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Learning Zone

December 2013

Go vertical!

The design of a D-SLR type camera makes it most comfortable to hold horizontally, with the long edge of the frame parallel to the horizon.

Don’t Fill The Frame

Contrary to much, if not all, of the advice you have heard or read, when it comes to composing pictures of wildlife you do not always need to fill the frame.

Going Eye-to-Eye

Positioning the camera at the subject’s eye level, or even slightly below it, is one of the simplest and most effective ways to increase the impact of your wildlife pictures.

September 2013

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    How to photograph the Aurora Borealis – Northern Lights

How to photograph the Aurora Borealis – Northern Lights

Generally the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights won’t appear, or be at their best until late in the evening. This means setting up your gear and shooting in pitch darkness !

August 2013

Use Creative Shutter Speeds

Apertures, ISO settings and white balance all affect the final image but one of the most creative tools we have at our disposal is the shutter speed. It gives you the ability to slow the world down or speed it up by capturing split second moments or extending time in two dimensional images.

July 2013

Find Natural Frames

A framed photograph naturally draws the viewer into a picture leading the eye toward a subject within that frame. By using natural frames whilst shooting you can create this effect in camera.

June 2013

Engage with the locals

People pictures are a must whilst travelling, not always the easiest of subjects but sometimes a portrait of a local can say more about a place than a sweeping vista.

May 2013

Look for details

It’s very tempting whilst travelling just to shoot the wide views and landmarks but sometimes it’s good to look for smaller details too. These can be natural details such as flowers and insects or architectural details.

April 2013

Shoot in the right light

One of the most important aspects of photography is using the right light for your pictures. Dawn and dusk are undeniably the best times for outdoor photography, the ‘golden hours’ before sunset and during the first light of the day will lift your images to the next level giving even the most ordinary view the extra edge.

March 2013

Stay after sunset

Once the sun has set don’t be tempted to pack up and go home, the best conditions sometimes occur in the period between sunset and dusk when the last light of the day underlights cloud cover turning pink through orange and red.

February 2013

Add people for scale

Most landscape photographers get very annoyed when people appear in their scenic shots, usually just after the sun has popped out from behind a cloud after waiting for an hour !, but sometimes having a human element in the landscape can add to scene giving a sense of scale or a splash of colour.

January 2013

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    Don’t leave your landscape without checking the image first

Don’t leave your landscape without checking the image first

The week after Christmas found me in the Lake District enjoying some uncharacteristically superb winter weather; blue skies, frosty ground and deep, orange bracken. A shot I had taken some years ago, which needed updating, was of the view up the Great Langdale Valley from the road connecting Elterwater with Grasmere, so off I went.

December 2012

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    Using polarisers for your photography

Using polarisers for your photography

Photographers often extol the virtues of polarising filters to get those blue skies bluer and the white clouds whiter. Because of the polariser's ability to reduce or remove reflected light this is absolutely true, provided, of course, that the camera is more or less pointing at 90 degrees from the sun, i.e. the sun is to your left or your right.

November 2012

Wait for the light

I was photographing in Shropshire recently and decided to pay a visit to the wonderfully named Moreton Corbet Castle near Wem. I found the castle and remains of the Old Hall and set up the camera, concentrating on the Hall. The light was less than inspiring but I had a reasonable viewpoint and fired off a few frames.