Friday, August 28, 2009

Late, but not too late

With the deadline fast approaching, Sarah and I finally did our homework, go
ing to Festival City where we saw something move a few weeks back.

But first, on the way I shot this out the window:
Check out the number plate on the car.
1/30s, F11, 100ASA

That's the only reason I'm sharing this rather dull image - I was intrigued by how the pole and the motion combined to offset the car.

(Right, am I doing something wrong, or does Blogger always drop the photo at the top of the page, and then give you only a TINY window to work in so you can't see how it all looks? This is really starting to get my goat.)

Anyway, car hijinks over, Sarah took over the camera and took these next two photos.
0.6s, F14, 100ASA

2.5s, F22, 100ASA

My best effort does not stand up well to comparison, but here it is anyway:
3.2s, F22, 100ASA

cheers for now, N+S

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


There has been a fantstic response to Movement this month.
Only a few days left and this is the last weekend so for those who haven't yet it's not to late.

Come on !

Richard B.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Mosque is Open......but not

Imogen and I took a long intended trip down to Abu Dhabi at the weekend to see the new Grand Mosque which I have driven past many times but never been in to have a look at. Now with it being start of Ramadan last Saturday I was aware enough to ring ahead and check it would be open and that it was OK to take photographs and was pleased to hear it would be so we arose at 7.30am and headed off.

However, suprise suprise, we got there to find a 'problem'. It seems that, as promised, the Mosque was indeed open but......nobody was allowed in. When I pointed out that this therefore meant they were closed he insisted that I was wrong, they were open as plainly demonstrated by the doors all being open, but it was just that nobody was allowed in......not even Muslims.

Go figure.

Anyway, undettered we came to an agreement that I could take pictures of the mosque provided I stayed on teh block paving (which is classified as the car park) and didn't step on to the marble floor tiles (classified as the Mosque). And so here are a few shots taken this weekend:

These were taken with the new toy which I might have mentioned once or twice to a few of you, the new D700. Now for those I haven't bored silly so far the camera has a whole range of fantastic features (which I won't bother listing here) other than the main one for HDR which is 9 shot bracketing from +5EV through to -5EV. Bored of camera talk yet?

Well, what this basically means is that I can now shoot 9 shots every time I shoot knowing there is a very good chance I will have enough to use for HDR. For example here are the nine shots that when into making up the pillars shot:

Now I will admit right away that of these nine the HDR software really only needs 3 or 4 of these shots in order to work, but with the 9 shot bracketting don't need to even think about it, just shoot them off and select them when I get home. If you're interested I'll explain more at the next shutterbugs.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Nikon D70s
Tokina 12-24mm at 19mm
1/2 sec F8

I spotted this unlikely sculpture-cum-machine in the Museum of American History. Hand-held, propped against the glass with rear curtain synch to catch both the movement and the real shapes of the cogwheels and cams behind them.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Movement - Add on assignment

Well done all, an amazing response and some truely superb shots.

As there seems to be such a response thought would try to keep peoples creative juices flowing with a follow on.

For those who fancy, try to emulate the style of one of the existing entries with a new slant / twist. Copying is the greatest form of flattery and trying new ideas you might not have thought of yourself is how we learn. After all the shutterbugs is about learning (not just slating the use of photoshop)

I think even Imogen can manage a trip to the Maul to have a go at the divers !

p.s. David you are exepmt the current assignment(s) as I believe there is supposed to be some random wedding photos that need Post Process ;-)

Richard B.

Public Photography - AKA The Tripod Police


Following Paul's and my recent comments on Tripod police I thought I'd dig out the article I read on American public photography.

Here is the original blog article I read on New York Rules.

The Full rules are here :-

However the lazy amongst us paraphrased the rules say :-
(2) The following activities do not require that a permit be obtained pursuant to this chapter:
(i) Filming or photography occurring on City property involving the use of hand-held devices provided that such activity neither involves the obstruction of one or more lanes of a street or walkway of a bridge, nor results in less than eight feet or one half of the width of a sidewalk.

It then later defines hand held to also include tripods. However they do seem to get upset about light stands, dollies, tracks etc.

Also found various US transport rules on photography

Richard B.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

MOVEMENT: Paul's stuff

Despite vacationing being on holiday in the United States, I found time to take some photos on the subject of "movement". Curiously, all my previous month's submissions would have sufficed. But here are some new ones, edited for size and removal of those annoying dust bunnies.

Salem swing
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 40mm
1/30 sec F27

Maybe this should have been cropped to portrait. However, I left it landscape to retain the blurred, movement-streaked background. This is the best of about a dozen attempts to get the child's eyes in sharp focus. I nearly managed her hand. This sort of shot is intensely difficult to get right.

From a moving train
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 20mm
1/30 sec F22

Shot through the filty, scratched, graffiti-strewn window of a Boston tram, I was amazed that this one came out in any way acceptable. The blurred background of parked cars, plus interference patterns between railway sleepers and fencing all serve to accentuate movement.

Night train
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 48mm
1/4 sec F6.7

Not actually shot at night, but in a tube station. Other attempts to take photos with even longer exposures were thwarted by the Tripod Police. I was leaning against one of the columns and a Metro employee seemed to think that I was trying to shoot passengers with some (unspecified) firearm.

The Hare and the Tortoise
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 62mm
1/500 sec F6.7

Bronze statues in Boston, Massachusetts don't actually move very much. The fable in which they appear revolves around the subject of movement, so it counts. Image cropped in Photoshop(TM) and an annoying distraction has been clumsily cloned out of the image.

Boston lights
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 32mm
1/1000 sec F6.7

The green traffic light is for "Go", hence movement. I tried to clone out the annoying power cable but it proved too difficult for me. The repetitive pattern of the building's windows was too hard for me to align accurately enough to fool the average bear. Fail.

Moving bridge
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 22mm
1/250 sec F16

The bridge at Mystic, Connecticut opens at twenty minutes to every hour, at which time there is a procession of boats up and down the river.

We're on a road to nowhere...
Nikon D70S
Nikkor 18-200 at 18mm
1/750 sec F3.5

I wanted everything in focus, but in a moving vehicle it wasn't likely to happen. The large discrepancy between bright outdoors and dark car interior has almost lost interior detail. I used a little Photoshop(TM) to burn in the highlights on the dashboard. In retrospect I could have improved depth of field by closing the aperture, relying on the lens' vibration reduction to deal with camera shake, and setting the 'film speed' to automatic to allow a moderate shutter speed.

Movement - Bobs first post

Hello all,

My first post!

Seeing as people are posting their movement homework already, I thought I'd do a quickie while alone in my bedroom ;)

I liked this one as it scared the hell out of me.

Ill have more attempts once I find my camera battery charger and can figure out a way of safely driving my bike and taking photos at the same time.

Movement - Richards Attempt

Hi All,

It's that time of year when there is nothing left to do but trawl the Mauls, however, at least this weekend there was some point. I was able to do this assignment, hope you like.

Dubai maul is famous for tripod police and being very anti photo, no tripods, no flash (it's "professional equipment") etc..
Therefore all of these were hand held and used photoshop to give me the balance of slow shutter speed and detail in the divers.

Close up
Shutter priority.
1/200, F4, ISO 400
Canon 350D, Sigma 17-70 Mancro
Hand held (tripod police !)
Pop up flash for fill.
Only very minor photoshop :-
- Smoothing the dried water drops on divers head.
- 2 degree tweak and minor crop to make horizontal.

Stood Back
Composite image.
Shutter priority
1/13, F4, ISO 100, Slow shutter to capture the falls.
1/200 sec, F4, ISO 400, Fast shot to capture the diver.
Canon 350D, Sigma 17-70 Mancro
Photoshopped to bring together, also :-
- Smoothing the dried water drops on divers head.
- Masked levels on the diver.
- Cloned out a complete diver top right as it badly effected toe composition.
- Cloned in small section at bottom where falls didn’t fill the frame and a small pebble that was sticking out and effecting flow.

Composite image.
Shutter priority
1 sec, F36, ISO 100, Slow shutter to capture the falls.
1/200 sec, F8, ISO 400, Fast shot to capture the diver.
Canon 350D, Sigma 17-70 Mancro
Pop up flash for fill.
Photoshopped to bring together, also :-
- Smoothing the dried water drops on divers head.
- Masked levels on the diver.
- Cloned out the stand on divers belly.
- Filled in small section at right and bottom where falls didn’t fill the frame.

Flying serious Photoshop.
Same as flying but also added about 8 varying layers of movement blur.

As always comments, critque and any abuse welcome.

Richard B.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Time and Motion

Well, hot on the heals of Colin I thought I too would kill a bit of time and knock out my Motion homework. Decided to go for a time theme, taking shots of a pocket watch (wedding present from Imogen) but using it as a pendulum.

f1.8 75mm(DE) 1" . f1.8 75mm(DE) 0.5"

f1.8 75mm(DE) 1" . f2.5 75mm(DE) 1/3"

My personal favorite of the set is the one below as, although it doesn't show as much of the path of the motion I like the fact the watch is in focus, and there is almost a full image of the watch in teh red blur area. Not sure why, but that amused me.

f2.5 75mm 1/3

I took these shots using my old faithful black sheet as a back drop and then shooting the shots at low aperture to throw out any texture in the back drop. I then lit the watch with a homemade lamp comprising a load of Christmas tree fairly lights (soft reddish light), a previous attempts at a home made ring flash, and then used rear curtain sync on the on board flash to freeze the watch at the end of the exposure (sharp white light):

Post shooting tinkering included cropping a little in some cases, shapening slightly and adjusting the colour to make the background a uniform black. Oh and hitting the delete button about 300 times to get rid of all the shots where the watch is out of focus or off the shot all together.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Ghostly Bike

The aim here was to actually post something for the next homework (movement) before the rest of you get round to it. Only in some vain hope that people will not notice how late I was with the previous one. Still not what I was hoping for as I really wanted the tunnelling afect around the bike but ot do that it would need a rider and he is still in the UK.


Have to admit to having a play with the HDR software that you all seem to use with this one.

Light - In B&W

The candles looked really naff in colour so ran it again in Black and white. Liked the results better. Richard did show me some fancy tricks with photoshop but forgot them 2 minutes after he told me.

Light in NYC

Late Homework

A few days late, apologies.

These first two go together and are meant to show the changing light of sunset in the big city, but indirectly.

Top: f4.0, 1/50, 100asa, 70mm (D)
Bottom: f3.5, 1/30, 800asa, 70mm (D)

Next up, the same sunset, but shot directly and zoomed in a tad for effect. Note the plane.

f5.0, 1/30, 800asa, 63mm (D)

There are more sunset ones, but I won't bore you. ... Ah, the hell with it.
Dusky Docks
f3.2; 1/20, 800asa, 35mm (D)

Now, if only I'd remeber to bracket it so I could HDR it...

Final entry: I've included this because of the lack of light. I shot this at night with ambient city light. ie, you could make out people but not features and no colours. I rested the camera on my knee for a long exposure (high tech, I know), hence the blur. There was a guy in the background selling light-wands. It looks a bit fuzzy on blogger, possibly because I reduced the size and it's up at 1600asa. Looks great full size, though.

f2.8, 1.6s, 1600asa, 24mm (D)

Sarah also did her homework, and hers is much more dynamic:

Like a Virgin
f22, 1/4, 400asa, 28mm (D)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Next Assignment = MOVEMENT due 1st Sept

Here is the next one :-
Due 1st of September.

As for those who haven't done the last subject (sorry, I mean, taken it but not downloaded off the camera yet) come one !

If you don't belive me for "Movement" here is the random topic generator :-