Saturday 28 February 2009

First wedding

Today I went to help out a friend as a second photographer in a registry office wedding. It was only about an hour's shooting, but it was an invaluable experience for me; invaluable in a sense that I learned a lot about how to handle the situation when things don't go as expected! As incredible as it may sound, the ceremony was interrupted by a photographer-hating registrar asking us - not so politely - to stop taking photos as it was putting her off. (Even though she'd first said that we could take photos as long as we stayed in one place without moving about - which we did). Then, next she said it was putting the couple off (errr, the couple had actually ASKED us to take photos during the ceremony... and actually not just asked, either, but PAID us to take photos of the wedding ceremony!) Well, we did manage to take a couple of shots of the changing of the rings, even though the registrar had asked us not to take any more photos - and she, subsequently, threatened to throw us out. I didn't hear what the bride and groom thought about it all, but the parents/guests joked about the photographer-hater registrar afterwards, so luckily it didn't seem like they let her ruin their day. And as my friend was much braver than me, I think she managed to get some nice shots of the rest of the ceremony for the couple.

Anyway, I forgot to ask whether it is OK for me to put any of the photos in my photo blog, so here are just a couple of anonymous shots from the wedding. I will upload more when/if I get a permission to do so.

~ Have received approval, so here are a few more shots from the day ~

Thursday 26 February 2009


'Tis the season... for sneezin'. Can't believe it - it has started! Wasn't it only a couple of weeks ago that we had snow on the ground? And now, hayfever!

I went to a new place for a walk with Zebedee today. I tried to find Barcombe Mills, but the public car park near it was closed, and after parking the car a little further up the road, I ended up almost getting lost walking from field to field, across people's gardens (almost) in search of something interesting to shoot (with a camera). Well, this is the best I could come up with. A tree house and a ditch.

...and some trees. Great. Well, made me do a little black and white conversion experiment, anyway.

And what's worse, by the time we got home I was sneezing and my eyes were itching. Oh no.

Load of editing

I've had so many photo shoots this past week I have to dedicate the rest of this week for photo editing. I.e. lots of time spent at the computer. Just the computer and me.

Wednesday 25 February 2009


Another fun photo shoot today with another photogenic photographer!

I present you Darren. Enjoy! :-)

(Mole borrowed from Robert De Niro)

(An experiment on how cheesy can you get without offending the neighbours!)

When we were taking the next photo (that I have titled "Suntory Time"), I couldn't help myself thinking of the film "Lost in Translation".

DIRECTOR (in Japanese to the interpreter): The translation is very important, O.K.? The translation.

INTERPRETER: Yes, of course. I understand.

DIRECTOR: Mr. Bob-san. You are sitting quietly in your study. And then there is a bottle of Suntory whiskey on top of the table. You understand, right? With wholehearted feeling, slowly, look at the camera, tenderly, and as if you are meeting old friends, say the words. As if you are Bogie in "Casablanca," saying, "Cheers to you guys," Suntory time!

INTERPRETER: He wants you to turn, look in camera. O.K.?

BOB: That's all he said?

INTERPRETER: Yes, turn to camera.

BOB: Does he want me to, to turn from the right or turn from the left?

INTERPRETER (in very formal Japanese to the director): He has prepared and is ready. And he wants to know, when the camera rolls, would you prefer that he turn to the left, or would you prefer that he turn to the right? And that is the kind of thing he would like to know, if you don't mind.

DIRECTOR (very brusquely, and in much more colloquial Japanese): Either way is fine. That kind of thing doesn't matter. We don't have time, Bob-san, O.K.? You need to hurry. Raise the tension. Look at the camera. Slowly, with passion. It's passion that we want. Do you understand?

INTERPRETER (In English, to Bob): Right side. And, uh, with intensity.

BOB: Is that everything? It seemed like he said quite a bit more than that.

DIRECTOR: What you are talking about is not just whiskey, you know. Do you understand? It's like you are meeting old friends. Softly, tenderly. Gently. Let your feelings boil up. Tension is important! Don't forget.

INTERPRETER (in English, to Bob): Like an old friend, and into the camera.


DIRECTOR: You understand? You love whiskey. It's Suntory time! O.K.?


DIRECTOR: O.K.? O.K., let's roll. Start.

BOB: For relaxing times, make it Suntory time.

And last, my favourite photo (or one of the favourites anyway), partly because it is straight from the camera and partly because of the shallow DOF:

Tuesday 24 February 2009

Frames In The Lanes

I took photos for a business called Frames In The Lanes today. It's a cool boutique shop, and the owners are absolutely lovely; knowledgeable and friendly. Here are a few shots from the (mostly) product photo shoot:

Friday 20 February 2009

Jani, Alex and Henry

OK, this is just a teaser again. Had such a good time with these people and dog today!

Will be uploading photos soon!


So! Here's a few.

What The Duck?

I saw a comment on a friend's Flickr photo today that reminded me of a comic strip. A few people had left praising comments on this beautiful photo, and then, at the end, someone asked "What camera did you use?" And this is the comic strip the question reminded me of:

...which makes EVERY photographer say "I must remember that line next time someone says that to me!" ;D

In the olden days when I hadn't started photography as a hobby yet and was using a box standard point & shoot camera to take my holiday snaps with, I heard the following comment quite a few times when I picked my photos up from a photo lab: "Those were REALLY nice photos! You must have a really good/expensive camera! What kind of camera did you take those with?"

The photos weren't great, to say the least, and looking at them now that I know more about photography, I'd say 99% of them were appallingly awful; but they must have been at least slightly above average for that many lab staff to comment on them and enquire about my "fancy" equipment.

All because my camera took really nice pictures! ;-)

Thursday 19 February 2009

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

I got my new lense delivered today. And who else to test it on, than Z. :-)

I'm looking forward to using this as a portrait lense.

Wednesday 18 February 2009


I had a lovely young girl to take portraits of today: Miina.

She was an absolutely great model.

I mean - how cute and pretty is SHE?!

There was only one problem - how to get rid of the puppy who just HAD to be there in front of the lights with her all the time! No matter how many times we tried to bribe him with treats to leave the spotlight for a minute or two!

No, he wouldn't budge - he wanted to be there in the middle of the action. Even when he got so tired he couldn't hold back the yawns.

Not to worry - Miina is a Super Girl with Super Powers, and she can take on anyone, right?

Perhaps... except the persistent, attention-seeking Mr. Zebedee, who knows just the moment to sneak into the frame when he's least expected.

(Miina knew by then that Mr. Zebedee was after her flowers, really, even when he pretended to engage himself in rope-chewing.)

Well, we managed to take a few more shots... while Zebedee waited behind a closed door in the hall!

Oh, and by the way - it was great to see Miina's parents for the first time in about 10 years! Perhaps next time we'll have time to take photos of the parents, too! :-)

Saturday 14 February 2009

Valentine's at Camber Sands

Had a lovely day at Camber Sands today.

Zebedee met quite a few dogs on the beach.

(Click on the photo to see it bigger)

Lots of couples walking on the beach at sunset...

Then, two riders appeared.

They walked up and down the shoreline...

...until finally they galloped!

(with a little wannabe-galloper in tow)

More couples... it's Valentine's Day after all...

And the odd beach loonie joining in the fun.

When the riders stopped and rested their horses for a while, we went to say hello to them. Zebedee set off all of a sudden, so we thought he'd got over his fear of horses...

...but not quite. Here he is pretending he never meant to run right up to them anyway.

...and then the riders were off again.

What a fantastic afternoon by the sea.