Oh, and this would be a valid reason for always shooting RAW and at the camera’s full resolution. You never know when your picture gets printed at the size of a billboard!
I’ve pretty much finished work on my dissertation now, so I could take a day off when Coralie and Oliver came down to visit us in Canterbury. Together with David and Alison we drove to the Ice Bowl in Gillingham.
[Update: Some people have asked about the editing of the ‘splash’ photo, so I’ve uploaded the original for comparison.]
I really liked Southlands Beach which Alison showed me when we were in Bermuda. I had a Fashion photography competition that I wanted to participate in while we were there, so I asked Alison to play the ‘local’ card and get in touch with one of the models she’s worked with before, Stephanie Wilkinson.
For most of the photographs I used three flashes. Two were used together with a shoot-through umbrella which Alison held on to to avoid it falling over. The third flash was used on its own as a kicker or sidelight and was safe on a tripod. Or so I thought.
The shoot went really great – until we got to the final location. The wind blew over the tripod with one of my flashes and a PocketWizard. The hotshoe foot of the latter snapped off, so tomorrow I’ll have to head over to the Flash Centre in London to get a replacement foot (they said they can fix it in time for my Eurostar to Luxembourg in the evening if I drop it off in the afternoon).
Sod’s law. I think I got quite lucky for the rest of the shoot anyway. The forecast had announced rain but it stayed dry, I got way too close to stepping on a Portuguese Man o’ War, and the light levels were just on the sweet spot for me to make use of the flashes at full power and a 1/500 sync speed whilst keeping a shallow depth of field.
After my last class from the spring term, I visited Bermuda with Alison for a week two weeks, thanks to the ashcloud. Before then, I always thought the colours in the photos she’d taken over there were pure Photoshop. Well, no, the water is actually that blue. Below are some general impressions of this and that, from the places we visited in between me researching my essays (which I handed in yesterday, yay!). I’ll post some more sets from my visit later.
I’m trying a new way to display photos on the blog here, with the WordPress NextGen gallery plugin, instead of the SlideshowPro flash plugin I have used so far. On the one hand, it’s going to save me some time getting images ready for the web, on the other hand I can now show photos that are bigger than the main column in the blog. What do you think of the new gallery style?
The second season of the DPChallenge Photography Leage started this week over at DPC and I decided to submit a warm-up entry before the season begins to get back into the game - I haven't taken part in the site's competitions for a while. I decided to shoot something for the Out of the Ordinary challenge.
I'm staying with Alison in Bermuda at the moment. (My flight was meant to leave 4 hours ago but with the airspace around the UK being closed for some foreseeable time I'm not going anywhere soon.) We borrowed some furniture from her house and drove to Warwick Long Bay. We set the things up where I thought we'd get a wave washing over them once in a while. Turns out that for a long time the only wave that would make it that far was the one that got my feet wet when we set up...
In order to make the lamp light up I placed a Canon Speedlite 580EXII inside the lamp head. I had taken out the bulb earlier. My initial plans to keep it there with a superclamp didn't work out because there was not enough room inside the lampshade. So I kept the flash and the Pocketwizard FlexTT5 that was attached to it in place with a ball bungee. A Full C.T.O. gel gave the flash the colour temperature of a tungsten lamp. The flash was set to ETTL, I let the camera do the metering for the lamp, which was easier since my aperture, shutter speed and ISO kept changing as it got progressively darker after sunset. The settings for this photo were f/4, ISO400, 1/30. I also asked Alison to point a snooted flash at the plant to give it a bit of extra definition.