Further commitment to better quality pictures

I’ve bought the new Canon 16-35mm f2.8L mk3 lens – a significant investment but one that’s necessary to have the best image quality available.   As one of my favourite and most used lenses for all types of work no other manufacturer has a lens of this quality at this focal length.  It’s truly an amazing lens!

Facebook and their right to use your pictures

I recently had a discussion about posting links to Facebook groups (ie. via Flickr) instead of posting directly to Facebook.  Some Facebook group owners don’t like links being posted, maybe because links are traps for unsuspecting users to have their hard drive wiped, their bank accounts emptied and their children sold to slavery?
 
What’s actually wrong with posting a link to (for example) a Flickr.com page where a large thumbnail of the picture appears in the Facebook post anyway?
 
Did you know that by uploading/posting photos and videos to Facebook gives Facebook a license to use your content in any way it sees fit? And the license goes beyond that – it can transfer or sub-license its rights over a user’s content to another company or organisation if needed.  More on, Facebook’s license does not end upon the deactivation or deletion of a user’s account.
 
As a professional photographer I’ve had images stolen and used without my permission so I tend to put watermarks on my pictures where possible (not that it’ll stop people determined to steal your image).  And usually instead of uploading them directly to Facebook I link them to an external photo sharing website which is free to use and more importantly is also safe to use.
 
If the owners of these groups insist that pictures have to be uploaded directly then surely they must also ensure to warn their users about Facebook using your pictures as it sees fit?

A boost from new equipment!

I invested in some new top of the line equipment a little while ago now and I’m very pleased with the results I’ve been getting from the Canon 1DX mk2, 600EX II-RT flash and ST-E3-RT transmitter.

The new kit gives me greater flexibility in difficult conditions where others might struggle.  This really is the best photography equipment on the market at the moment and I’m proud to be able to be using this in my work.

Hensingham awards 2016

Hensingham Primary School held their annual Awards Evening which recognised pupils’ work and social skills at the school.  The awards were presented by Jolan Gidney-Craigen (The Voice finalist) and Luke Reeson, a winner of four medals at the recent Invictus Games.

Evie Pilkington won an award for outstanding contribution to the school (in memory of Carol Brown) and Year 6 pupil Ethan Musgrave won the friendship award in memory of Joan Greggain.

I have put a YouTube video up of Jolan singing “Wishing Well” – please click here for the video.

Helping to re-brand a local school

Aspatria’s Beacon Hill school are rebranding their material across the range, from their website to brochures to signage and they chose me to help them do it.  It was a great opportunity to help a really nice school who have an emphasis on supporting the relationships between teachers and pupils.  It was a privilege to be able to assist.

My 10 tips for photographing fireworks

With the International Whitehaven Festival starting this week I posted in a recent thread on Flickr about some tips on taking firework photos.    I hope this is useful…

10 top firework tips from me;

  1. Use a tripod!  And also use a remote shutter release so that you don’t transmit vibrations when you press the shutter button on the camera with your finger.
  2. Make sure you have a full battery and lots and lots of memory card space (obvious but you’ll be surprised!).
  3.  If your camera struggles to focus in low light, set it up before hand while it’s light and switch your lens to Manual focus and don’t touch it.
  4. Don’t use auto modes (including Aperture and Shutter priorities). Use manual.  And turn the flash off 🙂
  5. Shooting in raw instead of JPG will give you better pictures. But be aware that raw will use a lot more memory card space and you may need to process each shot individually depending on what software you use.
  6. Exposure?  Get the right amount of ambient light with the shutter speed, a few seconds should be enough for each shot. Adjust the aperture to get the exposure on the fireworks right and use your ISO to control the overall brightness of the scene..
  7. Don’t use a long exposure because the results will just be a complete mess of whited-out over-exposed-ness. Instead, try to time each main burst from start to finish.
  8. Don’t be afraid to blend two or more shot together afterwards to get the shot you need.
  9. Don’t get in anyone’s way!
  10. Don’t forget to enjoy the show! I’ve shot loads of fireworks where I’ve concentrated so much on the pictures I didn’t get time to enjoy it.

Gaiety Cinema pictures cause a stir

It seems that my pictures which ran in The Whitehaven News have provoked a good reaction!
Page 10 of this weeks’ paper (23rd December 2009) features letters from the public who having seen my pictures are backing up the plea to re-open the cinema, especially in light of the Workington bridge disaster which makes it difficult to get to the local multiplex.

There is even a Facebook group called Re-open the Gaiety Cinema – please join up!

My full Gaiety picture set can be viewed here; http://www.flickr.com/photos/horrgakx/sets/72157622745861702/

This is a link to the feature on the Whitehaven News’ own website.
Here’s a jpg copy of the feature in The Whitehaven News (hosted on Flickr).
Here is a link to The Whitehaven News letter page.

Whitehaven News - front of Section 2