Happy Mistake Making

We’re well into summer in Australia which means its the season for hot rod shows and show and shines, which seem to be every weekend and they attract people from all walks of life and some of those people have clearly made some pretty bad choices and mistakes along the way. Mistakes like the mullet haircut (why?), poor clothing choices (pockets go on the inside) and rubbish tattoos which led me to think about mistakes I’ve made in photography and I was about to make another without realising it.

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Originally the plan was to photograph hot rods and cars as they cruised passed using a technique called panning. This technique requires slow shutter speeds and the subject needs to be tracked as it passes by. You also need to give consideration to the background as it may distract the viewer away from the subject and the one criticsal technique you need is patience as you shoot because you will more than likely need to adjust shutter speeds on the fly to perfect your shot.

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It wasn’t until the images were downloaded that I realised that none of the subjects were in focus. This is a direct result of my unwillingess to wear my glasses when photographing and resulted in blurry images. I firmly believe that If I had worn them I would have realised that the shutter speed to needed to be increased to ensure the subject is in crisp focus. Lesson learnt…..again

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Even though the subjects are not in focus these images convey movement, exposed properly and the location is, to me at least pretty good. Overall I actually like a couple of them however I am yet to determine if they are print worthy.

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You may not be able to see it but these lovely gentlemen were flashing their rubbish tattoos as their mullets were flapping in the breeze whilst showing me a rarely seen bird but what does stand out is their incredibly bad choice of car.

The key take away for me was to (wear my glasses) not to be afraid to experiment with the camera settings and shoot in manual. I also realised that every mistake I make is another lesson learned and hopefully that mistake won’t be made again in the future.

But we also need to remember that skills are learnt by trial and error. This is the method that we as photographers and creative types learn and grow.

So get out there and make mistakes.

No Planet B!

DSC03609Firstly, your safety is paramount. If any protest or protesters become violent towards you or others, including the police interacting with protesters, leave. Your safety is more important and must have a higher value than any photo you take and your safety always come first. No photo is worth you being injured or hurt.

DSC03623Travelling, mainly for work, I had decided that the photos taken during my trip would be to show my family the famous sights of London with no intention of sharing, so I was surprised to stumble across a what looked like a protest,  a peaceful protest, on a bridge, a famous bridge (Westminister Bridge) in London. What an opportunity!

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Pushing through the crowds trying to get a feel of what the protest was about I found that there were plenty of photographic opportunities with good light and everyone seemed pretty happy, might be the whacky weed that was in the air, to have their photos taken.

DSC03627Some people will struggle with my next comment, I selected Auto on my camera and started shooting. Why not? Camera companies spend millions of dollars developing incredibly small computers and sensors to work everything out so why not select auto.

DSC03617Documentary and street photography are genres that I have always been attracted to, I find them to be challenging as you have little to no control of what is about to happen and how you capture those moments can be a challenge in itself. Ultimately you want people to feel connected to your images and to possibly inspire them in some small way.

DSC03630Please remember, if you do decide to photograph a protest, remember your safety must come first over any photo opportunities.

Happy Shooting

Are We Ever Truly Alone ?

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the Rip Curl Pro Surf Comp at the iconic Bells Beach here in Victoria earlier this year and I was just like the rest of crowd that took up every conceivable spot on or near the beach to watch and be swept up in the emotion on the day. I managed to capture over 700 photos, some blurry and some went straight to the delete folder but there were a number of keepers. However there is one image that I keep going back to and staring at, and I stare at it for several minutes as well.

 

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World Surfing Chanpion, Steph Gilmore answers questions via a microphone while a drone watches over her.

 

We live in a world where we are connected to each and everyone through the use of smartphones and social media. Which is why every time I look at this photo, I ask myself and we ever truly alone? how do we get time to ourselves? Time alone to sit and think, time to think about where life may lead you or just to think of others like family and friends.

And that’s why I continue to stare at this photo of Steph Gilmore, Australian World Surfing Champion answering questions while a drone watches over her as she waits for the wave that will propel her to greatness.

Happy Shooting

P.S This photo looks so much better on the big screen than it does on Instagram