The Essence of Photography

Focus on Imaging 2011

Every March in the UK, the “biggest annual imaging trade show in Europe” rolls into the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham. I’ve never had reason to attend because despite it’s “biggest” billing, very little groundbreaking camera technology ever debuts at Focus, with all the big announcements and displays reserved for the bi-annual Photokina in Germany, and CliQ in America – the recent rebranding exercise of the Photo Marketing Association (PMA). Yet that changed last year when I switched tacks to […]

It’s That Time of the Year

Only I haven’t actually got a specific one in mind. Really, it could be any time of the year. This follows on from last week’s post to an extent, but the beauty about photography in a temperate climate is that there are different photographs to be had all through the year. The thought of four seasons conjures up flowers and bees, yellow leaves and the first fall of snow, and all of them present different opportunities to the photographer – […]

Making Hay…

… Should be done while the sun is shining. Or so goes conventional wisdom anyway. Yet as photographers we should be aware to the photographic potential available to us when the sun isn’t shining, or when conditions are not ideal. When I think about landscape photography I am sometimes guilty of wanting – and waiting for – conditions to be nigh on perfect before I’ll venture out with camera gear in tow. It doesn’t help that even though I live […]

Budget(ing) Wedding Photography

Technology is a wonderful thing. More powerful, cheaper, better… it’s a neverending upgrade cycle. Today many people have more computing power in their mobile phone than they did in their first desktop computer. In the same way, digital cameras are getting better all the time, and prices that were once astronomical (a six million pixel Kodak DCS660 would have set you back £18, 000 in 2000) are falling to levels that us mere mortals can afford without having to remortgage […]

Name Checking

The other day I was engaged in a bit of “friendly” repartee with a user on a large online photographic forum. The user in question was insisting that access to higher level sporting events would help boost their portfolio and generate more experience. It’s not a concept that’s altogether alien, but at the same time not one that I subscribe to. As long as the sport that you’ve photographing is of a decent standard (say, University level for example), then […]

Seabird Sanctuary Part I

Located a few miles off the Northumberland coast, a handful of small and rocky islands make up the collective group that is the Farne Islands. Visually unremarkable, the highest point, on Inner Farne, is a mere 19 miles above sea level, while some of the smaller “islands” dip below the sea on all but the lowest tides. Yet these islands have a major ecological interest; in the summer months they are taken over by approximately 100, 000 pairs of nesting […]

My Lens is Longer than Your Lens!

I think we’ve all been there at some point. Eyeing a new bit of kit to help you get “better” pictures. Wishing that you had a longer lens to help you get better wildlife photographs for example. I’m slightly privileged in that regard; my work as a sports photographer means that I have had access to a variety of long lenses and own my own super telephoto. I’m not privileged enough that I didn’t have to pay for that though! […]

The Right Tools for the Job

Durham Cathedral is one of the architectural masterpieces in Europe. Blessed not just with painstaking Norman workmanship but a setting that rivals any in the country for sheer magnificence, the Cathedral lies on a plateau in a loop in the River Wear. It has stood in that spectacular setting since building work began in 1093, when it took about 40 years for the majority of the original construction work to be completed. A colourful history through the centuries includes serving […]

It’s All About the Photographer!

“But, I thought you said…” You’re right. I did. I’m talking about something else now, however. Good photography is very often confused by many to be one part photographer and one part camera. It’s not, and if anything it’s really all about the photographer. In the same way that no one told Pavarotti that he had a magnificent microphone and acoustical auditoria, good photography is about the photographer and not the camera he or she uses to create pictures. The […]

It’s Not About the Photographer!

So… hello. I’m 31, very nearly 32, and feeling very old. After lots of excuses and random reasons not to, I’ve finally dragged myself into the world of online blogging. I’ll admit to not knowing what a widget is and have no idea how tags work, but give me a keyboard and an empty space and I can type for England. Still, as the title might have indicated, this blog is not about the photographer. Or more specifically, it’s not […]