Surrounded By Blue, The Harsh Beauty Of Midday Light
I recently rediscovered this image in my archive and decided to give it some TLC and publish it here.
It was taken near Gaios, on the island of Paxos while on a boat tour in the summer of 2006
I would not state this image as a particularly amazing piece of creative travel photography in fact the image was simply a grab shot
to look back upon and enjoy as a memory of our trip.
Never Shoot In The Midday Sun.
If you critiqued this image you probably say the lighting here is a little bland (it’s overhead) and pretty harsh in contrast (it’s a fairly cloudless summer sky) and certainly not the time of day that most photographers including myself would choose to produce creative travel photography.
However, I’ve always said there is no such thing as bad light it just depends on your personal style or what you decide works for a particular image or a clients brief.
On the plus side, in this image, that same bland hard light gives some amazing punch to those blues which for me are a strong signature of Greece along with incredible mountains and historic sites of interest.
Once again we see that rules (or guidelines) are often there to be broken and even encouraged for creativity especially when it comes to photography.
If you want to see some wonderful images by a master photographer who is often known for their use of razor-sharp light and contrast I’d recommend checking out Albert Watson’s work especially the images in his wonderful book Cyclops.
Picture Retouching A Digital Chainsaw
How picture retouching enabled an uncluttered view.
I remember first being at this location photographing this tree high above Lyndos town in around 2004 when I was still capturing the world on film.
13 years later I found myself once again in the same spot admiring the same tree and the amazing views that this ancient citadel offered of the stunning coast below.
I couldn’t resist capturing the scene again but I soon remembered as I composed the image through the viewfinder the same problem I had experienced all those years ago it was very cluttered.
To capture the tree and wonderful view meant a messy composition consisting of branches from adjacent trees and there was no other angle or option despite my efforts.
I decided to capture the scene and reconfigure a few elements later in post-production to get the image I had visualised.
The picture retouching work was pretty straight forward consisting mainly of removing the obtrusive branches and replacing the sky which was the only element not from the original scene but captured a mile or so away on another day.
A favoured spot, creative travel photography Greece 2018
One of my favourite spots for creative travel photography that I captured in Greece in 2018.
It was while searching through my archive last week I came across some location photography film scans of almost the exact same area I shot 15 years ago which I had forgotten about.
Later this year I’m heading back there once again this time to shoot some motion work.
As a keen Scooterist from way back in the 80’s Im always on the lookout during my travels for old Italian Vespas and Lambretta’s.
In Greece you can still come across older Vespa workhorses still being used but it stands to reason they are becoming less frequent these days.
There does seem however a large amount of Honda Cub mopeds still on the road which is no surprise when you discover over 100 million have come off the production line so far and still going.
And my point is?… well I don’t have one except to introduce a couple of images with them in and inform you why you see the bloody things everywhere you go!
Lifestyle Portrait Photography, Capturing Mr Butt.
Mr Butt window cleaner Captured in Burnham On Sea Somerset circa 1993.
I can’t remember the exact year I did this lifestyle portrait but I do remember running home in excitement like a big girl to grab a 5×4 camera to do the shot!.
I had wanted to create a lifestyle portrait of this lovely chap for a while and I finally seized the opportunity.
I set up the large format camera hastily (well as hastily as you can with a 5×4) in front of what I felt was a perfect backdrop for colours.
Location Photographer. A Passion For Colour
I started out like many photographers of a certain age shooting, developing and printing Black & White Images.
Even though I can fully appreciate the beauty of monochrome my real passion has always been for colour work inspired by many
of my favourite 80’s advertising location photographer heroes like John Claridge, Duncan Sim and Peter Lavery (google em kids).
So this is a rare occasion when I decided the subject worked far better in B&W.
Have you ever been to a place and had such a great trip you kind of don’t want to go back because you don’t feel you can top that perfect first visit?
That’s where I’m at when it comes to Venice.
I visited a week before Christmas to capture some travel lifestyle images so no doubt a little festive mood helped set the tone. On that note Venice is incredible at Christmas as the whole place is like a huge Santas grotto with lights and more importantly very few tourists.
The weather was also a great gift as it was very cold but clear providing beautiful low winter sunlight.
I came away with some incredible images from the trip which in Venice is hard not too and the feeling that returning could not get any better.
Having said all that’s it’s not to say I won’t as I would love to take my kids there and perhaps shoot some motion work this time.
A Nine Image Aerial Image Retouching Composite
To add extra resolution to the camera resolution of my DJI Phantom 4 Pro I decided to capture this aerial scene in nine individual frames.
Some high-end retouching was then applied to the frames and then colour graded.
I could never image capturing images from the air years ago let alone being able to capture separate perfectly registered frames.
The last few days I’ve been busy in my archives digging through my travel photography portfolio. and also old car work.
These were shot predominately when I was retained to shoot cover cars for Top Marques magazine in circa 2007.
Within the keyword search popped up this image from my travel and photography trip in the states way back in 1992.
The photography location is Venice Beach in Los Angeles where I finished my 3-month photo trip before flying home.
Unfortunately, the lab back here in the UK actually cocked up the processing leaving many rolls with major colour and tonal issues and pretty much unusable.
Thankfully decades after capturing the image and with my knowledge of image retouching many frames are now repairable.