Blog

If you follow baseball you know that a batting average above .300 is considered a sterling achievement, and over .400 nearly impossible. Yet I know a photo firm that bats 1.000. Not every retailer, I hasten to say, nor yet every wholesaler. They do their best but sometimes strike out. I'm thinking of a manufacturer - a maker of studio and lighting equipment; Manfrotto. You can be as surprised at this as you like, but my experience with their goods has been uniformly...

Well here we are, supposedly twenty years later, and some of our photographic space odysseys have become distinctively odd. None more so than the ones we start on when we open the menu for our new camera and see what the factory designers have prepared for us. In 1968 when we went to the cinema to see Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey we were shooting analog cameras and processing the results in chemicals. We were just about to be amazed at the success of computers in getting people on the Moon and were ready to accept the fact that one of them could turn rogue and start thinking for itself. Now when we open the camera or the phone we are all too ready to let these devices do just that - and to accept what they think as our opinion too...

This is a question I was asked at a hobby club when I was seen using an older camera. It was doing the job brilliantly, but when the questioner learned that the design is some 9 years old all credibility seemed to vanish. He'd bought a new camera last year, and while he had not learned how to operate it yet, he felt that surely it must be better. When I told him I had bought mine as new, old stock when a replacement was being sold he called me a madman. I was so pleased...

You may recall the movie or the song, but remember that every studio needs stands. Camera Stands, light stands, hot dog stands. ( well photography makes you hungry. ) General Custer used to make stands, but his last one was somewhat of a failure. I went looking in the Stirling Street shop for economical stands for the new video venture. Not for me - I have 6 or 8 Manfrotto light stands of various types and they have never failed me. I have a Gitzo tripod that is the same - and a home made studio stand that hasn't fallen over yet. I'm okay - it's my dancer model who needs to build up a dance studio set at her own home. And not at high prices. Could we do it? a. A tripod is needed. I don't care what the adverts show you about putting a mobile phone on a light stand - if you have to support it on the ground and it has to be at least up to navel height, you need a proper tripod.   The INCA tripod I discovered...

All over the world, lockdown has become the norm for many. The most challenging factor of experiencing this is that the freedoms we had prior have been minimised to the size of our own homes. When we purchased our photography gear, we had hopes to maximise its potential wherever our creative compass leads. Even though this feels like a huge setback throughout the days, weeks and months, we have the opportunity to photograph our home in ways we have yet to explore. Our stay-at-home guide will spark your creative-fuse and will keep you sharp as a photographer until the outside world becomes available to us again. Let us dive into it.    Tip 1: Macro Photography   Macro photography is generally photographing small subjects with the achievement to showcase them in a ‘larger than life’ experience. Subjects like plants, insects, coins, the eyes, rain droplets and anything with detailed texture and colours are often the focus in this genre. It opens up the possibilities to capture anything inside the household or our outdoor spaces in fresh new perspectives. What are the tools we need...