Andrew Macpherson

Camera Club

Camera Club Fundraiser

by on Jul.09, 2011, under Camera Club, Equipment, On Site, Workflow

Three weekends ago, just before I went off for an op, we had a stand at Hatfield Heath Festival to try to raise awareness of the club, and raise some cash for the projector fund.  I havn’t quite got round to writing about it, having been slightly distracted, so it’s time to make amends

Hatfield Heath Public Photoshoot, © 2011 Paul Lambert

Photo given to sitter as 6×4 print

The Saturday session was in direct competition with Bishop’s Stortford Carnival, where we also had a stand, so each event had one of the two print stands, usually used for print competitions

We had a selection of member’s prints for sale, both ones that had been in competition, and some framed or mounted specially for this event.  Mainly though the exercise was to engage potential members, and enthuse them to come along for a trial club evening, and I think we were moderately successful in that.

We were also offering free “Hollywood Look” 4×6 portrait, retouched with “Portrait Professional”  (continue reading…)

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Why use shoot-through umbrellas?

by on Feb.16, 2011, under Camera Club, Equipment, On Site

Yesterday evening was one of those interesting sessions at the camera club, with lots going on.

Kevin, the chairman, was continuing his occasional talks on Photoshop Elements for beginners,  Dave Woods was doing some HDR demos, with photoshop, Photomatix and HDR Efex (and possibly others), and we had 2 ‘studio’ sessions.

Bill was doing a macro session, and had 2 tabletop setups: a tent and a square area with backdrop and white walls, while I was trying out 3 portrait techniques with interested parties.

For my setup I had:

Setting up the autopoles and paper is extremely fast, but assembling the softboxes is slow, even though they have one spreader pocket closed with velcro to make the job easier, the octabank really needs 2 adjacent spreaders set that way, as getting the ends of the final 2-3 spreaders into the flash head ring is murder when everything is under tension from the already placed spokes. (continue reading…)

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App Store hits the Mac Desktop

by on Jan.07, 2011, under Camera Club, Workflow

App store search for photography

After this morning’s update of Snow Leopard I have a new icon in the dock toolbar.  It’s Apple trying to sell stuff, using the downloadable App model that has been so successful on the iPhone/Touch/Pad.

There seem to be some significant savings vs store-bought discs for the same products, eg Aperture at £45 is about 1/3 the usual price, and I’ll be pointing this out at the Camera Club, but overwhelmingly the stock on offer is not useful to me just now, and could do with a 3 line description — more than just an icon, app-title and category — to answer the question “What will this let me do?”

I think I’ll be removing it from the dock, but it will be interesting to see if Adobe’s prices for Lightroom respond to Apple’s price-drop

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Giving too much away

by on Oct.11, 2010, under Competitions, Presentation

Original square photo as entered in competition

I quite like entering photo competitions and was delighted when notified that one of my photos had been picked for the official Bishop’s Stortford Calendar 2011.  I thought it was maybe a little dark, but rather fun, and very nice to be picked out against all the other entrants — especially after encouraging all the photowalk participants to take part.

On Saturday I had an email to tell me that the calendar was back from the printer, so I sneaked out this morning to pick up my copy.

There are some really nice photos in there, but some fail to be calendar photos in terms of colour clarity and just plain “chocolate box” oomph.

I’m afraid that my photo after it had been cropped into the template was one of them (continue reading…)

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Someone likes my photo

by on Oct.02, 2010, under Competitions

Vine Cottage Much Hadham

There’sa slight buzz when someone selects one of your photos.   Recently I put a few photos in to a draw on Weekly photo tips, and Scott was kind enough to pull one out in a post to gee up further entries.  That was a nice follow-up to having another shot picked for the local tourist board calendar for 2011.  It’s validation that one is getting something right.

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World Wide Photowalk reflections

by on Aug.08, 2010, under Camera Club, Competitions

Join Me for the PhotowalkWell wasn’t that fun!  Emma, Sandy and Kevin from the Club came along for the walk, and to offer directions and advice, and were essential as the group spread out along the walk.  Unfortunately we only managed the shorter route in the time allocated, but some really good shots were uploaded to the flickr group for the walk.

Nine walkers (of 22) entered the competition for one of Scott Kelby’s fine, fine volumes, and it was a revelation to me how difficult it is choosing a ‘best’ from a variety of styles and subjects.  John Pugh was a worthy winner.

We were lucky to have another prize to give away, and I asked Tony Auguste to help me choose which of the photos from the group should get the canvas treatment.  Our shortlist is here.

We finished the walk at the Rivermill Chinese Restaurant, and they put on a good selection of finger-food to go with everyone’s post-walk drink.  They also offered a spontaneous mini-competition for a Photo they could use in their advertising.  It was all a great afternoon, and just a shame that some walkers had to rush off to other engagements.  Thanks everyone for making it such a success.

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