Oh how time flies

Dear Diary

It has been several weeks (egads, it’s been a few months!) since my last entry. I apologise for not up dating you more regularly. So what has been happening that has kept me away from the internet for so long?

Thing that has kept me away from the internet excuse #1: The wedding.

Last year I decided that to truly understand the wedding process I should experience it first hand. So after lots of planning and many trips I married my now lovely wife Pam in the idyllic snow fields of Guthega Alpine Village. Normally I wouldn’t put other wedding photographer’s photos on my site, but I am happy to make an exception. Thank you to Candice (and Emily) of O Photography for taking the photos and putting up with the two of us.

Some snap shots from our wedding at Guthega:

Flowers  - Our snow wedding at Guthega

Preparation for the snow ball fight - Our snow wedding at Guthega

The view - Our snow wedding at Guthega

Fun in the snow - Our snow wedding at Guthega

Snow ball fight - Our snow wedding at Guthega

Snow ball fight #2 - Our Snow wedding at Guthega

The wedding procession - Our snow wedding at Guthega

The rings - Our snow wedding at Guthega

The beautiful Bride - Our snow wedding at Guthega

Thing that has kept me away from the internet excuse #2: The house.

So naturally after getting married we wanted to move in together. Unfortunately neither of our residences was really suitable for our needs. So we bought a new house. In reality we had been looking for over 12 months, and trying to balance weddings and open homes every weekend for 12 months is a long and arduous task. So with the old studio now happily rented I have been undertaking the task of establishing the new premises in anticipation of it’s grand opening.

Thing that has kept me away from the internet excuse #3: The twins.

Lastly and probably the most exciting, I am happy to announce the imminent arrival of the twins. I won’t go into too much detail yet, as I’ll keep all that information for a separate post.

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The man with the hoe: Photo 6 of 52

The man with the hoe

Photo 6 of my Project 52. The man with the hoe

Photo 6 of 2: The man with the hoe

This weeks theme is based on the poem ‘The man with the hoe’ by Edwin Markham and the painting ‘L’Homme à la houe’ by Jean-François Millet (II).
'L'Homme à la houe' by Jean-François Millet (II)

For this weeks theme I thought I’d re-interpret the the painting into a more personal photographic rendition.

“Is this the Thing the Lord God made and gave
To have dominion over sea and land;
To trace the stars and search the heavens for power;
To feel the passion of Eternity?”
Ah stuff it, I’m out of here…

Photo 6b of my Project 52. The man with the hoe - alternate

The man with the hoe - alternate

Next weeks theme: Good eats!
Previous theme: Etiology

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Etiology: Photo 5 of 52

Etiology

EDIT: Having had a few moments spare I’ve managed to catch up on a few photos. So this week was Etiology: the study of causation, or origination. Often used to refer to the study of why things occur, or even the reasons behind the way that things act. So I thought a quick self portrait trying to examine what is behind the camera would be appropriate. Enjoy…

Photo 5 of Project 52: Etiology

Etiology, The study behind things

Next weeks theme: The man with the hoe
Last weeks theme: Annals of Connacht

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Annals of Connacht: Photo 4 of 52

Annals of Connacht: Photo 4 of 52

Annals of Connacht

Hark to the deeds of great heros in the Annals of Connacht

This weeks theme was initially a daunting one, but the idea came to me in a flash of inspiration. The idea behind this image is the imagination of a scholar in the dark ages writing illuminated manuscripts of the heroic deeds of heros and the evil they have vanquished.

On a completely different tangent, and interesting fact; the book used for this image is a 150 year old bible that is a family heirloom. It was the bible of Rev Micheal Henry Becher who arrived in Australia in 1854, arriving on the super clipper “Champion of the seas” after a 75 day voyage. He became the Rector of St James Cathedral in Melbourne, and to this day there is a plarque commemorating his service in the cathedral. Oh yeah!

Technical stuff:

This is a composite of two elements.

The scholar

The first is the scholar at the table. This is lit with a single strobe directly above the book and aimed directly down. The beam was zoomed in to give a tight pool of light. The figure is lit using the reflected light from the pages of the book.

The ghost

The ghost uses a single strobe with beauty dish set high above the figure and in line with the camera.

Next weeks theme: Etiology (ok this one has me stumped!)
Last weeks theme: Gordo Space Monkey

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Gordo, Space monkey: photo 3 of 52

Gordo, Space monkey: photo 3 of Project 52

Even as a young monkey, Gordo dreamed of the stars

Week three

So here is week three’s photo. Gordo, space monkey. Gordo was one of the first monkey to fly into space in a Jupiter rocket. But, due a technical malfunction in the rocket, the parachute failed to open. Poor Gordo and his capsule were never seen again.

The idea behind this photo was to show Gordo as if he was a young child, gazing up at the stars, and like a small child would dream and pretend he was an astronaut. He has his pretend rocket and helmet (that were made out of cardboard). One day Gordo would be the first man (Monkey) in space. But little did he know of the dangers.

The technical stuff:

This photo was taken at night time (for obvious creative reasons) in the back yard of our lovely suburban canberra home. The camera was set to 400 iso, f9 and a 30 sec exposure to allow the camera to capture the star sky. I then walked around the scene with my trusty flash and manually triggered flashes (1/32 sec power) painting in sections of the foreground that I wanted illuminated; including gordo and his rocket.

Then using a bit of tweaking in photohop to adjust the contrast in the sky and add some lovely NASA insignia to the rocket and helmet.

Next week: The Annals of Connacht
Last weeks theme: The Goblin Tower

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The Goblin Tower – Photo 2 of 52

So week two’s theme for the 52 project was The Goblin Tower…

The Goblin Tower - Photo 2 of 52

The Goblin Tower

(The photo is quite dark, but there is detail in the shadows – trust me I was using a calibrated monitor and it is there. If you can’t see the photo you may need to adjust your monitor).

I had a few ideas for this photograph, but after shooting a test photos it became quite clear that this assignment was going to be tougher that I originally thought.

So with the photography dead line rapidly approaching (and quite a few chores to complete before I could dedicate my time to the photo project) I rapidly hatched an alternate concept.

Looking back at Sprague de Camp’s original novel cover I thought I’d create a similar feel with a barely dressed barbarian as the focus. Not having a muscular barbarian looking photographic model to work with I had to use myself. Looking like a plump hero I decided to apply a bit of photoshop wizardry and transform our hero into a green goblin.

The backdrop is a combination of the oval across from my house to provide the grass, trees and clouds (although I think all but the clouds remain in the final photo); a tunnel from a electric train set, and a hand made model house.

The technical stuff

The models were shot with a single strobe set to 1/32 power. This was place high above the models and directly behind them. This was to create a moonlit feel to the landscape. The goblin was lit by two strobes. 10:00 and 2:00, both aimed directly at the backdrop. A white reflector was then place in front of the model about 3m away. (I’ll add some lighting diagrams as soon as I find where I put my diagram folder).

Next weeks theme: Gordo, space monkey
Last weeks theme: Emergency Landing

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Emergency landing: photo 1 of 52

Emergency landing: Photo 1 of Project 52

My friend Ed and I came up with and idea for me to undertake a new photography project to push myself outside of my photographic comfort zones, and to take more photographs . We have devised a list of 52 themes (one for each week) and it is our goal to create a photograph each week that is either referencing this theme or related to it.

So this is my week one photograph. So far I am quite happy with my progress, having had several ideas on how to complete this weeks assignment ‘Emergency landing’.

This week idea is inspired by the 1941 film ‘Emergency landing’ which is a spy-fi film (no I had not realised that there was such a thing as spy-fi either), where by the hero of the film has invented a device to remote control an aeroplane. As an avid lover of all things RC how could I resist using something RC. If you look closely in the background of the photo you can see the front of my RC helicopter in the window about to make an emergency landing into my living room.

This photo was a combination of two images. The first photo is a shot of your lovely author running from some ominous landing lights.

Lighting Setup Emergency landing part one

The second photo is a simple over head lighting of the copter for use in the background:

For those who would like to play at home these are the rules:

  • One week allocated to each theme (Monday to midnight Sunday) – no jumping ahead and working on other weeks topics before the allocated times!
  • You have the freedom to interpret the topic/theme – try and provide a brief synopsis/statement explaining the connection.
  • Any size/dimension for photographs. Maximum of 3 photographs per topic.
  • All photos must be accompanied by a lighting diagram or at least a description of the lighting/techniques used in the image.
  • Must be all original work including original audio.
  • If due to exceptional circumstances a video/photo may be submitted by midnight the following day at the latest.
  • Small amount of stock photos/video footage may be used if personally sourced footage is not practically feasible.

Next weeks theme is: The goblin tower.

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Treasure hunt

This morning I was out and about early, scouting out some new locations for an upcoming corporate photo shoot that I’m doing on Monday. After several uninspiring locations I can across this:

To put the building in some perspective, my head didn’t reach the bottom of the window so I wasn’t able to look in (the tall grey ‘box’ at the left of the building is roughly human height).

To me it has the feeling of what a child’s drawing of a house would look like if it were to be constructed in real life.

Inside view:

Now comes the hard part, what to use the space for…

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Quick self portrait

Today was a good day. Started out really early when the annoying alarm sounded. After chugging down some coffee, I headed out to the War Memorial to meet the wonderful staff of Tiffen & Co to take some corporate portraits after they had won the Boutique Mortgage Broker of the Year 2011. W00t, you rock!

Having wrapped up the shoot at 9:30, I headed across the road and collected some slide film that I had dropped in to develop and had completely forgotten about. Not having any idea what this roll of film contained I was stoked to find lots of lovely Holga snow photos (I promise I’ll post some up as soon as I scan them). Today was awesome and it wasn’t even 10am yet.

So retiring back home in front of the computer, I managed to get the morning’s photos done and even have time for a bit of fun with my new flash triggers. And here’s the result.

So, if anyone can come up with a clever quote for this photo I’ll add it as the official by-line for the photo.

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Yay, Transformers

I thought I’d share with you a photo that a friend sent me today. This piece of outstanding artwork was spotted this morning in the heart of Canberra. Although I have to background about who, what, or why, I can marvel at the awesomeness that it is. Finally, some Canberra artwork that isn’t lame or have some sort of perversive sexual undertone (I’m looking at you Belconnen owl).

If you have any further information feel free to add it to the comments below.

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