, part of the iconic London skyline. Thousands of people cross this bridge daily, so shooting at night not only allowed me to shoot this without disruption, but also capturing the fantastic light given off by the city.

Photoshoot - Osterly Park and the Pitsford's Home Guard

Osterly Park is one of the largest open spaces in West London, with it's original footprints dating back to the 1570's. It's spectacular mansion surrounded by gardens and parkland, made Osterly today's location of choice to chill out and relax in the sun. It just so happend that on this weekend, Osterly was being visited by the Pitsford Home Guard. They hosted a display with barracks, uniforms, rifles and even an old Messerschmidt! The phrase 'Carpe Diem' is one that comes to mind here, and as soon as I saw the Home Guard stood next to the plane, I had to ask.......Can i take your picture!?

They were more than happy to oblige, and after photographing a single member of the platoon, more came over to have theirs taken. Hats off to these guys (or is a salute more appropriate?) for being such good sports! :)

I had a great time doing a real impromptu photoshoot with members of Pitsford Home Guard, and hope they like the photographs as much as I did taking them (Well...they did have rifles after all). I've since learnt that Osterly Park was one of the first locations used for the training of the first members of the Local Defence Volunteers (forerunners of the Home Guard).

If your local and are thinking about visiting Osterly Park it really is a nice day out. Please feel free to click here to see the full gallery from today.

Photoshoot - Amy: "Tor" of Guildford

It's been a hectic week, and Sunday was a chance to relax in the sunshine. After a quick drive down the A3 into Guildford, Surrey I found myself at 'The Mount' with its idyllic views across the entire town. Never one for being without my camera, it made for a great panoramic image with Guildford Cathedral situated in the centre (You can see this image in the gallery). Accompanied by Amy, it was a chance to grab a few images of her enjoying the great British weather. She makes a gorgeous model, right? :)

I particularly like this image, shot on a tight F22 aperture to give the sun that distinctive look (note the number of points minus one can tell you how many blades your aperture is made up of) and lit with a single 580EX II in a shoot through umbrella camera right triggered via the ST-E2 transmitter.

For a full gallery of Amy and my trip to Guildford Mount feel free to click here.

Location - London Eye and Aquarium

The London Eye was completed in 1999 weighing 1,700 tonnes and is hailed as the largest Ferris wheel in Europe. Towering 443ft high into the London Skyline, the Eye has 32 capsules (one for every London Borough) each holding upto 25 passengers. Rotating at 0.6mph, it allows passengers to take a view over London by day or by night. Having seen the view from both times of day, I can highly recommend taking a trip up at dusk to see the city glowing with light.

Just beneath the London Eye is the Sealife - London Aquarium. First opened in March 1997, and after recent £5m refurbishments the aquarium now has a glass tunnel, shark walk and a large pacific ocean tank. A vast array of creatures feature here, ranging from crocodiles to sharks!


Location - The Blue Pool

'The Blue Pool' is a lake which lies on the site of an old clay quarry in Wareham, Dorset. A vast 25 acre heath woodland now makes this one of the most peaceful and tranquil places i've ever visited. 'Purbeck Ball Clay' was once extracted here back in the 17th century, which is why the pool gets it vivid changing colour. There are tiny particles of clay suspended in the lake's water, which defract the reflected light. With the light being refracted differently, it means the lake can change colour from grey right through to a turqoise blue. The below picture is straight off the camera, and has no photoshop trickery involved. The water is actually this colour and could fool anyone to think this wasn't taken in the UK! Idyllic setting for a one on one or couples outdoor photoshoot.

For the full gallery of the Blue Pool, please feel free to click here.

Location - Corfe Castle

Corfe Castle dates back to the early 11th century. During the Civil War the castle came under seige twice by the Parliamentarians. The fortress was impenetrable, until during the second siege when it was betrayed by  a member of the garrison. Once captured, the castle was planted with explosives to ensure it could never be used as a stronghold again. These ruins still stand today, run by the National Trust located in the Purbeck Hills (Dorset). This weekend, with the summer weather well on it's way we took a trip up to see the magnificent structure.

Over the years the castle has undergone various restoration projects, to ensure that each year the hundreds of thousands of visitors can enjoy what was hailed as 'one of the most important castles in England at the time'. Below is a picture of Corfe Castle Village taken high in the castle.

For a full gallery of Corfe Castle, including abit of fun with off camera flash high aloft the castle please feel free to click here.