Thursday, 29 May 2014

Buttercups Season

I have recently purchased some textures hand made by Distressed Jewell, a very talented American rural photographer whom I admire greatly and derive a lot of inspiration from. Here are the ULRs of her Flickr photostream and her Textures blog:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/jewellofdistressed/
http://www.distressedtextures.net/
There are plenty of free textures on Flickr and elsewhere on internet but sometimes it is nice to treat yourself to some special ones as they are inexpensive anyway. I love Jewell's textures and feel they are most effective on images with plenty of sky or plain background, something I would like to do more of.
As I have felt quite adventurous lately I also decided to try actions in post processing. I have wanted to try them for a long time because I was amazed at tones they produce but felt a bit daunted because I struggled to understand what they are and how they work. After reading a few tutorials on how to download, install and use actions and a lot of browsing I decided to buy a set from Jessica Drossin
http://jessicadrossin.com/
called Fine Art Tints. I am still learning how to use it but after playing around for a while I think the set is best suited for portraits and for achieving beautiful skin tones which is what Jessica is all about. I do intend to start doing some portraits and am looking forward to using Jessica's actions on them. I am also hoping to buy some more actions and overlays from her fantastic and very clever Beautiful World collection. Next I would like to try her cloud overlays.
On each of the two images bellow I used one texture by Distressed Jewell and one action by Jessica Drossin. I so love buttercups. They are such a cheerful sight at this time of the year. Wild garlic is very abundant this year and the two alongside each other together with a lot of tree blossom do create magic in nature.





Monday, 26 May 2014

Salt & Garlic

.....and "don't forget rosemary!" as an English saying goes.
It's been a while since I posted here. I have recently started a new job which is quite life changing. There is a lot to learn and adjust to new circumstances so my photography has been a little slow. I don't mind that. I think it helps to freshen your creativity if you have periods when you are not doing much but just concentrating on other things and thinking of new ideas.
I shot this still life at the beginning of the month. I wanted to make a traditional, old-world looking image that would evoke the spirit of the past times kitchen, As my house is done up in country style there is quite a few objects to choose from in my kitchen. As usual when I am creating a still life with a few elements I went for a theme and this time it was seasoning and herbs used for cooking. I opted for a low key look using dark wood textures and a low brightness setting as a lot of old cottages and houses had small windows and therefore it was quite dark inside. (It would not bother me, I would love to live in an old English cottage!)




Thursday, 8 May 2014

Colours of May

May has got to be my favourite month of the year. So much exuberant new growth...so much beautiful and delightful colour both on the trees and on the ground! It is so short-lived though, a most fleeting beauty...And this year it all seems to start and finish weeks earlier than usual.....I saw first buttercups today, a sight you don't normally see until June in this part of the world.





Friday, 2 May 2014

St James's Church, Tong, 28/04/2014

The following images will always hold a special meaning to me because they mark the end of a chapter of my life. I took them on my last day of work at the Tong Garden Centre. On my way home I stopped at the local pub for some late lunch as I had not eaten all day and then I went into the churchyard to enjoy some peace and beautiful makings of spring. My camera hung off my shoulder and soon I immersed myself in capturing the magic of the moment......
All the images were taken with my 50mm f1:8 lens which I have been using more often lately.