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Joy the Wanderer

Joy has wandered to Kraków.

Taken at SteemFest3 in Krakow, November 2018. I like this preset and have lost it. Thankfully Lightroom retained its name in its history, so I can seek it out again and hopefully find it. It’s called Chestnut.

Hiking up to Caisteal Abhail

On 28 October 2018 I did the route around from North Glen Sannox to Caisteal Abhail and down what I believe is called Hunters Ridge. I set off early, though not quite early enough as it was already daylight when I left. Not to worry – it was an absolutely amazing day.

I got to the car park just before 9 and made it back for 4, so one hour longer than the previous time, but that time the whole walk was in cloud with rain belting off me the whole way round. This time was rather different!

It was interesting following the moon and watching it set.

It was really cold to start with. I had to layer up and put my gloves on, but by the time I got to the gate in the coire I was well warmed up.

In the coire. I came down the rock ridge from just left of the middle down towards the right.

That was my route, up towards the moon then turn left up the ridge to the peak of Sail an Im.

Poppy, my trusty companion.

There was a lot ice as we got higher. It made the descent pretty treacherous down the other side.

Now it’s really starting to get interesting. Looking down into the coire, towards Caisteal Abhail.

Rocking the shades! It was cold, but such an amazing day.

That’s the ridge I’m climbing. This is where I bumped into Ranger Kate going the other way. She’d lost her lens cap and asked me to look out for it. I only bloom’ found it! Ha ha. Kate’s one of the rangers for the National Trust for Scotland and knows this terrain probably better than anybody!

Creag Dhubh, back the way I’ve just come.

Looking back over the way I’ve just come.

Getting closer to the top. The views are just about to blow me away…

Aha, now we’re getting some views to be sure. Not quite at the top yet though. Just a little further.

Looking down towards Blackwaterfoot and the Kintyre peninsula.

Some rocky tors that give this area its name of the castles.

Oh mama. Are we there yet?

Poppy finds an icy pond. It did crack eventually, though it wasn’t so deep as it look and she had a long drink from the water that came up from below.

And just when you think it can’t get any better, Cìr Mhòr appears in all its majesty.

Some more of those rocky tors at the summit. It’s always weird to puff and pant all the way to a summit and find it relatively flat at the top. Nice, but weird.

Cìr Mhòr with the ridge going down to the saddle between Glen Rosa and Glen Sannox, then up to North Goatfell and then the ridge to Goatfell itself. That looks like a tricky route, though one I’d like to try, possibly with a camp in between?

It was amazing to see for the first time how all the peaks join up with ridges. The Ridge from Caisteal Abhail where I was to Cìr Mhòr looks fairly straight forward, although the walk to the summit looks helluva steep. The next ridge coming down from Cìr Mhòr is called A’Chir and it leads to the summit of Beinn Tarsuinn. I’ll need to talk to my pal Kirstie about routes.

My ever-faithful companion Poppy the Akita.

The Witch’s Step from above. It looks like you could actually bypass it. It doesn’t look quite so scary from where I was, but that could be deceptive. I’ve always been kinda afraid of that particular place, but I could probably do it; then round to the summit of Suidhe Fhearghas. I wonder?

Lunch break. That Highlander stove is really good. There’s nothing quite like drinking coffee at the top of a mountain! I had a trio of chicken sandwiches from the Co-op, shared with Poppy of course, and a Boost bar. One of the best lunches I ever had!

A few more photos before heading back down again.

How’s that for a view, Poppy? Magic, innit?

D’you think dogs care about stuff like that? I wonder, ha ha.

Ra-oooo, says Poppy. Check out the icicles on the rocks on the right. Brrrrr.

The other side of the Witch’s Step as I start making my way down the horrible rocky, slippery ridge.

Looking over the peak of Suidhe Fhearghas towards the mainland and the islands in the Firth of Clyde. This is one of my favourite images from the day.

The rocky minefield I had to pick my way through to get back down. You can see how slippery they are in the foreground. Although the route was shorter, I think it would have been quicker to have gone back the way I came up because the terrain was so much easier underfoot.

The ridge I came down is called Hunters Ridge I think. According to the OS map it’s called Cuithe Mheadhonach, which might be Gaelic for Hunters Ridge. Dunno.

The Witch’s Step starting to look scary again. See what I mean? Is it actually as hard as it seems from below?

Nearly back down to the burn. Nice view of the jaggy tors that I’ve just come down from, and the rocky minefield in Garbh Choire. Man that was tough going.

And we’re down!

Conclusion

This is without a doubt the most enjoyable walk I’ve even done. Seven hours start to finish. I dressed right, I took the right food, I judged the time and daylight hours right. The one thing I need to do is learn to use a compass again. I used to know, but need a refresher. I do have a map.

Poppy was amazing company the whole way too. One of the most memorable moments was when Peter Gabriel Signal to Noise came on the AirPods just as Cìr Mhòr came into view and I was in utter heaven. The mountains can be harsh and brutal, as they were last time I did this route, but they can reward you like nothing else can if the conditions are right.

I kinda started getting the bug at the beginning of this summer and it’s growing as I explore more with my dog and my camera. Look out for more as spring comes in; I’m not quite ready for winter hikes yet.

And lastly, a moment of gratitude if I may. I fell from a cliff in 1989 whilst on exercise in the Lake District in England with the British Army. I almost lost my right leg; it bothers me a lot still and is actually getting worse now as I get older. But look at what I still get to do!

Avatar

Having an Irn Bru in The Auchans in Dundonald.

Tim Keen took this with my Sony A7 III and the Sigma 85mm f/1.4 ART lens at a pub in Dundonald and I really like it, so I thought I’d upload it here to use as an avatar on some places. It’s possibly too big, or too busy. Dunno. It’s the one I sent to @roelandp for the Steemfest3 workshop avatar for the programme. I’m doing an audio workshop as part of the @ddaily crew and am really excited for that!


Meet me at SteemFest 2018 in Kraków

Austin Sheerline

I have some photos of my dad’s old cars that he owned as a young man. This one here is an Austin Sheerline and some info gleaned from a fellow photographer on Flickr.

Info thanks to Flickr user www.flickr.com/photos/40878011@N07/

The car is an Austin A125 Sheerline; it has a Glasgow registration from late 1950 to early 1952, according to www.oldclassiccar.co.uk/registrations/ga.htm . The Sheerline was Austin’s first post-war big car design, although the exposed P100 headlamps hark back to the luxury cars of the 1930s. Although well-polished, the car is perhaps showing its age in that one windscreen wiper is missing! It had a 4-litre 6-cylinder engine (Michael Sedgwick and Mark Gillies, in A-Z of cars, 1945-1970 (2010 edn.), p.24, call it a “poor man’s Bentley”), so it would have been quite expensive to run, but large cars were a better second-hand proposition in the 1950s than they had been earlier (or have become since), with the road-fund licence ceasing to be related to engine size in 1948 and not being related to engine size/emissions again until much more recently; cars did not, of course, have the complex electronics that can make modern cars very expensive (or even impossible) to repair and indeed until 1960 there was no annual roadworthiness test for older cars so that minor failures (such as that missing wiper) could be overlooked; mileages were usually lower than now so that the cost of petrol mattered less (I’m unsure whether petrol was cheaper in real terms in the 1950s than it is now).

Category vehiclephotography
Location Prestwick, Scotland

Thanks to @juliank and @photocontests for running this!


Photocontest Image


My introduceyourself post

My Time Working as a Translator in Almaty, Kazakhstan

In December 1999, just a few months after graduating from the University of Bradford with an MA in Interpreting and Translation, I got a job with Ernst & Young in Almaty, Kazakhstan as a translator in the tax department. It was an incredible experience in all sorts of ways. I spent almost two years there and it was a fantastic experience.

The tax department was a fantastic place to work and I made friends there that I’m still in touch with today. That’s me at the front in the blue shirt.


I as a rookie translator with the tax team at EY in Almaty during my first week. I’d go back in a heartbeat!

Medeo

You can take a bus up to Medeo, which is an old Olympic ice rink in the mountains. It’s a spectacular location!


Up the hill from where my apartment was. Steep climb!


Charyn Canyon

One day in April 2001 we took a trip with work colleagues to visit the amazing Charyn Canyon. It was a fantastic day out and I highly recommend that you visit this place if you get the chance. Charlie Boorman and Ewan McGregor went down into the canyon on the motorcycles on their travel show The Long Way Round.










Chymbulak

Then there was Chymbulak, a ski resort up in the Alatau mountains. Many EY folk went up at weekends skiing. I went once on a retreat, although I don’t ski — I spent time playing guitar and taking saunas!






These two girls were the best and I miss them both dearly




Here’s me singing in the ski chalet. Good times!

Big Almaty Lake

Beyond Chymbulak was Big Almaty Lake and the Cosmostantsia. Five of us took a drive up there, first of all stopping at a trout farm at Turgen to catch some lunch, then all the way up beyond the snow line.



Tien Shan Astronomical Observatory, Ile-Alatau National Park, Assy Plateau


On the way to Big Almaty Lake



I love this image – the Lada Niva was a great motor

Leaving do

One of the partners left in May 2000 and we had a leaving do up in the mountains, with shashlyk, guitar, a fire. It was superb.

Party




Singing the Leaving Song we Wrote for Reece

Time


Cityscape

View from my apartment

It was soon time to go. During my time in Almaty I’d got engaged to my girl in Scotland and she was working in Luxembourg. She did consider moving to Almaty, but the climate wasn’t quite right for her. She came to visit in summer when it was 40C. Winters could get down to -30C. It was a crazy climate. It was a very enriching experience for me and I get very nostalgic when I think about it. Being a Russian speaker meant I could integrate well and my Russian became completely fluent while I was there. It’s not like that any more – it’s been 10 years since I quit translating and I stopped speaking Russian well a few years after moving to Luxembourg.

The Kazakh people are amazing and I miss them all from the office. The two gals I showed you at the ski resort in Chymbulak came to our wedding in Scotland, which was extra special. Here are some of the people I love and miss…


Me in the office

Me in my office space


Graeme, Lyakka and Dinara

Graeme, an Aussie partner and a guy I spent a lot of time with, along with two tax auditors, Lyazzat and Dinara


Yerzhan

My good friend Yerzhan.


Reece

Reece was my immediate boss, one of the tax partners, from the eastern seaboard of the USA if I remember correctly. He was a fine piano player and a top bloke.

Lena

Lena was Reece’s secretary and she and I shared an office. She was an utter darling and I owe so much of my Russian fluency to her. She was a bit of a chatterbox! Standing on the right with Graeme is Belinda, another Aussie. She came a bit after me and we got on great.

Nick

Nick was yet another Aussie. This is us at a Burns supper of all things. I’m forever grateful to him for his gift of Neil Young’s Silver and Gold and Mark Knopfler’s Sailing to Philadelphia, still two of my favourites.


We played Risk A LOT. This is us playing at Mike’s place (far left). These are some of my happiest memories. ‘Fortune favours the brave!’


This is me and Dilya the night before I left. She was such a good friend.


Okay, so a horrible photo of me, but I have to include it because I loved Zoya so much. I talked to her a lot and she helped me through a lot of things. I really miss her.


Alyona was Anzhelika’s bestie and I loved her a lot. She was often at the Risk table and the laughs we used to have were treasure. This is on my last night in Almaty.

It’s been a real journey going through these photos and putting them into a timeline. If you’ve read along, I thank you. I was inspired to do it after reading a post by @elly-fly.

I left Kazakhstan for the last time in May 2001 and moved to a small village in Luxembourg where I spent the next 7 years. That’s a story for another time!

My Project 365

Back on episode 65 of On Taking Pictures, hosts Bill Wadman and Jeffery Saddoris set a challenge to take ‘an intentional photograph that you feel good about every day’. I took up the challenge and ran with it until it became my project 365. I took my last shot of the project on 24 July, and now that some time has passed, I thought I would put together some thoughts on how it was and what I got from it.

Confidence

The biggest thing I got was probably the most surprising thing, and that is confidence. I’m an introvert by nature, and I’m further along the autistic spectrum than your average bear. For as long as I can remember, I’ve never been able to look people in the eye when engaging with them, but taking pictures has changed that, and it’s amazing! I’ve spent a lot of time over the year processing people’s eyes in photos, and I now find myself making the conscious effort to shift my gaze from mouth to eyes when talking to people, and so I get to see the amazing depth and variety of expression that eyes show about a person.

I’ve also developed the confidence to ask people if it would be okay to take their picture. Not all the time, but certainly more than I used to be able to.

Manual mode

I spent the whole project shooting with my camera in manual mode. I now have a reasonably good foundation of how the trinity of shutter speed, aperture and ISO works and what each of them does not only for exposure, but for a desired look. Before I did the project, I would often forget about ISO!

Interestingly, I never used exposure compensation. It just never occurred to me and, to be honest, I’m still not sure when or why it would be useful when I’ve got the trinity to set my exposure.

And now, having completed the project, I find myself able to get pretty close to the correct exposure before taking my first shot! One of my favourite shots was one that I surprised myself with, because it was the only shot I took that day and I nailed it! I think it was the first and only time of the project that I took only one shot for the whole day and was done.

Flash

I bought a Nikon external flash (SB800) a long time ago, but never really figured out how to use it. I only ever used it in TTL and didn’t like the results, so it pretty much stayed in its case. Then I discovered Zack Arias. It was just before he published the 2.0 of his OneLight lighting videos, so I pre-ordered it to get the discount and watched it twice. It’s one of the most useful tutorials of any kind that I’ve ever seen. Zack’s teaching method is exemplary and it wasn’t long before I was online ordering a light stand and umbrella. I’ve no doubt that I will watch his tutorials again, but I do most definitely need to practice a lot more with the umbrella to figure out placement, flash power, etc. The results I’ve had since learning how to use it properly are night and day.

Selects

Selecting the right image for the shot of the day was one of the most difficult things, but it was something I got better at as time went on. My wife and daughter were very helpful with this!

Processing

It was Lightroom that really got me into photography, which I realise is kind of backward, but its organisation tools really gel with how my mind works. When 1.0 was released, I went through Chris Orwig’s Lynda.com training and I’ve stayed with Lightroom ever since. I’ve installed presets from Trey Ratcliff and Nicolesy and used them a lot to learn Lightroom’s power tools (how about that tone curve?!).

Then there’s Nik. After Google bought them, the price came way down and, after watching Jason Odell’s training for Silver Efex Pro 2.0 , I paid for the suite. Silver Efex is amazing, and once you get your head round the control points, it becomes incredibly powerful. And then there’s Color Efex Pro. There was quite a steep learning curve with that, but the results are outstanding!

As the project progressed, I’d find myself thinking of a Color Efex recipe and having it in mind as I took my shots, and a few times I got some images that were pretty flat unprocessed, but remarkable when my vision became reality. It was one of the most gratifying things about the whole project.

Flickr

I’ve had a pro account for Flickr for a while, but never really used it much. Once I started the project, I became quite a heavy user and got into groups in quite a big way. I started following people whose pictures I liked and that became a huge inspiration. One of the first people I found was Kevin Schmidt; he was kind enough to share some of his LR presets with me and I found his work inspirational.

The JF export to Flickr](http://regex.info/blog/lightroom-goodies/flickr) plugin made posting and managing the album so much easier, using a smart album in LR and posting to Flickr and Facebook.

I’d never had a picture explored on Flickr, but that finally happened for me with my shot of a rainbow over Holy Isle. It was a pano – stitched in Photoshop CC, which I finally bought a license for. I was at work and got some emails from Flickr to say that my picture had been made a favourite. Then a few more, and then a whole flood of them! It was exhilarating! To be fair, it was one of my best shots from the whole project, but still, I felt rather proud. And then, bizarrely, another two of my pictures got Explored within a week of the first.

Landscapes and Portraits; seascapes and cargo ships

I never really considered myself a landscape photographer, but it soon became apparent that I was wasting the gorgeous part of the world where I live if I didn’t get some landscapes and seascapes, so I started shooting from the beach near work in Brodick in the mornings and got some of the shots I’m most proud of.

I also started shooting cargo ships as they sat in Brodick Bay, looking up their shipping info and posting them into groups on Flickr, and it’s something that I started to get really interested in. It gave me a great opportunity to use my 70-400mm VR lens and I got some pretty good results.

Time management

Time management was one of the biggest things to deal with. It wasn’t so much the shooting as the selecting and editing, especially at the beginning when I had to learn what the various presets and plugins did. I never let myself get more than four or five days behind, because I knew that if did, it could be the breaking of the project. I would ideally have liked to be spending the year reading photography books and blogs, doing tutorials and learning how to use the tools properly, but, to be honest, I needed the time for getting the pictures edited and posted. That in itself was a fantastic learning opportunity and I got some really nice edits, even if I couldn’t replicate them!

I’ve learned a little bit about a lot of things so I now have a basic general foundation and it’s really down to practice now going forward.

I thought that the winter months would have been harder than the summer, but June and July were the hardest months because I was so busy with playing music and doing things with the family.

Creativity

My first passion is for music. I play acoustic guitar in different bands and do solo gigs too. I’ve travelled the world attending workshops and seminars and I play in a variety of styles. But I’ve never actually created anything musically and that has always frustrated me. I could learn other people’s arrangements of tunes, play their songs and accompany traditional music on fiddles and pipes and whistles, but it never really scratched that itch. In fact, I found it so frustrating that, for a while, I lost my enthusiasm for it.

Taking pictures really scratched that itch for me and I think that that’s why I feel so proud at having got to the end. It’s one of the most creative things I’ve ever done and the results are there for all to see.

Future

It felt weird the first day that I didn’t take a picture after the end of the project, and then I felt pretty flat. I guess I should’ve expected that, because that’s how I used to feel at the end of my last exam at uni as well.

And now that some time has passed, I find myself missing taking pictures, but, at the same time, it’s a bit of a relief because I’m still extremely busy and am not sure how I would have managed to keep it going into August this year.

Thanks

A HUGE thank you to Bill and Jeffery for not only setting the challenge, but for all they do on the show to keep it real. Seriously guys, you’ve pushed me into doing something of which I am extremely proud!

The G+ group has been amazing for support and feedback, and the weekly challenges have given me ideas when the creative soil was fallow.

Thanks to Zack Arias for putting out that lighting tutorial and getting the DEDPXL assignments going. They’ve been great for giving me ideas and thickening my skin a little.

Thanks to Lorraine and Freya for helping with the selects.

Thanks to Kirsty for being a patient model while I moved around my umbrella and climbed up on ladders to get the shot.

See full 365 album on Flickr here: Project 365 on Flickr

DEDPXL Assignments

DEDPXL Assignments

I discovered Zack Arias of DEDPXL in rather a roundabout way. I was driving to work and saw a friend of mine sitting on a wall in Lamlash with his camera. This is the dude that sold me his D300. I wondered what he was doing and I got the answer when I saw a picture he’d posted to Flickr with the weird tag #DEDPXL.

‘Huh?’ I thought to myself. So I did a bit of digging and soon found my way to Zack’s site where the first assignment video was posted. Always on the lookout for inspiration for my #365, I decided to submit a few pictures for the first assignment. I looked some more into what DEDPXL was all about and pre-ordered the OneLight 2.0 lighting videos. I’ve now been through that course and am the proud owner of a new lightstand and 150cm umbrella and I’m loving it! His teaching methods are exemplary and, for the first time since buying my SB800 around 10 years ago, I have an idea of how to use it! Those videos were incredibly helpful!

Critique

At the end of the first assignment, Zack sat down with his wife Meg and recorded a video critique of the submissions and it was super helpful. It’s incredible to think that a pro with chops like Zack’s would give his time like that at no charge. I was in! Now, I’m not sure what his methods are for choosing which pictures to critique, but none of mine was picked. ‘Fair enough,’ I thought. There are probably thousands of submissions!

Assignment 2

The second assigment was entitled Repetitive Shape: Form / Pattern / Rhythm and I got into it quite early. I submitted a total of six shots, two or three of which I should’ve taken back out the pool because I didn’t really think they were that good, but, stupidly, I left them in. And this time, Zack DID pick one of my shots. Which one? Yep, you guessed it. One of the ones I wish I’d removed.

I watched the long-form video and got a C with some good feedback, but in the short-form video I got a D with the comment that it was ‘kinda boring and sucks’. I felt crushed. I knew the feeling would pass, but I’d had the worst day and had to go and play a gig that night and was kicking myself for not waiting to watch the critique. The long-form critique was actually valuable, and I knew Zack’s comments were on the money, but the shorter critique where I got a D made me sad and angry and all I could think of were the words ‘boring’ and ‘sucks’. Such is human nature I suppose: ten good reviews and one bad one and guess which one you’ll dwell on?

These were my three favourites of my submissions:

Sandbags

I like the sky and the sun flare, but especially the sandbags and the story that they represent. I’m not sure about the stones in the foreground.

Hamilton Terrace

I like the triangles that the roofs make and the way the chimneys go into the triangle of sky. I wasn’t sure about the crop, whether to crop the right-hand edge off and, now that I’m looking at it again, I think I should probably have done that. I remember playing around with the crop before I posted it, so I must’ve chosen not to do that for some reason.

Haymarket Station

I grabbed this one while I was waiting on a train and it’s one of my favourite shots of my #365. I’m not sure how I could’ve made this better, so critique would be useful.

My Lesson

So, what have I learned? Well, firstly, I need to be far more judicious in selecting my submissions. I guess four selects is about right for an assignment, but I have to be sure that they’re keepers. That log truck should never have been in there.

Also, learn to take the criticism. I know it can be a bitter pill to swallow, but I also know that I’m getting incredible value just from the inspiration that I get from the group to get out there and think about my photography. All it’s costing me is time and I would do well to think on that when I consider just how much I’m getting out of it.

Assignment 3

The third assignment, Shadows, has just been set, so it’s time to get back on the horse and think my way into making some great shots that I can be proud of! If I’m proud of them and get a bad grade, well, we’ll see how that goes if it comes to that. But it won’t. Will it?

On this Day in History – A Photo Project

Screenshot of my Flickr album
I finished my one-year photograph project entitled On This Day in History today. The idea came to me when I couldn’t find any way in Lightroom of viewing all pictures taken on the same date but in different years.

Tags

Screenshot of Lightroom tagsI have a Lightroom catalog going back to 2002, when I got my first digital camera. I rely heavily on Lightroom and have done since it first came out. Amongst all my tags, the most useful ones have been people, places and events, and I’ve used Lightroom to create date folders within year folders. So, how did I do my On This Day tagging? I created a top-level folder into which I put 12 more folders, one for each month of the year. Inside each month folder, I created tags for ddmm, so 10 May would be 1005.

Processing

Now that I had my tagging system set up, I spent some time each day going through my photos for that day’s date in each year, picking out my favourite images for that date and tagging them with the ddmm tag. I processed the pictures with Lightroom mostly, but for the more recent shots taken on my Nikon, sometimes I’d dip into some of the Nik plugins such as Silver Efex or Color Efex. I then gave them a title and wrote a short description and added them to the map in Lightroom, a feature of the software that I’ve really come to enjoy. And finally I set them up for publishing to Flickr with Jeffrey Friedl’s fantastic Export to Flickr plugin.

As I got adept at the process, it was something I really got to look forward to each day and I’d usually have a few days set up in advance. I’d start each day by going straight to the computer and publishing that day’s pictures.

My photos had been sitting on my computer for years, but they had become like the printed photos in shoeboxes, or albums on shelves; rarely did I look at them. So the project was fantastic on an emotional level and now I have a year-long archive of my favourite photos processed, dated, tagged, mapped and, perhaps most importably as all, published. I can now go into my Flickr stream or Lightroom and select pictures all taken on the same date across the years. Since I started the project, I’ve been tagging all my photos with that day’s ddmm tag at the point of import so they’re all done going forward.

AppleTV

I have my AppleTV set up to show my Flickr stream as a screen saver so we have yet another way to enjoy our old pictures and it’s one that the whole family can enjoy. My son (b. 2006) and daughter (b. 2004) both really enjoy seeing pictures of themselves coming up at all ages!

DayOne

Since I was getting so much value out of this project, I also did the same with my journal entries in DayOne. They go back somewhat further than my photos though. My first diary entry is in 1985!

My OTD album is here on Flickr: On This Day in History

Photography

It’s been an amazing weekend for photography. I’m working through Zack Arias’s Onelight v2.0 videos on lighting and have ordered a lightstand, umbrella, cold shoe adapter and umbrella bracket. These videos are really great and I’m gonna start putting my SB800 flash to use. It’s exciting.

On Saturday morning, I caught a post on G+ with a link to an episode of The Grid entitled The Power of the Unsolicited Critique, where they spoke about photographer Regina Pagles and how she felt crushed by an unsolicited critique of her work. It was an interesting episode of a show I’d never seen before and I really enjoyed it, but the best part of it was that I discovered Regina Pagles photography through it. Her work is amazing, but not only that; she also takes time to share her thought processes and technical data. It’s really something.

Regina Pagles

Regina Pagles
Regina Pagles' Flickr

So I was shooting with Hamish on Saturday, grabbing a few shots and figuring out some things with my SB800 flash and getting some pretty decent results, even if I do say so myself!

I was posting some shots from that shoot on Flickr this morning and clicked on Hamish’s tag to get all my images of him, but Flickr now defaults to showing Everyone’s pictures with that tag and I got a page full of Hamish shots where two photographers’ pictures really stood out. And they are amazing! I’ve spent the last half hour looking through their photostreams and it’s made me feel that fluttery feeling inside of disovering art that’s evocative, moving and inpsiring.

Michelle Dupont

Michelle Dupont (mistybliss)
Michelle Dupont's Flickr
Michelle is doing a 365 of portraits of what I assume is her daughter and I’m inspired to do the same thing when my present 365 reaches its conclusion in July (still can’t believe I’ve managed to keep it going this long!). I shall look at Michelle’s and Paul McGee’s and Regina Pagles’ photostreams for inspiration and hope to grow even more as a photographer!

Paul McGee

Paul McGee
Paul McGee's Flickr

What really stands out for me with Paul’s work is his use of lens flare. I would love to learn how to do this, so I’m really pleased that Paul doesn’t strip out his EXIF data! His street shots in Glasgow are AMAZING!

Black and White Lightroom Presets →

One of them is an all-purpose B&W effect that I use most of the time. But there’s a few others for outdoors, beaches (which is a little different than the general outdoors one, and indoor portraits). Remember, they’re portrait presets though, so they all have a similar look to them with just a few differences. But the whole point is to show off the people in the portraits so you won’t see a huge difference in each of these like you would the Lightroom 4 landscape presets from last week.

Matt comes up with the goods again. If you’re a Lightroom user and haven’t seen Lightroom Killer Tips, I seriously recommend that you visit there as soon as you possibly can!