The digital monochrome print talk – again

I am off to hopefully sunny north Devon to give a talk at Barnstable CC this evening. This is a highly interactive talk as all mine are. I gave the same presentation at Bridgwater PS on Tuesday evening the audience asked a lot of interesting questions. I ended up only showing about half of the prints I had taken to show in the first half because the Q&A was going so well. The second half of the talk is aRead more

How to automatically select pictures in Lightroom

The digital age of photography means that there is a proliferation of frames taken suggests that its easy to forget what you have done and not take the picture to it’s rightful conclusion. In my case taken to conclusion might mean that a picture ends up here on my blog, on my website, as an A3 sized print or an A2 sized print if the picture is exceptional. To help me bring order to the editing process I use variousRead more

9999 Frames

Remember when DSlr’s were very slow to boot up and focus? This shot was taken in 2004 with my then new Canon 20D. The first digital camera I had that worked semi-like it was supposed to. So who are Anna and Jack in the picture on the right, are they a real couple, are they still together, why are their names carved in to the stone paving in Millennium Square in Bristol? In the ten years since I have hadRead more

Leaving things out

Photographic composition or designing a picture, is really as simple as deciding what to leave out of the frame preferably at the taking stage. I will say it again “use it or lose it, when composing a picture”. So here I choose to leave out the house roof tops in the background by not including them in the picture as it was taken. In the processing I have chosen a letterbox aspect ratio for the picture of 6×17 to furtherRead more

Infra-red inspiration

In the past week I have had cause to talk about infra-red photography three times. So feeling inspired after re-reading a book called “Infra-red Photography – a complete workshop guide” by my good friend Hugh Milsom MFIAP I thought I would have a go. The book is about film based IR photography but with lots of tips and great portfolios of pictures. As there was strong directional lighting yesterday evening I took my IR converted camera body to an areaRead more

Digital Lith Workshop outline

I am off tomorrow to hopefully finalize the venue and shoot locations for the Digital Lith Workshop based in Bridgnorth, Shropshire. The date for the workshop is the 14-16th Feb 2014. Would you like to master the secret of making wonderful elusive Digital Lith images from an acknowledged leader in the field? The Workshop will give you the confidence to make your own digital Lith pictures in any photographic genre. On the weekend Digital Lith Workshop I will share withRead more

FREE Nik Collection of Software

If you’re an existing Nik Software customer you can now get the whole Nik Collection for free just by providing your existing Product Key as evidence of purchase. This offer was introduced by Nik’s new owners Google. To purchase the whole collection at current rates would cost $149 approximately £100 pounds. When I purchased Silver Efex Pro 2 it was around £150 on its own, so this is an extremely good offer. The Nik Collection consists of Color Efex ProRead more

The simple secret of becoming a first class photographer

I am pleased to announce “The simple secret of becoming a first-class photographer” course. This one-day course will be held at Calumet Photographic in Bristol on Saturday 22nd June 2013 commencing at 10.30 Half of the places have been booked already before I could advertise it on my blog so book your place now to avoid disappointment. For full details of the course please look at my website on the workshops and seminars page at http://www.andybeelfrps.co.uk/Workshops%20-%20Seminars The picture above isRead more

Deep joy for a dyslexic

Please look at the picture fullsize against a grey background. I have just bought Dragon 12 voice recogition software which is actually working brilliantly. I installed it this evening and as you can see I am dictating to you by a microphone headset. So if you are dyslexic like me and have great difficulty with typing, you might find Dragon 12 really helpful. Hopefully the days of unrecognised missing words and mixed up sentences are gone forever. Alleluia. A bigRead more

How to create photography project ideas

Please look at the picture full size against a grey background. I have been thinking about how the ideas for a potential photography project are formed in the mind. The following is a jumbled list of how the creative process works in my mind. It may not be correct or complete but it’s where I am at with my understanding of the creative process. Probably the first thing to say is – photography is not about photography, it is aboutRead more

Which lens aperture do you choose?

Please look at the picture full size on a grey background. I was thinking the other day about favourite lens apertures I use. My perception was that I use the following apertures: the lens wide open a lot, somewhere in the middle around f8/11 occasionally and f22 rarely. With new technology meta-data is saved about each picture. I used the Library Module in Lightroom to filter for all apertures used on the 21,000 pictures I have on an external hardRead more

Grasses – Cum Morthin

Please look at the picture full size against a grey background. One the great strengths of Infra-red photography is a situation like this in north Wales where you have grasses that reflect IR  very well in a landscape with other features that do not reflect IR light as well as the grasses. The infra-red effect can easily be overdone on a sunny day in a woodland. This picture was taken on a rainy day in April this year. A bigRead more

Pre-visualisation – planning ahead

Please Like my Facebook fan page at http://www.facebook.com/AndyBeelFrps Please look at the picture full size against a grey background. As a sometime landscape photographer I really struggled to see a picture in the Ogwen Valley. Heresy I know but it happens. Of the genres of photography I find landscape really difficult. I am rereading a book by Alain Briot called “Mastering Landscape Photography” The Luminous Landscape Essays. See http://www.luminous-landscape.com/index.shtml In the introduction to the book he makes a very goodRead more

Slate Quarry Barracks – Wales

Please look at the picture full size against the grey background. Slate Quarry Barracks – Wales. You might dislike your place of work but it can not compare to the living and working conditions of the men who worked in absolutely dire and dangerous conditions of the 19th Century. Be grateful to the men and women who campaigned and fought for better working conditions. (c) Andy Beel FRPS 2012 http://www.andybeelfrps.co.ukRead more

Rally round the flag boys

Please look at the picture full size against a grey background. I was doing my usual trawl through various posts looking for examples of good B&W photography to comment on and I came across a picture of a flag and was instantly reminded of this IR shot taken about six months ago. See Marks picture of the Aussie flag at http://markelliottphotographer.com/2012/07/03/sydney-2/ This picture is named after a very old Ry Cooder song called “Rally round the flag boys”. Being anRead more

Harlech Point

Please look at the pictures full size against a grey background. I am reliably informed the scene in the background is Harlech Point in North Wales. The pictures were taken from Port Meirion. This pair of shots are unusual for me as they are reasonably similar but the second one below was taken in Infrared. I think the main differences are the tonality of the hills and clouds in the background. I think on balance I prefer the IR shotRead more

Where halos come from

Please look at the picture full size on a grey background. I was chatting with a friend about Lr4 and the myth that halos had been eradicated. So I thought other people might like to be aware of all the controls that can provide an unwanted halos at an edge with greatly differing tonal values. This is largely a problem for black & white users of Lr. Colour photographers generally do not require the same high contrast as the seniorRead more

Walkers with dominance, balance and …

Please look at the picture full size on a grey background. An early evening stroll in Biarritz, south-west France. Infrared Capture with usual wide-angle lens. I did do a crop with the guy on the left, left out (below) but in the end felt that he needed to be there for balance and tension. As I have said before for me, pictures work best when there are elements of dominance, balance and tension. Tension can be provided when the eyeRead more

Stourhead

Just another example of my style of split toning Sepia in the Shadows and Gold  in the Highlights. Sepia is giving the Chocolate shadows and the Gold (Gold toner in the dark room gave a fugitive duck egg blue) in the Highlights. Note the lack of deep saturation for both tones, the shadow tones is about 25% of the density of the highlights. This picture started out life as an IR capture a few years ago in Stourhead Gardens Wiltshire.Read more

The Birds

Please look at the picture full size. It’s said if you are embarking on a long-term or difficult project (especially where photographic distinctions are involved) it is wise to choose a subject that is not on another continent, is easily and cheaply available to re-photograph as the work develops. I have lived in my current house since 1985, an unknown neighbour of mine has a Pigeon Loft. He exercises the birds everyday at around 5.10pm in the summer. I mustRead more

Pont Y Pandy Slate Mill

Pont Y Pandy Slate Mill is somewhere that I had been wanting to photograph but I had no idea where it was apart from in Snowdonia. I had seen pictures of in the National Trust Magazine taken from a similar angle to mine. I have had the idea of doing a talk on digital Infrared photography for a while but thought that I did not have enough pictures. So I have been using my infrared converted body more recently. IRead more

Bill Brandt Homage

Click on the picture and see it full size to get the full impact and point. “Photography is still a very new medium and everything must be tried and dared”. Bill Brandt Whatever your particular preference is in photography there are new ways of seeing and doing. “Man can not discover new oceans unless he has the courage to leave sight of the shore”. Andre Gide Why not try something new today? What is this picture “Brandt homage 3” aboutRead more

The best place to take pictures is – where you are

The best place to take pictures is where you are, the best camera to use is the one you have with you. That might sound a little fatuous but the grass or the light won’t necessarily be greener 1000 miles away, you get my drift? It’s so easy to think great pictures are only made with ultra-expensive equipment on the other side of the world. I am just as guilty of familiarity breeding contempt as anyone. A few wise wordsRead more

Everything is easy?

I have a book that contains a section on digital Lith printing. Over a three page spread the author happily tells the reader with great joy that digital Lith printing is easy – seven times!. No names, no pack drill this author is well-known, I know him and we do meet occasionally. I found the assurance that everything is easy, very annoying and frustrating. I have been trying get digital Lith right for a round four years so to beRead more

Shelter Man in Worthing Recovers

Just to keep my Blog topical and up to date here is a snap taken last week in Worthing called Shelter Man – Worthing. This is IR capture processed in Silver Efex Pro 2 via Lightroom and Photoshop. The 1600 ASA Film grain and Gold toning was done in SXPro 2. Its called gold toning because darkroom gold toner turned prints a fugitive blue. I unfortunately reformatted the CF card before importing this folder of pictures in to Lightroom which wasRead more