I have to confess to being a bit of a waterfall geek, I just love the way water flows over a waterfall, majestic and at the same time powerful as it heads towards the ground and then flows on into a stream or a river. What I like most about waterfalls is finding one’s that have not been photographed to many times or at all. Don’t get me wrong I do like photographing popular well know waterfalls as everybody interprets the waterfall in their own way, but finding one’s that have not been photographed or I haven’t seen any images of really excites me. So here I was doing what I like to do when not shooting for clients, is wander around places and see if I can find a waterfall sometimes off the beaten track and sometimes not so much. The trick is to look around you when out walking as it is easy to just walk looking in front and not surveying or taking in the natural beauty around you when out. And as such this is how I came to spot this small waterfall, by looking around and as luck would have it I spotted it of in the distance on the far side of the beck in Hamsterley Forest, it would have been easy to miss if I had not been looking around as a few more steps and I would have been past it and out of my sight line. So I head over to the other side and trek through the trees looking and thinking I am sure it was just around here and starting to doubt myself, but I carry on and eventually set back I come across the waterfall, full of excitement to have found it I set up my tripod and camera and get ready to shoot a couple of test images. What I notice is a branch that has flowed down over the fall and is stuck sticking up out of the water, I thought I would remove the branch from the waterfall by grabbing a long fallen branch and hooking it over this one that sticks out and dislodge it. Oh for not a really well thought out plan as I put my foot on a rock that is of course slippy I feel myself falling and falling I did getting soaked down one side, but on the plus side I did remove the offending object. Yes I could have removed the branch in Photoshop but where would be the fun in that, there is nothing like getting wet on a cold early morning to add to the fun of capturing something great. So here are a couple of shots from the that morning.
Yes it’s been snowing how could we not notice, as they called it the beast from the east, so driving up into the dales was a no go as a lot of the roads were blocked. And I would probably spend more time sitting in the car going nowhere than I would travelling. So challenged myself to just explore around my door step, and see what I could come up with image wise that really appealed to me and was not just taken for the sake of taking images. (Not that I ever just shoot for the sake of taking a image) An image when I am shooting for myself has to have substance to it telling some sort of story or have some visual impact that people can connect to, in some way.
So I have done my first dog portrait session for a long time with, facebook.com/Heavenly-Pets-supplies-and-Woof-Cutts-Events-page-1429293124030487and to say it was fun would be an understatement. There is that old saying “never work with children and and animals”, I have to say I don’t take much notice of these sayings as it was great fun working with the owners and their dogs trying to get them to sit where you wanted them and looking at least in the right direction and staying put long enough for you to take a picture and the owner holding a ball on top of your head, to get the dogs attention, and just hoping the dog doesn’t decide to make a leap for the ball so we all end up in a pile on the floor with the dog on top of me while trying to keep my camera in hand, fortunately this scenario never happened but it might one day.
This is just a small sample of the images from an entertaining day photographing dogs.
I was offered the chance to come and take some photographs at a local bands practice session, as I had said I was wanting to expand my music photography portfolio. This is just a few of the images from the session.
Band Members, Colin Lynch, Geoff Rose, Micky Pearson, Peter Atherton, Neil Nattris
I have had the privilege of going to do some photographic work for Community Campus 87, who run a variety of projects focused upon young person centred development, and on housing services for the homeless. So far the work I have done has mainly been taking images of their staff at desks and a few head shots, so they can update their website and other literature and also images of their properties in different stages of repair and refurbishment. One of the nice things about working with Community Campus87 is finding out about there day today work and their future plans are, it is nice to see how they are helping people from disadvantaged backgrounds and helping them turn their lives around. One of the things that struck me when meeting the staff was how positive they were about everything, and the hard work they put in to help people.
I am always looking for new challenges with my photography, I like shooting action images but I do shoot other subjects and genres as well.
After a conversation with a Francis Jones a boxer I asked about taking some images of him while training, unfortunately Francis was already working with another photographer but he said he knew someone and he would put me in touch with them, to see if they would be interested in working with me on what I will call a project. The boxer he put me in touch with was Hannah a twenty-two year old, one of the first things that struck me when I met Hannah was the smile that puts you at ease as soon as you meet her. So we go inside the boxing club and sit down to talk, about what I am looking for in images, and to find out a bit more about Hannah, and one of the things that struck me is how focused she is and driven towards her goals. We talked for about forty-five minutes and arranged to meet the following week to capture some images, I asked whether her coaches would be fine with me coming along and taking pictures while she trained and with that she said “yes it will be fine”, so I said we better check with your coaches that they are happy for me to attend a training session, in walks one of the coaches you can tell he is a boxer, not saying I was nervous maybe a bit apprehensive as he might just say no get out and don’t come back. But my fears were unfounded he was very pleasant and happy for me to come along and take photographs of Hannah training.
So the day arrives for me to go to the evening training session the gym is not far from where I live so a short car journey is all it took I pull up outside and I can see inside the club lots of bodies moving around, nerves take a hold a little bit, not long after I arrived so did Hannah with the infectious smile she says hello and I follow her inside, there is a lady on the door collecting subs for training , Hannah pays her subs and I say hello to the lady and walk in then the voice pipes up “are you here to train”, in a joking voice I say do I look like need the exercise which I probably do and quickly explain that I am there to take some photographs of Hannah training. So I am through the door and I feel like all the eyes are focused on me a stranger in the camp but I think I was probably being very self-conscious, I say hello to the coach I had seen the other night and quietly say hello to other people not wanting to look out of place but with a camera bag it was hard not to stand out I was getting a few quizzical looks from people probably wondering what I was doing. So it’s time for training feeling like I was intruding on the club a bit I moved around watching my every step so I made sure that I didn’t get in the way of anybody’s training session as I thought that would be the quickest way to get ejected from the club, but as time went on I felt like they were accommodating me by making sure they didn’t get in my way. So the first photographic session went well, I have to say I have never photographed anything quite as hard, as one minute you are focused then like lightning Hannah has moved to a different spot throwing punches and working as hard as the men in the club. I have to say a big thank you to the boxing club for allowing me in and I thought it was very nice for them to invite me back anytime I want, so I will be doing another session with Hannah on Monday night, and will be looking to do some other photographic work with Hannah, in the coming months.
More images can be viewed at http://www.sdbphotography.uk/
Sometimes keeping the image simple can work, letting the subject speak for itself, in a way that the photograph draws the eye into the subject. Sometimes simple clean images work well for certain subjects.
So I did my first fashion and model shoot with xtraordinary photography run by Chris Ord, I am moving away from landscape photography as I am finding carrying all the gear needed across hills and other places is getting to much and having an adverse effect on my medical conditions. So after a long think of what area I would enjoy as much as I did with landscapes I settled on portrait and fashion, I wouldn’t say I was a person who has great confidence and able to approach people easily, but portrait photography I have done in the past I have really enjoyed and thought I need to step out my comfort zone and go after this as a new challenge and a way of moving my photography forward so a new chapter begins and once again I have managed to stop my medical conditions dictating to me how I live my life. A special thanks to the models, for their patience, the ladies who did the make up and hair, and a big thank you to Chris and Alexander Ord for all the help and advice with the photography on the day
Myself and my youngest son decided to have a look too the local BMX track, in the afternoon. As we travelled in the car getting closer to the track the skies were black and angry and it looked like they had already had heavy rain as the roads were covered in huge puddles. We decided to carry on and check out the track, once we arrived the track was wet with a few large puddles of water with the skies threading to open up again, but we decided to stay for a bit and have a ride around, taking a few pictures on my phone as he rode the Burms and curves. Always looking for the image that will stand out from the rest having noticed a nice sized puddle I asked Neo to ride into the puddle and just sit as we waited for the water to settle and here we have the image quite pleased with it and we are planning another trip back with the camera to catch some more action orientated images